Monday, December 07, 2009

Category Straddlers

I'm feeling very mellow about the dread topic of 'category fraud' this year. I guess the Academy's refusal to ignore that "supporting" call on Kate Winslet in The Reader last time around gave me hope that other people are over it now that it's egregious misuse has become such a regular occurence. At any rate, there's always been a fine line for some roles between what we'd define as "supporting" and "lead". I'd love to know your opinion of the following roles and where you'd place them if you'd never heard a thing about "campaigns"
  • Melanie Laurent, Christoph Waltz and Brad Pitt in Inglourious Basterds
  • Anthony Mackie in The Hurt Locke
  • Woody Harrelson in The Messenger
  • Christian McKay in Me and Orson Welles
  • Jake Gyllenhaal in Brothers

If you've seen the movies, I hope you'll help me with these tiebreaker cases.


amir_uk said...

Melanie Laurent - Actress
Brad Pitt - Actor
Christoph Waltz - Supporting Actor

Anthony Mackie - Supporting Actor

Christian McKay - Supporting Actor

Haven't seen The Messenger or Brothers yet.

Anonymous said...

All supporting in Inglourious Basterds (Pitt most of all!)
haven't seen Brothers, but if it's anything like the original, Gyllenhaal should be lead, no?


Chase Kahn said...

"Inglourious Basterds" is a film with no lead role - that's Tarantino's horse.

Mackie is obviously supporting and Jake Gyllenhaal is tough but I don't think there's a lead role in that film, either. (By the way, I also think that was an exceptionally underrated performance in an otherwise 'meh' film.)

amir_uk said...

Yeah, actually come to think of it, Pitt is Supporting in Inglourious too. The only lead is Laurent - because she's in all the film's acts, right? - but even then I wouldn't be scandalised to see her cited by some in Supporting. (Though I still think she should be in Leading.)

Markku Ylipalo said...

Mackie is definitely supporting. It's a sizable role, at least in the first half, but his impact on the movie lessens as it goes along. Basically, he's there to yell "Hogaaan!" at Renner's character whenever he does something crazy.

I would say, actually, that Pitt, Laurent and Waltz are all leads, even if the first is the nominal star of the show. But I can accept the other two as supporting, too.

NicksFlickPicks said...

I think Laurent and Waltz are leads; I'd waffle on Pitt, but to me he's also a lead. But as I've probably said too many times, I don't think that a movie lacking a single "main characters" as the same thing as not having leads.

I wondered about Harrelson, but given the long period when he recedes and we're only with Foster, or with Foster and Morton, I think of him as supporting.

I think Mackie is a lead.

I haven't seen Brothers yet because no one's given me a reason yet, and I don't see Me and OW till tomorrow.

NicksFlickPicks said...

But obviously, you should do what you want! And I get the greyness of these cases, although it's hardest for me to think of Laurent and Waltz as "supporting."

Casey said...

all the inglourious memebers are supporting in my opinion

David Sims said...

I'm a firm believer that movies almost always have leads, and that it's not always about screentime, but impact and theme. Pitt and Laurent are definitely the leads of Basterds. Waltz is pretty much a co-lead, but I'd call him supporting anyway because he's more of a catalyst setting every other plot into action. Things seem centered around him, but he's not the center, I guess.

Mackie is supporting, no doubt. The movie isn't really about him, certainly not in any pivotal way. There's only one lead character in The Hurt Locker.

Haven't seen Welles yet, but Christian McKay sounds very similar to the others. Brothers, Gyllenhaal feels like a co-lead, but I haven't seen that either.

RJ said...

Putting Brad Pitt in Supporting ... I dunno. I think in the original intention of that category that is unthinkable, but it's been warped for a while.

Leslacs said...

A category placement i'll never understand in both the oscars and your filmbitch awards is Javier Bardem as supporting in NCfOM. He's in it quite a lot and soooooooooooo pivotal. I say he's lead.

Alex Constantin said...

Melanie Laurent and Brad Pitt feel mostly supporting to me. I don't think Inglourious Basterds has a real leading character.
Just as I don't think John Travolta was leading in Pulp Fiction... It's not a case as serious as a Robert Altman film, but it borders it nicely. Christoph Waltz is more debatable. But I'd also go with supporting.

The Awards Prognosticator said...

Everyone in "Inglourious Besterds" is Supporting, so is Anthony Mackie.

Ann McD said...

I would definitely say everyone is supporting in Inglourious Basterds. The main character in the film is really Quentin Tarantino whose role is the storyteller.
I also think Anthony Mackie is supporting since his character is primarily used to contrast with Renner.

FrenchGirl said...

we can see Pitt 20 min max in "inglorious basterds";he's a cameo for me

Waltz & Laurent are lead players for me

Deborah said...

Aw, hell, amir, don't second guess yourself! I'm with your first call:

Melanie Laurent - Actress
Brad Pitt - Actor
Christoph Waltz - Supporting Actor

Jim T said...

I've only seen the Basterds and I think they're all suppoting.


i guess i'm more interested in the reasons 'why' than in blank statements.

I'm really confused about MACKIE for instance. he's in virtually every scene isn't he? But the movie is about Renner. (Like Chase why do you think Mackie is "obviously" supporting?)

whereas CHRISTIAN MCKAY is missing quite often but the movie is often TOTALLY about him. Or maybe he seems like a lead sort of because the other and definitive lead is so flimsy?

pomme 20 minutes equal CAMEO now? yikes.

leslacs i'm not perfect and I have made two supporting calls that i can't really stick by after the fact. Not exactly sure what i was thinking. But at least I try caring abotu what it all means! :)

Noecito said...

Pitt is lead obviously. He's married to Angelina.
Isn't that how it works?

Morgan Leigh Davies said...

I think Mackie is obviously supporting, too. It's not about screentime (in this case at least), it's about the story. He is there to support Jeremy Renner. Renner's the one we're fascinated by (not that Mackie's character wasn't interesting or the performance anything other than great... he's just not the center of attention).

Jim T said...

I based my argument on screen time. i really don't know if the film is about him or her or whatever. If it is about someone, it is about Waltz, Laurent and Roths's hotness. Not Pitt, who by the way is supporting since Angelina leads and her partner supports :p

Jude said...

For Inglourious Basterds it's sort of like the Friends cast with the Emmys. Either all go in supporting or all go in lead, because they each had an equal amount of story/screen time (or practically equal). I think I'd go with supporting for each of them, but I could change my mind.

Fig said...

Inglourious Basterds is an ensemble piece and should be treated as such by placing everyone in the supporting categories.

Derek said...

I think in the case of Inglourious Basterds, the structure makes it difficult so you must analyze each character's impact on the plot. In that case, Laurent is clearly your main lead - the entire film exists for and because of her character. (Could you pull off the film without Pitt's character and still have roughly the same outcome? Sure. Without Laurent? No way.) I would say Waltz's Landa is your second most important character, but this is where things get tricky. He appears in the most chapters (featured prominently in chapters 1, 3, and 5, with a brief appearance at the end of chapter 4), but as with Pitt, it's plausible to omit much of that character's impact on the film and still have roughly the same outcome. (I'm not saying Pitt and Waltz aren't valuable to Inglourious Basterds - they are.)

Having said that, I personally call all of them supporting (particularly Pitt - for me, there's no question about that call). For Laurent, it's a matter of screen time. She appears briefly at the end of chapter 1, features prominently in chapter 3, and about half of chapter 5 (which is quite long, but half doesn't turn out to be that much) - plus, given the length of chapter 4, she has roughly the same amount of screen time as Diane Kruger - and I don't think anyone is thinking about lead there. So, with Laurent - Basterd's true lead, if any - in supporting, it's only fair that Waltz belongs there, too.

ThaDropDownBear said...

Anthony Mackie originally was a lead for me but now it feels like his entire role in he film is more support so a supporting campaign makes sense. Melanie Laurent seems to be the central character of Inglourious Basterds however there are several intervening stories so I suppose a supporting campaign wouldn't be too incorrect. However Brad Pitt is supporting, legitly supporting. There was no male lead in that movie.

Amir said...

Inglourious Basterds has no lead actor/actress. They're all supporting, that's just how the ensemble works in that film.

Anthony Mackie for me was as prominent as Jeremy Renner. i mean i understand that he could easily be counted as supporting, but they could have campaigned for him otherwise too i guess.

McGuire said...

I would classify all the Inglorious Basterds folks as supporting. Laurent's lead campaign saddens me, because it greatly reduces her chances (Although I understand they were small to begin with)of getting awards traction. I've become rather enamored of her, and need to see some of her French work.

Matt T said...

A lead performance is one that is at the forefront of the story. IB has two major plotlines that eventually come together at the end. One of those plotlines is the story of Shoshanna, which makes Melanie Laurent lead. The other plotline is the story of the Basterds, which makes Brad Pitt lead. Both story lines are SUPPORTED by the Landa character, which makes Christoph Waltz supporting. It's not category fraud.

Mackie is definitely supporting in The Hurt Locker. I'm not sure how you could argue otherwise.

Robert Hamer said...

So Nat, what are your two supporting calls that you "can't really stick by after the fact?"

Would they be Javier Bardem (which a strong case could be made for either way, in my opinion, same as Christoph Waltz) and Jeff Daniels (who really was the lead in The Squid and the Whale, though I empathize with the stretch you made to give SOME kind of recognition to a great performance)?

Logan said...

It's been a while since I've seen the Hurt Locker, but if my memory serves correct, once Renner is introduced, I don't think there is a scene Mackie is in that Renner isn't in, while there are a few scenes, and even a couple small story lines, that Renner is involved in that don't involve Mackie. I think Mackie's is a truly supporting performance (and a very good one at that).

As for Basterds...I think they either have to be considered all lead, or all supporting. Too much gray area there for me, I'll admit.

DJ said...

The Inglourious Basterds kids: all supporting. It's an ensemble piece.

Anthony Mackie: Supporting

Jake Gyllenhaal: lead, like Portman and Maguire

Scene-Stealers said...

Melanie Laurent, Christoph Waltz are supporting, but only Waltz stands a chance.

Even though his role is equal to theirs--he's the star, he sold the movie--so Brad Pitt would be in the lead category. But he won't get it.

Anthony Mackie in The Hurt Locker is supporting too, and I would love to see that. Fair chance, I'd say.

Haven't seen Woody Harrelson in The Messenger yet, but I hear Ben Foster will get it if anyone does.

Christian McKay in Me and Orson Welles will get supporting too.

Jake Gyllenhaal in Brothers - doesn't matter. Lionsgate isn't pushing it at all...


Robert Hamer -- those are the two. frankly i don't know what i was thinking. sometimes i also question the wisdom of MARIA BELLO in supporting (for A History of Violence) but that one doesn't bother me when i see it.

the other two I'm like errr....

but at least i've never done anything so stupid as to claim that Jamie Foxx was supporting in Collateral ;)

Ryan Ray said...

I think there is a good case for supporting for everyone in Inglourious Basterds, but I would personally say supporting for all except Laurent for Actress and Waltz for Actor. Brad Pitt really isn't in the film as much as the other two, or at least it seemed that way. Laurent and Waltz appear to drive the picture. I wonder what the screen time is for each actor? Waltz and Laurent have the biggest impact on the proceedings of the film, so I'd say lead.

Still can't really comment on the others...

The Pretentious Know it All said...

I would say that Waltz, Laurent and Pitt are all supporting in "Inglourious Basterds." The film is an ensemble piece and none of the performers really clock enough screentime to warrant a lead placement.

Mackie is supporting. I have yet to see the Orson Welles movie or "The Messenger" so I cannot comment on that.

Regarding "Brothers," Gyllenhaal is definitely the lead (though I don't think this film will factor into the awards race having now seen it). What's more ridiculous is that they're campaigning Natalie Portman in the supporting category, which makes zero sense to me.

Anonymous said...

I think an important determining factor, that can't be true for all films especially ensemble pieces, is whether the actor has any alone time. If we spend time with just one character or follow them for an extended period of time when they are not with a Lead than they are most likely not supporting players but quasi lead to Lead actors. Screen time also comes into play and whether their story line shows growth not just effecting the main acr of the film. Thats my 2 cents

Peter said...

Of those movies, I've only seen the Hurt Locker and Mackie is definitely supporting. He's the Nick Carraway of that movie... he's in every scene, but it's not about him. He's just observing, reacting, reflecting. Renner is the lead.

Michael B. said...

They are all supporting:

Melanie Laurent, Christoph Waltz and Brad Pitt in Inglourious Basterds

Anthony Mackie in The Hurt Locker

Woody Harrelson in The Messenger

Christian McKay in Me and Orson Welles

Jake Gyllenhaal in Brothers

Ivan said...

I understand a supporting role as a character that helps to know more about main characters, in some cases the story itself like Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Inglourious Basterds.
Time on screen doesn´t really determinate category for a role.
For example Maria Bello in A History of Violence is in almost every scene but her character is truly supporting in my opinion.

I disagree with some of your past category choices like:

Leading that I think are supporting
Clive Owen/Closer
Rachel Weisz/The Constant Gardener
Casey Affleck/Jesse James
Heath Ledger/The Dark Knight

Danny King said...

I'd put Harrelson in supporting because that is primarily Foster's story. We know much more about his character, his backstory, whereas we don't know much about Harrelson's character.

I agree with most people when they say that Inglourious Basterds is a true ensemble piece. Every involved is supporting.

Haven't yet seen Orson Welles or Brothers, but from what I've read elsewhere, Brothers seems to be the film causing the most controversy in this debate.

adelutza said...

So if a film does not have a definite lead - like Inglorious..., why would the whole cast be called supporting? Who do they support? I think everybody should be lead' of course I'm referring at the Laurent. Pitt, Walts trio, not everybody.
As for Brothers, I think that all three characters have the same weight in the story ; if any one would be missing, we wouldn't have the story.

Unknown said...

I've seen some of (not all of) Brothers, and from what I have seen, I'd put Natalie Portman as the lead and everyone else Supporting

As for Inglourious Basterds, Laurent is the only lead IMHO

McKay looks like a lead, but I haven't seen the film... ???

Mackie has enough screen time to be a lead, but it wasn't really his story. Supporting


@julian... Jake as "the" lead really? One of the things i found so strange about the remake is that Tobey becomes the main character and the wife recedes. I don't belive that a film can only have one lead but if you did it'd have to be Tobey in the american version. And it'd be Connie in the Danish version

this topic is interesting to me sometimes (when I'm not mad abotu it) because it does offer a peek iinto how differently people perceive any narrative artform. Though maybe there wouldn't be much difference if there were no such thing as Oscar campaigns and people didn't argue about it.


Anonymous said...

Waltz, Laurent and Pitt should be supporting. Not only is Besterds an ensemble piece, but the real "star" of the film isn't any of the performances, it's Tarantino's direction.

Anthony Mackie is definitely supporting. Renner is the clear lead of the film.

Harrelson is supporting in the sense that Catherine Zeta-Jones was supporting in Chicago. He's in a lot of the film, he's the most dynamic character in the film, the character that inadvertently becomes the catalyst to a lot of the lead's journey but ultimately the film isn't about him.

Can't say about McKay or Gyllenhaal, though I'd campaign Gyllenhaal in lead with Maguire and Portman.

gabrieloak said...

Would all be supporting?
Not sure about Jake because Brothers is a film where all three stars have equal weight.
Anyway, Jake isn't going to be nominated so why worry.

Christian McKay dominates Me and Orson Welles but I think Zak Efron is actually the lead of the film since it's his life that is changed by meeting Orson Welles.

Paul Outlaw said...

Melanie Laurent = could go either way

Christoph Waltz = lead

Brad Pitt = supporting

Anthony Mackie = could go either way

Woody Harrelson = supporting

Jake Gyllenhaal = lead

Paul Outlaw said...


Laurent and Waltz are the main characters IMO but the episodic nature of the film affects that perception; Pitt's character is a "starring" role but doesn't have any depth.

Mackie is a co-lead but Renner's role is more foregrounded.

Harrelson supports Foster. The clearest supporting performance in this list.

Gyllenhaal, Portman and Maguire are totally co-leads. He is about as "supporting" in this as he was in Brokeback.

Kevin D. said...

I consider "Brothers" to be a three lead film. So Jake is a lead in my book. Mackie is supporting for "The Hurt Locker".

OtherRobert said...

Laurent - Actress
Pitt - Actor
Waltz - Supporting
Gylenhaal - Lead

Can't speak for the rest.

jahs34 said...

The Mackie Renner thing, reminds me of the Denzel, Hawke thing in Training Day, to me both of them were leads, but the studio thought otherwise, and the academy followed.

adam k. said...

I did always find it weird that you gave Bardem supporting and Ledger lead, since their basically the same character, dramaturgically speaking. Plot catalyst villains who dominate the film even though we're never in their heads. Totally on the line and could go either way. BUT it seems like whichever way you go with one, you should go with the other. It's only fair. Same with Waltz, for the third year in a row.

So if you feel bad in retrospect about putting Bardem in supporting (even though every awards group in the known universe did) and good about the Joker in lead, then I'd put Waltz in lead. And if you did that, you'd have to put Laurent in lead, too, since she's really the protagonist (if there is one), while Waltz is the plot-moving villain.

Pitt I'm not concerned with, since it's not an award-worthy performance regardless. But it could go either way... I think if you put the other two in lead, then he should be there, too (kind of a domino effect happening).

BUT, that said, I personally am leading toward having them all as supporting. It's an ensemble film, period. They deserve an ensemble award. And I'm less of a stickler about this. I think plot-moving villains, unless we really identify with them in some way, can be supporting. And I give leeway the campaigns unless they totally abuse it.

I think the reason Anthony Hopkins in Lambs ended up in lead was that he did such a good job with the psychosis of that character that the audience really did feel like we were on his side. We were inside his head. We identified with him. Not so with Bardem. Less so (but arguable) with Ledger's Joker.

I think you've gotten oversensitive about this subject and are overcompensating due to the studios' blatant disregard for common sense. I wouldn't worry about it too much. My two sense? The Inglorious Basterds cast is all supporting.

What I don't get about this year is how so many roles are attempting fraud in the OTHER direction, toward lead. It's just bizarre. I mean, Vera Farmiga? Really? Just saw that film, and in no way was she the lead. It might've seemed like she was for a while, but by the end of the film, there's little doubt: it's about Clooney. Why are they screwing her out of a nod for what will surely be a frontrunner film? And Cotillard? Really? AND Laurent?

btw, FYC: Best Supporting Actress. Vera Farmiga. Up in the Air. Just saw the film, and absolutely LOVED her. What a delicious role. What a sly fox. And what terrific MOVIE STAR acting from someone generally regarded (I'd thought) as a character actress. Meryl Streep, watch out.

*Phew* Done now.

Hilary Swank said...

IMO I thought IB was an ensemble film, making it all supporting.

By the way Nate will your next predictions update be before the Gold Globes or after?

cal roth said...

Bardem could go either way. No Country is very like The Hours. Three leads, but one could campaign them all as supporting, too.

But there's something different when you see No Country. You never feel it's his story, or the movie is about him. I always felt that movie was about Tommy Lee Jones, but he has less screentime than Brolin and Bardem. Complicated.

I remember I always claimed Bello as lead. Always. Same for Weisz, a leading role in the same fashion of Julie Christie's parts in Dr. Zhivago and McCabe and Mrs. Miller.

Sometimes little screentime can't deny the fact that a movie is all about a character.

And huge screentime not always make a role leading, as we can see in No Country's case.

I'm confused.


Hilary... stop asking me if i'm predicting you for a Golden Globe! AMELIA IS OUT!


Adam agreed on Vera. I readily admit that i became oversensitive to the supporting/lead conversation. But the world forced me into it. Now that the trend reached its breaking point (Kate Winslet) I am happy to let go of the issue. I don't wanna be the spokesboy anymore.

i was just curious about these roles is all (and how people view them)

Anonymous said...

I think everyone in IB is supporting, but I can see the arguments for Waltz and Laurent in lead. Not so much for Pitt though - but what does it matter anyway? I thought the role wasn't really awards-worthy in any way, as much fun as he obviously had in it.

adam k. said...

I understand. I'm sensitive about it, too. And I don't think it's over either, despite the Winslet situation striking it a blow. I just don't want to see you cause yourself undue stress over these roles which really cant be viewed either way ; )

And oh god, VERA FARMIGA. I just watched the film, but I'm really feeling an irrational level of love for that performance. So, so good. I think maybe I even liked her better than Mo'Nique. And I have a feeling she's gonna get totally jipped.

adam k. said...

really *CAN* be viewed either way.


Don't get the wrong idea ; )

Chris said...

Of those I've seen I'd say that the "Inglourious Basterds" should all be supporting, with maybe Laurent being the lead. But really that film was such a mess and you can't really say there was one lead. Waltz was maybe the most present character but he didn't really carry any of the storylines, so supporting.

Anthony Mackie i'd say was supporting too. There's really just one scene in which we get some kind of insight into his character, whereas for most of the film he is really just "supporting" Renner's character development.

Popcorn and Cigarettes said...

Melanie Laurent would be the only one out of the three in Inglourious Basterds that you could argue was a lead, but I would place Brad Pitt and Christoph Waltz in Supporting.

Anthony Mackie is a Supporting Actor, no doubt.

I would also place Christian McKay in Supporting Actor.

kin said...

I am surprised by how overwhelmingly people consider Mackie to be supporting. For me, that was his (the character) film up until the ending. Yeah, he was reacting mostly, but I thought the film was about his reactions to the different issues happening to the team he is in and all of the changes he face. And more importantly, it is about him trying to survive his how ever many days left. So I would put him and Renner as co-leads, giving a nomination to Mackie and probably not Renner.

And I agree with all supporting for Inglourious Basterds. And I am not really considering Pitt for a nod.

adri said...

I've only seen two of these.

In "Inglourious B.", all the actors are supporting - it's an ensemble.

In "Brothers", there are 3 leads: McGuire, Portman, and Gyllenhaal.

Alex said...

I haven't seen ME AND ORSON WELLES yet, but (judging from the trailer) I almost want to call Christian McKay. It reminds me of a sort of Meryl Streep/Anne Hathaway situation for PRADA or James McAvoy/Forest Whitaker in LAST KING OF SCOTLAND in that it's really about Zac Efrom, but Christian McKay IS the movie. Does that make sense?

And then there's Marion Cotillard.

Vera Farmiga is for sure supporting, right? There was that confusion for awhile. All this positive energy on her performance here. Nat, Adam, anyone else: do we like her more than Kendrick?

Lev Lewis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason H. said...

I've only seen Inglourious Basterds and The Hurt Locker.

Its hard to really tell who's a lead and who's supporting, since, honestly for the first time since Pulp Fiction, Tarantino has really made an ensemble film. That being said, I would call Melaine Laurent a lead performance, and Brad Pitt and Christoph Waltz supporting performances. Laurent has a lead character arc and appears in much of the film. Pitt, on the other hand, only appears in parts, and doesn't have much of a story line. Waltz is supporting because he is never the focus of the story; instead, he appears to put pressure on the rest of the cast, particularly Laurent, as he lives up to his nickname as "The Jew Hunter."

Anthony Mackie, on the other hand, is a supporting role, since his strict character is meant to contrast lead actor Jeremy Renner's character's carefree (or careless?) recklessness.

adam k. said...

Alex, I like Farmiga more than Kendrick, yes. But they're both great. I hope they both receive noms.

Kendrick's part, I just read, was actually written with her in mind, and she's perfect for it, but I think the script does a lot of her work for her. Vera's character is more complicated, more vaguely defined on the page, and also more essential to the emotional core of the film. She has to fill out a lot of the nuance herself, and she does so gloriously.

I'm also partial to Vera because she seems to be a bit of an underdog, getting less praise than Anna Kendrick, and also because this part is so very different from what I've seen her do before. I was impressed.

Colin Low said...

I've done quite a bit of thinking about Inglourious Basterds, and it now breaks down like this. You have to first treat each chapter as a standalone short film, and think about who's "carrying" each:
Chapter 1: Menochet and Waltz lead
Chapter 2: Pitt leads
Chapter 3: Laurent leads; Bruhl and Waltz support
Chapter 4: Fassbender and Diehl lead; Kruger, Pitt and Waltz take over duties
Chapter 5: Laurent, Waltz and Pitt lead

So once you intertwine the narrative, Waltz, Pitt and Laurent would count as leads for me, while the rest (Menochet, Fassbender, Kruger, Bruhl) become supporters. To drop any of those three actors to supporting would be unfair to what the others have a fighting chance to do.

As for The Hurt Locker, Anthony Mackie provided my viewpoint character for Jeremy Renner's, and his growing frustration, eventual breakdown and decision at the end of the film is informed by the actions of Renner's character. So I'd say they are co-leads.

NicksFlickPicks said...

Kin just said exactly what I would have said about Mackie in The Hurt Locker. The movie is as much about Mackie's internal state and his evolving responses to Renner's character and to the whole war as it is about Renner's character. Thought does not necessarily "support" Action, and since the film stresses both equally, in terms of screen time and in terms of theme, I have a hard time splitting them.

Anonymous said...

Personally I'd put Laurent, Pitt, and Waltz in supporting. I see IB as an ensemble film. I guess they could all be seen as leads, though. Mackie and Harrelson are definitely secondary to the leading characters in their films.

Urey said...

Melanie Laurent, Christoph Waltz, and Brad Pitt in "Inglourious Basterds" = All Supporting
Anthony Mackie in "The Hurt Locker" = Supporting Actor

fred said...

Obviously, thre three from inglorious basterds are supporting roles. Why would anyone consider them category straddlers?

amir_uk said...

Ooh Adam, interesting to know that the part was always intended for Kendrick. Lately I've been wondering if Scar-Jo passed on it first. She could've done so much with it too - and bagged her overdue first Oscar nom.

Not that I don't already like Up in the Air a lot (and Clooney and Kendrick, and Farmiga to a slightly lesser degree, in it) - but I wonder what it would've been if it were the film where Bill Murray and Scarlett were reunited. Hmm...

Colin Low said...

Fred, my reasons for considering Pitt, Laurent and Waltz to be leads in Inglourious Basterds were posted just four posts up from yours. I'd like you to explain why you think they are supporting, however obvious it may seem.

Catherine said...

I saw Me and Orson Welles this afternoon and I'd be tempted to stick McKay into the Lead category. C'mon, he's mother-f'n ORSON WELLES. Nobody puts Orson in Supporting!

Steolicious said...

I only saw Inglourious Bastards and every person is supporting to me.

If I look back at times when Marcia Gay Harden and Jennifer Connolly win for supporting,I think it´s all about strategy.