Surprises, snubs and shoe-ins round out the list of 2015 Golden Globe nominees

Even in a season of sure things, there are plenty of surprises.

December 14, 2014 21:59
3 minute read.
Michael Keaton

Actor Michael Keaton accepts the Hollywood Career Achievement Award during the Hollywood Film Awards in Hollywood, California. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Usually, it’s quite easy to look at an actor’s choices and pinpoint the one that caused the fall from grace. There’s usually a big scandal or an embarrassing box-office bomb (sometimes both). But for Michael Keaton, there was no embarrassing clunker of a film, nor any hidden footage of him doing something untoward.

And, yet, for much of the ‘90s and all of the previous decade he remained largely unnoticed despite his talent.

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So it’s fitting that Keaton’s comeback consists of a Golden Globe nomination for playing a washed-up Hollywood actor trying to resuscitate his career by staring in a Broadway play in Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman. On Thursday, that film led the pack with seven nominations. Close behind it was Boyhood – a coming-of-age story shot over 12 years – and The Imitation Game, a biopic about cryptanalyst Alan Turing staring Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley.

The best actor category has another seminal scientific genius in its midst with the addition of Eddie Redmayne playing Stephen Hawking. That film, the Theory of Everything, earned four nominations total.

Those are the frontrunners, and are most likely to appear on Oscar’s shortlist. But even in a season of sure things, there are plenty of surprises.

For example, The Grand Budapest Hotel, a star-studded, delightfully eccentric movie released in March – considered ancient history amid the other films released during the holiday season – surprisingly scored four nominations as well.

Moreover, after Joaquin Phoenix declared that the Academy Awards are “bulls**t” in 2012, it’s amazing that the actor has found himself with an invite to the award show circus yet again. Proving that award shows aren’t always a popularity contest, with his work in Inherent Vice, Phoenix is enjoying (or dreading?) his fourth Golden Globe nomination.

Jennifer Aniston, nominated for her unglamorous turn playing a grief-stricken woman addicted to painkillers in Cake, had the opposite reaction when hearing of her first nod in the film category (she was nominated twice and won once for Friends). “I’m just humbled,” she told Entertainment Weekly. “It’s just all happening so fast and so beautifully. The Globes are a big fun party and it’s so fun to celebrate with your peers.”

But there were plenty of deserving people who didn’t wake up to good news Thursday morning. Both David Fincher and Christopher Nolan, directors of Gone Girl and Interstellar respectively, were shut out for films that were considered good bets.

And in an indication that the Hollywood Foreign Press Association may be growing up, they omitted a remake of Annie from the Best Musical or Comedy Category. Such a feel-good, commercial film full of movie stars usually does well with your average HFPA voter. However, aside from nominating Quvenzhané Wallis for her starring role and Sia for best song, they listened to initial negative critical buzz and ignored the film.

On the TV side, Fargo and HBO dominated the nominations.

Fargo earned the most nominations – five – with True Detective following with four nods. HBO programming garnered 15 nominations.

Among the shows earning three nods apiece: House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, The Good Wife, The Affair, The Normal Heart and Olive Kitteridge.

And in a sign of television’s ever-shifting landscape, Amazon’s instant video comedy series Transparent was nominated for two Golden Globes, including best comedy or musical series and best actor for Jeffrey Tambor.

The telecast will air on January 11, 2015, with critical darlings Tina Fey and Amy Poehler hosting for their third (and reportedly last) time.

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