Pittsburgh's Michael Keaton Earns Oscar Nomination
“Foxcatcher,” filmed in the Pittsburgh area, also fared surprisingly well.
Photo courtesy Fox searchlight Pictures
The Academy made it official this morning: Forest Grove, Pa.'s Michael Keaton is an Oscar nominee.
The “Birdman” star will indeed compete for Best Actor at the 87th Academy Awards on Feb. 22. After a Golden Globe win among many others — his turn as aging action hero Riggan Thomson has already been lauded by the National Board of Review, the Online Film Critics Society and more — Keaton’s nomination was widely expected.
He’ll compete against four actors interpreting real-life subjects: Eddie Redmayne, who played Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything”; Benedict Cumberbatch, who played Alan Turing in “The Imitation Game”; Steve Carell, who played John du Pont in “Foxcatcher”; and Bradley Cooper, who played Chris Kyle in “American Sniper.” Redmayne is largely seen as Keaton’s most significant competition.
It was a big morning for “Birdman,” as the comedy tied “The Grand Budapest Hotel” for the most nominations; each scored nine nods. Other nominations for "Birdman": Best Picture; Best Director, for Alejandro González Iñárritu; Best Supporting Actor, for Edward Norton; Best Supporting Actress, for Emma Stone; Best Original Screenplay; Best Cinematography; Best Sound Editing; and Best Sound Mixing.
Photo courtesy sony pictures classics
The locally made “Foxcatcher” fared better than expected with five nominations, although it missed the cut for Best Picture. Director Bennett Miller snared an upset Best Director nomination to go along with Carell’s Best Actor spot; co-star Mark Ruffalo was also nominated for Best Supporting Actor, and the film’s screenplay was nominated as well. “Foxcatcher” will also compete for Best Makeup and Hair, thanks to the impressive aging effects layered on Carell (to say nothing of Channing Tatum’s array of ’80s and ’90s hairstyles).
One Pittsburgh-made production was shut out: fans of the hit “The Fault in Our Stars” were hoping that Shailene Woodley could score a dark-horse Best Actress nomination, but it was not to be.
If you’d like to see how Keaton is taking the news, he’s widely expected to win at least one award at tonight’s Critics’ Choice Awards. (Full disclosure: I’m a voting member of the BFCA, which presents the awards.) He’s nominated for both Best Actor and Best Actor in a Comedy, and the cast is up for Best Ensemble; "Birdman" leads the field tonight as well, with 13 nominations.
It feels like we’ve been saying it a lot, but congratulations to Keaton and “Birdman” — as well as all the local film professionals who brought “Foxcatcher” to the screen!