How the Adapted-Screenplay Oscar Race Got So Fascinating.. Adapting a prominent book for the screen can be a shortcut to Oscar buzz, but is never a guarantee of success; for every Call Me by Your Name there are so, so many Angela’s Ashes.
But this fall brings an unusually competitive set of adaptations, many of them written by their directors and driven by the kind of star power very few screenwriters ever get to claim. So how do you even compare the feat of Denis Villeneuve adapting the mammoth Dune to Maggie Gyllenhaal intricately recreating Elena Ferrante’s The Lost Daughter, or Rebecca Hall picking up the nearly 100-year-old Passing? Well, that’s for Academy voters to decide. For now, we get to have fun and talk about all of them.
On this week’s Little Gold Men podcast, David Canfield, Rebecca Ford, Richard Lawson, and Katey Rich dive into both the adapted and original-screenplay races, both of which are shaping up nicely now that late-breaking films like Aaron Sorkin’s Being the Ricardos and Adam McKay’s Don’t Look Up are finally screening. But a category historically friendly to oddball indies that don’t land other nominations might also be a place to root for underdogs like Zola and The Green Knight.
Elsewhere on the show, the group discusses early reactions to Being the Ricardos and the hugely successful AFI premieres of Tick, Tick…Boom!, King Richard, and Swan Song. They also, of course, consider formally adopting Kirsten Dunst’s code word for awards, because who wouldn’t want to call this podcast “shrimpy”?
The episode ends with two interviews. First, David Canfield speaks with Kodi Smit-McPhee—who has been on a whirlwind promotional campaign for The Power of the Dog, and seems poised to score his first nomination at the age 25, having been acting onscreen for more than half his life already.
Then Katey Rich speaks with Jeymes Samuel, who has been on a promotional blitz of his own for his feature directorial debut The Harder They Fall, a project more than a decade in the making that, as Samuel tells it, is not over yet.
Listen to the episode above, and find Little Gold Men on Apple Podcasts or anywhere else you get your podcasts. You can also sign up to text with us at Subtext—we’d love to hear from you.
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