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And so it begins! This trailer marks the first in-depth look of the many award hopefuls that will roll into theaters in the competitive winter months. Hyde Park on Hudson seems to be bred to catch the eye of the many picky awards ceremonies. The film has the time period going for it (anywhere between 1925 and 1945 is sure to grab their attention, especially those of the Academy), it is a biopic with the focus on one of our most acclaimed presidents, FDR, and let’s not forget its acclaimed actors, Bill Murray and Laura Linney, both are former Oscar nominees and are beloved by the acting community. With all these factors, Hyde Park on Hudson is a shoo-in for multiple nominations and could possibly go on to become the big winner of awards season.
While it may seem like typical Oscar bait, this new film from Roger Michell (Notting Hill, Morning Glory) has an interesting premise of a love affair between FDR (Murray) and his distant cousin (Linney) during one weekend on the eve of WWII when the King and Queen of England visit upstate New York. At this point little else is known of the plot, but with Murray and Linney at the helm there is sure to be some memorable antics with grade-A acting. And let us not forget about Olivia Williams in her portrayal of Eleanor Roosevelt. This superb British actress is sure to bring some zest as she brings to life the legendary first lady.
Already Michell has directed an Oscar nominated performance with Peter O’Toole’s gripping performance in the critical darling, Venus, and there is a probable chance that he will do it again. Based on extraordinarily early predictions (considering that we’re not even halfway through this year of movies), Laura Linney has a locked-in nomination. Unless there are some late year surprises, this is not the year for female performances. We have Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan bringing two classic literary figures to life in Anna Karenina and The Great Gatsby, respectively. Yet besides those two, there are only a handful of other hopefuls in the mix. The men’s field is vastly different with a number of Hollywood veterans turning out star-studded performances, and as usual the awards ceremonies will be itching to give them all nominations. Bill Murray may have to go up against the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Daniel-Day Lewis, but if he can pull off this portrayal of our most beloved president, the awards will be handed over to him.
We may have to wait quite a bit for Hyde Park on Hudson to premiere, but at least we have the trailer to enjoy until December. Plus we have a summer full of inciting new releases to hold us over to what is shaping up to be an overall underwhelming awards season. Happy Moviegoing!