There were surprises
Published: Wednesday, January 28, 2004 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 28, 2004 at 12:47 a.m.
Sure, there were some surprises among Tuesday's Academy Award nominations: Alec Baldwin earned a nod for best supporting actor in "The Cooler," while star William H. Macy was as luckless as Bernie Lootz.
Then Keisha Castle-Hughes, now 13, became the Academy's youngest best-actress nominee.
But, according to Roger Beebe, the biggest surprise came with dippy Jack Sparrow. That is to say, Johnny Depp's nomination as the swish-swashy pirate in "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" is, quite frankly, a "sign of the Apocalypse."
An assistant professor for the University of Florida's Film and Media Studies program, Beebe has seen a good chunk of films that made Tuesday's cut. He saw "Pirates of the Caribbean" on an airplane and remains baffled by the Academy's choice.
"It was no better than I expected it to be. I don't get it," Beebe said. "Johnny Depp's fine in the movie, but I really think he's acting in another film."
To top it all off, Beebe said, "The Station Agent" - an across-the-board critical favorite - disappeared from the Academy's radar.
The Sun called Beebe for his thoughts Tuesday. He contends his opinion is not exactly a power voice in Hollywood, but - upon some urging - he did offer a handful of predictions on the Oscars race.
"Hollywood loves a winner. It may be the 'Titanic' of this year," said Beebe, who admitted he had not seen the lengthy trilogy cap. "Three and a half hours? Could it possibly be that good?"
There are good choices in there, he said, particularly noting Naomi Watts in "21 Grams." But, he added, there's a lot of talk about Charlize Theron's take on serial killer Aileen Wuornos, especially after the model-turned-"Monster" took home a Golden Globe last week.
The likely winner? Sean Penn for "Mystic River."
"Hollywood loves that sort of thing - lots of crying," he said.
Dave Schlenker can be reached at 374-5045 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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