Will American Hustle Be the Next Argo at the Academy Awards?
American Hustle, a film shot in Boston last spring, went home with major awards last night at the Golden Globes in Los Angeles. The film swiped the biggest award of the night in its comedy or musical category, Best Motion Picture, and actresses Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence took home awards for Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress.
The film, a David O. Russell original—from the guy who brought us The Fighter and Silver Linings Playbook—was expected to be an absolute killer this awards season. The Academy is set to announce its nominations for the Oscars this Thursday, and the Globe speculates that Hustle will be the next Argo.
Of course, this speculation came from Hustle’s big win last week at the Palm Springs International Film Festival when it walked away with the Ensemble Performance Award—the same award received by Affleck and his Argo cast just last year. And sure, Hustle did well at the Golden Globes last night, and award season forerunners tend to follow in the same patterns as its predecessors. But one of two situations are happening in regard to this comparison: First, it’s just too early to tell how well American Hustle will do at the Oscars, and second, it’s very possible that it won’t follow in the same path as Argo.
Argo and Hustle are two very different films, and this was made quite clear based on the awards each received at the Golden Globes in its respectful seasons. First, Hustle qualified under the comedy and musical category at the Globes last night, while Argo fell into Drama. And although each won Best Picture in its category, I’d like to think Argo was quite an underdog film when it left with this award, considering all the hype behind Zero Dark Thirty and Lincoln at the time. Argo also had a more humble cast actors including Breaking Bad’s Bryan Cranston, John Goodman, and Kyle Chandler.
If we compare these basic facts to American Hustle, we have a very different movie and different circumstances. Even in its early stages based on its director and high-profile cast, Hustle was talked about as a “major Oscar contender” as soon as the film began production in Boston last spring. So we can safely say this movie would hardly be the underdog at the Oscars this year. Furthermore, Bradley Cooper, Christian Bale, and Amy Adams were original cast members, with Jennifer Lawrence, Louis CK, Jeremy Renner, and Robert De Niro signing on soon after to Russell’s star-studded cast—just about every currently relevant A-lister in Hollywood minus Jessica Chastain. If this movie doesn’t scream high-profile, I’m not sure what does.
Perhaps I’m biased because I’m always in the underdog’s favor. Or maybe it’s because Ben Affleck stands on the highest pedestal in my eyes. It’s only speculation at this point, and how much does speculation really mean at the end of the awards show? But will American Hustle follow behind Argo as the new reigning Best Picture? In the words made famous by Ben Affleck, I’m saying: Argo @#!* yourself.