Texas at the Oscars: An Academy Awards Preview

Two Texans are up for Best Director at the Academy Awards this weekend: Austin’s Richard Linklater for “Boyhood” and Houston native Wes Anderson for “The Grand Budapest Hotel.” Austin Film Festival Executive Director Barbara Morgan talks Oscar odds.

By Laura RiceFebruary 20, 2015 10:53 am

On the Slate of Films this Year:

“You’ve really just got a lot of stuff here. You’ve got typical Hollywood fare with ‘American Sniper’… and then ‘Grand Budapest Hotel’ which is a Wes Anderson movie – which always such unique storytelling from him.”

On Politics Affecting the Chances of ‘American Sniper’:

“(Clint Eastwood) is an Academy member and, of course, the Academy is an institution and politics are part of institutions and so I think that probably is a big help to him to some extent – he’s somebody that they all know. They know his filmmaking. He’s been in this spot before… It’s actually one of the few I haven’t seen and I’ve talked to a number of people who were just completely emotionally impacted by that film and I think that’s a big part of it, too.”

On #OscarsSoWhite:

“I think there’s not enough people of color who are in the process to begin with. I think that’s a topic that’s been in the conversation for a while and it seems to be heating up even more. The pool is largely middle-aged white guys in Hollywood. That, I think, has been known for a long time. So it’s hard to say the chicken and the egg here.”

Barb’s Picks:

  • Best Picture – “I’m going to give it to ‘Birdman’ and I think the Vegas odds are with me, I checked before I came in – they’re 1 to 1 – and right behind it, though is ‘Boyhood’ so it’s going to be tough.”
  • Best Director – “I think they actually might give it to Linklater. (‘Boyhood’) was pretty risky and he pulled it off. I think they’ll notice him for that.”
  • Best Actor in a Leading Role – “I think they’re going to go for Bradley Cooper.”
  • Best Actress in a Leading Role – “I’m going to give it Reese Witherspoon… That movie was really her, it was an opportunity for her to show what she’s made of and I think she pulled it off.”