Saturday, November 7, 2009

Oscar Examination: Comedians Doing Drama

With Precious garnering serious Oscar buzz for Mo'Nique, I've decided to take an examination of comedians going straight. Well, doing drama. And believe me there are a lot:
  • Saturday Night Live alum Dan Aykroyd received an Oscar nomination for his supporting role in Driving Miss Daisy; lost to Denzel Washington in Glory.
  • Mary Tyler Moore and Judd Hirsch, two actors well known for their comedic work on television, showed their dramatic sides in Ordinary People. Both were nominated but lost; Moore to Sissy Spacek in Coal Miner's Daughter, Hirsch to his co-star Timothy Hutton.
  • Another veteran of sitcom, Jackie Gleason, earned praises for his role of Minnesota Fats in The Hustler; the Oscar went to George Chakiris for West Side Story.
  • Red Buttons won an Academy Award for his supporting role in the Korean War drama Sayonara.
  • Robin Williams won over critics with his role of John Keating in Dead Poets Society. Although he lost to Daniel Day-Lewis, Williams would later win for his supporting role in Good Will Hunting.
Those are the ones I can remember. What do you think?

1 comment:

  1. Some comedians are just solid actors all around, not all of them can pull it off though.

    Charlie Chaplin's 1952 drama about the trials of comedians post fame (a personal favorite of mine) Limelight is a good example. The movie wasn't released in the US until 1972 and earned Chaplin his only Oscar... that of best original score. Even with his amazing talent Chaplin never won an oscar for his writing, acting or directing.


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