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Westchester’s Oscar-Attracting Power


The awards season continues. Between the SAG, DGA, LAFCC, NYFCC, PCA, and other sundry acronymed honors, are you getting nomination fatigue yet?

The good news is that Academy Award nominations came out this morning, which means the beginning of the end of the inexhaustible kudos.

The great news is that one lucky Westchesterite had the goods enough to snag one. Was it Denzel Washington, for any of his powerhouse roles as actor and/or director in American Gangster or The Great Debaters? No. Was it Aaron Sorkin, for his peppy script for Charlie Wilson’s War? No. Those are all ex-county residents anyway.

The most decorated local performance of the year goes to current New Rochelle resident Ruby Dee, who earned a Best Supporting Actress nomination for her role in American Gangster.

I think the lesson here is clear. Stay in the county, and you get nominated. Ditch us for L.A., and you don’t.

Plus, Dee got to lay a mighty, open-handed slap across Denzel Washington’s face. That’s pretty badass, and it couldn’t have been easy.

The Oscars aren’t the first to recognize Dee. This year, she’s already wracked up nominations for the Image award, the Satellite award, and the Screen Actors Guild award. So far, she hasn’t returned with hardware, but our fingers are crossed for February 24, where she’ll go head-to-head with double-nominated dynamo Cate Blanchett for her role as a Bob Dylan figure in I’m Not There. Since Blanchett is nominated for both Best Actress (Elizabeth: The Golden Age) and Best Supporting Actress (I’m Not There), let’s hope she splits her own vote so Dee can push through. Her other competitors are pretty tough, too. There’s Amy Ryan, whose received around 15 nods for her role as a drug-addled Southie in Gone Baby Gone, Tilda Swinton, whose received around nine honors for her tough-cookie lawyer in Michael Clayton, and young Saoirse Ronan from Atonement, who you’d think would be a long shot but has gotten around eight nods for her performance already.

It’s a tight race. In any case, what’s that thing they always say in times like this? Oh yeah, it’s an honor just to be nominated.

See the complete list of nominees.


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