By Sara StokoeSee January 23, 2004 story on the Asian films submitted for Academy consideration.
By 4:30 am the Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences Wilshire office was filled with hustling and bustling journalists from around the world (25 countries to be exact), eagerly awaiting the announcement of the 2004 Oscar nominees while they feasted in the schmorgazborg before them of scrambled eggs, french toast sticks, bagels, hash browns, orange juice and, of course, lattés (something's got to keep these people going at this ungodly hour!). The Academy decided in 1986 that in order to boost enthusiasm for the awards, the nominations would be announced pre-dawn, so as to be timed with the East Coast morning news shows. Following the much anticipated announcement, the media madness of celebrity journalism began. “This is our Super Bowl,” Rob Silverstein, executive producer of Access Hollywood said Monday to Los Angeles Times reporters while preparing coverage plans. According to Maria Elena Fernandez and Greg Braxton of the Los Angeles Times, “certain choices prompted cheers and applause from the foreign press: Ken Watanabe of Japan, Keisha Castle-Hughes of New Zealand, Lost in Translation, The Last Samurai and Japan's The Twilight Samurai all generated reactions." The positive reactions towards Asian, or Asian focused films, such as Lost in Translation, was quite appropriate as the region was well represented, bringing in ten nominations in all including nominations in five of the top six categories, including Best Actress for which 13 year-old New Zealander Keisha Castle-Hughes is nominated. Also noteworthy, this is the first year in Oscar history that a woman has been nominated for Best Director, and that woman is the ever fabulous daughter of famous film director Francis Ford Coppola, Sophia Coppola for Lost in Translation.
The Oscars will be held February 29th at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood.
Lost in Translation
Best Foreign Language Film
The Twilight Samurai (Japan)
Keisha Castle-Hughes—Whale Rider (first nomination)
Bill Murray—Lost in Translation (first nomination)
Sophia Coppola—Lost in Translation
Best Supporting Actor
Ken Watanabe—The Last Samurai
Best Original Screenplay
Lost in Translation—Sophia Coppola
Lily Kilvert, Gretchen Rau—The Last Samurai
Andy Nelson, Anna Behimer, Jeff Wexter—The Last Samurai
Ngila Dickson—The Last Samurai
For more information on the 76th Annual Academy Awards visit www.oscar.com