Could Oscar history repeat itself a third time, and yet again feature a battle between leading ladies Hilary Swank and Annette Bening for the Best Actress accolade?
It certainly appears to be likely, and in no less than two scenarios. Access Hollywood has confirmed with Focus Features that Annette is indeed being submitted for Lead Actress in “The Kids Are All Right,” while Sony Pictures Classics has confirmed to Access that they are submitting her for Lead Actress as well for her role in “Mother and Child.”
So, we have a scenario that could see: Hilary Vs. Annette… Vs. Annette!
This past July, Annette wowed audiences with her role as a lesbian mom in “Kids.” Earlier this spring, she also demonstrated why she is one of the most talented working actresses today, with her stellar performance in “Mother.”
Of course, who could forget when Hilary made her debut in Hollywood as an Oscar darling, with her Best Actress win for the 1999 film “Boy’s Don’t Cry” — winning over Annette for her role in “American Beauty.” History repeated itself for the 2004 Oscar year when Hilary won for “Million Dollar Baby” — winning over Annette in “Being Julia.”
Which then leads us to Hilary’s swanky 2010 role, as the lead in Fox Searchlight’s “Conviction,” set for release in theaters on October 15. According to press notes, “Conviction,” “is the inspirational true story of a sister’s unwavering devotion to her brother. When Betty Anne Waters’ (Swank) older brother Kenny (Sam Rockwell) is arrested for murder and sentenced to life in 1983, Betty Anne, a Massachusetts wife and mother of two, dedicates her life to overturning the murder conviction.” The film co-stars recent Lead Actress Academy Award nominee Melissa Leo, along with Academy Award nominees Minnie Driver and Juliette Lewis, as well as Peter Gallagher.
While not many folks have seen “Conviction” yet, it certainly seems to have “Academy Award” movie written all over it.
Now, of course, Hilary was supposed to make a huge play last year with “Amelia,” a film from Fox Searchlight that fell flat with audiences and critics alike. Regardless, Searchlight still has a great track record with distributing Academy-caliber fare, thanks to “Juno,” “Little Miss Sunshine,” and “Slumdog Millionaire.”
It’s still very early in 2010 to be making any sort of Oscar predictions yet, but the universe works in mysterious ways (and so, for that matter, does Hollywood!). It wouldn’t surprise us one bit to witness this legendary match-up come to fruition yet again.