The National Board of Review’s awards aren’t great bellwethers for the best picture Oscar wins, but they do help define the early conversation.
NBR’s best picture, MGM/UAR/BRON’s romantic comedy-drama LICORICE PIZZA (pictured), will likely land an Academy nom. So should director Paul Thomas Anderson, an 8 time Oscar nominee — including 3 in 2008 for THERE WILL BE BLOOD.
Over the past 3 decades, almost all NBR best pictures have also nabbed Academy picture nods. Last year, however, didn’t bring an NBR/Oscar match-up. NBR’s winner, DA 5 BLOODS, received only an Oscar nod for the score.
Several other films are also likely to springboard from the NBR spotlight into Oscar voters’ nominating embrace — especially, Disney’s diversity-driven animated feature ENCANTO, WB’s bio-drama KING RICHARD lead actor Will Smith & Disney/20th’s musical drama WEST SIDE STORY lead actress Rachel Zegler.
NBR didn’t help Focus Features’ drama BELFAST & director Kenneth Branagh build on their People’s Choice win at the Toronto Film Festival in September. But it’s #1 on NBR’s alphabetical Top Films list & Ciarán Hinds’ supporting actor win could help him get an Oscar nod.