Fox Pushing Andy Serkis For Best Supporting Oscar Nomination for ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’
There have been few performances as effective and moving this year as Andy Serkis' work as Caesar in 'Dawn of the Planet of Apes.' Combining Serkis' raw acting with the technical wizardry of a talented visual effects crew, the role feels like another huge leap forward for motion capture performances. So, naturally, 20th Century Fox is out to get Serkis an Oscar nod, even if it means getting him nominated in the wrong category.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Fox plans to campaign for Serkis to receive a Best Supporting Actor nomination despite the fact that Caesar is undoubtedly the lead role in the film. It's a decision that only makes sense if you think about how political the Academy Awards really are. This is a strong year for leading men, so the studio thinks their money will be better spent pushing for a supporting nomination, which will be easier to obtain. In fact, Fox plans to push the entire 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' ensemble for supporting nods, including Toby Kebbell, whose performance as the villainous Koba is another standout role.
Of course, there are plenty of obstacles standing in Fox's way outside of the usual Oscar politics. First of all, 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' is a blockbuster science-fiction film and no number of critical raves can change that. With the exception of 'Avatar' and the 'Lord of the Rings' films, the Academy has not been incredibly kind to genre fare in the past.
Secondly, the Academy still has plenty of members who aren't prepared to honor motion-capture performances. The form has become increasingly common in the decade-plus since Serkis broke new ground with his work as Gollum in 'The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers,' but the voting body for the Oscars are an old-fashioned lot who simply aren't prepared to recognize (or fully understand) what Serkis and his fellow mo-cap actors do.
It'll be interesting to watch how this evolves. Fox would certainly like to see some nominations for their critically acclaimed film, but a nomination would be a huge deal for Serkis, who has dedicated the bulk of his career to motion capture. He's even opened his own motion capture studio, the Imaginarium, which is currently working on 'Star Wars: Episode 7.' Oscar recognition is the final frontier for Serkis and mo-cap and it's easy to imagine him thirsting for validation for the past ten years of groundbreaking work.