Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Gay Guide to the Oscars: Brokeback Mountain. Capote. Transamerica. No Matter Who Wins-Sorry, No Matter Who the Oscar Goes To-This Year's Academy Awards Promises to Be the Gayest in Its 78-Year History. Here's a Look at Who's Been Invited to the Party on March 5

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Gay Guide to the Oscars: Brokeback Mountain. Capote. Transamerica. No Matter Who Wins-Sorry, No Matter Who the Oscar Goes To-This Year's Academy Awards Promises to Be the Gayest in Its 78-Year History. Here's a Look at Who's Been Invited to the Party on March 5

Article excerpt

Some years, it's a real challenge to come up with a gay guide to the Academy Awards. Try to find a queer hook for In the Bedroom--uh, Nick Stahl was in Bully!

What a treat, then, to consider the films of 2005 as they jockey for position at Hollywood's biggest night of the year. The exquisite Brokeback Mountain leads the field with eight nominations, while Capote pops up with five, and Transamerica with another two. Having just one of these movies in a past year would have seemed special--all three at once feels miraculous. As a glass-is-half-full colleague pointed out in late 2000, when the Supreme Court handed the presidency over to George W. Bush, "Oh, well, at least it'll be good for art."

Here's a quick look at this year's gay and gay-adjacent Oscar nominees--and even if Nick Stahl doesn't appear in any of them, we might stretch the connections a bit, just for old times' sake:

Brokeback Mountain is the movie to beat this year, of course, although seeming like such a sure thing early on in the awards process makes this King of the Mountain ripe for being knocked off. Still, its nominations--Best Picture, Best Director (Ang Lee), Best Actor (Heath Ledger), Best Supporting Actor (Jake Gyllenhaal), Best Supporting Actress (Michelle Williams), Best Adapted Screenplay (Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana; see page 42), Best Original Score (Gustavo Santaolalla), and Best Cinematography (Rodrigo Prieto, who also plays Jack's Mexican whore)--edge it past Philadelphia as the most-nominated gay-themed film ever.

And tying with Philadelphia's five nominations is Capote, although "gay-themed" seems a reductive description of this riveting portrait of an artist and his willingness to sell his soul. Philip Seymour Hoffman appears to be the favorite in the Best Actor category, but don't rule out this film's chances for Best Supporting Actress--Catherine Keener as Harper Lee, whose To Kill a Mockingbird features one of American literature's greatest baby dyke characters--Best Director (Bennett Miller), Best Adapted Screenplay (Dan Futterman), or even Best Picture.

While Transamerica had pulled in only about $1.5 million before the announcement of the Oscar nominations, Felicity Huffman's striking performance puts her at or near the front of the Best Actress pack. And even if Huffman doesn't win for her convincing portrayal of an MTF counting down the days to gender-reassignment surgery who discovers she has a long-lost son, look for Dolly Parton to steal the show when she performs Best Song nominee "Travelin' Thru"--and to steal it again when she wins. …

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