Thursday, March 08, 2012

The Women of 1975: Commencement

In 1975 there were many talking points in the world of film: Susan Hayward and Fredric March both passed away; Charlie Chaplin was knighted by the Queen, and Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws” became the highest-grossing film of all time. In terms of Oscar, commentators were enamoured with the Academy’s Best Picture lineup, which, as well as encompassing Spielberg’s film, comprised of “Barry Lyndon,” “Dog Day Afternoon,” “Nashville,” and eventual winner “One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest.”

While many regard this lineup as a benchmark for the category, few people seem to feel that way about the five women nominated for Best Actress. A New York Times article from February 1976 perhaps best articulates the discontent felt in quarters, highlighting the dearth of Best Actress contenders from the previous year and listing their many detractors. Titled “Do any of these Best Actress contenders rate an Academy Award?” Judy Klemesrud’s article names twenty women in with a shot of a nomination, ten of whom eventually won a Best Actress Oscar at one time or another.

As most of you have probably gathered, for the past year my quest to see every Oscar nominee in the major six categories has seen the focus shift primarily onto the Best Actress category, and last May I crossed the threshold of one hundred performances left to see. Ten months later, and that figure is now fifty. As part of a celebration of crossing the milestone of fifty Best Actress Nominees left unseen, I’m going to write a profile on each 1975 Best Actress contender recognised by the Times, culminating in a review of the eventual nominees, two of which – Glenda Jackson and Ann-Margret – I have yet to encounter. The other contenders for the Oscar were Isabelle Adjani, Carol Kane, and the anointed Louise Fletcher.

If you haven’t seen the article (as far as I know, it's only available through subscribing to the New York Times website) then I’m going to keep the contenders a surprise until the profiles are posted. Get ready for the women of 1975!

If you’re interested, these are the remaining Best Actress nominees I have left to see: 

1. Ruth Chatterton, “Madame X” (1928-29)
2. Betty Compson, “The Barker” (1928-29)
3. Corinne Griffith, “The Divine Lady” (1928-29)
4. Greta Garbo, Romance” (1929-30)
5. Norma Shearer, “Their Own Desire” (1929-30)
6. *Helen Hayes, “The Sin of Madelon Claudet” (1931-32)
7. Marie Dressler, “Emma” (1931-32)
8. Lynn Fontanne, “The Guardsman” (1931-32)
9. Elisabeth Bergner, “Escape Me Never” (1935)
10. Irene Dunne, “Theodora Goes Wild” (1936)
11. *Luise Rainer, “The Good Earth” (1937)
12. Barbara Stanwyck, “Stella Dallas” (1937)
13. Margaret Sullavan, “Three Comrades” (1938)
14. Olivia De Havilland, “Hold Back the Dawn” (1941)
15. Katharine Hepburn, “Woman of the Year” (1942)
16. Joan Fontaine, “The Constant Nymph” (1943)
17. Greer Garson, “The Valley of Decision” (1945)
18. Rosalind Russell, “Mourning Becomes Electra” (1947)
19. Ingrid Bergman, “Joan of Arc” (1948)
20. Deborah Kerr, “Edward, My Son” (1949)
21. Jane Wyman, “The Blue Veil” (1951)
22. Julie Harris, “The Member of the Wedding” (1952)
23. Leslie Caron, “Lili” (1953)
24. *Anna Magnani, “The Rose Tattoo” (1955)
25. Carroll Baker, “Baby Doll” (1956)
26. Elizabeth Taylor, “Raintree County” (1957)
27. Rachel Roberts, “This Sporting Life” (1963)
28. Sophia Loren, “Marriage, Italian Style” (1964)
29. Elizabeth Hartman, “A Patch of Blue” (1965)
30. Anouk Aimee, “A Man and a Woman” (1966)
31. Patricia Neal, “The Subject Was Roses” (1968)
32. Vanessa Redgrave, “Isadora” (1968)
33. Genevieve Bujold, “Anne of the Thousand Days” (1969)
34. Diana Ross, “Lady Sings the Blues” (1972)
35. Marsha Mason, “Cinderella Liberty” (1973)
36. Ann-Margret, “Tommy” (1975)
37. Glenda Jackson, “Hedda” (1975)
38. Liv Ullmann, “Face to Face” (1976)
39. Geraldine Page, “Interiors” (1978)
40. Ellen Burstyn, “Resurrection” (1980)
41. Jane Fonda, “The Morning After” (1986)
42. Meryl Streep, “Ironweed” (1987)
43. Isabelle Adjani, “Camille Claudel” (1989)
44. Joanne Woodward, “Mr. and Mrs. Bridge” (1990)
45. Bette Midler, “For the Boys” (1991)
46. *Emma Thompson, “Howard’s End” (1992)
47. Mary McDonnell, “Passion Fish” (1992)
48. Miranda Richardson, “Tom and Viv” (1994)
49. Emily Watson, “Breaking the Waves” (1996)
50. Julie Christie, “Afterglow” (1997)


Fritz said...

Great, I'm really looking forward to this! :-)

Runs Like A Gay said...

Some surprises in your lists of haven't seen nominations.

I don't envy you having to sit through Lili mind, one of the most horrendous experiences I've ever had.