Not even Warner Brothers, the studio that distributed “The Blind Side,” expected awards attention for “The Blind Side” or star Sandra Bullock until late in 2009. Now, both the film and the actress are Academy Award nominees, with Bullock widely regarded as the favorite to win the best actress Oscar since she’s already won the Golden Globe for best actress (drama) and the Screen Actors Guild Award for best actress.
As if the prospects didn’t already look bleak enough for Bullock’s competition — Helen Mirren (“The Last Station”), Carey Mulligan (“An Education”), Gabby Sidibe (“Precious”), and above all Meryl Streep (“Julie & Julia”) — I’ve just dug up a few new statistics that seem to indicate that she holds an even greater advantages over her competition than we had previously realized.
- 51 of the 82 best actress winners (there was 1 tie) in Oscar history won for a performance in a film that was nominated for best picture. This bodes well for Bullock, as well as for Mulligan and Sidibe, but not for Mirren and Streep.
- Only 11 of the 82 best actress winners (there was 1 tie) in Oscar history were the sole nominee from their film. This bodes well for Bullock, as well as for Mirren, Mulligan, and Sidibe, but not for Streep.
- Since the first SAG Awards in 1994, only 4 women have won the Golden Globe for best actress (either drama or comedy/musical) but not the SAG Award for best actress and still gone on to win the best actress Oscar. This bodes well for Bullock, but not for Streep.
- Since the first SAG Awards in 1994, no woman has ever lost both the Golden Globe for best actress (either drama or comedy/musical) and the SAG Award for best actress and still gone on to win the best actress Oscar. This bodes well for Bullock, as well as for Streep, but not for Mirren, Mulligan, or Sidibe.
And that’s before you consider that Streep has already won two Oscars and garnered 16 Oscar nominations; Mirren won an Oscar only 3 years ago; and Mulligan and Sidibe are nominated for their first starring roles; whereas this is the first nomination of Bullock’s long career as a leading lady.
One can never say never when it comes to Streep, in particular, but it appears that even someone with as much stature as she is going to face an tremendous uphill climb in terms of beating Bullock.
Photo: Sandra Bullock in “The Blind Side.” Credit: Warner Brothers.