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Tuesday, December 24, 2013
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Jonah Hill, the Two Time Oscar Nominee?

By Terence Johnson
Managing Editor

It’s a The Wolf of Wall Street world and we’re all just living in it. Opening tomorrow, the film is generating a lot of talk from critics praising it to Academy members maybe not being on its side. The one thing that I’m sure most people will come away from the movie talking about is the performances, including a great turn delivered by Jonah Hill. But does he have what it takes to place in the Supporting Actor race?

Looking at Jonah Hill’s career, it’s certainly quite an astounding position for the young actor to be in as he has certainly come up in the past few years. You’d have been hard-pressed to think that big kid who starred in the raunchy comedy Superbad would have starred in a single Best Picture nominated film let alone two in a three year span. He also finds himself on the precipice of being twice Oscar nominated in Supporting Actor, giving a really great performance as the right hand man to Jordan Belfort.

Despite the fantastic performance though, there are many who doubt that the young actor could pull this off. For all of his more serious work, and previous nomination, many cannot divorce that from his turn in Superbad or even his comedic work in 21 Jump Street. Being a “serious actor” should not automatically equal awards prestige and ability, it does carry some weight and people aren’t likely to stay quiet if he gets two nominations before someone gets their first. With his 2nd nom, he’ll have as many nominations as Jim Carey, Bill Murray, Eddie Murphy, and Richard Gere combined. He’d be tied in nominations with actors such as Will Smith, Robert Downey Jr., Ralph Fiennes, Mark Whalberg and Edward Norton. That’s some esteemed company. Looking at the field of nominees this year and here’s the list of presumed nominees that he would have more Oscar nominations than: Michael Fassbender, Chiwetel Ejiofer, Bradley Cooper, Bruce Dern, June Squib, Matthew McConaughey, Jared Leto, John Goodman, Lupita N’yongo, Sally Hawkins, Jennifer Garner, Margo Martindale, etc. I’m sure I could go on and on but you get the point that of that entire group his being named a two-time nominee could seem like a bit much.

However, I personally don’t think the Academy even bothers with things like records, nomination totals, or public perception until it gets to big for them to ignore. It’s why they were never in a rush to give comedic actors nominations and why they continually pass over actors like Al Pacino, Kate Winslet, and Paul Newman until they can’t anymore. Jonah Hill is much, much less consequential than any of those previous names mentioned so I think the conversation around him getting a 2nd Oscar nomination probably won’t even affect them in the slightest.

It must be said that the last time Hill got in to the Supporting Actor lineup he did so on the back of a well liked film (Moneyball), with a strong script and a bonafide star turn (Brad Pitt) at the center of the film. Lightning could certainly strike twice as The Wolf of Wall Street has all of those ingredients plus a legendary director in Martin Scorsese leading the charge.

Do you all think Jonah Hill will be Oscar nominated again?

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  • SamOlivier

    It’s possible, just because of the importance of his contribution to this major film. However, his competition this year is fierce. His work in “Wolf” is consistant and strongly supportive of DiCaprio. Is it brilliant? No, I don’t – as a fellow thespian – think so. He is a capable, appealing young second banana, not a comic genius. However, given the opportuntiy, Jonah Hill should grow in his subsequent roles beyond loud and vulgar into truly comedic..