Last year we whipped up a list of would-be Oscar contenders that went nowhere, movies that seemed poised for the season but ended up with a big ole' goose egg when the nominations were announced. It's less about pointing and laughing than it is about reminding of the lessons of the past. Hype is conjured by everyone from the agents and studio chiefs who encourage filmmakers with promises of prestige (this happens a lot) to media placing sometimes unwarranted expectations (hi!). There's no “fault” here, just an overall note about perspective.
It's interesting this year because, look, “Unbroken” is no air ball. But it has taken some critical knocks this week and the folks at Universal are probably crossing their fingers that it's not destined for a listicle like this. On paper, though, it's a film that had all the trappings of a serious player. So naturally, a number of Oscar prognosticators figured, “Sure, why not? It looks solid until it doesn't.” Well, lately, it doesn't. But we'll see where it goes from here.
Nevertheless, we thought we'd dig back in and check out a whole knew slew of potential Oscar films that didn't pan out. These are pretty much relegated to the last 15 years, which is fitting since the awards madness of the modern era has been far more ravenous in terms of gauging Oscar prospects from afar (hi again!). And we could surely put together yet another list of 10 after this. But click through the gallery below for a few examples and remember, they don't always take the bait.