Don't call it a comeback, “The Grand Budapest Hotel” has been here since, um, March.
Yes, Fox Searchlight's spring hit has made a mark on awards season (and also was this pundit's no. 1 film of 2014). I could take credit for believing it would be in the mix for Best Picture since the summer, unlike some of my other prognosticating peers, but let's not get ahead of ourselves shall we? While the SAG Awards ensemble nomination, numerous critical kudos, critics' top 10 lists, four Golden Globe nominations and 11 Critics Choice nods likely add up to something special on Thursday, Jan. 15, there is still much to be done. And while they have “Birdman” and “Wild” to contend with, Searchlight isn't ignoring the growing “Budapest” buzz.
Like many early releases, “Boyhood” being the most prominent, the studio is putting Wes Anderson's latest back in theaters. It re-opened today at the Laemmle Music Hall in Los Angeles and will return to the Quad in New York on Friday, Dec. 26. That's the best way for Academy members to see it, but the film will also benefit from premiering on HBO later this month:
Saturday, Dec. 27 – 8:00pm and 12:30am on HBO
Monday, Dec. 29 – 10:00am and 7:00pm on HBO2
Tuesday, Dec. 30 – 8:00pm and 5:00am on HBO
Frankly, those airings actually might help it with SAG voters the most. Moreover, even though it's far past its theatrical window and hit DVD and digital download in June, Searchlight is supporting the instant classic with a paid media campaign beginning this weekend. Academy members in New York and LA will see ads on programs such as “The Today Show,” “GMA,” “60 Minutes,” “CBS Sunday Morning,” “The Kennedy Center Honors,” “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and “The Late Show with David Letterman.”
Yes, awards season friends, things are heating up.