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Handful of Oscar Nominations on Home Video

22 Jan, 2008 By: John Latchem

Away From Her, starring Oscar nominee Julie Christie, is available from Lionsgate.

With nominations for the 80th annual Academy Awards ceremony in the bag, the competition for Oscar is underway. Several of the films already are available on DVD or are slated for release within the next few weeks, which may be key in securing not only Oscar gold, but an uptick in sales to consumers hoping to check out the honored films.

“The increased publicity that comes with an Academy Award nomination [can fuel] strong retail sales on DVD … and generate great word of mouth among consumers," said Suzanne White, VP of Marketing for Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

In 2005, Crash was the only best picture nominee on DVD during the voting period, and Lionsgate famously blanketed Hollywood with thousands of copies. The result was a victory for the top prize.

This year, the best picture field includes Atonement, Juno, Michael Clayton, No Country for Old Men and There Will Be Blood. So far, none are on DVD, but Michael Clayton is slated for release on DVD and Blu-ray Disc Feb. 19 from Warner Home Video, just a week before the Feb. 24 ceremony. An HD DVD version streets March 11.

Michael Clayton also earned nominations for best actor — George Clooney; supporting actor — Tom Wilkinson; supporting actress — Tilda Swinton; director — Tony Gilroy; musical score — James Newton Howard; and original screenplay.

No Country for Old Men, the latest effort from the Coen brothers, streets March 11 on DVD and Blu-ray from Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment and Miramax. In addition to best picture, the film earned the Coens a best director nom, as well as a best supporting actor nomination for Javier Bardem, best adapted screenplay, best cinematography, best film editing, sound editing and sound mixing.Pixar's Ratatouille, on DVD and Blu-ray Disc from Disney, earned nominations for best animated feature, musical score — Michael Giacchino, original screenplay, sound editing and sound mixing. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment's Surf's Up, on DVD and Blu-ray, also was nominated for best animated feature.

Four of the nominees for documentary feature are either on DVD or announced for release. The nominees include two films about the Iraq War currently on DVD: Magnolia's No End in Sight and New Video's Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience. Also available is Michael Moore's Sicko, from Genius Products and The Weinstein Company. ThinkFilm will release War/Dance on DVD April 15 (prebook March 20).

The top-selling DVD of 2007, Paramount Home Video's Transformers, earned nominations for visual effects, sound editing and sound mixing. The title also is on HD DVD.

Other nominees on DVD, by studio:

Disney: Enchanted, on DVD March 18, earned three nominations in the original song category. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, now available on DVD and Blu-ray, earned noms for makeup and visual effects. Gone Baby Gone, a nominee for best supporting actress (Amy Ryan), hits DVD Feb. 12.

HBO Video: Marion Cotillard earned a nom for best actress for playing French songstress Edith Piaf in La Vie En Rose.

Lionsgate: Away From Her earned a nomination in the best actress category for Julie Christie, as well as for best adapted screenplay. The Western remake 3:10 to Yuma was nominated for best musical score and best sound mixing.

New Line: The Golden Compass was nominated for visual effects and art direction, and streets April 29 (prebook March 18) on DVD and Blu-ray.Paramount: Into the Wild, due March 4 on DVD and HD DVD, earned a best supporting actor nom for Hal Holbrook. Norbit, which was released on both high-def formats before Paramount switched to HD DVD, earned a makeup nomination.

Sony Pictures: The Beatles homage musical Across the Universe, nominated for best costume design, streets Feb. 5 on DVD, Blu-ray and UMD.

20th Century Fox Home Entertainment: The music-heavy Once, now on DVD, earned a nomination for the original song “Falling Slowly.”

Universal Studios Home Entertainment: Now available on DVD and HD DVD are The Bourne Ultimatum (film editing; sound editing; sound mixing) and Eastern Promises (best actor for Viggo Mortensen). Due Feb 5 on DVD and HD DVD is Elizabeth: The Golden Age, a nominee for costume design and best actress for Cate Blanchett. American Gangster, nominated for best supporting actress Ruby Dee and art direction, streets Feb. 19 on DVD and HD DVD.

Warner Home Video: Due Feb. 5 on DVD, Blu-ray, and Feb. 26 on HD DVD, is The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, nominated for best supporting actor for Casey Affleck and best cinematography. In the Valley of Elah, due Feb. 19 on DVD and Blu-ray, and March 11 on HD DVD, earned Tommy Lee Jones a nomination for best actor.

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