God, we kinda hate to say it because they've had an extremely difficult year, but man The Weinstein Company have really fucked things up this year, or at least they did for Tom Ford's remarkable directorial debut, "A Single Man," a film that topped the Venice Film Festival awards, was one of our favorite films at TIFF and seemed like sure-fire Oscar-bait (it's moving, gorgeous and has tremendous performances by Colin Firth and the rest of the cast).
But as we all know TWC has been in dire financial straits this year which has meant films that didn't have enough Oscar buzz were marginalized with small releases (John Hillcoat's "The Road" which really got the shaft — it was supposed to go wide, but has never been on more than 311 screens in total).
"A Single Man" is essentially about a gay man in mourning devastated by the loss of his longtime partner who suddenly dies in a car accident. Sure, it's gay, but so was "Brokeback Mountain" and look how far that went at Oscar time (and of course, the safer, much-more-banal pic of "Crash" won the Oscar Best picture even though 'Brokeback' won the PGA award).
When posters and trailers hit early this year, many noticed a distinct gay-bias, meaning TWC was trying to essentially hide all the gay elements of the film and sell it more as a straightforward drama about a man dealing with loss. We didn't fret too much because, well, we figured it was early and "A Single Man" was so strong it wouldn't matter come its December release.
Well, awards season is basically over outside the final Oscar nominees and "A Single Man" has generally been ignored outside Colin Firth's stellar performance (and we never cared for him much before, but he blew us away) and Julianne Moore's excellent supporting turn. Vulture recently spoke to "A Single Man" actor Matthew Goode and even he thinks the Weinsteins haven't been doing much to push or promote this film (that again, feels like true and traditional Oscar-bait).
"Nominations wise, I think Colin will get one, and I think that Julianne will for Best Supporting. And I suspect that the screenplay will for Best Adapted. And the cinematography is amazing, and the editing." As for Best Picture, though? "I think it stands alone, but it doesn't seem to be getting a push from the Weinsteins too much."When the posters first came out many remarked that it was weird that Julianne Moore was on it and Matthew Goode was not. He agrees. "That was always a bit weird, isn't it? That's obviously a kind of push towards, 'America won't come and see this if they don't want to see a gay movie.' We shot the film during Prop 8, with all that was going down in California — big irony. It's disappointing. But, hey, if you recruit money and you're gonna make money out of it, far be it from me to get in the way. I'm sure they've done their figures and they know they're going to make X, Y, Z more if they do that. I think it's a bit wicked, but I don't have millions of dollars pumped into it, so I think that's what you have to do."
In all fairness though, Goode's character (not a spoiler don't worry) dies pretty much immediately and is not as big a character in the film as Moore. Sure, his lack of presence means everything to the story and his flashback sequences are powerful, but Moore certainly has much more screentime than he does.
Anyhow, we lament it all, but aren't totally surprised either. TWC has been cash-strapped all year and it's likely that they have much less against the gays and only so much cash to spend for Oscarbaition (though with "Nine" tanking at the box-office and critically, you'd think they'd have some put-aside awards cash for Tom Ford's excellent debut).