Hollywood — Academy Award nominations will be announced Wednesday with some Oscar Nominees so certain that the formal announcement will come as no surprise.

For instance, “‘Amadeus’”’ has a mortal lock on a nomination as best picture. So had ‘The Killing Fields.”

But the remaining three nominees are almost sure to be found among ‘‘Place in the Heart,” ‘“‘The Cotton Club,” ‘Under The Volcano,” ‘‘Beverly Hills Cop,” ‘‘A Soldier’s Story” and ‘‘A Passage to India.”

While 1984 was not a stellar year for great motion pictures, neither was it memorable for the number of outstanding performances among actresses.

 Standing a good chance for nominations for best actress are the. Three survivors of nature’s ravages down on the farm. Wags have combined their rural sagas into one title, ‘Places in the River Country.”

The trio of likely Oscar candidates made three different movies with almost the same theme strong wife, weak, dead or stupid husband, a catastrophe of nature and a determination to save their land. The actresses are Sally Field (Places in the Heart), Sissy Spacek (The River) and Jessica Lange (Country).


Other actresses in the running suffered less mundane confrontations in their roles and are pretty fair nomination prospects  Anne Bancroft in “Garbo Talks,’ Diane Keaton in ‘Mrs. Soffel’’ and Kathleen Turner in “Crimes of Passion.”

Curiously, only Field among top Oscar candidates for a nomination appeared in a film almost assured of nomination. The other actresses far out showed the movies in which they appeared.

There were no genuine best actress award roles inherent in ‘Amadeus, “The Killing Fields,” Soldier’s Story” or “‘Passage to India.”

Actors had the best of it last year with many leading men in contention.

First among them is F. Murray Abraham. He is also the outstanding favorite to win the Oscar for his performance as Salieri, Mozart’s betenoire in ‘‘Amadeus,”’ Like Ben Kingsley, who won the Oscar for ‘‘Gandhi,” Abraham fits into the role of Salieri like a second skin.

The rest of the best actor field includes Tom Hulce (Amadeus), Albert Finney (Under the Volcano), Sam _ Waterston (The Killing Fields), Jack Lemmon (Mass Appeal), Eddie Murphy (Beverly Hills Cop), Jeff Bridges (Starman), Robert Redford (The Natural) and Robert DeNiro (Falling in Love).

 A major bone of contention involves Dr. Haing S. Ngor, an immigrant Cambodian physician making his film debut in “The Killing Fields.’ Ngor clearly has a leading role in the film with more time on screen than Waterston. Yet he is being boomed for best supporting actor.

Assured of nomination for best director are Milos Forman for ‘‘Adadeus,”’ Roland Joffe for “The Killing Fields” and David Lean for ‘“‘A Passage to India.’”’ Robert Benton has a chance for “Places in the Heart,’’ as does Norman Jewison for ““A Soldier’s Story” and John Huston for “‘Under the Volcano.”

Standing above all supporting actress candidates for nomination is Peggy Ashcroft for her role as the aging matron in “‘A Passage To India.”

Other likely prospects for best supporting acress nominations are Yim Bassinger (The Natral), Geraldine Page The Pope of Greenwich Jillage), Christine Lahti Swing Shift) and Jacqueine Bisset (Under the Jolcano).

One of the hottest academy categories this year involves the best supporting actor nominations.

Richard Crenna is favored for his role as the dealer card playing; cam artist in ‘‘The Flaningo Kid.’’ Very strong, 00, are Adolph Caesar (A soldier’s Story), Jeffrey Jones (Amadeus), Pat Morita (The Karate Kid) and the late Richard Buron (1984).

Last week’s Golden Globe Awards are not necessarily a precursor of the Oscar nominations, but this year the Hollywood Foreign Press Association tabbed some sure things, ‘‘Amadeus,’’ Field, Abraham, Forman and Ashcroft.

The Los Angeles Film Critics Association also zeroed in on the hottest prospects, ‘Amadeus,’ Abraham and Finney, Turner, Forman, Ashcroft and Caesar.

The 4,100 academy members frequently come up with nominees from left field. This year they may even choose to recognize “‘Ghost Busters,” the leading box-office champion of the year with more than $230 million in the coffers.


Article extracted from this publication >> February 8, 1985