40 Potential 2014 Oscar Contenders: Part Four – ‘Prisoners’ to ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’

We have reached the final ten films in my 2014 Oscar Preview, which has been made up of 40 potential 2014 Oscar contenders and, as we all know, I’m sure to have missed more than a handful. However, I think today’s batch has more than a few gems to keep an eye on, many of which made my list of most anticipated films of 2013.

This list also includes the one movie of the entire 40 that has the best chance of being pushed to next year, but it would be foolish to leave it off until we know for sure. You probably know what film I’m talking about, but if you don’t I’m sure the next paragraph will give it away.

This final list of ten films begins with Prisoners from Incendies helmer Denis Villeneuve and starring Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal alongside Melissa Leo and Viola Davis, next is Brad Furman‘s Runner, Runner with Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake, Ron Howard‘s Rush is a film I am dying to see, Tom Hanks becomes Walt Disney to Emma Thompson‘s P.L. Travers in Saving Mr. Banks, Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper reteam for Susanne Bier‘s Serena, Sundance standouts The Spectacular Now and The Way, Way Back make the list, David O. Russell‘s Untitled Abscam Project is a question mark but must not be overlooked, Akiva Goldsman steps behind the camera for the first time with Winter’s Tale and Martin Scorsese is back with Leonardo DiCaprio and a fleet of talent for The Wolf of Wall Street.

All those films and all those stars make today’s list of ten and behind the top-billed talent there are some crew members working these flicks you’re going to want to keep an eye out for.

As with all the other installments, just below is a navigation so you can check out previews parts you may have missed and tomorrow I will be posting all 40 once again in one massive recap.

2014 Oscar Preview Navigation

Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Complete List

Otherwise, if you’re ready to go, take your time and click on through and see if you can finally start putting together some early predictions, mine are coming next week…

DIR. Denis Villeneuve / September 20

With the September release date I think you can pretty much guarantee Prisoners will be showing up in Toronto. Directed by Denis Villeneuve who made a splash with Incendies in 2011, this thriller has taken some time to get off the ground as Bryan Singer was attached for a longtime, but it’s finally on its way and with a strong cast. I think we can also prepare for Roger Deakins to get his 11th Oscar nomination, will this finally be the one?

POTENTIAL OSCAR CATEGORIES: Best Picture, Director, Actor (Hugh Jackman), Supporting Actor (Jake Gyllenhaal), Supporting Actress (Maria Bello and Viola Davis), Cinematography (Roger Deakins), Original Screenplay (Aaron Guzikowski)

STUDIO: Warner Bros.

CAST: Hugh Jackman, Melissa Leo, Jake Gyllenhaal, Paul Dano, Viola Davis, Maria Bello and Terrence Howard

SYNOPSIS: Prisoners revolves around a small-town carpenter named Keller (Hugh Jackman) whose young daughter and her best friend are kidnapped. After the cops fail to find them, Keller takes the law into his own hands, but in the process runs up against Detective Loki, a hot shot cop with confidence to burn, assigned to the case.

Runner, Runner
DIR. Brad Furman / September 27

Unfortunately not a ton is known about Runner, Runner outside of the original script by Rounders co-writers Brian Koppelman and David Levien and that it’s directed by Brad Furman (The Lincoln Lawyer) with a cast that includes Ben Affleck, Justin Timberlake, Gemma Arterton and Anthony Mackie. Oscar-winning cinematographer Mauro Fiore (Avatar) is behind the camera and as for the rest, your guess is as good as mine, but that’s enough for me to add it to the radar.

POTENTIAL OSCAR CATEGORIES: Best Picture, Director, Actor (Ben Affleck and Justin Timberlake), Supporting Actor (Anthony Mackie), Supporting Actress (Gemma Arterton), Cinematography (Mauro Fiore), Original Screenplay (Brian Koppelman and David Levien)

STUDIO: 20th Century Fox

CAST: Ben Affleck, Justin Timberlake, Gemma Arterton, Anthony Mackie and Ben Schwartz

SYNOPSIS: The film is set in in a $30 billion world of illegal online gambling.

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