Nine films were nominated but only one will be named best picture at the Oscars. With no clear favorite, here is some interesting trivia about each one.
“Ford v Ferrari”
Christian Bale, who played a rather portly Vice President Dick Cheney in 2018’s “Vice,” had to lose 70 pounds to play race car driver Ken Miles. And he had seven months to do it.
According to the Internet Movie Database, the 3 1/2-hour production required nine cameras, 309 scenes, 117 locations and 108 shooting days, occasionally necessitating as many as three company moves in a single day.
Director, writer and producer Taika Waititi portrays Jojo’s imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler. The Fuhrer would not be pleased considering Waititi is a Kiwi of Maori, Ashkenazi Jewish and Irish descent.
Warner Brothers originally wanted Leonardo DiCaprio to play the title role, with Robert De Niro to play Murray Franklin and Martin Scorsese to direct.
But DiCaprio was unavailable because he signed up to do “Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood” and Scorsese was getting set to start work on “The Irishman.” The only person who managed to be involved in both films was De Niro, who is also the only one not to be nominated for an Oscar.
Although Louisa May Alcott’s novel is as American as they come, none of the actors playing the March sisters is American. Florence Pugh and Emma Watson are English, Eliza Scanlen is Australian and Saoirse Ronan, while born in New York, was raised in Ireland.
In this story of divorce, the attorney Laura Dern plays is loosely based on attorney Laura Wasser, who allowed director Noah Baumbach to film in her law offices.
Baumbach, who based the film on his split from actress Jennifer Jason Leigh, along with Dern and Scarlett Johansson, who plays Nicole, were all represented by Wasser in their divorce cases.
Director Sam Mendes dedicated the film to his grandfather, Alfred, who like the characters in the film, was charged with carrying messages across no-man’s land during World War I.
He became a novelist and short story writer. Mendes says his grandfather never talked about his war experiences until he was in his 70s.
“Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood”
Period pieces are always tough to film. “Once Upon a Time,” which is set in 1969, has its share of mistakes: In one scene in a movie theater, a Starbucks sign is visible. Starbucks didn’t exist until 1971. Sharon Tate and Roman Polanski attend a party at the Playboy Mansion. Problem is, there was no Playboy Mansion until 1971. Numbered exit signs are clearly visible in scenes on the freeway, but California didn’t adopt numbered exit ramps until 2002.
Director Bong Joon Ho, who also wrote the movie, worked as a tutor for a wealthy family in college and in an interview said he felt like he was spying on them. That idea developed into the idea for “Parasite,” which floated around his head for years. His first plan was to write it as a play.