Official Nominations: Eileen Heckart. Jeannie Berlin. Geraldine Page. Susan Tyrrell. Shelly Winters.
What is it with this category? Why is it always crappy? Heckart won for a film most people don’t know and feels like one of those ‘well, she’s been around for decades so we’d better nominate her’. It’s fine, but nothing out of the ordinary. Jeannie Berlin gets a nomination as the slighted newlywed in The Heartbreak Kid – again, fine. Geraldine Page and another movie most people will never see – Pete ‘n’ Tillie (told ya). Guess what? Fine, nothing more, but she’s barely there. Susan Tyrrell and Fat City? Well, at least this one is interesting and probably the best performance of the bunch. Finally, Shelly Winters gets another nomination in what is the most memorable performance of the bunch. Really, any pick here as as good as another, but I do like the whole world-weary drunk thing so…
My Winner: Susan Tyrrell.
My Nominations: Talia Shire. Diane Keaton. Ida Lupino. Natalya Bondarchuk. Anne Bancroft.
I’m going to have to go Godfather again in this category. Both Keaton and Shire don’t have a huge amount to do in Part 1, but both are strong contenders in the early days of their careers. While Keaton has more depth, Shire garners more sympathy and passion from the audience as a character. I’ll throw a good old veteran nomination out there – Lupino never got one, but she gets one from me, this year as the distressed and tired mother of Steve McQueen in Junior Bonner. Natalya Bondarchuk is ghostly and tormented in Solaris while Anne Bancroft is strong once again in Young Winston.
My Winner: Talia Shire.