Best Cast – 1971

My Nominations: The Anderson Tapes. The French Connection. Klute. The Last Picture Show. McCabe And Mrs Miller. Nicholas And Alexandra. Walkabout. Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory.

Another year, and another chance to talk about my favourite category – pub time/break time/lunch time discussions over who should have won Best Film are all well and good, but this is where the real action is at. There are some undoubtedly great casts and performances this year, so lets take a look.

The Anderson Tapes is a film no-one remembers much now. Before The Conversation, before Watergate it takes a look at surveillance, with criminals, Feds, bugs, cameras etc all playing their part  – Sean Connery, Martin Balsam, Ralph Meeker, and Christopher Walken all feature. The French Connection is an obvious choice with both Gene Hackman and Roy Scheider being nominated individually and Fernando Rey as the primary villain. Klute features a masterclass by Jane Fonda, alongside Scheider (again) and Donald Sutherland while The Last Picture Show’s cast got a bunch of nominations and awards – Jeff Bridges, Timothy Bottoms, Cybill Shepherd, Ben Johnson, Ellen Burstyn, Randy Quaid, and Cloris Leachman.

McCabe And Mrs Miler was largely snubbed this year, but we can add it here for Julie Christie, Warren Beatty, Shelly Duvall, Keith Carradine, Rene Auberjonois, while Nicholas And Alexandra featured Laurence Olivier, Jack Hawkins, Janet Suzman, Tom Baker, Michael Redgrave, Michael Jayston, Ian Holm, Curt Jurgens, Brian Cox and more. Walkabout mainly features three performers, Jenny Agutter, David Gulpilil, and Luc Roeg, while Willy Wonka has a much larger ensemble lead by Gene Wilder but also with Jack Albertson, Peter Ostrum, Julie Dawn Cole, Rusty Goffe and others.

My Winner: The Last Picture Show.

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Let us know in the comments what your winner for the Best Cast category is!