Nominated: The Aviator, Finding Neverland, Million Dollar Baby, Ray, Sideways
Screwed-Over New Yorker: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
The Left Coast Bias: L.A., Neverland, L.A., L.A., California wine country! Scorsese scores, but with an L.A. story. Eternal Sunshine—and its director, overlooked New York–based Michel Gondry—weren’t just too adventurous for the Academy; in this context, the East Coast romance was practically a foreign film.
Nominated: Annette Bening, Catalina Sandino Moreno, Imelda Staunton, Hilary Swank, Kate Winslet
Screwed-Over New Yorker: Laura Linney
The Left Coast Bias: L.A., and a bunch of (admittedly fabulous) foreign ladies. Hilary Swank, a fabulous New Yorker, made the list—but only after having her nose and neck broken. Maybe this is the way evil Californians like to see us: bloodied and battered.
Nominated: Don Cheadle, Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Clint Eastwood, Jamie Foxx
Screwed-Over New Yorker: Paul Giamatti
The Left Coast Bias: A criminal omission. Paul Giamatti may not have Hollywood neighbors or red-carpet looks, but his rangy Sideways performance was far more full-blooded than, say, Eastwood’s manly grousing.
Nominated: Born Into Brothels, The Story of the Weeping Camel, Super Size Me, Tupac: Resurrection, Twist of Faith
Screwed-Over New Yorker: Where do we begin?
The Left Coast Bias: Michael Moore’s quest for Best Picture nixed his chances—and may have torpedoed Jehane Noujaim’s insightful Al-Jazeera documentary, Control Room, by association. Also overlooked: New Yorker Jonathan Caouette’s brilliant Tarnation, and End of the Century, the story of the Ramones.
Nominated: Alan Alda, Thomas Haden Church, Jamie Foxx, Morgan Freeman, Clive Owen
Screwed-Over New Yorker: Peter Sarsgaard
The Left Coast Bias: Jamie Foxx was terrific in Ray, but just fine in Collateral, while Sarsgaard was brilliant in both Garden State and Kinsey (he deserved a nomination for the latter).
Nominated: Cate Blanchett, Laura Linney, Virginia Madsen, Sophie Okonedo, Natalie Portman
Screwed-Over New Yorker: No one
The Left Coast Bias: Okay, you’ve got us here: Linney and Portman. Our ideal outcome? A tie.