VIDEO: Canadian Oscar hopefuls include Ryan Gosling, Arrival

Academy Awards on Sunday feature several Canuck contenders




From a jazzy Ryan Gosling, to a Montreal team behind “Arrival,” and a trio of homegrown animators, there’s a healthy dose of Canuck amongst this year’s Oscar nominees.

Here are five Canadian bullet points for Sunday’s show, which will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel on ABC and CTV:

GA-GA FOR GOSLING

Awards shows have been showering the London, Ont., native with nominations for his “La La Land” role as a jazz pianist who falls in love with a fledgling actress, played by Emma Stone. The former “Mickey Mouse Club” star has already won a Golden Globe for the part and is up for an Oscar for best actor. It’s his second such Oscar nomination after 2006’s “Half Nelson,” in which he played a high school teacher with a drug addiction.

Fun fact: Gosling found inspiration in the musicals “Top Hat” starring Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire (“I like Fred’s style. He’s very mischievous,” he said) and “An American in Paris,” which he called “very experimental and yet it doesn’t feel pretentious.”

DENIS VILLENEUVE HAS ARRIVED

Hollywood is hot for the talents of this French-Canadian gem, who is nominated for best director for his heady alien-invasion drama “Arrival.” It’s his second Oscars ride after his 2010 drama “Incendies” was nominated for best foreign-language film. The Quebec filmmaker has had a string of high-profile projects in recent years, including “Prisoners,” “Enemy” and “Sicario.” His next film is a whopper: the hugely anticipated “Blade Runner 2049,” starring Gosling.

Fun fact: Villeneuve has dreamed of doing science fiction since childhood, when he read European sci-fi comic books. “I was raised with dreaming about space all my childhood,” he said. “I’m part of the ‘Star Wars’ generation.”

“ARRIVAL”‘s MONTREAL MOMENTUM

Several other Montrealers who worked on “Arrival” are also up for Oscars. They include sound editor Sylvain Bellemare production designer Patrice Vermette and decorator Paul Hotte and sound mixers Bernard Gariepy Strobl and Claude La Haye.

Fun fact: Bellemare found inspiration for the sound of the heptapod aliens in Pink Floyd’s music and a melange of animals. “We tried to do something that … was more based on instinct and rhythm,” he said.

HIGH HOPES FOR ANIMATED SHORTS

Three of the five titles nominated in the best animated short category have Canadian ties. “Blind Vaysha” is by Montreal’s Theodore Ushev and produced by the National Film Board of Canada. “Pear Cider and Cigarettes,” produced by Cara Speller, is directed by Robert Valley of Vancouver. And the Pixar-produced “Piper” is helmed by Alan Barillaro of Chippawa, Ont.

Fun fact: When Ushev heard of his nomination, he fainted, overwhelmed by pent-up emotions from the campaign. “A lot of people were telling me, ‘You have a chance, you have a chance,’ and when a lot of people tell you this you just get nervous,” he said. “I had to do a lot of yoga and sports to tame the pressure.”

FIRST NOD FOR “13TH” PRODUCER

Winnipeg-born producer Howard Barish has his first Oscar nomination for the documentary “13th,” which looks at the criminalization and mass incarceration of African Americans in the U.S. He shares the nomination with filmmaker Ava DuVernay and her co-writer, Spencer Averick.

Fun fact: Barish first met DuVernay a decade ago and also had producer roles on her 2010 debut “I Will Follow” and her 2012 film “Middle of Nowhere.” Working on her first two films inspired him to focus on “giving back.” “My current projects revolve around producing small independent features which will embrace emerging talent and first time directors,” he said.

– Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press

— with files from David Friend.

Just Posted

RCMP officer cleared in Prince George arrest

A suspect’s leg was fractured in 2015 incident

Area timber supply cut by a third

More sustainable, pre pine beetle timber cut levels restored

Students dig in to finish harvesting garden produce

Hands-on healthy living education produces results in October, F2S month

New equipment for Vanderhoof public works

New generation grader and sweeper hitting the streets

BC Ferries restricts passengers from lower vehicle decks

The new regulations will no longer allow passengers to remain in their vehicles on closed car decks.

VIDEO: Sears liquidation sales continue across B.C.

Sales are expected to continue into the New Year

VIDEO: Oprah Winfrey and a celebrities attend ‘B.C. Miracle Concert’

Fundraiser featured Foster, Steven Tyler, The Tenors, Matteo Bocelli, Laura Bretan, Carly Rae Jepsen

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Search ramps up for B.C. woman after dog, car found near Ashcroft

Jenny Lynn Larocque’s vehicle and dog were found in Venables Valley, but there is no sign of her

Police officer hit by car, stabbed in Edmonton attack back on job

Const. Mike Chernyk, 48, returned to work Thursday

UBC medical students learn to care for Indigenous people

Students in health-related studies to take course, workshop to help better serve Aboriginal people

Dorsett has 2 goals, assist in Canucks’ 4-2 win over Sabres

‘It was a real good hockey game by our group,’ Canucks coach Travis Green said.

Berry disappointed: Bear tries to eat fake fruit on woman’s door wreath

A Winnipeg woman has taken her berry-embellished wreath down, after a hungry bear visited her porch

Most Read