Films made in Nevada could be in Oscar race

Three movies partly made in Nevada may be Oscar contenders when the Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences on Tuesday announces Academy Award nominations.

"Anywhere But Here," "Magnolia" and Man on the Moon" had scenes shot in Nevada and have potential for Oscar nominations, said Robin Holabird, deputy director of the Nevada Film Office.

"I'm hoping to add some names to Nevada's award list this year," Holabird said.

Nevada's most recent Oscar recognition came in 1996, when Nicolas Cage was named best actor for his work in "Leaving Las Vegas." Golden Globe wins that year also went to Sharon Stone in "Casino" and John Travolta in "Get Shorty."

Best picture Oscar winners that had scenes shot in Nevada are "Rain Man," "The Godfather" and "The Godfather, Part 2."

Two of this year's potential Oscar contenders were filmed in Northern Nevada and have already won Golden Globes.

Writer-director Paul Thomas Anderson in May brought the "Magnolia" production to John Ascuaga's Nugget in Sparks and the Downtowner Motor Lodge in Reno. Holabird believes Tom Cruise has a strong shot for an Oscar following his best supporting actor Golden Globe for his role in "Magnolia."

"Man on the Moon," which recounts the life of quirky comedian Andy Kaufman, had scenes shot last spring at Harrah's Tahoe with a second-unit crew capturing footage of the lounge act of Kaufman's alter ego, Tony Clifton.

"Anywhere But Here" earned Natalie Portman a best supporting actress nomination from the Golden Globes. The film used Mount Charleston outside Las Vegas to double for Utah road scenes.

Holabird helps provide support services for film productions that come to the Reno-Carson-Tahoe area. In January, she was involved in a shooting on East Lake Road and in Reno for a movie called "Wakin' Up in Reno," starring Patrick Swayze, Billy Bob Thornton, Natasha Richardson and Charlize Theron.

"It always helps to be associated with success, and Oscar nominations certainly meet that description," Holabird said.

Holabird and the Sierra Arts Foundation each year put on "A Night of Art and Oscars" event. Details for this year's event will be released Tuesday.


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