Is it Clooney versus the field?
Demian Bichir, "A Better Life"
Pro: Bichir ("Weeds," "Che") received strong notices for his moving portrayal of an illegal immigrant trying to create a better life for his teenage son in Los Angeles. Summit Entertainment sincerely believes in Chris Weitz's drama and it made "A Better Life" one of the first screeners to reach Academy members. Could be an Indie Spirit Awards player.
Con: Even sending the screener out early, "A Better Life" was a huge disappointment in limited release with just $1.7 million. The bigger question is: will Academy members really watch it?