From Ben Affleck to Joss Whedon
Sacha Gervasi - 'Hitchcock'
Pro: By yanking “Hitchcock” from a planned 2013 berth into the thick of the 2012 awards season, Fox Searchlight suggested that they have significant confidence in Gervasi's semi-comedic study of Alfred Hitchcock's “Psycho”-making years. With the film only premiering later this week, we can only guess as to whether their faith is justified, but either way, it's an auspicious narrative-feature debut for the Emmy-winning British screenwriter and documentary-maker. If it's up to snuff, who's likelier to respond to a story of fearless directorial ambition than the directors' branch?
Con: Everything we've seen so far suggests the film is on the lightweight side, more “My Week With Marilyn” than “Capote” – Searchlight could wrangle acting nods and even a Best Picture bid, but it'll need to go down very well indeed to snag a directing nomination for a relative outsider. The studio's other hot new filmmaker, “Beasts of the Southern Wild” helmer Benh Zeitlin, is a flashier talent.
- Guy Lodge