More than a dozen Oscar nominations have connections to Louisiana, including the category-sweeping The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, (13 nominations – more than any other film) in which New Orleans itself has been said to play a starring character role.
Rachel Getting Married, which includes New Orleans locals as actors, music by New Orleans musician and educator Donald Harrison and characters inspired by director Jonathan Demme’s work in the city also received a nod – Best Actress in a Leading Role for Anne Hathaway. Best Documentary Feature nominee Trouble the Water, recounts New Orleans native Kimberly Rivers Roberts’ personal Katrina story.
“Louisiana continues to attract the best and the brightest from the nation’s film industry,” says Sherri McConnell, executive director of Louisiana Entertainment, a division of Louisiana Economic Development. “These Oscar nominations, the Golden Globes and our presence at Sundance are a testament to what the larger motion picture community knows: Louisiana can be relied on to meet their needs and that it is both easy and enjoyable to make movies here. We’re very proud to be recognized by all these awards. They are well deserved by those who make up our native creative community.”
Other nominations have histories of Louisiana-based productions. Although not shot in Louisiana, these directors, producers and actors have Louisiana connections:
– Angelina Jolie, nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role, and her family now call New Orleans home.
– Sean Penn, nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role, is no stranger to Louisiana having shot both “Dead Man Walking” and “All the King’s Men” here.
– Josh Brolin, nominated for Best Supporting Actor, was in Louisiana shooting Oliver Stone’s” W” for several months last summer and reportedly will be back in New Orleans this spring to shoot the Warner Brothers comic book thriller “Jonah Hex.”
– Acclaimed Director Werner Herzog, nominated for Best Documentary feature “Encounters at the End of the World” shot “Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans” here last summer.
In 2008, Louisiana hosted more than 80 motion picture feature productions which contributed more than half a billion dollars to local economies statewide. Louisiana Entertainment, a division of Louisiana Economic Development, administers the state’s entertainment incentive programs and works to encourage, nurture and facilitate growth of Louisiana’s entertainment industry. Louisiana offers business development initiatives to film, music, digital and live entertainment industry sectors.