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Monday, 16 December, 2002, 15:26 GMT
Oscar hopefuls fill top films list
Salma Hayek as Frida Kahlo
Salma Hayek stars as artist Frida Kahlo in Frida
A list of the best films of the year drawn up by a respected US film body has given an indication to the movies likely to dominate the Hollywood awards season.

About Schmidt, starring Jack Nicholson
About Schmidt has already picked up awards
The new Lord of the Rings film, Martin Scorsese's Gangs of New York and Jack Nicholson drama About Schmidt are all on the American Film Institute's top 10 of 2002.

The list comes as the awards season gets under way, and with it the guessing game about what will do well at the Oscars in March.

Another pointer, the New York Film Critics Circle Awards, will also reveal their winners on Monday.

The American Film Institute's movies of the year, in alphabetical order, are:

  • About A Boy
  • About Schmidt
  • Adaptation
  • Antwone Fisher
  • Chicago
  • Frida
  • Gangs of New York
  • The Hours
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
  • The Quiet American

Already creating a buzz is Gangs of New York, Martin Scorsese's epic project set in the 19th Century and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Cameron Diaz and Daniel Day-Lewis.

The Hours, which stars Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf, appears on the list after being named best film by the National Board of Review of Motion Pictures.

About A Boy
About A Boy is a surprise inclusion
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers is included on the list, and will hope to match the success of the first instalment, which was given 13 Oscars nominations.

Among the AFI's other picks for their 2003 ceremony is black comedy Adaptation, starring Nicolas Cage and Meryl Streep. It is director Spike Jonze's follow-up to Being John Malkovich.

Antwone Fisher is Denzel Washington's directorial debut, while Frida stars Salma Hayek as artist Frida Kahlo.

One surprise inclusion is Hugh Grant's comedy About A Boy, which was a moderate box office success but was not thought likely to be in the running for the major awards.

Michael Caine has been touted for an Oscar nomination for his role in The Quiet American, which also makes the AFI list.

Critics' prizes

About Schmidt, starring Jack Nicholson as a man facing retirement who faces up to an unfulfilling life, has already won one of the early awards, the LA Film Critics Association's best movie prize.

The critics also named Nicholson best actor when their awards were announced on Sunday.

But he had to share the prize with Daniel Day Lewis for Gangs of New York.

The association's pick for best actress this year was Julianne Moore for her roles in Far From Heaven and The Hours.

  • Bafta, the UK film awards body, is considering using a "virtual red carpet" at next year's ceremony, according to film industry publication Variety.

    Chief executive Amanda Berry told Variety they had consulted special effects experts after spending an "absolute fortune" on a red carpet that started frothing in the rain this year.


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    See also:

    15 Dec 02 | Entertainment
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    05 Dec 02 | Entertainment
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