Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind: Ellen Kuras
Owen Gleiberman
February 21, 2005 AT 05:00 AM EST

Why did ”Eternal Sunshine” get overlooked for awards?

I am outraged by the lack of attention that Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind has received during awards season. Do you think if it had been released later in the year, it would be garnering more Oscar buzz? — Pete
It couldn’t have hurt. Eternal Sunshine has, of course, received a handful of awards and nominations, but there’s a general perception in Hollywood that its early-in-the-year release date (March 19) didn’t do it any favors. Had the film swapped calendar dates with, say, Finding Neverland (Nov. 12), it would now be a lot easier to imagine Jim Carrey looking at a Best Actor nomination instead of Johnny Depp. Given the extraordinary acclaim that has been lavished on Eternal Sunshine, it was all but inevitable that the movie would be viewed as a test case — by its studio, Focus Features, and by the rest of the industry — for the question of how an early release date ends up influencing a film’s awards chances. The old conventional wisdom was, Hey, it didn’t work against The Silence of the Lambs (Feb. 14) or Seabiscuit (July 25). The new wisdom: Remember Eternal Sunshine.

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