Who's up for the Best Original Screenplay Oscar
With most of this year's Oscar-guzzling epics falling into the Adapted Screenplay category, the Original Screenplay race should feature some of 2003's more personal scripts. There was the magical friendship detailed by in ''Lost in Translation'' and the family ties of Jim Sheridan's '''' (cowritten with his daughters), both of which won critics' prizes and Globe noms. And Guillermo Arriaga's time-jumping ''21 Grams'' should impress those who gave ''Memento'' a nod in '02.
Writer-director Catherine Hardwicke and writer-star have won praise for their raw script for ''Thirteen,'' though some voters might not feel the 15-year-old Reed has truly earned her stripes. Other indies, like 's ''The Station Agent,'' Denys Arcand's ''The Barbarian Invasions,'' and Steven Knight's ''Dirty Pretty Things,'' could be eclipsed by their higher-profile rivals. And the well-received romances ''Love Actually'' (written by Richard Curtis) and ''Something's Gotta Give'' (by Nancy Meyers) could be viewed as too lightweight.
So perhaps two bigger productions will round out the list. John Logan, a past nominee for ''Gladiator,'' melds action with quiet drama in ''The Last Samurai,'' while the punny ''Finding Nemo'' team of Andrew Stanton, , and David Reynolds should follow ''Shrek'' and ride the CG wave to the Oscars.