Movies: Dear Johns and Best Supporting Actors

If you guessed "that guy from Inglourious Basterds" you'd be right.

That's Austrian born actor Christoph Waltz, way back in 1982 in his first feature film Tristan Und Isolde. He played Tristan in the oft told tale (James Franco had a go at the character a few years back). It must be crazy to play the lead role — and a title character no less — your first time in front of the movie camera. The only other Oscar nominated actor who can tell you how that feels this year is Gabourey 'Gabby' Sidibe… Precious herself.

Woody_wildcats Most actors start small with their first role, usually cast as someone without a name who has to go by a job description in the credits like "soldier" (Stanley Tucci in Prizzi's Honor) or "steamer" (Matt Damon in Mystic Pizza). If they're lucky they get a part with several lines, like Woody Harrelson in the Goldie Hawn sports comedy Wildcats.

I don't know why I obsess over the minutae of Oscar statistics and
useless trivia but I want to know everything: how the nominees got their starts, what other Oscar watches are happy about, sad about and which nominee will give the most canned reaction. I want to where everyone was born, where the gay is… everything.

The Supporting Actor Nominees

  • Matt Damon as a star athlete in Invictus
  • Woody Harrelson as an alcoholic Casualty Notification Officer in The Messenger
  • Christopher Plummer as Russian icon "Leo Tolstoy" The Last Station
  • Stanley Tucci as evil serial killer "George Harvey" in The Lovely Bones
  • Christoph Waltz as evil 'Jew Hunter'  in Inglourious Basterds

You can either play rugby with Matt, deliver bad news with Woody, debate celibacy and politics with Christopher, build dollhouses with Stanley or play "That's a Bingo" with Christoph. Take your pick. Who are you rooting for on March 7th?