Is Ben Affleck in the running for an Oscar? Industry insiders seem to think so, after his latest movie Argo opened at the Telluride Film Festival. According to Los Angeles Times, the very same movie critic that predicted success for The King's Speech two years ago has flagged up Argo for the same accolade. The Telluride Film Festival is known for its left-of-centre, "eccentric" programming but in recent years has found itself acting as a precursor for some of the movie world's awards success stories.
Ben Affleck directs and stars in Argo, the story of the 1980 rescue of US State Department employees hiding in Iran during the hostage crisis. The response from its Telluride screening was overwhelmingly positive; this will no doubt have a snowball effect in the run up to the movie's release on October 21, 2012. Alongside Affleck, John Goodman, Taylor Schilling and Bryan Cranston also star in the film. Argo turned out to be one of the highlights of Telluride, as many other suspected Oscars contenders - such as Steven Spielberg's Lincoln and Sacha Gervasi's Hitchcock simply haven't been completed yet and are yet to be added to the 2012 release schedule.
Affleck also sat on the panel for the Telluride discussion on terrorism and argued the point, rather optimistically, that Hollywood movies have the potential to change the world, saying he "would also caution the other members of this panel to ward off their cynicism and remember that those of us in America get our education from movies. We know Adams because we saw Paul Giamatti with his hat on marching around on HBO, and we learn about Lincoln because we see Daniel Day Lewis in a Spielberg film," argued Affleck, adding, "The people who see these films will believe them." And plenty believe that Affleck is headed for 2013 Oscars glory.