SHORTLISTS AND WINNERS 1996

In 1996, Bridget Jones wrote by hand in her diary, and George R.R. Martin typed A Game of Thrones using WordStar 4. The rest of us got ahead by learning, for the first time, to grab a mouse. Yet at the movies, more often than not, the stars were reaching for something more deadly. Wasn’t it ironic?

Download VFA shortlist and winners from 1996, 1986, 1976 & 1966 (PDF)

Film

VINTAGE FILM OF 1996

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Jerry Maguire

Winner : Vintage Film of 1996

Director: Cameron Crowe

Screenwriter: Cameron Crowe

Integrity never looked so good. In Cameron Crowe’s original and genre-defying film, Jerry Maguire is a man who won’t sell his soul to have it all; he wants to earn it the hard way. Filled with great performances and cameos, it’ll make you laugh, cry, cheer for touchdowns, and search for the kwan in your life.

Starring: Cuba Gooding Jr., Jay Mohr, Jonathan Lipnicki, Renée Zellweger, Tom Cruise

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Swingers

Winner : Zeitgeist Film of 1996

Director: Doug Liman

Screenwriter: Jon Favreau

Probably the film that produced more catchphrases per budget dollar in history. Trent Walker (Vaughn), the alpha-swinger, tries everything (Drinks! Girls! Vegas!) to coax his best friend Mike (Favreau) out of a post-break-up malaise. The low-rent digs, the beat-up cars and the constant rejection paint a candid portrait of life for Trent’s not-yet-famous (or never will be) entourage, and the film makes you happy it worked out for so many involved.

Starring: Jon Favreau, Vince Vaughn

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IMAGE ©Warner Bros.

Set It Off

Director: F. Gary Gray

Screenwriter: Takashi Bufford, Kate Lanier

Four friends pool their knowledge from their low-wage jobs to plan a bank robbery that will get them out of the projects. Getting an audience to cheer for a successful bank robbery is always a feat, but Set It Off’s brilliant cast pulls it off multiple times in succession.

Starring: Jada Pinkett Smith, Kimberly Elise, Queen Latifah, Vivica A. Fox

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Shall We Dance?

Director: Masayuki Suo

Screenwriter: Masayuki Suo

Despite his successful career and loving family, a disconsolate Tokyo salaryman finds new meaning in a secret life of ballroom dancing. As midlife crises go, his trips to the studio are easier to hide than a sports car, but then there are wardrobe malfunctions to consider. A 2004 American remake starring Richard Gere is almost as good, but one of the original film’s great pleasures – getting a glimple of Japanese culture – was lost in the translation.

Starring: Koji Yakusho, Tamiyo Kusakari

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Bound

Director: The Wachowskis

Screenwriter: The Wachowskis

It’s unlikely we’d have ever seen anyone trapped in The Matrix if not for the success of this art-house debut by the Wachowskis, who wrung buckets full of noir style out of every blood-soaked dollar in their budget. The plot: A gangster’s moll and her new lesbian lover hope to steal enough cash from the Mafia to escape the cages their lives have become. Both Joe Pantoliano and Meg Tilly have said Bound offered their best roles ever.

Starring: Gina Gershon, Jennifer Tilly, Joe Pantoliano

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Scream

Director: Wes Craven

Writers: Dan Sullivan and Fred LeBow

20 years, three sequels, multiple parodies and a Netflix series later, we still hear from horror fans, film critics and academics that Scream “deconstructed” and “revitalized” the genre for its fans. For the other 90% of the population, Scream was simply the first slasher movie worth paying to see in the theater (especially for the guys who finally found a willing female to accompany them). Having seen the 25-odd films referenced by Scream may heighten one’s appreciation, but this star-studded thrill ride stands on its own.

Starring: Courteney Cox, David Arquette, Drew Barrymore, Jamie Kennedy, Matthew Lillard, Neve Campbell, Rose McGowan, Skeet Ulrich

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Sling Blade

Director: Billy Bob Thornton

Screenwriter: Billy Bob Thornton

“Write what you know” is a common axiom, and it’s moving to consider Billy Bob Thornton’s own impoverished childhood here in the rural Arkansas of Sling Blade, where self-sacrifice goes unrecorded but creates opportunities for the young and innocent. Many critics used “Southern” to describe it, but it’s much bigger than that.

Starring: Billy Bob Thornton, Dwight Yoakam, James Hampton, John Ritter, Lucas Black

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Trainspotting

Director: Danny Boyle

Screenwriter: John Hodge

A film that will make it seem kinda okay if your kids turn out like Seth Rogen, Trainspotting is darker than Fargo and, in terms of nail-biting action, is the polar opposite of the dull hobby of its title (which appears in the source novel by Irvine Welsh but not the film). The film simultaneously propelled Ewan McGregor to stardom and millions of young people away from ever trying heroin. A sequel is coming in 2017.

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Jonny Lee Miller, Robert Carlyle

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IMAGE ©Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.

Fargo

Director: Joel and Ethan Coen

Screenwriter: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

No character in Fargo is terribly bright, but then any law student can tell you that most criminals are tripped up by their own sheer stupidity. Here, a suburban Minneapolis car dealer, facing exposure for his white-collar crimes, arranges to have his wife kidnapped for ransom, and, oh geez, it doesn’t turn out real good. Enter Marge Gunderson, heavy with child beneath her Brainerd Police parka, who follows the trail of blood all the way to Moose Lake.

Starring: Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, William H. Macy

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Emma

Director: Douglas McGrath

Screenwriter: Douglas McGrath

After the success of Clueless in 1995, it seems audiences were ready for the real thing. One of two Emma adaptations released in 1996 (Kate Beckinsale starred in the other, for British television), the more comical of the two casts is led here by Gwyneth Paltrow, who tries on her flawless RP accent for the first time.

Starring: Alan Cumming, Ewan McGregor, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeremy Northam, Toni Collette

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Actor

VINTAGE PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR 1996

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Winner
Tom Cruise

as Jerry Maguire in Jerry Maguire

FINAL NOMINEES

Vince Vaughn as Trent Walker in Swingers

Billy Bob Thornton as Karl Childers in Sling Blade

Ewan McGregor as Mark Renton in Trainspotting

Steve Buscemi as Carl Showalter in Fargo

Jeremy Northam as George Knightley in Emma

Actress

VINTAGE PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS 1996

Winner
Sandra Bullock

as Ellen Roark in A Time to Kill

FINAL NOMINEES

Renee Zellweger as Dorothy Boyd in Jerry Maguire

Queen Latifah as Cleopatra Sims in Set It Off

Neve Campbell as Sidney Prescott in Scream

Frances McDormand as Marge Gunderson in Fargo

Gwyneth Paltrow as Emma Woodhouse in Emma

Song

VINTAGE SOUNDTRACK SONG 1996

Winner
R. KELLY

"I Believe I Can Fly" from Space Jam

Buy Or Listen

Nominated Songs

THE CARDIGANS: "Lovefool" from Romeo + Juliet

MADONNA: "Don't Cry for Me Argentina" from Evita

UNDERWORLD: "Born Slippy .NUXX" from Trainspotting

GARBAGE: "#1 Crush" from Romeo + Juliet

Memorable Moments

FROM THE VINTAGE FILM AWARDS

I’m honored to have it. The longevity of Back to the Future still amazes and delights me.
Writer Bob Gale – winner, Vintage Film of 1985 : Back to the Future

Thanks for this delightful tribute to my work. We often work in the dark, never knowing if our creations are going to resonate with other and so, These two ‘thank you gifts’ are most welcome.
Writer and Star Richard O’ Brien, winner Zeitgeist Film of 1975 and Vintage Sound Track Song of 1975 for The Rocky Horror Picture Show

The Vintage Award means so much especially considering that the film was up against some of my favorite films from the 80s.
Screenwriter Carl Kurlander – winner, Zeitgeist Film of 1985 for St Elmo’s Fire

We are very appreciative of the support given to our movie and for the statue which we just recently recieved. Back to the Future had some excellent competition so the honor is very special.
Director Robert Zemeckis – winner, Vintage Film of 1985: Back to the Future

“Just received [VFA statuette]! Love her and am thrilled, thank you so much.”
Patricia Quinn (Magenta)

“So exciting, thank you!”
Nell Campbell (Columbia)

Co-winners, Vintage Soundtrack Song of 1975 for “The Time Warp” from The Rocky Horror Picture Show

“Thank you so very much for the wonderful honor and trophy!”
Fred Lebow, screenwriter

“I received my statuette today and it’s beautiful… thanks again.”
Daniel Sullivan, screenwriter

Winners, Zeitgeist Film of 1995 for While You Were Sleeping

“Received this award last week & to this day ROSE ROYCE is still being acknowledged for our Car Wash sound track. Thank you!”

@RoseRoyceHits via Twitter

“I am very proud to receive your award. It is a privilege to have been is such a beloved film and your acknowledgement is is so gratifying. Keep punching.”
Sylvester Stallone, winner, Vintage Film of 1976 and Vintage Performance by an Actor in 1976 for Rocky

IMAGE © MGM