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James Cromwell on ‘Babe’: I paid for my Oscar campaign

Larry King NowApr 24 '17

James Cromwell reveals that he paid for the Oscar campaign that resulted in his Academy Award nomination for ‘Babe,’ because the studio didn’t want to nominate him as a supporting actor.

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Larry King: Does it strike you as odd that of your almost 200 roles to date on film, ‘Babe’ is the one that got you an Oscar nomination?

James Cromwell: [Laughs] Yes, it strikes me as odd. [Laughs] Cause they didn’t want to let me run the campaign.

Larry King: Why?

James Cromwell: Because I said, “I’m not the lead of the picture, the pig is.” They said, “Well we can’t put a pig up for leading actor.” So I said, “Well that’s fine, let me be supporting actor.” They said, “If you go for supporting actor, we won’t support you at all. You can’t use any photograph of you in the costume, you can’t—now they changed their mind cause we did it, I just took out the ads, I took out the ads, I paid for them. Getting an Academy Award when you’re a character actor is very expensive.

Larry King: Sure.

James Cromwell: Costs a lot of money.

Larry King: Do awards mean something to you?

James Cromwell: They don’t mean much to me. As the guy said when we had the lunch of all the nominees, he said, “Look, being nominated is the Academy Award. That means your peers, all of your peers, have voted your performance one of the-”

Larry King: Five.

James Cromwell: Five best. The award itself is a crap game. That has to do with the studio and whether they bought advertising, how much money they can make off it, and whether somebody saw the picture. A lot of people in the Academy would not go to ‘Babe’ because they thought it was a kids’ picture.

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