Tree of Life Producer Isn’t Optimistic About Oscar

'The Tree of Life.' Photo: FOX

At the New York Film Critics Circle Awards last night, two films were well honored: The Artist, which was recognized for Best Picture and Best Director by the group, and Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life, which was represented in Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Cinematography. Still, Tree of Life producer Dede Gardner thinks there's a world of difference between the two movies when it comes to Oscar. "The Artist is a contender for all of the awards and The Tree of Life is a contender for no awards. That's a fact," she told us. "Tree of Life has gotten an amazing acknowledgement from the critics groups, which honestly matters more to me." Does Gardner think Tree of Life has any shot at significant Oscar nods? "No," she said simply. "I mean, Terry didn't get a DGA nomination, we didn't get a PGA nomination, we didn't get a Golden Globe nomination. You have to take those as sort of indicators of the trend, and the trend seems to be that the film has been treasured and very well recalled by the critics and is not being recalled or appreciated by the industry, is sort of how I feel." (Check out Vulture's awards tracker for a refresher on how this year's race is panning out.) Gardner couldn't articulate why the movie and Malick have been mostly passed over by those bellwether awards — "I don't actually know; I'm truly stumped by it," she said — but allowed that late-voting Academy voters could always reverse this season's long odds. "Maybe! Maybe. We'll see."