Maria Bakalova, First Bulgarian Actress With Chance to Grab Oscar
The 24-year-old Bulgarian actress made her big screen debut alongside Sacha Baron Cohen in the comedy sequel, playing Borat Sagdiyev’s daughter Tutar and winning much acclaim for her performance. Fans had called for Maria to be nominated for an Oscar and she could be well on her way in light of the new development with the Golden Globes. According to Variety, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has decided to bump Maria up to best actress in a comedy or musical category upon their review after she was originally submitted for best supporting actress in a motion picture.
The publication reports that Maria is currently leading in critics’ wins and is one of the top contenders for the Oscars next year. It’s not unusual for the HFPA to take it upon themselves to switch categories – Catherine Zeta-Jones was upgraded to leading actress for her performance in Chicago but lost out to her co-star Renee Zellweger.
However, Catherine did go on to win the Sag, Bafta and Oscar for best supporting actress. Abigail Breslin was also moved to the lead category for 2006’s Little Miss Sunshine but failed to earn a Golden Globe nomination. Abigail went on to score nods at the Sag and Oscars for best supporting actress. So, it remains to be seen how the HPFA’s decision on Maria will impact her chances at the Golden Globes.
After the release of Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan in October, heaped praise on Maria’s turn as Borat’s long-suffering, independence-seeking daughter. The actress managed to get 76-year-old statesman Rudy Giuliani into a hotel room after an interview about coronavirus, where he was secretly filmed reclining on a bed before Sacha Baron Cohen entered as Borat to yell at him: ‘She’s 15. She’s too old for you.’
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