"Million Dollar Baby" wasn't even a blip on the radar back in October 2004. Warner Bros. kind of snuck it into theaters in early December after deciding it was worthy of an Oscar push. That decision by the powers that be turned out to be one of the best moves Warner Bros. made all year. Director/actor Clint Eastwood, Morgan Freeman, and Hilary Swank all picked up Oscar nominations, with "Million Dollar Baby" collecting a grand total of 7. Not too shabby for a film almost nobody had even heard of six months ago.
Eastwood responded to the happy Oscar news saying, "I want to thank the Academy for their kind recognition not only on my behalf, but on behalf of this remarkable film. It's always very gratifying to be recognized by your peers and even more so when that recognition is shared by such a wonderful team of creative professionals. This is a very personal film for me and for everyone involved, and we deeply appreciate the Academy's support."
Hilary Swank's no stranger to the Academy Awards having earned an Oscar for Best Actress in 1999 for "Boys Don't Cry." The second time around appears to be just as sweet to Swank. "It's an honor to have been a part of this film, and to have worked side by side with Clint, Morgan, and all of Clint's wonderful collaborators. It is an experience that I will forever cherish. I'm beside myself," stated Swank.
The nomination as Best Supporting Actor for "Million Dollar Baby" brings Morgan Freeman's total Oscar nominations to four. In responding to the news of his latest nomination Freeman said, "It is an honor to be recognized by the Academy for the work that I was privileged to do in this jewel of a film. The fact that the venerable Mr. Eastwood and the magnificent Ms. Swank have also been nominated makes me so happy that I could just burst."
The 77th Academy Awards will be held on Sunday, February 27, 2005 at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland®.