'Les Miserables' gets standing ovation at first official screening

By Matthew Dougherty,

The Oscar race just got a little more complicated as director Tom Hooper has officially screened his musical adaptation Les Miserables to audiences that responded with a standing ovation.

According to The Huffington Post, the film was screened Friday in New York for an audience that was made up mostly of guild members who have some serious pull in awards' season. Hooper stated that he only finished the film on Wednesday morning at 2 a.m.

"If Hugh Jackman didn't exist, I don't think I would have done the film," the director said.

The Hollywood Reporter notes that this is the first major awards push by Universal since 2008's Frost/Nixon. If Les Miserables wins Best Picture at the Academy Awards, it will be the first film to do so for the studio since A Beautiful Mind in 2001.

Right now, a ton of Oscar buzz is circulating around Ben Affleck's Argo, Steven Spielberg's Lincoln, Ang Lee's Life of Pi and David O. Russel's Silver Linings Playbook.

Other potential contenders that have yet to screen for audiences include Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty, Peter Jackson's The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained.

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