Michael Shannon finds Oscar nod nice, life strange

Thu Feb 12, 2009 3:38pm EST
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By Bob Tourtellotte

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Oscar nominee Michael Shannon says his life is so strange right now.

His portrayal of John Givings -- the surprising voice of reason in the dark suburban drama "Revolutionary Road" -- earned Shannon a nomination for best supporting actor at the February 22 Academy Awards.

But heading into January's nominations, Shannon was on few -- very few -- lists of actors who might get a nod for one of the world's top film honors.

Even Shannon admits he was surprised when his cell phone began buzzing at 6:30 a.m. the day nominations were announced.

"My phone started doing a voodoo dance," he told Reuters. "I still can't believe it. Life is so strange. I never thought this would happen."

Shannon, 34, was born in Kentucky and began acting in Chicago. His work dates back to the early 1990s on TV and on the stage. He credits his working relationship with playwright Tracy Letts ("August: Osage County") for getting him roles in plays like "Killer Joe" that led to film work.

Shannon has had small parts in high-profile movies such as "Pearl Harbor," "8 Mile," and "Bad Boys II." Yet he remains one of those actors whose face people recognize but they're not sure why.

"I'm in this weird middle ground, because I'm not like a movie star or anything but I'm not quite anonymous," he said.   Continued...

<p>Actor Michael Shannon is shown in a scene from director Sam Mendes film "Revolutionary Road" in an undated publicity photo released to Reuters February 12, 2009. REUTERS/Francois Duhamel/Paramount Vantage/Handout</p>