It's the time of year when Oscar buzz starts to pick up pace, and one of the Irish dark horse contenders forcefully emerged last week with strong word of mouth.

The trailer for the upcoming film Albert Nobbs was released on Access Hollywood, and Glenn Close, who stars as an Englishman who dresses as a woman in order to obtain a job in a Dublin luxury hotel in the 19th century, garnered some early raves for her portrayal.

Close portrays Nobbs, who has no choice but to disguise herself as a man so she can secure the butler’s job and escape a life of poverty.  What’s more, Nobbs is the illegitimate child of a maid, and when working at the hotel she takes a shine to a pretty maid . . . who in turn has a thing for a hot handyman. Sounds like an 1800s version of Jersey Shore to us!

The film was made in Dublin and Wicklow earlier this year, and for Close it’s been a true labor of love. She portrayed the role of Albert nearly 30 years ago onstage, and has since dedicated herself to bringing it to the silver screen.

After a few false starts and financing issues, the project finally proceeded with a budget of $9 million and a roster of formidable co-stars including Mia Wasikowska, Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Brendan Gleeson.  Close also co-wrote the screenplay and is a co-producer.


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“I felt the power of (the) story from this inner kind of simple character. It just emotionally blindsided people,” Close told reporters last week.

“What I seek as an artist is to find stories that I feel fulfilled by and that I think have potential to make real connection with other human beings that have something to do with our common humanity. What I love about this story is that as people may think it is all about gender, I don’t think it is. It’s about how people survive. It is about the fact that human beings need to feel safe.”

You can see the new trailer for the film on YouTube. The clip has been warmly received by some Hollywood influencers, including Entertainment Weekly.

“While it may be hard to recognize Glenn Close in the Albert Nobbs trailer, it’s easy to see how her performance could be major Oscar bait,” reports the magazine.

CNN’s entertainment blog was also impressed. “With Oscar season in full swing, Close should get another shot at the coveted award when nominations are announced in late January,” it opined.