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Jack Thompson. Picture: Getty Images

As the Oscars draw closer, Australian actor and Academy member Jack Thompson has nothing but praise for Aussie nominees like Jacki Weaver and Hugh Jackman.

A member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Thompson is one of the 6000 people who vote on the awards and said the Australian representation in the line-up this year was impressive.

"Hugh Jackman's in there in Les Mis(erables) and you won't get a better performance on screen than that," he said in Sydney at Australia's version of the Oscars, the AACTA Awards.

"He's already been recognised with a Golden Globe, so who knows, he may get an (award) there."

But in particular, Thompson said it was great to see Weaver getting international recognition again, two years after her Oscar-nominated performance in the Australian film Animal Kingdom.

Weaver is up for best supporting actress for her part in David O Russell's Silver Linings Playbook, alongside her fellow nominated castmates Robert de Niro, Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence.

"Jacki and I, the first feature film that I did here was a film called Petersen," Thompson said.

"She played my wife in it. We've worked together for a long time.

"To see her getting the recognition, all I can say is, it's about time."

Also speaking from the AACTA Awards about the Oscars was Weaver's Animal Kingdom co-star, Aussie actor Joel Edgerton, who can currently be seen in Kathryn Bigelow's nominated film Zero Dark Thirty.

The film not only nabbed five Oscar nominations, but topped the box office in the US, although it's drawn headlines and divided audiences for its depiction of torture.

"It's causing a bit of controversy," Edgerton said.

"I sort of stay away from all that because I don't really like actors talking about politics, because they inevitably sound really stupid...

"But look it's a great movie and I think it's very special and I think it's being used for all sorts of kind of political reasons, you know, that obviously I try and avoid.

"But I think Kathryn and Mark (Boal, screenwriter) did a great job and I'm very proud to be a part of it."

  • The Academy Awards will take place on February 24.
The West Australian

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