The Social Network was one of the best received movies of the past year—critically and otherwise—and it’s practically guaranteed a Best Picture nomination at the 2011 Academy Awards, if not the Oscar itself. You can also expect to see director David Finch, actor Jesse Eisenberg, and writer Aaron Sorkin to get nominations in their respective fields.

But what about the rest of the cast? What’s the likelihood that, say, singer-dancer-actor Justin Timberlake, who played Napster creator Sean Parker, might get nominated in the Best Supporting Actor category? According to The New York Post, Timberlake is bound and determined to get said nomination, to the point that he plans to campaign personally by attending Academy screenings and rubbing elbows with the Hollywood elite.

So says a source close to Justin Timberlake:

“He’s hell-bent on getting a nomination this year even though he has tough competition from his co-star Andrew Garfield. […] Sony is footing the bill for advertising the awards campaign, but Justin is also doing things his own way, including attending Academy screenings on his own and privately reaching out to award winners and Academy darlings Tom Hanks and Kevin Spacey for campaigning advice.”

Now, I’ll be the first to admit that Timberlake did a surprisingly good job as the human weasel (otherwise known as Sean Parker). But that’s just it—it was good. The performance wasn’t extraordinary. It wasn’t mind-blowing. And it certainly neither matched nor exceeded fellow Social Network cast member Andrew Garfield’s turn as Eduardo Saverin. There’s a reason millions of Spider-Man fans stood up and cheered for Garfield after The Social Network was over—he was so damn good, and likable, and charming, and down-to-Earth, that he assuaged nearly all of their fears regarding the casting of Garfield as the new Peter Parker in the upcoming Spider-Man reboot. Just like that.

Again, I say, Timberlake is a good actor, but he’s not a great actor—at least, not in my opinion. Not yet. I can’t imagine why he’s so hell-bent on getting an Oscar nod after only a half-decade of acting (in mostly terrible movies, I might add, including Southland Tales, Shrek the Third, and The Love Guru). Everyone knows that when it comes to the Academy Awards, actors have to pay their dues and move up the ladder ever-so-slowly or else blow their chances altogether. I can’t imagine it’s a brilliant strategic move to go with a full-court press the first time you’re in a movie that everybody loves.

When reached for comment, Timberlake’s reps dodged the question altogether:

“He’s doing everything to support Social Network.”

Well, that’s a non-denial denial if I’ve ever heard one.

Recently, it was announced that James Franco and Anne Hathaway will host the 83rd Annual Academy Awards, which is scheduled to air February 27th, 2011 (nominations are announced one month prior on January 25th). Meanwhile, Justin Timberlake’s next film, Yogi Bear, in which he plays Boo-Boo Bear, hits theaters December 17th, 2010.

What’re your thoughts? Do you think Justin Timberlake deserves a nomination for his work on The Social Network? Or do you think there are other more deserving supporting actors out there? Let us know in the comments.

Source: The New York Post