Among the films nominated for 2019 Academy Awards is First Reformed a movie partly shot on Long Island in which Ethan Hawke plays a Protestant minister facing a crisis of faith.

The film’s director, Paul Schrader, was nominated for best original screenplay for the dramatic thriller, which was set in upstate New York. Several street scenes in the movie were filmed in Hicksville, according to IMDB and local officials. Schrader was simultaneously appreciative and flippant upon learning he was nominated Jan. 22.

“I have never really respected the Academy for their choices,” Schrader told The Los Angeles Times. “On the other hand, I’m enormously gratified that they have selected me. So you live in a kind of conflicted world. Where on one hand you say it truly doesn’t matter. And on the other hand you say, ‘Well, I guess it does matter.’

This is the first Oscar nomination for Schrader, 72, who co-wrote four screenplays with Martin Scorsese: Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, The Last Temptation of Christ, and Bringing Out The Dead. He’s also directed more than a dozen other movies, including American Gigolo, Cat People, and Mishma: A Life in Four Chapters.

In the best original screenplay category, Schrader is up against the writers of The Favourite, Green Book, Roma, and Vice.

The credits for First Reformed included a special thanks to Nassau County police spokesmen Det. Lt. Richard LeBrun, Det. Vincent Garcia, Det. Mike Bitsko, and Officer Maureen Roach, who helped secure the scene for the film crew while they were on LI for a scene in which Hawke’s character drove through the streets of Hicksville, police said.

“We closely monitored and provide intermittent traffic control to keep the crew as well as residents of our roadways safe and free from obstructions during these driving scenes,” LeBrun told the Press. He added that the department’s Public Information Office “has assisted with thousands of productions in Nassau County and we thank the production company for the acknowledgement that has been given and congratulate them for their nomination.”

The Academy Awards ceremony is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 24. The full list of nominees can be found here.

The last full-length feature film shot on LI to win an Oscar was 2014’s Still Alice, for which Julianne Moore won for best actress. That movie was partly shot in Lido.

RELATED STORY: 23 Movies Shot on Long Island That Won Oscars 

Paul Schrader, who wrote and directed First Reformed, at the Montclair Film Festival. (Photo by Frank Schramm)
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Timothy Bolger is the Editor in Chief of the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.