Countdown to the Oscars: New Predictions

All that is left is the big one. All of the guild, craft and awards shows, with the exception of the Indie Spirit Awards, are complete. Nothing else will really influence the impending results. Marketing and campaigning will continue until Oscar voting ends, but we are in the home stretch. Some categories are locked in and would be tremendous shocks if the perceived favorites do not win. Other categories are up in the air with nothing but stats, momentum and personal preference driving predictions and choices. This years Oscar race is one for the ages, with the pros being a wide open race with many options to chose from, while the cons, and what will be remembered as much, if not more, as the winners, will be the conversation about diversity and #OscarsSoWhite. I just hope the controversy turns in to more of a discussion about inclusion and acceptance, over ignorance and disregard.

This is one of the most wide open Oscar races in a long time and we have three films — The Revenant, Spotlight and The Big Short — vying for the top prize. All three films have a reasonable shot at winning, especially since each film as won a major guild prize. The Revenant won the DGA, ASC, ADG, Golden Globe Drama and BAFTA. Spotlight won the SAG and WGA. The Big Short won the PGA, WGA and ACE Eddie (Mad Max: Fury Road won an Eddie as well). The PGA usually matches up with the Best Picture winner, especially since the PGA votes with the preferential ballot like the Academy Awards and contains similar amount of voters/members. Here are my previous two posts, here and here, where I dive a little deeper into the voting and some history. The Big Short buzz is just not there though. If it had won the SAG or DGA, it would be a lock for Best Picture and Oscar night would be fairly boring. It has ardent supporters, like Sasha Stone at awardsdaily.com, who is absolutely fantastic and is one of the best writers and historians out there, if not the best, but I am just not seeing it happen. I do think it needs to win the Best Film Editing award at the Oscars, and then I might be sweating my pick, but I have feeling that award is going to go to Mad Max: Fury Road. That is not to say it would surprise me if it wins, but my odds are on either The Revenant or Spotlight.

Spotlight has the support of actors and writers. That is huge, but, much like The Big Short, it really could have cemented its Best Picture status if it had won at the DGA. A film about journalism has never won Best Picture and I am not sure it will win this year because of the support and possible split voting between The Big Short and Spotlight, leaving The Revenant in prime position to make Oscar history. The Revenant is on a roll right now. Iñárritu made DGA history by winning consecutive Best Director awards for the first time in DGA history, and the film just won five BAFTAs, including Best Film, Best Director and Best Actor. It might win because of the huge support throughout the industry for what Iñárritu and his team created, look at those leading 12 nominations. It might win, as I said before, because the other two films are splitting votes and The Revenant is hanging on in the right spot. Sneaking in enough #1 and #2 votes throughout the voting to nudge out the other two films. If it does take home the Oscar for Best Picture and Best Director, it will be first time a director as won consecutive directing and Best Picture Oscars in the history of the Academy Awards. And, I do not think not having a screenplay nomination will hurt it at all. The momentum and craft will ride it all the way to the victory, much like it did at the BAFTAs. I am thinking history will be made on February 28th.

I have updated all my picks below and will announce my final predictions next Thursday. Enjoy!

Best Picture
The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Brooklyn
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Room
Spotlight

Prediction:  THE REVENANT

If Not:  SPOTLIGHT

Best Director
Adam McKay, The Big Short
George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road
Alejandro González Iñárritu, The Revenant
Lenny Abrahamson, Room
Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

Prediction:  ALEJANDRO G. IÑÁRRITU (THE REVENANT)

If Not:  GEORGE MILLER (MAD MAX: FURY ROAD)

Best Actor

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo
Matt Damon, The Martian
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Prediction:  LEONARDO DICAPRIO (THE REVENANT)

If Not:  MICHAEL FASSBENDER (STEVE JOBS)

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett, Carol
Brie Larson, Room
Jennifer Lawrence, Joy
Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Prediction:  BRIE LARSON (ROOM)

If Not:  SAOIRSE RONAN (BROOKLYN)

Best Supporting Actor

Christian Bale, The Big Short
Tom Hardy, The Revenant
Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight
Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies
Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Prediction:  SYLVESTER STALLONE (CREED)

If Not:  MARK RYLANCE (BRIDGE OF SPIES)

Best Supporting Actress

Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Rooney Mara, Carol
Rachel McAdams, Spotlight
Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl
Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Prediction:  ALICIA VIKANDER (THE DANISH GIRL)

If Not:  KATE WINSLET (STEVE JOBS)

Best Original Screenplay
Matt Charman, Ethan Coen & Joel Coen, Bridge of Spies
Alex Garland, Ex Machina
Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Josh Cooley & Ronnie del Carmen, Inside Out
Josh Singer & Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
Andrea Berloff, Jonathan Herman, S. Leigh Savidge & Alan Wenkus, Straight Outta Compton

Prediction:  SPOTLIGHT

If Not:  INSIDE OUT

Best Adapted Screenplay
Charles Randolph & Adam McKay, The Big Short
Nick Hornby, Brooklyn
Phyllis Nagy, Carol
Drew Goddard, The Martian
Emma Donoghue, Room

Prediction:  THE BIG SHORT 

If Not:  THE MARTIAN

Best Foreign Film
Embrace of the Serpent
Mustang
Son of Saul
Theeb
A War

Prediction:  SON OF SAUL

If Not:  MUSTANG

Best Documentary Feature
Amy
Cartel Land
The Look of Silence
What Happened, Miss Simone?
Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom

Prediction:  AMY

If Not:  THE LOOK OF SILENCE

Best Animated Feature
Anomalisa
Boy and the World
Inside Out
Shaun the Sheep Movie
When Marnie Was There

Prediction:  INSIDE OUT

If Not:  ANOMALISA

Best Film Editing
Hank Corwin, The Big Short
Margaret Sixel, Mad Max: Fury Road
Stephen Mirrione, The Revenant
Tom McArdle, Spotlight
Maryann Brandon & Mary Jo Markey, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Prediction:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

If Not:  THE BIG SHORT

Best Song
“Earned It,” Fifty Shades of Grey
“Manta Ray,” Racing Extinction
“Writings on the Wall,” Spectre
“Till It Happens to You,” The Hunting Ground
“Simple Song #3,” Youth

Prediction:  THE HUNTING GROUND

If Not:  SPECTRE

Best Original Score
Thomas Newman, Bridge of Spies
Carter Burwell, Carol
Ennis Morricone, The Hateful Eight
Jóhann Jóhannsson, Sicario
John Williams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Prediction:  THE HATEFUL EIGHT

If Not:  CAROL

Best Visual Effects

Ex Machina

Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Prediction:  STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS

If Not:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

Best Cinematography

Edward Lachman, Carol
Robert Richardson, The Hateful Eight
John Seale, Mad Max: Fury Road
Emmanuel Lubezki, The Revenant
Roger Deakins, Sicario

Prediction:  THE REVENANT

If Not:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

Best Costume Design
Carol
Cinderella
The Danish Girl
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Revenant

Prediction:  CAROL

If Not:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Mad Max: Fury Road
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared
The Revenant

Prediction:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

If Not:  THE REVENANT 

Best Production Design
Bridge of Spies
The Danish Girl
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant

Prediction:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

If Not:  THE REVENANT

Best Sound Editing
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Sicario
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Prediction:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

If Not:  THE REVENANT

Best Sound Mixing
Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Prediction:  MAD MAX: FURY ROAD

If Not:  THE REVENANT 

Best Short Film, Live Action
Ave Maria
Day One
Everything Will Be Okay
Shok
Stutterer

Prediction:  AVE MARIA

If Not:  SHOK

Best Short Film, Animated
Bear Story
Prologue
Sanjay’s Super Team
We Can’t Live Without Cosmos
World of Tomorrow

Prediction:  SANJAY’S SUPER TEAM

If Not:  WORLD OF TOMORROW

Best Documentary Short Subject
Body Team 12
Chau, Beyond the Lines
Claude Lanzmann
A Girl in the River
Last Day of Freedom

Prediction:  BODY TEAM 12

If Not:  CLAUDE LANZMANN

 

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