Film Festivals and Awards Prospects

 

The season is upon us. After taking a bit of a break, working on our house and focusing on family and work, it is time to get back into the swing of things and what better time to begin then with the beginning of the “quality” film season. The Venice, Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals have all concluded over the past few weeks and if there is one clear headline to come out of all three, it is that, as of right now, there is not a clear frontrunner for Best Picture. Last year, La La Land, premiered and was heavily lauded by the film fest crowds and was automatically deemed “the one to beat.” That did not turn out the way that crew wanted it too, but the hype train can be a detriment to a films presumed Oscar certainty. With no frontrunner, it is going to make for one hell of a season and one that will be extremely exciting.

I would say the films that shined the brightest, regardless of Oscar possibility, are The Shape of Water (Golden Lion winner at Venice), Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri (Audience winner at Toronto), Lady Bird, Darkest Hour, Call Me By Your Name, The Florida Project, mother! (let’s hope some of the elderly Oscar crowd watches it because it is fantastic), Battle of the Sexes, First They Killed My Father, Mudbound, and Molly’s Game. That is quite a group of films that have the chance to not only be in Oscar contention, but to end up on numerous top ten and best of lists. The thing is is that not one of the films has taken off like La La Land did last year. There was not a consensus of agreed approval and acceptance for one singular film. People liked this one or that one, but were also divisive on almost everything. In my opinion, that is beyond exciting. The possibilities are endless and we could see an Oscar race go down to the wire with numerous films up for the big prize.

Having said that, we still have some heavy weights still to be seen. Woody Allen’s Wonder Wheel, Steven Spielberg’s The Post (obviously with Hanks, Streep and that phenomenal supporting cast), Paul Thomas Anderson’s untitled film (or possible titled Phantom Thread), Richard Linklater’s Last Flag Flying, Ridley Scott’s All the Money in the World, Michael Gracey’s The Greatest Showman and maybe Clint Eastwood’s The 15:17 to Paris. How will these films play out during the race?

Then you have the earlier released films from this year that will be vying for a spot with Dunkirk (maybe the closest to a front runner, but no certainty that is for sure), Get Out, Logan, The Big Sick, The Beguiled, A Ghost Story, War for the Planet of the Apes and Wonder Woman. All of these films were great in their own way and could easily play out during awards season. All were appreciated, and dissected, previously and will not be thrown to the wayside. That is a lot to digest and it appears there are just a lot of good films out there this year.

Then we break down into the specific categories and the Best Actress field is stacked. I wish we could have ten nominees because we still would not have enough room for all of the amazing performances. The ones that really stuck out from the early festival circuit include Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water), Frances McDormand (Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri), Glenn Close (The Wife), Jennifer Lawrence (mother!), Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird), Emma Stone (Battle of the Sexes), Jessica Chastain (Molly’s Game), Margot Robbie (I, Tonya), Annette Bening (Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool), Judi Dench (Victoria and Abdul), Brooklynn Prince (The Florida Project), Carey Mulligan (Mudbound), and Daniela Vega (A Fantastic Woman). Wow! Then you still have the consistent and enigmatic Meryl Streep (The Post) to deal with and Michelle Williams (All the Money in the World). That is a phenomenal list of women and how exciting to see this many quality and significant roles being brought to the front line. That is just fantastic and will make this race one of the most anticipated this awards season.

When talking about the thin Best Actor field, Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour) might have this thing already locked up. Long overdue and many missed nominations, he is supposedly brilliant and what a way to honor a true acting legend. We will still have to fight off two legends, and both as consistent and brilliant as Streep is, with the unseen Daniel Day-Lewis (untitled PTA film) and Denzel Washington (Roman J. Israel, Esq.) in what some were saying is a mediocre follow-up from Nightcrawler writer-director Dan Gilroy. Tom Hanks (The Post) will easily be in contention as well. Then comes the wild card and the one that could throw a wrinkle into the Oldman automatic win, Timothee Chalet (Call Me By Your Name). He is already a new rising star and could be the big upset win come Oscar time.

The supporting categories are still up in the air, but much like the push for Oldman to win his first Oscar, there also seems to be a strong push for Willem Dafoe (The Florida Project) to win his first. He is receiving rave notices for his work in a film that has garnered great reviews since it’s premiere at Cannes. There will be stiff completion from Armie Hammer and Michael Stuhlbarg (both in Call Me By Your Name), Sam Rockwell (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) garnered great notices and I am sure someone from The Post will stand out as well. Laurie Metcalf has received maybe the best reviews of her career for Lady Bird and then you have Mary J. Blige (Mudbound), Allison Janney (I, Tonya), and Kristin Scott Thomas (Darkest Hour) will all be in competition.

All of these films and performances shined, but a few films hit a bit of a road block coming out of the early festival circuit. The biggest one being Alexander Payne’s Downsizing. The buzz was fairly strong from it’s premiere at Venice, but that dissipated a bit once hitting Telluride and Toronto. I am not saying it is completely out of the picture, but it is going to be an uphill climb for almost automatic Payne. Same can be said for Gilroy’s Roman J. Israel, Esq., where Denzel Washington received raves, but the film was deemed mediocre. Acting nominations might be the only one’s received for Stephen Frears Victoria and Abdul, where the performances seem to outshine the entirety of the film.

Being that there is not a clear front runner is cause for excitement at the beginning of the race. There are some strong films from earlier this year, as well as the summer, and many good films coming out of the fall film festivals. This could be an Oscar race that goes down to wire, even with the nominations and the Best Actress is killer this year! It is going to be one hell of an awards season!

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Academy Awards Recap…Wow!

moonlight-best-picture-oscar-1488203503

Well, that was one for the ages! For the Academy, that has to be the one thing, the one mistake you cannot have happen and it occurred Sunday night. I still cannot even rewatch the Best Picture results again. My anxiety gets to me. I know, that is bad and weak, but I felt so bad for both teams from Best Picture winner Moonlight and not so much winner La La Land. Unbelievable, but what a historic night for the Moonlight crew. The first film to win Best Picture with an all black cast. The first film where the main character is LGBTQ to win Best Picture. The film I thought was the best of last year and the one I thought was deserving of the big award. It won!!!

You have to feel bad for La La Land and I do not think many people expected it to lose, but to lose that way is saddening and horrific. La La Land producer Jordan Horowitz, showed amazing grace while fighting back anger when letting everyone know there was a mistake and Moonlight was victorious. It is sad that Moonlight did not get the huge crowd reaction it would have received if it had been announced correctly and they would had more time to thank their crew and peers. Nevertheless, Moonlight is your Best Picture winner and both sides, who have been on this exhausting awards season trail since Telluride, showed immense respect and love for each other. That was another victory in and of it self.

The rest of the night went the way many expected it too. Viola Davis, Mahershala Ali and Emma Stone all won in their respected acting categories. The only category that was somewhat up for debate was Best Actor. Casey Affleck won pretty much every award this season for his heartbreaking turn in Manchester by the Sea, but Denzel Washington won the SAG, and many thought he might win come Oscar night. Affleck took home the prize and Denzel did not appear to thrilled about not winning the award. That would have been three Academy Awards for Washington, tying him with Ingrid Bergman, Daniel Day-Lewis, Meryl Streep, Jack Nicholson and Walter Brennan. Katherine Hepburn has four acting Oscars. Affleck I thought deserved it.

Damien Chazelle took home Best Director, becoming the youngest Best Director winner in Oscar history at age 32. Barry Jenkins and Tarell Alvin McCraney won Best Adapted Screenplay for Moonlight, and Kenneth Lonergan won Best Original Screenplay for Manchester by the Sea.

Although La La Land did not take home Best Picture, it still won the most Oscars, taking home six trophies. The film is a beautiful ode to the classics and extremely well-made, but with Moonlight winning, it really says something about the state of our country and the political climate we are encompassed in. It was time for a statement and not just a victory for beautiful escapism, but for a win that stands up for every one’s rights and showing and appreciation for art and education. Both films are wonderful, but Moonlight is a mesmerizing poetic masterpiece. A film that says so much by saying so little. A film that is so measured and meticulously thought out that every time you see the picture it overwhelms you with emotion. The pain and longing that occurs in the film is something Barry Jenkins and his beautiful cast and crew delivered with such poignancy and importance. I admire the Academy for honoring such a meaningful and important film. What a night!

Academy Awards Winners TBA

BEST PICTURE:  MOONLIGHT!!!

BEST DIRECTOR:  DAMIEN CHAZELLE (LA LA LAND)

BEST ACTRESS:  EMMA STONE (LA LA LAND)

BEST ACTOR:  CASEY AFFLECK (MANCHESTER BY THE SEA)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS:  VIOLA DAVIS (FENCES)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR:  MAHERSHALA ALI (MOONLIGHT)

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY:  MOONLIGHT

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY:  MANCHESTER BY THE SEA

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY:  LA LA LAND

BEST FILM EDITING:  HACKSAW RIDGE

BEST DOCUMENTARY FILM:  O.J.:  MADE IN AMERICA

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM:  THE SALESMAN

BEST ANIMATED FILM:  ZOOTOPIA

BEST COSTUME DESIGN:  FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM

BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING:  SUICIDE SQUAD

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE:  LA LA LAND

BEST ORIGINAL SONG:  “CITY OF STARS” (LA LA LAND)

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN:  LA LA LAND

BEST SOUND EDITING:  ARRIVAL

BEST SOUND MIXING:  HACKSAW RIDGE

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS:  THE JUNGLE BOOK

BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM:  PIPER

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT:  THE WHITE HELMET

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM:  SING

 

Final Academy Awards Predictions

Here are my final predictions before tonight’s show. I truly loved La La Land, Moonlight, Manchester by the Sea, and Arrival. It was tough to pick a best picture, but Moonlight was a brilliant poem of cinema and deserves to be treated like one. Here are my picks. Enjoy!

Best motion picture of the year

  • “Arrival” Shawn Levy, Dan Levine, Aaron Ryder and David Linde, Producers
  • “Fences” Scott Rudin, Denzel Washington and Todd Black, Producers
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Bill Mechanic and David Permut, Producers
  • “Hell or High Water” Carla Hacken and Julie Yorn, Producers
  • “Hidden Figures” Donna Gigliotti, Peter Chernin, Jenno Topping, Pharrell Williams and Theodore Melfi, Producers
  • “La La Land” Fred Berger, Jordan Horowitz and Marc Platt, Producers
  • “Lion” Emile Sherman, Iain Canning and Angie Fielder, Producers
  • “Manchester by the Sea” Matt Damon, Kimberly Steward, Chris Moore, Lauren Beck and Kevin J. Walsh, Producers
  • “Moonlight” Adele Romanski, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner, Producers

WILL WIN:  LA LA LAND

SHOULD WIN:  MOONLIGHT

Achievement in directing

  • “Arrival” Denis Villeneuve
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Mel Gibson
  • “La La Land” Damien Chazelle
  • “Manchester by the Sea” Kenneth Lonergan
  • “Moonlight” Barry Jenkins

WILL WIN:  DAMIE CHAZELLE (LA LA LAND)

SHOULD WIN:  BARRY JENKINS (MOONLIGHT)

Performance by an actor in a leading role

  • Casey Affleck in “Manchester by the Sea”
  • Andrew Garfield in “Hacksaw Ridge”
  • Ryan Gosling in “La La Land”
  • Viggo Mortensen in “Captain Fantastic”
  • Denzel Washington in “Fences”

WILL WIN:  CASEY AFFLECK (MANCHESTER BY THE SEA)

SHOULD WIN:  CASEY AFFLECK (MANCHESTER BY THE SEA)

Performance by an actor in a supporting role

  • Mahershala Ali in “Moonlight”
  • Jeff Bridges in “Hell or High Water”
  • Lucas Hedges in “Manchester by the Sea”
  • Dev Patel in “Lion”
  • Michael Shannon in “Nocturnal Animals”

WILL WIN:  MAHERSHALA ALI (MOONLIGHT)

SHOULD WIN:  MAHERSHALA ALI (MOONLIGHT)

Performance by an actress in a leading role

  • Isabelle Huppert in “Elle”
  • Ruth Negga in “Loving”
  • Natalie Portman in “Jackie”
  • Emma Stone in “La La Land”
  • Meryl Streep in “Florence Foster Jenkins”

WILL WIN:  EMMA STONE (LA LA LAND)

SHOULD WIN:  ISABELLE HUPPERT (ELLE)

Performance by an actress in a supporting role

  • Viola Davis in “Fences”
  • Naomie Harris in “Moonlight”
  • Nicole Kidman in “Lion”
  • Octavia Spencer in “Hidden Figures”
  • Michelle Williams in “Manchester by the Sea”

WILL WIN:  VIOLA DAVIS (FENCES)

SHOULD WIN:  VIOLA DAVIS (FENCES)

Best animated feature film of the year

  • “Kubo and the Two Strings” Travis Knight and Arianne Sutner
  • “Moana” John Musker, Ron Clements and Osnat Shurer
  • “My Life as a Zucchini” Claude Barras and Max Karli
  • “The Red Turtle” Michael Dudok de Wit and Toshio Suzuki
  • “Zootopia” Byron Howard, Rich Moore and Clark Spencer

WILL WIN:  ZOOTOPIA

SHOULD WIN:  THE RED TURTLE

Achievement in cinematography

  • “Arrival” Bradford Young
  • “La La Land” Linus Sandgren
  • “Lion” Greig Fraser
  • “Moonlight” James Laxton
  • “Silence” Rodrigo Prieto

WILL WIN:  LINUS SANDGREN (LA LA LAND)

SHOULD WIN:  RODRIGO PRIETO (SILENCE)

Achievement in costume design

  • “Allied” Joanna Johnston
  • “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” Colleen Atwood
  • “Florence Foster Jenkins” Consolata Boyle
  • “Jackie” Madeline Fontaine
  • “La La Land” Mary Zophres

WILL WIN:  MADELINE FONTAINE (JACKIE)

SHOULD WIN:  MADELINE FONTAINE (JACKIE)

Best documentary feature

  • “Fire at Sea” Gianfranco Rosi and Donatella Palermo
  • “I Am Not Your Negro” Raoul Peck, Rémi Grellety and Hébert Peck
  • “Life, Animated” Roger Ross Williams and Julie Goldman
  • “O.J.: Made in America” Ezra Edelman and Caroline Waterlow
  • “13th” Ava DuVernay, Spencer Averick and Howard Barish

WILL WIN:  O.J.:  MADE IN AMERICA

SHOULD WIN: I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO

Best documentary short subject

  • “Extremis” Dan Krauss
  • “4.1 Miles” Daphne Matziaraki
  • “Joe’s Violin” Kahane Cooperman and Raphaela Neihausen
  • “Watani: My Homeland” Marcel Mettelsiefen and Stephen Ellis
  • “The White Helmets” Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara

WILL WIN:  JOE’S VIOLIN

Achievement in film editing

  • “Arrival”Joe Walker
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” John Gilbert
  • “Hell or High Water” Jake Roberts
  • “La La Land” Tom Cross
  • “Moonlight” Nat Sanders and Joi McMillon

WILL WIN:  TOM CROSS (LA LA LAND)

SHOULD WIN:  TOM CROSS (LA LA LAND)

Best foreign language film of the year

  • “Land of Mine” Denmark
  • “A Man Called Ove” Sweden
  • “The Salesman” Iran
  • “Tanna” Australia
  • “Toni Erdmann” Germany

WILL WIN:  THE SALESMAN

SHOULD WIN:  TONI ERDMANN

Achievement in makeup and hairstyling

  • “A Man Called Ove” Eva von Bahr and Love Larson
  • “Star Trek Beyond” Joel Harlow and Richard Alonzo
  • “Suicide Squad” Alessandro Bertolazzi, Giorgio Gregorini and Christopher Nelson

WILL WIN:  STAR TREK BEYOND

SHOULD WIN:  STAR TREK BEYOND???

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)

  • “Jackie” Mica Levi
  • “La La Land” Justin Hurwitz
  • “Lion” Dustin O’Halloran and Hauschka
  • “Moonlight” Nicholas Britell
  • “Passengers” Thomas Newman

WILL WIN:  JUSTIN HURWITZ (LA LA LAND)

SHOULD WIN:  NICHOLAS BRITELL (MOONLIGHT)

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)

  • “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” from “La La Land”
    Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
  • “Can’t Stop The Feeling” from “Trolls”
    Music and Lyric by Justin Timberlake, Max Martin and Karl Johan Schuster
  • “City Of Stars” from “La La Land”
    Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
  • “The Empty Chair” from “Jim: The James Foley Story”
    Music and Lyric by J. Ralph and Sting
  • “How Far I’ll Go” from “Moana”
    Music and Lyric by Lin-Manuel Miranda

WILL WIN:  CITY OF STARS

SHOULD WIN:  CITY OF STARS

Achievement in production design

  • “Arrival” Production Design: Patrice Vermette; Set Decoration: Paul Hotte
  • “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Decoration: Anna Pinnock
  • “Hail, Caesar!” Production Design: Jess Gonchor; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh
  • “La La Land” Production Design: David Wasco; Set Decoration: Sandy Reynolds-Wasco
  • “Passengers” Production Design: Guy Hendrix Dyas; Set Decoration: Gene Serdena

WILL WIN:  LA LA LAND

SHOULD WIN:  HAIL, CAESAR!

Best animated short film

  • “Blind Vaysha” Theodore Ushev
  • “Borrowed Time” Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj
  • “Pear Cider and Cigarettes” Robert Valley and Cara Speller
  • “Pearl” Patrick Osborne
  • “Piper” Alan Barillaro and Marc Sondheimer

WILL WIN:  PIPER

Best live action short film

  • “Ennemis Intérieurs” Sélim Azzazi
  • “La Femme et le TGV” Timo von Gunten and Giacun Caduff
  • “Silent Nights” Aske Bang and Kim Magnusson
  • “Sing” Kristof Deák and Anna Udvardy
  • “Timecode” Juanjo Giménez

WILL WIN:  ENNEMIS INTÉRIEURS

Achievement in sound editing

  • “Arrival” Sylvain Bellemare
  • “Deepwater Horizon” Wylie Stateman and Renée Tondelli
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Robert Mackenzie and Andy Wright
  • “La La Land” Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
  • “Sully” Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman

WILL WIN:  LA LA LAND

SHOULD WIN:  ARRIVAL

Achievement in sound mixing

  • “Arrival” Bernard Gariépy Strobl and Claude La Haye
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Kevin O’Connell, Andy Wright, Robert Mackenzie and Peter Grace
  • “La La Land” Andy Nelson, Ai-Ling Lee and Steve A. Morrow
  • “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” David Parker, Christopher Scarabosio and Stuart Wilson
  • “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” Greg P. Russell, Gary Summers, Jeffrey J. Haboush and Mac Ruth

WILL WIN:  LA LA LAND

SHOULD WIN:  ARRIVAL

Achievement in visual effects

  • “Deepwater Horizon” Craig Hammack, Jason Snell, Jason Billington and Burt Dalton
  • “Doctor Strange” Stephane Ceretti, Richard Bluff, Vincent Cirelli and Paul Corbould
  • “The Jungle Book” Robert Legato, Adam Valdez, Andrew R. Jones and Dan Lemmon
  • “Kubo and the Two Strings” Steve Emerson, Oliver Jones, Brian McLean and Brad Schiff
  • “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” John Knoll, Mohen Leo, Hal Hickel and Neil Corbould

WILL WIN:  THE JUNGLE BOOK

SHOULD WIN:  THE JUNGLE BOOK

Adapted screenplay

  • “Arrival” Screenplay by Eric Heisserer
  • “Fences” Screenplay by August Wilson
  • “Hidden Figures” Screenplay by Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi
  • “Lion” Screenplay by Luke Davies
  • “Moonlight” Screenplay by Barry Jenkins; Story by Tarell Alvin McCraney

WILL WIN:  MOONLIGHT

SHOULD WIN:  MOONLIGHT

Original screenplay

  • “Hell or High Water” Written by Taylor Sheridan
  • “La La Land” Written by Damien Chazelle
  • “The Lobster” Written by Yorgos Lanthimos, Efthimis Filippou
  • “Manchester by the Sea” Written by Kenneth Lonergan
  • “20th Century Women” Written by Mike Mills

WILL WIN:  MANCHESTER BY THE SEA

SHOULD WIN:  MANCHESTER BY THE SEA

SAG Awards Winners TBA

FILM

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture

HIDDEN FIGURES!!!

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role

WINNER:  DENZEL WASHINGTON,  FENCES

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role

WINNER:  EMMA STONE,  LA LA LAND

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role

WINNER:  MAHERSHALA ALI,  MOONLIGHT

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role

WINNER:  VIOLA DAVIS,  FENCES

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble 

WINNER:  HACKSAW RIDGE

TELEVISION

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series

WINNER:  STRANGER THINGS

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series

WINNER:  ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series

WINNER:  JOHN LITHGOW,  THE CROWN

WINNER:  CLAIRE FOY,  THE CROWN
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
WINNER:  WILLIAM H. MACY,  SHAMELESS

 

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series

WINNER:  JULIA LOUIS-DREYFUSS,  VEEP

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a TV Movie or Miniseries

WINNER:  BRYAN CRANSTON,  ALL THE WAY

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a TV Movie or Miniseries

WINNER:  SARAH PAULSON,  THE PEOPLE VS. O.J. SIMPSON

Outstanding Action Performance by a Stunt Ensemble 

WINNER:  

 

 

Oscar Nominations Reaction

Well, being to engrossed in all of the terrible things going on in DC, I need to get away from the news and the resistance for a bit and give a little attention to the recent Academy Awards nominations. This was one of the first Academy Awards where I picked the majority of the main categories accurately. I was 100% on all nine Best Picture nominees, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Cinematography and both of the writing categories. Not too bad. I missed Michael Shannon in the Best Supporting Actor category, I had Hugh Grant, and I had Martin Scorsese (who should have been nominated along with his powerful film, which only received one nomination) for Best Director over Mel Gibson. The only category where I was fairly off was Best Actress and what a year it was for actresses. You could have easily had ten nominees this year it was so great. I was surprised that Amy Adams and Annette Bening were left out, but equally happy that Isabelle Huppert and Ruth Negga got nominated. Bening still deserves a damn win!

La La Land received the most nominations with 14, tying only Titanic and All About Eve for most all-time at the Oscars. The film is going to clean up. The only category it may not win in  Best Original Screenplay, which I think will go to Moonlight. Speaking of that film, Moonlight is the only film that has a strong chance of upsetting La La Land, but it would need the PGA and SAG to have a solid chance. Chazelle should get Best Director and will win the DGA. Manchester by the Sea is strong as well, but not receiving a Best Editing nomination hurts it chances.

In the acting races, the only surefire bet is Viola Davis for Best Supporting Actress. It would be a monumental upset if she were not to win. Best Actress will be between Stone and Portman, and Stone should have it, especially if she wins the SAG. It would be pretty amazing if Huppert won though. Best Actor is probably going to go to Affleck, but watch out for Denzel. It thing Best Supporting Actor will most likely be determined after the SAG awards and it is the category with maybe the most suspense. My bet is on Mahershala Ali.

The Oscars are fun an all and we need a little fun right now. Yes, they are highly political and campaigned way too much, but it is nice to see the craft and arts rewarded for outstanding work. We are in uncharted waters and just after week one of this abomination, the hurricane is brewing. Resist with all of your heart and mind against this impish wannabe leader. Filmmakers, painters, musicians, writers and all who strive to be artistic and say something with their art, speak up and speak loudly. It is time to put powerful meaning and passion into all of our work.

 

89th Annual Academy Awards Nominations

Best motion picture of the year

  • “Arrival” Shawn Levy, Dan Levine, Aaron Ryder and David Linde, Producers
  • “Fences” Scott Rudin, Denzel Washington and Todd Black, Producers
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Bill Mechanic and David Permut, Producers
  • “Hell or High Water” Carla Hacken and Julie Yorn, Producers
  • “Hidden Figures” Donna Gigliotti, Peter Chernin, Jenno Topping, Pharrell Williams and Theodore Melfi, Producers
  • “La La Land” Fred Berger, Jordan Horowitz and Marc Platt, Producers
  • “Lion” Emile Sherman, Iain Canning and Angie Fielder, Producers
  • “Manchester by the Sea” Matt Damon, Kimberly Steward, Chris Moore, Lauren Beck and Kevin J. Walsh, Producers
  • “Moonlight” Adele Romanski, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner, Producers

Achievement in directing

  • “Arrival” Denis Villeneuve
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Mel Gibson
  • “La La Land” Damien Chazelle
  • “Manchester by the Sea” Kenneth Lonergan
  • “Moonlight” Barry Jenkins

Performance by an actor in a leading role

  • Casey Affleck in “Manchester by the Sea”
  • Andrew Garfield in “Hacksaw Ridge”
  • Ryan Gosling in “La La Land”
  • Viggo Mortensen in “Captain Fantastic”
  • Denzel Washington in “Fences”

Performance by an actor in a supporting role

  • Mahershala Ali in “Moonlight”
  • Jeff Bridges in “Hell or High Water”
  • Lucas Hedges in “Manchester by the Sea”
  • Dev Patel in “Lion”
  • Michael Shannon in “Nocturnal Animals”

Performance by an actress in a leading role

  • Isabelle Huppert in “Elle”
  • Ruth Negga in “Loving”
  • Natalie Portman in “Jackie”
  • Emma Stone in “La La Land”
  • Meryl Streep in “Florence Foster Jenkins”

Performance by an actress in a supporting role

  • Viola Davis in “Fences”
  • Naomie Harris in “Moonlight”
  • Nicole Kidman in “Lion”
  • Octavia Spencer in “Hidden Figures”
  • Michelle Williams in “Manchester by the Sea”

Best animated feature film of the year

  • “Kubo and the Two Strings” Travis Knight and Arianne Sutner
  • “Moana” John Musker, Ron Clements and Osnat Shurer
  • “My Life as a Zucchini” Claude Barras and Max Karli
  • “The Red Turtle” Michael Dudok de Wit and Toshio Suzuki
  • “Zootopia” Byron Howard, Rich Moore and Clark Spencer

Achievement in cinematography

  • “Arrival” Bradford Young
  • “La La Land” Linus Sandgren
  • “Lion” Greig Fraser
  • “Moonlight” James Laxton
  • “Silence” Rodrigo Prieto

Achievement in costume design

  • “Allied” Joanna Johnston
  • “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” Colleen Atwood
  • “Florence Foster Jenkins” Consolata Boyle
  • “Jackie” Madeline Fontaine
  • “La La Land” Mary Zophres

Best documentary feature

  • “Fire at Sea” Gianfranco Rosi and Donatella Palermo
  • “I Am Not Your Negro” Raoul Peck, Rémi Grellety and Hébert Peck
  • “Life, Animated” Roger Ross Williams and Julie Goldman
  • “O.J.: Made in America” Ezra Edelman and Caroline Waterlow
  • “13th” Ava DuVernay, Spencer Averick and Howard Barish

Best documentary short subject

  • “Extremis” Dan Krauss
  • “4.1 Miles” Daphne Matziaraki
  • “Joe’s Violin” Kahane Cooperman and Raphaela Neihausen
  • “Watani: My Homeland” Marcel Mettelsiefen and Stephen Ellis
  • “The White Helmets” Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara

Achievement in film editing

  • “Arrival”Joe Walker
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” John Gilbert
  • “Hell or High Water” Jake Roberts
  • “La La Land” Tom Cross
  • “Moonlight” Nat Sanders and Joi McMillon

Best foreign language film of the year

  • “Land of Mine” Denmark
  • “A Man Called Ove” Sweden
  • “The Salesman” Iran
  • “Tanna” Australia
  • “Toni Erdmann” Germany

Achievement in makeup and hairstyling

  • “A Man Called Ove” Eva von Bahr and Love Larson
  • “Star Trek Beyond” Joel Harlow and Richard Alonzo
  • “Suicide Squad” Alessandro Bertolazzi, Giorgio Gregorini and Christopher Nelson

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)

  • “Jackie” Mica Levi
  • “La La Land” Justin Hurwitz
  • “Lion” Dustin O’Halloran and Hauschka
  • “Moonlight” Nicholas Britell
  • “Passengers” Thomas Newman

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)

  • “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” from “La La Land”
    Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
  • “Can’t Stop The Feeling” from “Trolls”
    Music and Lyric by Justin Timberlake, Max Martin and Karl Johan Schuster
  • “City Of Stars” from “La La Land”
    Music by Justin Hurwitz; Lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
  • “The Empty Chair” from “Jim: The James Foley Story”
    Music and Lyric by J. Ralph and Sting
  • “How Far I’ll Go” from “Moana”
    Music and Lyric by Lin-Manuel Miranda

Achievement in production design

  • “Arrival” Production Design: Patrice Vermette; Set Decoration: Paul Hotte
  • “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Decoration: Anna Pinnock
  • “Hail, Caesar!” Production Design: Jess Gonchor; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh
  • “La La Land” Production Design: David Wasco; Set Decoration: Sandy Reynolds-Wasco
  • “Passengers” Production Design: Guy Hendrix Dyas; Set Decoration: Gene Serdena

Best animated short film

  • “Blind Vaysha” Theodore Ushev
  • “Borrowed Time” Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj
  • “Pear Cider and Cigarettes” Robert Valley and Cara Speller
  • “Pearl” Patrick Osborne
  • “Piper” Alan Barillaro and Marc Sondheimer

Best live action short film

  • “Ennemis Intérieurs” Sélim Azzazi
  • “La Femme et le TGV” Timo von Gunten and Giacun Caduff
  • “Silent Nights” Aske Bang and Kim Magnusson
  • “Sing” Kristof Deák and Anna Udvardy
  • “Timecode” Juanjo Giménez

Achievement in sound editing

  • “Arrival” Sylvain Bellemare
  • “Deepwater Horizon” Wylie Stateman and Renée Tondelli
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Robert Mackenzie and Andy Wright
  • “La La Land” Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
  • “Sully” Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman

Achievement in sound mixing

  • “Arrival” Bernard Gariépy Strobl and Claude La Haye
  • “Hacksaw Ridge” Kevin O’Connell, Andy Wright, Robert Mackenzie and Peter Grace
  • “La La Land” Andy Nelson, Ai-Ling Lee and Steve A. Morrow
  • “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” David Parker, Christopher Scarabosio and Stuart Wilson
  • “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” Greg P. Russell, Gary Summers, Jeffrey J. Haboush and Mac Ruth

Achievement in visual effects

  • “Deepwater Horizon” Craig Hammack, Jason Snell, Jason Billington and Burt Dalton
  • “Doctor Strange” Stephane Ceretti, Richard Bluff, Vincent Cirelli and Paul Corbould
  • “The Jungle Book” Robert Legato, Adam Valdez, Andrew R. Jones and Dan Lemmon
  • “Kubo and the Two Strings” Steve Emerson, Oliver Jones, Brian McLean and Brad Schiff
  • “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” John Knoll, Mohen Leo, Hal Hickel and Neil Corbould

Adapted screenplay

  • “Arrival” Screenplay by Eric Heisserer
  • “Fences” Screenplay by August Wilson
  • “Hidden Figures” Screenplay by Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi
  • “Lion” Screenplay by Luke Davies
  • “Moonlight” Screenplay by Barry Jenkins; Story by Tarell Alvin McCraney

Original screenplay

  • “Hell or High Water” Written by Taylor Sheridan
  • “La La Land” Written by Damien Chazelle
  • “The Lobster” Written by Yorgos Lanthimos, Efthimis Filippou
  • “Manchester by the Sea” Written by Kenneth Lonergan
  • “20th Century Women” Written by Mike Mills