Without 12 Years a Slave, we knew the WGA would have to reach in the Adapted Screenplay category for that fifth slot. Lone Survivor has gotten some nice notices, but we all know that will not happen. I thought maybe they would go to The Spectacular Now route similar to their pick of Perks last year. But the other four were expected, and throw in Philomena and 12 Years a Slave and you have your six contenders for five slots. The original category had four I had predicted, Blue Jasmine (It's Woody Allen for gods sake), American Hustle, Her, and Nebraska (The three big contenders). But I did not expect Inside Llewyn Davis to be snubbed here (Gravity was the other big one, but I figured the writers would ignore it). En route to a Best Picture nomination, the WGA was the one big guild that A Serious Man got, indicating real support within the Academy. Now we all know there are huge Coen fans in AMPAS, so don't be surprised if it gets in here and in Best Picture, but it is looking really weak, and this is a much tougher year than 2009. The other surprise is Dallas Buyers Club, which has now hit PGA, SAG (three nods including ensemble), and WGA. I think it is safe to say that there is a lot of love for the film in the industry and Best Picture nomination is now in the cards. This also really helps McConaughey and Leto, both of whom could win Oscars this year. The other big one that was kind of surprising was the snub of Saving Mr. Banks, who will have to ride the PGA nod to the Oscars. For months, we had heard about how great the script was. Even though the direction was a bit pat, I thought that maybe the buzzed screenplay may find room. Like Inside Llewyn Davis, this one will have its supporters, but will still be borderline contenders.
"American Hustle," Written by Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell; Columbia Pictures
"Blue Jasmine," Written by Woody Allen; Sony Pictures Classics
"Dallas Buyers Club," Written by Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack; Focus Features
"Her," Written by Spike Jonze; Warner Bros.
"Nebraska," Written by Bob Nelson; Paramount Pictures
"August: Osage County," Screenplay by Tracy Letts; Based on his play; The Weinstein Company
"Before Midnight," Written by Richard Linklater & Julie Delpy & Ethan Hawke; Based on characters created by Richard Linklater & Kim Krizan; Sony Classics
"Captain Phillips," Screenplay by Billy Ray; Based on the book A Captain’s Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALS, and Dangerous Days at Sea by Richard Phillips with Stephan Talty; Columbia Pictures
"Lone Survivor," Written by Peter Berg; Based on the book by Marcus Lutrell with Patrick Robinson; Universal Pictures
"The Wolf of Wall Street," Screenplay by Terence Winter; Based on the book by Jordan Belfort; Paramount Pictures
"Dirty Wars," Written by Jeremy Scahill & David Riker; Sundance Selects
"Herblock – The Black & The White," Written by Sara Lukinson & Michael Stevens; The Stevens Company
"No Place on Earth," Written by Janet Tobias & Paul Laikin; Magnolia Pictures
"Stories We Tell," Written by Sarah Polley; Roadside Attractions
"We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks," Written by Alex Gibney; Focus Features