Wednesday, December 16, 2015

The Oscar Narrative: Post Globe/SAG/Critics Choice Predictions

Best Picture
The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens

Other Contenders - Brooklyn, Beasts of No Nation, The Hateful Eight, Straight Outta Compton, Joy, Inside Out, Steve Jobs, Creed, Black Mass, Sicario, The Danish Girl, Son of Saul, Youth, Suffragette, Anomalisa, Ex Machina, 45 Years, 99 Homes, Love & Mercy, Concussion

Commentary - This race is far from over, but I think I can pretty much now narrow it down to about 17 films. Yes that is a crazy large number, but it is still better than a couple of weeks ago. First, let's talk about what I am leaving out. Steve Jobs has been there since the beginning for me, but, despite love for its actors and screenplay, it is missing the cut. The BFCA snub in particular stung, and made me think that its box office flop status is dampening its Best Picture chances. The Hateful Eight has great reviews, but once again it missed at SAG, Globes, and the BFCA for Best Picture. I think people respect the film, but it doesn't seem like it is going to be Django or Inglourious Basterds (although never rule him out). Straight Outta Compton and Beasts of No Nation got huge SAG boosts, and are right there on the cusp. Joy is basically dead, Creed is not getting the love it needs, and despite so many folks saying otherwise, Brooklyn needs some help soon, or it could just be the Saoirse Ronan show. Finally, Inside Out is clearly beloved. My fingers are crossed. So now onto who will be nominated. Mad Max is gaining steam, and it, along with The Martian, Bridge of Spies, and The Revenant, I think will rebound from SAG missed by sweeping the broad industry awards, especially the PGA, and a lot of those tech guilds. Room and Carol look like strong indie hits. Even though both missed SAG ensemble, they got their individual players in, and I think both will have the passionate support. The Big Short is racking up love here at the end of the season with Globes, SAG, and the BFCA going nuts for them. Spotlight is of course in the lead, and statistically is probably the only film at this point that can actually win. And then there is Trumbo, a surprise contender, who has the support of the actors. Plus, it is the obligatory Hollywood film about Hollywood that they love. Finally, yes, I know this probably just me wanting it to be true, I am including Star Wars. The first reactions are fantastic, the box office will be undeniable, and it hits the sweet spot of technical achievement, and nostalgic favorite. It is not a guarantee, but it may be too big for them to ignore. The other categories I am just going to list my updated predictions, and there will, of course, be more discussion along the way.

Best Director
Todd Haynes "Carol"
Tom McCarthy "Spotlight"
George Miller "Mad Max: Fury Road"
Ridley Scott "The Martian"
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu "The Revenant"

Best Actor
Bryan Cranston "Trumbo"
Johnny Depp "Black Mass"
Leonardo DiCaprio "The Revenant"
Michael Fassbender "Steve Jobs"
Eddie Redmayne "The Danish Girl"

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

Best Supporting Actor
Christian Bale "The Big Short"
Paul Dano "Love and Mercy"
Idris Elba "Beasts of No Nation"
Mark Rylance "Bridge of Spies"
Michael Shannon "99 Homes"

Best Supporting Actress
Rooney Mara "Carol"
Rachel McAdams "Spotlight"
Helen Mirren "Trumbo"
Alicia Vikander "The Danish Girl"
Kate Winslet "Steve Jobs"

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