Todd’s 2015 Oscar Winner Predictions: Round 1

It’s been two days since the Oscar nominations came out, allowing some time to pass to digest what and who is being recognized. After numerous posts prognosticating the nominations, we now arrive at this question: What Will Win??

Today brings my initial round of guesses on the movies and performers that I believe will get their gold statues. I will definitely have a second and final round posted probably two to three days before the February ceremony.

Let’s get to it:

BEST PICTURE

First off, there are four selections that basically should be happy with the nomination: Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, The Martian, and Room. Mad Max: Fury Road is a major long shot. That leaves a three picture race and indeed it is. Between The Big Short, The Revenant, and Spotlight – this is truly a competitive category this time around. I’m currently giving the ever so slight edge to Spotlight, which has been considered the soft front runner for a while now. Be warned though: the other two are hot on its heels.

PREDICTED WINNER: Spotlight

BEST DIRECTOR

Tom McCarthy’s work in Spotlight could be honored with outside chances for Adam McKay (The Big Short) or George Miller (Mad Max). Lenny Abrahamson’s surprise nomination for Room succeeded in screwing up people’s predictions. He has no chance to win. Yet I’ll go with the Academy honoring Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s direction in The Revenant, just one year after he received the prize for Birdman.

PREDICTED WINNER: Inarritu

BEST ACTOR

We will make this simple: it appears that Leonardo DiCaprio is finally going to win a statue for The Revenant. He is the very heavy favorite and if he doesn’t emerge victorious, it would probably constitute the largest upset of the evening.

PREDICTED WINNER: DiCaprio

BEST ACTRESS

Like lead Actor, there is a front runner here with Brie Larson in Room. Unlike Actor, the possibility for an upset is real with both Charlotte Rampling (45 Years) and Saoirse Ronan. I’ll stick with Larson though. Cate Blanchett (Carol) and Jennifer Lawrence (Joy) seem like non factors.

PREDICTED WINNER: Larson

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

This was an incredibly difficult category to predict with about 12 performances in the running. Now that we know the nominees, this is a race ripe for an upset. Any of the five – Christian Bale (The Big Short), Tom Hardy (The Revenant), Mark Ruffalo (Spotlight), Mark Rylance (Bridge of Spies), Sylvester Stallone (Creed) – are feasible recipients. Rylance has won some precursors, but like the Golden Globes, I’ll project that sentimentality wins out with Stallone standing center stage.

PREDICTED WINNER: Stallone

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

No major front runner here but Alicia Vikander had a great year with another heralded role in Ex Machina. I’ll predict her work in The Danish Girl eeks out a win over Rooney Mara (Carol), Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Hateful Eight), Globes winner Kate Winslet (Steve Jobs), and Rachel McAdams (Spotlight).

PREDICTED WINNER: Vikander

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Short and sweet here – Spotlight is the heavy front runner here and I’ll be surprised if it doesn’t win here. I’m much more confident in predicting a victory for it here than in Picture.

PREDICTED WINNER: Spotlight

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

The Martian or Room have outside shots, but this looks like a win for The Big Short.

PREDICTED WINNER: The Big Short

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

Anomalisa has its hardcore fans, but Pixar’s Inside Out is the big favorite.

PREDICTED WINNER: Inside Out

BEST FOREIGN FILM

Easy pick. Son of Saul is a huge front runner. Mustang is the only completion.

PREDICTED WINNER: Son of Saul

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

Amy, chronicling the career of the late singer Amy Winehouse, is the favorite. For now, however, I’m going with an upset pick in the form of Cartel Land.

PREDICTED WINNER: Cartel Land

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

The legendary John Williams could be in the running for his latest Star Wars score, but I’ll predict the Academy honors another legend: Ennio Morricone for The Hateful Eight.

PREDICTED WINNER: The Hateful Eight

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

Was very surprised to see “See You Again” from Furious 7 snubbed. To me, that would have been the main competition for “Til It Happens To You” from The Hunting Ground, performed by Lady Gaga.

PREDICTED WINNER: “Til It Happens To You” from The Hunting Ground

BEST SOUND EDITING

I believe these sound categories will come down to a battle between Mad Max and Star Wars, with The Revenant as a spoiler. For now, I’m splitting the difference.

PREDICTED WINNER: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST SOUND MIXING

See above.

PREDICTED WINNER: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Once again, I see this as a contest between Chewbacca and Max. I’ll give Max the slight edge.

PREDICTED WINNER: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

This is another tough one with Mad Max maintaining a small edge over The Revenant and The Martian.

PREDICTED WINNER: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

The Hateful Eight stands a chance here, as does Mad Max. However, I believe Emmanuel Lubezki will take home his third Oscar in a row for The Revenant.

PREDICTED WINNER: The Revenant

BEST EDITING

This race often matches Picture and could here with Spotlight. The Big Short, Mad Max, and The Revenant are in the mix. This is practically a coin flip for me right now so don’t be shocked if this changes.

PREDICTED WINNER: The Big Short

BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

Only three nominees here and Mad Max and The Revenant are likely the only two winner possibilities.

PREDICTED WINNER: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Sandy Powell could split her own vote between Carol and Cinderella. Mad Max and The Danish Girl are in the running, but I’ll go with Powell and her work in Carol.

PREDICTED WINNER: Carol

And there you have it! My first Oscar winner predictions.

 

 

2015 Oscar Nominations Reaction

After numerous rounds of predictions, this morning the official Oscar nominations were released for the big show (hosted by Chris Rock) in February, with The Revenant and Mad Mad Max: Fury Road leading the way. My analysis on each race and how your trusty blogger performed in each category can be found now:

Best Picture

How I Did: 8/8 (though I predicted nine)

For the second year in a row, the Academy went with the number 8 on their scale of 5-10 pictures that can be recognized. I went with nine and the film that missed the cut: Carol. Still, not too shabby! Straight Outta Compton was a trendy pick to make the group, though I correctly left it off.

The Nominees

The Big Short

Bridge of Spies

Brooklyn

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Room

Spotlight

Best Director

How I Did: 3/5

The big surprise here is the omission of Ridley Scott for The Martian. My other pick, Todd Haynes for Carol, was who I placed in slot #5, so I’m not shocked to see him left out. Adam McKay and Lenny Abrahamson (a bit of surprise pick) made the cut.

The Nominees

Lenny Abrahamson, Room

Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant

Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

Adam McKay, The Big Short

George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Best Actor

How I Did: 5/5

Now we’re talking! 5 for 5 here and I stand by my estimate that this year will be the Leo Show.

The Nominees

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo

Matt Damon, The Martian

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs

Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Best Actress

How I Did: 5/5

Gotta admit I’m pretty pleased going 10/10 in the lead acting races. Like the previous race, there is a genuine front runner with Brie Larson.

The Nominees

Cate Blanchett, Carol

Brie Larson, Room

Jennifer Lawrence, Joy

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Best Supporting Actor

How I Did: 3/5

This has been the trickiest major race to prognosticate with about a dozen legit names to consider. It bore out with my predictions as I incorrectly guessed Idris Elba for Beasts of No Nation and Paul Dano in Love and Mercy. Taking their place: Mark Ruffalo (Spotlight) and Tom Hardy (The Revenant).

The Nominees

Christian Bale, The Big Short

Tom Hardy, The Revenant

Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight

Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies

Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Best Supporting Actress

How I Did: 4/5

Luckily, Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander’s work in Carol and The Danish Girl, respectively, were honored here and not in lead Actress. I missed Rachel McAdams and incorrectly picked Helen Mirren’s performance in Trumbo.

The Nominees

Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight

Rooney Mara, Carol

Rachel McAdams, Spotlight

Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Best Original Screenplay

How I Did: 3/5

I’m a bit surprised that Quentin Tarantino’s work for The Hateful Eight didn’t make it (I also had Sicario predicted in the five spot). My #6 and #7 other possibilities (Ex Machina and Straight Outta Compton) replaced them.

The Nominees

Bridge of Spies

Ex Machina

Inside Out

Spotlight

Straight Outta Compton

Best Adapted Screenplay

How I Did: 4/5

Following its Golden Globe victory for screenplay, Aaron Sorkin’s work in Steve Jobs missed the cut, replaced by Drew Goddard’s adaptation of The Martian.

The Nominees

The Big Short

Brooklyn

Carol

The Martian

Room

Best Animated Feature

How I Did: 3/5

No love for my predicted The Prophet or The Peanuts Movie (good grief!). Inside Out has the inside track here.

The Nominees

Anomalisa

Boy and the World

Inside Out

Shaun the Sheep Movie

When Marnie Was There

Best Documentary Feature

How I Did: 3/5

It’s Cartel Land and What Happened Miss Simone in and Going Clear and He Named Me Malala out with these predictions.

The Nominees

Amy

Cartel Land

The Look of Silence

What Happened Miss Simone

Winter on Fire

Best Foreign Language Film

How I Did: 4/5

Theeb got in instead of The Brand New Testament. Son of Saul is a strong front runner here.

The Nominees

Embrace of the Serpent

Mustang

Son of Saul

Theeb

A War

Best Production Design

How I Did: 4/5

Carol out, Martian in.

The Nominees

Bridge of Spies

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Best Cinematography

How I Did: 4/5

Carol (which I had listed as sixth) took out my #4 Bridge of Spies

The Nominees

Carol

The Hateful Eight

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Sicario

Best Costume Design

How I Did: 3/5

Voters went with The Revenant and Mad Max over my 4th and 5th guesses, Brooklyn and Far from the Madding Crowd.

The Nominees

Carol

Cinderella

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Best Editing

How I Did: 4/5

Nice for Star Wars (which I listed ninth on the scale), replacing Bridge of Spies.

The Nominees

The Big Short

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Spotlight

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

How I Did: 3/3 (!)

Pat on back.

The Nominees

Mad Max: Fury Road

The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared

The Revenant

Best Sound Mixing

How I Did: 4/5

#4 pick Sicario out, #7 pick Bridge of Spies in.

The Nominees

Bridge of Spies

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Sound Editing

How I Did: 4/5

Picked Sicario in wrong sound category, as I had it listed sixth here. It replaces my #5 The Hateful Eight.

The Nominees

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Sicario

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Visual Effects

How I Did: 4/5

Little surprised Jurassic World missed out. I did have Ex Machina listed sixth.

The Nominees

Ex Machina

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Original Score

How I Did: 4/5

Must admit, didn’t really have Sicario on my radar for a nod here, but it took out my #5 The Danish Girl.

The Nominees

Bridge of Spies

Carol

The Hateful Eight

Sicario

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Original Song

OK – I’m surprised here as my #1 pick “See You Again” from Furious 7 wasn’t honored. Same goes for “So Long” from Concussion (which I had fifth). In their place: “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey and the out of nowhere “Manta Ray” from Racing Extinction.

The Nominees

“Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey

“Til It Happens to You” from The Hunting Ground

“Manta Ray” from Racing Extinction

“Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre

“Simple Song #3” from Youth

All in all, I went 82 out of 106 on my predictions, which I can live with. The nomination breakdowns were as follows with the number in parentheses showing my predicted number for them:

12 Nominations

The Revenant (10)

10 Nominations

Mad Max: Fury Road (9)

7 Nominations

The Martian (6)

6 Nominations

Bridge of Spies (7)

Carol (8)

Spotlight (4)

5 Nominations

The Big Short (4)

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (4)

4 Nominations

The Danish Girl (5)

Room (3)

3 Nominations

Brooklyn (4)

The Hateful Eight (5)

Sicario (3)

2 Nominations

Ex Machina (0)

Inside Out (2)

Steve Jobs (3)

1 Nomination

Anomalisa (1)

Boy and the World (0)

Cinderella (1)

Creed (1)

Fifty Shades of Grey (0)

45 Years (1)

The Hunting Ground (1)

Joy (1)

The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (1)

Racing Extinction (0)

Spectre (1)

Straight Outta Compton (0)

Trumbo (2)

When Marnie Was There (o)

Youth (1)

Films I Predicted Would Be Nominated for One Oscar and Were Not:

Beasts of No Nation

Concussion

Far from the Madding Crowd

Furious 7

Jurassic World

Love and Mercy

I will have a post up very soon with my initial round of predicted winners. Until then!

 

 

 

 

 

Todd’s FINAL 2015 Oscar Predictions

Here we are folks! After numerous posts prognosticating on what and whom will be nominated for the Academy Awards honoring 2015’s best, we will all collectively find out tomorrow morning. This Oscar season has been filled with much intrigue and a great deal of uncertainty.

Many questions abound:

  • Will the performances of Rooney Mara (Carol) and Alicia Vikander (The Danish Girl) be recognized in lead Actress or Supporting Actress? That query alone makes predicting both of those races tricky this year. I will go with both being recognized in Supporting, but if Oscar voters go lead with one or both, it changes the whole dynamic. There’s also the possibility that Vikander could be honored in Supporting for Ex Machina and not Danish, which adds to the confusion.
  • Will the Academy nominate their first Star Wars pic (The Force Awakens) since the original 38 years ago? It’s already become the highest grossing film of all time and could certainly lead to even more eyeballs watching the telecast. That said, I have it narrowly missing the cut.
  • Will Leonardo DiCaprio finally win the gold statue for his work in The Revenant? Precursor awards including the Golden Globes point to yes. A nomination seems assured.
  • Is Spotlight truly the front runner or not? Many other possibilities are out there for an “upset” win. It is, at best, a soft front runner.
  • I’ll finally note that my predictions reflect a belief that Straight Outta Compton will be shut out. This goes against what several other predictors are saying and many have it being recognized in Best Picture. Another high profile offering that I have coming up empty: Black Mass.

As I’ve done for the last several weeks, I’m listing my predicted nominees and other possibilities in each category by likelihood of being nominated. Just because I have something listed as #1 doesn’t mean I’m predicting it to win (I’ll have my first blog post up predicting the winners this weekend). In parentheses after each entry is how far each predicted nominee/possibility has fallen from my previous predictions last week. On Thursday evening, I’ll have a post up letting you know how well (or not so much) I did.

Let’s get to it, shall we? My FINAL predictions:

Best Picture

As I see it, there are 21 films vying for anywhere from 5-10 spots. The magic number is usually 9 (last year it was 8). I’m going with 9 this year, though I believe 10 is more probable than 8. And strangely enough, my predicted nine has stayed the same over the course of the last month or so. Straight Outta Compton, Sicario, and even The Force Awakens have made some waves of late, but I still have them narrowly missing.

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. The Big Short (No Change)
  3. The Revenant (+3)
  4. Mad Max: Fury Road (-1)
  5. The Martian (No Change)
  6. Carol (+1)
  7. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  8. Room (-4)
  9. Brooklyn (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

10. Straight Outta Compton (No Change)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)

12. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

13. Sicario (+1)

14. Inside Out (-1)

15. Steve Jobs (+1)

16. Ex Machina (+2)

17. Trumbo (No Change)

18. Beasts of No Nation (-3)

19. Son of Saul (+1)

20. The Danish Girl (-1)

21. Creed (No Change)

Best Director

Tuesday’s Directors Guild of America usually provides a reasonably reliable snap shot of at least three or four of the nominees that will end up being recognized here. Their picks were Tom McCarthy, Ridley Scott, George Miller, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, and Adam McKay. Of those, McKay seems the most vulnerable (with Miller and Scott behind). I’ll keep my prediction for Todd Haynes in and there’s certainly a chance there’s a shocker nominee as we sometimes see in this category.

  1. Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (+1)
  2. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant (+1)
  3. Ridley Scott, The Martian (+1)
  4. George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road (-3)
  5. Todd Haynes, Carol (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies (+1)

7. Adam McKay, The Big Short (-1)

8. Denis Villenueve, Sicario (+5)

9. Lenny Abrahamson, Room (-1)

10. F. Gary Gray, Straight Outta Compton (+1)

11. John Crowley, Brooklyn (-2)

12. Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight (-2)

13. J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

14. Jay Roach, Trumbo (Previously Unranked)

15. Cary Fukanaga, Beasts of No Nation (-1)

16. Alex Garland, Ex Machina (Previously Unranked)

17. Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul (-2)

18. Ryan Coogler, Creed (Previously Unranked)

19. Danny Boyle, Steve Jobs (Previously Unranked)

20. Tom Hooper, The Danish Girl (Previously Unranked)

Best Actor

This race is increasingly looking like ‘The Leo Show” with Mr. DiCaprio likely to nab (finally) his first Oscar. Only Leo seems to be a totally safe bet (though it would be a surprise to me if Redmayne and Fassbender don’t get in and probably Cranston too). I would say numbers 5-8 are practically interchangeable while anything 9 or below would be a fairly big surprise.

  1. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  3. Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
  4. Bryan Cranston, Trumbo (No Change)
  5. Matt Damon, The Martian (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Steve Carell, The Big Short (-1)

7. Will Smith, Concussion (No Change)

8. Johnny Depp, Black Mass (No Change)

9. Ian McKellen, Mr. Holmes (No Change)

10. Michael Caine, Youth (No Change)

11. Michael B. Jordan, Creed (+1)

12. Geza Rohrig, Son of Saul (-1)

Best Actress

As previously discussed, all the rules go out the window if either Rooney Mara or Alicia Vikander are recognized here instead of in Supporting Actress. That said, I feel pretty confident about Larson, Ronan, and Blanchett. The rest? Not so much.

  1. Brie Larson, Room (No Change)
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn (No Change)
  3. Cate Blanchett, Carol (No Change)
  4. Jennifer Lawrence, Joy (+1)
  5. Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)

7. Helen Mirren, Woman in Gold (+1)

8. Emily Blunt, Sicario (+3)

9. Blythe Danner, I’ll See You in My Dreams (+1)

10. Sarah Silverman, I Smile Back (-1)

11. Maggie Smith, The Lady in the Van (Previously Unranked)

Best Supporting Actor

Bottom line: I feel like Rylance and Stallone are the only safe bets here. This category has been wide open for quite some time and all 12 performers listed here could get in. Very curious to see how this works out come tomorrow.

  1. Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  2. Sylvester Stallone, Creed (+1)
  3. Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (-1)
  4. Paul Dano, Love and Mercy (+1)
  5. Christian Bale, The Big Short (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Michael Keaton, Spotlight (No Change)

7. Michael Shannon, 99 Homes (No Change)

8. Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (No Change)

9. Tom Hardy, The Revenant (No Change)

10. Jacob Tremblay, Room (+1)

11. Benicio del Toro, Sicario (-1)

12. Jason Mitchell, Straight Outta Compton (Previously Unranked)

Best Supporting Actress

Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander seem like safe bets – as long as they’re nominated here and not in Actress. Kate Winslet (fresh off a Globe win) and Jennifer Jason Leigh should play here, too. The fifth slot is truly up for grabs, I feel.

  1. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Rooney Mara, Carol (No Change)
  3. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs (+1)
  4. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (-1)
  5. Helen Mirren, Trumbo (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Jane Fonda, Youth (-1)

7. Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria (No Change)

8. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight (+1)

9. Joan Allen, Room (-1)

10. Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina (No Change)

11. Elizabeth Banks, Love and Mercy (No Change)

12. Marion Cotillard, MacBeth (Previously Unranked)

Best Original Screenplay

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Inside Out (No Change)
  3. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  4. The Hateful Eight (-1)
  5. Sicario (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Ex Machina (-1)

7. Straight Outta Compton (No Change)

8. Love and Mercy (No Change)

9. Son of Saul (+2)

Best Adapted Screenplay

  1. The Big Short (No Change)
  2. Carol (No Change)
  3. Room (No Change)
  4. Steve Jobs (+1)
  5. Brooklyn (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. The Revenant (+1)

8. Beasts of No Nation (+1)

9. Trumbo (-2)

10. Mad Max: Fury Road (Previously Unranked)

11. Anomalisa (No Change)

Best Animated Feature

  1. Inside Out (No Change)
  2. Anomalisa (No Change)
  3. Shaun the Sheep Movie (No Change)
  4. Kahlil Gabran’s The Prophet (No Change)
  5. The Peanuts Movie (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Good Dinosaur (-1)

7. When Marnie Was There (No Change)

8. Minions (Previously Unranked)

Best Documentary Feature (First Time Predictions)

  1. Amy
  2. The Look of Silence
  3. Winter on Fire
  4. Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief
  5. He Named Me Malala

Other Possibilities:

6. Listen to Me Marlon

7. Best of Enemies

8. The Hunting Ground

9. Where to Invade Next

10. Heart of the Dog

Best Foreign Language Film (First Time Predictions)

  1. Son of Saul
  2. Mustang
  3. A War
  4. The Brand New Testament
  5. Embrace of the Serpent

Other Possibilities:

6. The Fencer

7. Labyrinth of Lies

8. Theeb

9. Viva

Best Production Design

  1. The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  3. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  4. Carol (-2)
  5. The Revenant (+4)

Other Possibilities:

6. Brooklyn (-1)

7. The Martian (Previously Unranked)

8. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+3)

9. The Hateful Eight (-3)

10. Cinderella (-3)

Best Cinematography

  1. The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  3. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  5. Sicario (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Carol (+1)

7. Son of Saul (+2)

8. The Martian (-2)

9. The Assassin (-1)

10. Spotlight (Previously Unranked)

Best Costume Design

  1. The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Carol (No Change)
  3. Cinderella (+1)
  4. Brooklyn (-1)
  5. Far from the Madding Crowd (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Mad Max: Fury Road (+6)

7. The Hateful Eight (-1)

8. Suffragette (-1)

9. The Revenant (No Change)

10. Mr. Holmes (Previously Unranked)

Best Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Big Short (No Change)
  3. Spotlight (+2)
  4. The Revenant (No Change)
  5. Bridge of Spies (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (-3)

7. Sicario (+3)

8. Steve Jobs (-2)

9. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+3)

10. The Hateful Eight (-1)

11. Room (-3)

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (No Change)
  3. The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (+1)

Other Possibilities:

4. Black Mass (-1)

5. Mr. Holmes (No Change)

6. Concussion (No Change)

7. Legend (No Change)

Best Sound Mixing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (+3)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  4. Sicario (No Change)
  5. The Martian (-3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

7. Bridge of Spies (Previously Unranked)

8. Jurassic World (-1)

Best Sound Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. The Revenant (No Change)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. The Hateful Eight (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (-1)

7. Jurassic World (+1)

8. Bridge of Spies (Previously Unranked)

Best Visual Effects

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. Jurassic World (No Change)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. The Revenant (Previously Unranked)

Other Possibilities:

6. Ex Machina (-1)

7. The Walk (No Change)

8. Ant-Man (Previously Unranked)

9. Avengers: Age of Ultron (-1)

10. In the Heart of the Sea (-4)

Best Score

  1. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  2. Carol (+1)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+2)
  4. Bridge of Spies (-2)
  5. The Danish Girl (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Spotlight (No Change)

7. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)

Best Original Song

  1. “See You Again” from Furious 7 (+2)
  2. “Til It Happens to You” from The Hunting Ground (-1)
  3. “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre (+4)
  4. “Simple Song #3” from Youth (No Change)
  5. “So Long” from Concussion (-3)

Other Possibilities:

6. “Love Me Like You Do” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

7. “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

These FINAL predictions reflect a belief that the following pictures will receive this number of nominations:

10 Nominations

The Revenant

9 Nominations

Mad Max: Fury Road

8 Nominations

Carol

7 Nominations

Bridge of Spies

6 Nominations

The Martian

5 Nominations

The Danish Girl, The Hateful Eight

4 Nominations

The Big Short, Brooklyn, Spotlight, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

3 Nominations

Room, Sicario, Steve Jobs

2 Nominations

Inside Out, Trumbo

1 Nomination

Beasts of No Nation, Cinderella, Concussion, Creed, Far from the Madding Crowd, 45 Years, Furious 7, The Hunting Ground, Joy, Jurassic World, Love and Mercy, The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared, Spectre, Youth

And there you have it, folks! My final Oscar predictions! I’ll have an update posted tomorrow. Until then…

 

Todd’s Weekly Oscar Predictions: January 1st Edition

Happy New Year, loyal blog readers!!

We begin 2016 with my weekly Oscar predictions leading up to nominations being announced on January 14th. This will mean I’ll have two more posts prognosticating on what and who will be nominated (one on Friday the 8th and one likely the day before the announcements).

A couple of quick notes on various races:

  • There is considerable speculation as to whether Rooney Mara will be nominated in the category of Best Actress or Supporting Actress for her work in Carol. So far, I’ve speculated a nomination for her in the latter. Today, I am changing it to the former.
  • Same goes for Alicia Vikander in The Danish Girl, but I’m keeping her in Supporting Actress for now. There is also speculation that her nod could come for Ex Machina and not Danish Girl.
  • The historic box office performance of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is increasing its shot at a Best Picture nomination. I’ve still got it on the outside looking in, but don’t be shocked if that changes in the coming days.

And with that, here’s my weekly predictions that list all possibilities for each race and how they’ve fluctuated since Christmas Day:

Best Picture

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Room (No Change)
  3. The Big Short (+2)
  4. Mad Max: Fury Road (+2)
  5. Carol (-2)
  6. The Martian (+1)
  7. The Revenant (-3)
  8. Brooklyn (No Change)
  9. Bridge of Spies (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+8)

11. Inside Out (-2)

12. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

13. Straight Outta Compton (-2)

14. Beasts of No Nation (-1)

15. Son of Saul (+2)

16. Steve Jobs (No Change)

17. Creed (-2)

18. Sicario (+1)

19. Trumbo (-5)

20. The Danish Girl (No Change)

21. Anomalisa (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Director

  1. Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (No Change)
  2. George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  3. Ridley Scott, The Martian (+1)
  4. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant (-1)
  5. Todd Haynes, Carol (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Adam McKay, The Big Short (+1)

7. Lenny Abrahamson, Room (-1)

8. Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies (No Change)

9. Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight (No Change)

10. Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul (+3)

11. J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+4)

12. John Crowley, Brooklyn (-2)

13. Cary Fukanaga, Beasts of No Nation (-2)

14. Ryan Coogler, Creed (-2)

DROPPED OUT: F. Gary Gray, Straight Outta Compton

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Actor

  1. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs (No Change)
  3. Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  4. Matt Damon, The Martian (+1)
  5. Bryan Cranston, Trumbo (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Johnny Depp, Black Mass (No Change)

7. Will Smith, Concussion (No Change)

8. Steve Carell, The Big Short (No Change)

9. Michael Caine, Youth (+1)

10. Ian McKellen, Mr. Holmes (-1)

11. Michael B. Jordan, Creed (No Change)

12. Tom Hanks, Bridge of Spies (No Change)

13. Geza Rohrig, Son of Saul (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Actress

  1. Brie Larson, Room (No Change)
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn (No Change)
  3. Cate Blanchett, Carol (No Change)
  4. Rooney Mara, Carol (Previously Unranked In This Category)
  5. Jennifer Lawrence, Joy (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years (-1)

7. Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road (-1)

8. Blythe Danner, I’ll See You In My Dreams (-1)

9. Helen Mirren, Woman in Gold (No Change)

DROPPED OUT: Sarah Silverman, I Smile Back

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Mara. Out: Rampling.

Best Supporting Actor

  1. Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  2. Sylvester Stallone, Creed (No Change)
  3. Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (No Change)
  4. Christian Bale, The Big Short (No Change)
  5. Michael Shannon, 99 Homes (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Michael Keaton, Spotlight (-1)

7. Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (+1)

8. Tom Hardy, The Revenant (+1)

9. Paul Dano, Love and Mercy (-2)

10. Jacob Tremblay, Room (+1)

11. Benicio del Toro, Sicario (-1)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Shannon. Out: Keaton.

Best Supporting Actress

  1. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (+3)
  2. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs (+1)
  3. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (-2)
  4. Helen Mirren, Trumbo (+1)
  5. Joan Allen, Room (+4)

Other Possibilities:

6. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight (+1)

7. Jane Fonda, Youth (-1)

8. Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina (Previously Unranked)

9. Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria (-1)

10. Elizabeth Banks, Love and Mercy (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Allen. Out: Rooney Mara (moved to Best Actress)

Best Original Screenplay

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Inside Out (No Change)
  3. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  5. Ex Machina (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Straight Outta Compton (No Change)

7. Love and Mercy (+2)

8. 99 Homes (-1)

9. Son of Saul (-1)

10. Sicario (No Change)

11. Joy (Previously Unranked)

DROPPED OUT: Youth

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Adapted Screenplay

  1. The Big Short (+1)
  2. Room (+1)
  3. Carol (-2)
  4. Steve Jobs (No Change)
  5. Brooklyn (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. The Revenant (+2)

8. Beasts of No Nation (-1)

9. Anomalisa (+1)

10. Trumbo (-2)

11. Creed (+2)

12. The Danish Girl (No Change)

13. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Animated Feature

  1. Inside Out (No Change)
  2. Anomalisa (No Change)
  3. Shaun the Sheep Movie (+1)
  4. The Peanuts Movie (+1)
  5. Kahlil Gabran’s The Prophet (-2)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Good Dinosaur (No Change)

7. When Marnie Was There (No Change)

8. Minions (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Cinematography

  1. The Revenant (No Change)
  2. The Hateful Eight (+1)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (-1)
  4. Sicario (No Change)
  5. Bridge of Spies (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. Son of Saul (-2)

8. Carol (-1)

9. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Previously Unranked)

DROPPED OUT: In the Heart of the Sea

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Bridge of Spies. Out: Son of Saul.

Best Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  2. The Revenant (+2)
  3. Spotlight (-2)
  4. The Martian (+2)
  5. Steve Jobs (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (Previously Unranked)

7. The Big Short (-4)

8. Bridge of Spies (-1)

9. The Hateful Eight (-1)

10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)

11. Carol (Previously Unranked)

12. Room (-3)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Martian. Out: The Big Short.

Best Production Design

  1. Carol (No Change)
  2. The Danish Girl (No Change)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  5. The Hateful Eight (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. Cinderella (No Change)

7. Brooklyn (-3)

8. The Revenant (+1)

9. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

10. Far from the Madding Crowd (Previously Unranked)

11. MacBeth (-1)

DROPPED OUT: The Martian

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Hateful Eight. Out: Brooklyn.

Best Costume Design

  1. Carol (+1)
  2. The Danish Girl (-1)
  3. Cinderella (No Change)
  4. Brooklyn (No Change)
  5. Far from the Madding Crowd (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (+1)

7. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)

8. MacBeth (+1)

9. The Revenant (+1)

10. Suffragette (-4)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Far from the Madding Crowd. Out: Mad Max: Fury Road.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (+4)
  3. Black Mass (+1)

Other Possibilities:

4. Concussion (Previously Unranked)

5. Mr. Holmes (+2)

6. The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (Previously Unranked)

7. Legend (Previously Unranked)

DROPPED OUT: The Danish Girl, Carol, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (these top seven finalists indicated above have now been announced)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Revenant, Black Mass. OUT: The Danish Girl, Carol

Best Sound Mixing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. The Revenant (No Change)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. Sicario (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (-1)

7. In the Heart of the Sea (No Change)

8. Jurassic World (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Sicario. Out: The Hateful Eight.

Best Sound Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (No Change)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+1)
  4. The Martian (-1)
  5. In the Heart of the Sea (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (No Change)

7. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

8. Jurassic World (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes.

Best Visual Effects

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)
  3. The Martian (No Change)
  4. Jurassic World (No Change)
  5. Ex Machina (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. In the Heart of the Sea (-1)

7. The Walk (-1)

8. Everest (Previously Unranked)

9. The Revenant (-2)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Ex Machina. Out: In the Heart of the Sea.

Best Original Score

  1. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  2. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  3. Carol (+1)
  4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)
  5. The Danish Girl (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Spotlight (No Change)

7. Steve Jobs (+1)

8. Inside Out (+1)

9. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)

10. The Revenant (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Original Song

  1. “Til It Happens to You” from The Hunting Ground (No Change)
  2. “See You Again” from Furious 7 (+1)
  3. “So Long” from Concussion (-1)
  4. “Simple Song #3” from Youth (+1)
  5. “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre (+1)

7. “Love Me Like You Do” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

DROPPED OUT: “I’ll See You In My Dreams” from I’ll See You in My Dreams

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

And there you have it – my latest Oscar predictions and first post of 2016!

2015: The Year of Matt Damon

Since his highest grossing picture ever some eight years back with The Bourne Ultimatum, Matt Damon has seen his share of critical and or commercial box office disappointments. This list includes such titles as Green Zone, Hereafter, The Adjustment Bureau, We Bought a Zoo, Elysium, and The Monuments Men.

Yet 2015 gave Mr. Damon his second largest hit of all time with The Martian, a science fiction epic (and comedy according to the Golden Globes) that captured the favor of critics as well. In fact, the Mars tale is likely to find itself the subject of Academy Awards nominations and that could extend to its star.

The Martian stands at $222 million in domestic grosses and is within ever so close reach of Damon’s pinnacle gross of $227M that Ultimatum topped out at. The film also served as a resurgent project for director Ridley Scott after a series of financial disappointments including Body of Lies, Robin Hood, Prometheus, The Counselor and Exodus: Gods and Kings.

For Damon, 2016 will return him to the Jason Bourne role that gave him his famous franchise. And it’s The Martian that easily gave him his most acclaimed part since that series.

2015: The Year of Tom Hardy

For close to a decade, Tom Hardy has been turning up in mostly high profile supporting roles and became a household name thanks to one Christopher Nolan. His breakout came in Nicolas Winding Refn’s acclaimed indie pic Bronson. The aforementioned Nolan took notice and soon Hardy found himself cast alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in Inception and as villain Bane in The Dark Knight Rises. Other notable appearances along the way include Warrior, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Lawless, Locke, and The Drop.

It’s been an impressive filmography but 2015 put the 38 year old Brit into a whole new stratosphere. This summer he took over the role made famous by Mel Gibson in Mad Max: Fury Road and the results were a worldwide box office smash that is gaining momentum for a Best Picture nomination.

This fall, he starred in Legend which cast him in the dual role of real life gangsters The Kray Brothers. Reviews were mixed, but Hardy earned raves for his work.

The calendar year will end with him paired up with DiCaprio once again in the eagerly anticipated The Revenant, which is also subject to plenty of Oscar buzz. In fact, it looks more probable than not that two Academy nominees for Best Picture will feature Mr. Hardy. He also could find himself in line for his own first Oscar recognition in Supporting Actor for The Revenant.

With three buzzworthy features to his credit in 2015, it was a furiously good year for this actor.

2015: The Year of Elizabeth Banks

For over a decade, Elizabeth Banks has popped up memorably in comedic and dramatic roles in everything from Catch Me If You Can to Seabiscuit to the Spider-Man trilogy to The 40 Yr. Old Virgin to W. to The Hunger Games franchise.

Yet 2015 has been the year which has undoubtedly catapulted Banks to new and unanticipated heights. She made her directorial debut with this summer’s Pitch Perfect 2 and along with it came a record. The massive $69 million opening for the pic earned her bragging rights for largest opening of all time for a first time director. She appeared in the smash hit as well. The $184 million domestic take of the sequel guarantees Ms. Banks many more opportunities behind the camera.

Around the same time, she was co-starring alongside John Cusack and Paul Dano in the acclaimed Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy. For her work, she is in the running to receive her first Oscar nomination.

Her terrific year capped off with her turning up for the final time as crowd favorite Effie in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2. Three examples of the best year yet for not only a talented actress, but a suddenly hot director.