2023 Oscar Predictions: May 29th Edition

As the month of May closes out, we arrive at my post Cannes forecast for the 96th Academy Awards! There were heavy hitters premiering in the south of France and buzz to discuss for several of them.

One year ago, Triangle of Sadness took the Palme d’Or (the fest’s top prize) and it eventually became a Best Picture contender at the Oscars. Ruben Östlund, Triangle‘s director who served as this year’s jury president, was also nominated for his behind the camera work.. In 2023, Justine Triet’s Anatomy of a Fall won the biggest honor. The French courtroom drama established itself as a major factor in International Feature Film and it is feasible that it could nab a slot in the eventual BP ten.

Other films that solidified their statuses as Academy bait? We start with Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon. The three and a half hour epic maintains its #1 position in Picture, Director, Supporting Actress (Lily Gladstone), and Supporting Actor after many raves at Cannes. However, the Supporting Actor in first is Robert De Niro and not Jesse Plemons, who was perched there two weeks ago. Reviews indicate it’s De Niro who should have the better shot.

Let’s be clear. My rankings right now reflect who I believe will be nominated and not necessarily who I think will win (it’s simply too early for that). Killers looks to be in a fantastic position for multiples nods after its unveiling.

Jonathan Glazer’s The Zone of Interest is right behind Moon as far as significant chatter out of the festival. The Holocaust drama could contend in Pic and Director. So could lead actress Sandra Hüller. Yet she might have an even stronger chance for her performance in Anatomy of a Fall.

For May December from Todd Haynes, reviews were quite solid. Its best chances at inclusion could be for its trio of actors Natalie Portman, Julianne Moore, and Charles Melton. We’re still not sure if Portman and Moore will be co-campaigned for lead. For now I’m slotting the former in Actress and the latter in supporting.

Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City drew plaudits though mixed reaction elsewhere. I’m skeptical of its chances (though it could play in down-the-line races like Production Design and Score).

Then there’s the features that dropped out of contention. Pixar’s Elemental won’t be the first studio title to vie for BP since Toy Story 3. It might be lucky to get an Animated Feature mention after some lackluster reaction. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny will not be a Top Gun: Maverick style hopeful for Oscars. And the fest’s opener Jeanne du Barry with Johnny Depp might get a Costume Design nod and that’s all.

In 2022, I made predictions for the 95th Academy Awards on this same day. It yielded 3 of the eventual 10 BP nominees with eventual winner Everything Everywhere All at Once, The Fabelmans, and Women Talking. Four others (Avatar: The Way of Water, Elvis, Tár, Top Gun: Maverick) were named in Other Possibilities. I wasn’t ready to anoint Triangle of Sadness despite its Cannes hardware. In Director – I correctly named the victorious Daniels for Everything Everywhere and Steven Spielberg for The Fabelmans. With Best Actress, I had Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere) who would take the gold. Cate Blanchett (Tár) and Ana de Armas (Blonde) were Other Possibilities. I will note that I had Michelle Williams (The Fabelmans) listed in supporting and she was nominated in lead. For Actor, winner Brendan Fraser (The Whale) were correctly called with Austin Butler (Elvis) listed. Both Colin Farrell (The Banshees of Inisherin) and Paul Mescal (Aftersun) were Other Possibilities. None of the five contenders in Supporting Actress were rightly placed. I did have winner Jamie Lee Curtis (Everything Everywhere), her costar Stephanie Hsu, and Hong Chau (The Whale) in Other Possibilities. Finally, Ke Huy Quan (who took the statue) for Everything Everywhere was the only correctly tagged performer in Supporting Actor.

OK… deep breath. With all that context, let’s see where everything and everyone ranks…

Best Picture

Predicted Nominees:

1. Killers of the Flower Moon (Previous Ranking: 1) (Even)

2. The Color Purple (PR: 3) (+1)

3. Past Lives (PR: 2) (-1)

4. Dune: Part Two (PR: 4) (E)

5. Oppenheimer (PR: 5) (E)

6. Saltburn (PR: 7) (+1)

7. The Zone of Interest (PR: 15) (+8)

8. The Holdovers (PR: 8) (E)

9. Air (PR: 9) (E)

10. Poor Things (PR: 6) (-4)

Other Possibilities:

11. May December (PR: 10) (-1)

12. Maestro (PR: 11) (-1)

13. Anatomy of a Fall (PR: Not Ranked)

14. Challengers (PR: 14) (E)

15. Blitz (PR: 13) (-2)

16. Barbie (PR: 12) (-4)

17. Napoleon (PR: 18) (+1)

18. Rustin (PR: 20) (+2)

19. Flint Strong (PR: 17) (-2)

20. Bob Marley: One Love (PR: 16) (-4)

21. The Nickel Boys (PR: 21) (E)

22. The Book of Clarence (PR: 22) (E)

23. The Killer (PR: 19) (-4)

24. Asteroid City (PR: 25) (+1)

25. Ferrari (PR: 23) (-2)

Dropped Out:


Best Director

Predicted Nominees:

1. Martin Scorsese, Killers of the Flower Moon (PR: 1) (E)

2. Denis Villeneuve, Dune: Part Two (PR: 3) (+1)

3. Blitz Bazawule, The Color Purple (PR: 4) (+1)

4. Celine Song, Past Lives (PR: 2) (-2)

5. Jonathan Glazer, The Zone of Interest (PR: 14) (+9)

Other Possibilities:

6. Christopher Nolan, Oppenheimer (PR: 6) (E)

7. Emerald Fennell, Saltburn (PR: 7) (E)

8. Yorgos Lanthimos, Poor Things (PR: 5) (-3)

9. Justine Triet, Anatomy of a Fall (PR: Not Ranked)

10. Alexander Payne, The Holdovers (PR: 9) (-1)

11. Bradley Cooper, Maestro (PR: 13) (+2)

12. Ben Affleck, Air (PR: 11) (-1)

13. Ridley Scott, Napoleon (PR: 15) (+2)

14. Greta Gerwig, Barbie (PR: 10) (-4)

15. Steve McQueen, Blitz (PR: 12) (-3)

Dropped Out:

Todd Haynes, May December

Best Actress

Predicted Nominees:

1. Fantasia Barrino, The Color Purple (PR: 1) (E)

2. Greta Lee, Past Lives (PR: 2) (E)

3. Emma Stone, Poor Things (PR: 3) (E)

4. Sandra Hüller, Anatomy of a Fall (PR: Not Ranked)

5. Natalie Portman, May December (PR: 5) (E)

Other Possibilities:

6. Jessica Lange, Long Day’s Journey Into Night (PR: 4) (-2)

7. Carey Mulligan, Maestro (PR: 7) (E)

8. Zendaya, Challengers (PR: 8) (E)

9. Margot Robbie, Barbie (PR: 6) (-3)

10. Saoirse Ronan, Blitz (PR: 9) (-1)

11. Kate Winslet, Lee (PR: 11) (E)

12. Annette Bening, Nyad (PR: 12) (E)

13. Sandra Hüller, The Zone of Interest (PR: 13) (E)

14. Ryan Destiny, Flint Strong (PR: 14) (E)

15. Jane Levy, A Little Prayer (PR: Not Ranked)

Dropped Out:

Regina King, Shirley

Amy Adams, Nightbitch

Best Actor

Predicted Nominees:

1. Colman Domingo, Rustin (PR: 1) (E)

2. Leonardo DiCaprio, Killers of the Flower Moon (PR: 2) (E)

3. Paul Giamatti, The Holdovers (PR: 4) (+1)

4. Barry Keoghan, Saltburn (PR: 3) (-1)

5. Kingsley Ben-Adir, Bob Marley: One Love (PR: 8) (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. Bradley Cooper, Maestro (PR: 5) (-1)

7. Teo Yoo, Past Lives (PR: 7) (E)

8. Cillian Murphy, Oppenheimer (PR: 6) (-2)

9. Anthony Hopkins, Freud’s Last Session (PR: 11) (+2)

10. Joaquin Phoenix, Napoleon (PR: 10) (E)

11. David Strathairn, A Little Prayer (PR: Not Ranked)

12. Matt Damon, Air (PR: 9) (-3)

13. Ed Harris, Long Day’s Journey Into Night (PR: 13) (E)

14. Mike Faist, Challengers (PR: 12) (-2)

15. John David Washington, The Piano Lesson (PR: 14) (-1)

Dropped Out:

Andrew Scott, Strangers

Best Supporting Actress

Predicted Nominees:

1. Lily Gladstone, Killers of the Flower Moon (PR: 1) (E)

2. Danielle Brooks, The Color Purple (PR: 2) (E)

3. Taraji P. Henson, The Color Purple (PR: 3) (E)

4. Da’Vine Joy Randolph, The Holdovers (PR: 4) (E)

5. Julianne Moore, May December (PR: 6) (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Viola Davis, Air (PR: 5) (-1)

7. Rosamund Pike, Saltburn (PR: 7) (E)

8. Lashana Lynch, Bob Marley: One Love (PR: 9) (+1)

9. Audra McDonald, Rustin (PR: 8) (-1)

10. Halle Bailey, The Color Purple (PR: Not Ranked)

11. Aunjanue Ellis, The Nickel Boys (PR: 11) (E)

12. Tilda Swinton, The Killer (PR: 10) (-2)

13. Danielle Deadwyler, The Piano Lesson (PR: 13) (E)

14. Jodie Foster, Nyad (PR: 14) (E)

15. Vanessa Kirby, Napoleon (PR: Not Ranked)

Dropped Out:

Claire Foy, Strangers

Rebecca Ferguson, Dune: Part Two

Best Supporting Actor

Predicted Nominees:

1. Robert De Niro, Killers of the Flower Moon (PR: 4) (+3)

2. Willem Dafoe, Poor Things (PR: 2) (E)

3. Colman Domingo, The Color Purple (PR: 10) (+7)

4. Charles Melton, May December (PR: 8) (+4)

5. John Magaro, Past Lives (PR: 3) (-2)

Other Possibilties:

6. Samuel L. Jackson, The Piano Lesson (PR: 5) (-1)

7. Ryan Gosling, Barbie (PR: 6) (-1)

8. Richard E. Grant, Saltburn (PR: 11) (+3)

9. Ben Affleck, Air (PR: 7) (-2)

10. Jesse Plemons, Killers of the Flower Moon (PR: 1) (-9)

11. Brian Tyree Henry, Flint Strong (PR: 13) (+2)

12. Mark Ruffalo, Poor Things (PR: 9) (-3)

13. Corey Hawkins, The Color Purple (PR: Not Ranked)

14. Glynn Turman, Rustin (PR: 15) (+1)

15. Ben Foster, Long Day’s Journey Into Night (PR: 14) (-1)

Dropped Out:

Jeremy Strong, Maestro

Oscar Predictions: The New Boy

If not for Michelle Yeoh and the Oscar juggernaut that was Everything Everywhere All at Once, Cate Blanchett likely would’ve taken home her third statue in lead Actress for Tár. That original home is Australia and Blanchett produces and stars in The New Boy, a 1940s set drama that takes place on the continent.

Directed by Warwick Thornton, it casts Aswan Reid as an Aboriginal orphan at a monastery run by Blanchett’s nun. Costars include Deborah Mailman and Wayne Blair. Slated to hit Australia in July with a domestic release TBD, Boy has premiered at Cannes to mostly decent reviews. The Rotten Tomatoes score is 80% based on the handful of reactions.

Yet I don’t see a real path for this to receive awards attention. While the small number of critics so far are positive, the write-ups aren’t exactly raves. Judging from the lead performer’s track record, she probably won’t have to wait too long until her next nomination. My Oscar Prediction posts will continue…

2023 Oscar Predictions: April Edition (Best Actress)

Best Actress is up next in my first ranked projections for the 96th Academy Awards. If you missed my posts on the other three acting derbies, they are linked at the bottom.

Per usual, let’s dispense with the usual caveats. Some of these actresses might end up being supporting players (category placement is a mystery for some pictures this early in the calendar). Some of these movies could get pushed to 2024. Both Emma Stone (Poor Things) and Regina King (Shirley) were initially supposed to contend in 2022.

And, of course, some of these performances will fall by the wayside due to poor reaction while surprises will inevitably pop up. When I made my inaugural rankings for the previous ceremony, I had eventual winner Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once) listed in third position with Cate Blanchett (Tár) in Other Possibilities.

Here we go!


1. Fantasia Barrino, The Color Purple

2. Greta Lee, Past Lives

3. Zendaya, Challengers

4. Emma Stone, Poor Things

5. Natalie Portman, May December

Other Possibilities:

6. Margot Robbie, Barbie

7. Jessica Lange, Long Day’s Journey Into Night

8. Saoirse Ronan, Blitz

9. Carey Mulligan, Maestro

10. Amy Adams, Nightbitch

11. Regina King, Shirley

12. Annette Bening, Nyad

13. Aunjanue Ellis, The Nickel Boys

14. Ryan Destiny, Flint Strong

15. Kate Winslet, Lee

2023 Oscar Predictions: March Edition (Best Actress)

My initial projections for the 96th Academy Awards arrives at Best Actress. If you missed my takes on the other three acting derbies, they can be accessed at the bottom of the post.

As I’ve mentioned in the other write-ups, this is simply a super early snapshot of the possibilities. A year ago in my first forecast for the 95th Oscars, none of the five actresses I had pegged in this race ended up being nominated. However, the pictures for two of them (Emma Stone for Poor Things and Regina King in Shirley) were pushed back to this year and you can find their names below yet again. Three of the eventual nominees for 2022 were listed in Other Possibilities: eventual winner Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Cate Blanchett (Tár), and Ana de Armas (Blonde).

I’ll have Director and the big prize Picture posted tomorrow!


Fantasia Barrino, The Color Purple

Greta Lee, Past Lives

Natalie Portman, May December

Margot Robbie, Barbie

Emma Stone, Poor Things

Other Possibilities:

Marisa Abela, Back to Black

Amy Adams, Nightbitch

Annette Bening, Nyad

Regina King, Shirley

Jessica Lange, Long Day’s Journey Into Night

Carey Mulligan, Maestro

Saoirse Ronan, Blitz

Cailee Spaeny, Priscilla

Kate Winslet, Lee

Zendaya, Challengers

95th Academy Awards Reaction

It was indeed a slap free almost four hours of TV at the Oscars Sunday night. However, half of the Best Picture nominees were smacked down with zero victories: The Banshees of Inisherin, Elvis, The Fabelmans, Tár, and Triangle of Sadness.

There’s no doubt that Everything Everywhere All at Once was the massive winner of the proceedings, emerging victorious in seven of its 11 nods. It was also a loudly pleasing reception for All Quiet on the Western Front with a better than anticipated four trophies.

As for my numbers, I went 13 for 20. Over the past half decade, I’ve had far stronger showings in the odd numbered years than even numbered ones and my 2022 results were again on the lower end of the spectrum.

Everything took home the most above the line awards (6) of any picture in Academy history: Picture, Director (Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert), Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Supporting Actress (Jamie Lee Curtis), Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan), and Original Screenplay (also the Daniels). It also won Film Editing. I correctly called all of those except for Supporting Actress where I went with Kerry Condon (The Banshees of Inisherin). This is the first pic in (get this!) 46 years to nab three of the four acting races. That’s since Network in 1976.

When Elvis lost to The Whale for Makeup and Hairstyling (which I got wrong), prognosticators across the Twitterverse and beyond knew that it could be a sign Brendan Fraser may take the gold over Austin Butler. And indeed that’s what happened – meaning I missed two of the four acting derbies. Let it be noted, by the way, that the Academy exactly matched SAG in those four competitions.

All Quiet grabbed International Feature Film and Cinematography as predicted. It additionally took Production Design (over my Babylon call) and Original Score (over my pick of The Fabelmans). I projected Quiet for Sound, but instead it marked the only victory for Top Gun: Maverick.

Animated Feature and Documentary Feature went, as anticipated, to Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio and Navalny. Song was “Naatu Naatu” from RRR and Avatar: The Way of Water in Visual Effects (correct picks) with Black Panther: Wakanda Forever in Costume Design over my Elvis pick.

And it was Sarah Polley in Adapted Screenplay for Women Talking. As far as the 95th Academy Awards, we’ll be talking about a historic night for one film in particular. It didn’t win everything, but it did so everywhere it was expected to and beyond. And it was also an evening filled with some genuinely heartfelt speeches and touching wins capped off by Indiana Jones embracing Short Round nearly 40 years later!

FINAL Oscar Predictions: 95th Academy Awards

After nearly a year of speculation on the blog and the new podcast (look up Movies at the Speed of Speculation on your favorite pod platform, folks!), the time has come to make my final picks for the winners at the 95th Academy Awards. The ceremony comes our way Sunday night with Jimmy Kimmel hosting and here’s hoping the presenters are given the correct envelopes and that no one gets slapped.

For some context, here’s how I did in the previous four Oscars (note that there were 21 races through 2019 because the sound competitions were divided into Editing and Mixing until their combination).

2018: 14/21

2019: 18/21

2020: 13/20

2021: 17/20

Note that I seem to do better in the odd numbered years. That could repeat for 2022 as three of the four acting derbies are highly tricky to pick and there are other down-the-line competitions that could go in different directions. As for Picture, Director, Supporting Actor, Animated Feature, and International Feature Film… not so much.

Let’s go through them one by one and I’ll give you my winner and runner-up projection!

Best Picture

All Quiet on the Western Front, Avatar: The Way of Water, The Banshees of Inisherin, Elvis, Everything Everywhere All at Once, The Fabelmans, Tár, Top Gun: Maverick, Triangle of Sadness, Women Talking

The tricky part isn’t picking the victor. It’s picking the runner-up. That’s because Everything has taken, well, nearly everything. PGA. DGA. WGA. SAG Ensemble. Critics Choice.

OK, so All Quiet received the BAFTA and The Fabelmans and The Banshees of Inisherin were your respective Drama and Musical/Comedy recipients at the Golden Globes. Yet the momentum has been with Everything for some time and it is the easy pick for the biggest prize of the night.

Given that a screenplay and acting statue are legitimately in play, Banshees has the strongest argument for a package of trophies that could include BP. It’s a distant runner-up.

Predicted Winner: Everything Everywhere All at Once

Runner-Up: The Banshees of Inisherin

Best Director

Daniels (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Todd Field (Tár), Martin McDonagh (The Banshees of Inisherin), Ruben Östlund (Triangle of Sadness), Steven Spielberg (The Fabelmans)

I suppose the voters could go the Globe route and bestow their honor on the legendary Spielberg. Doubtful. Look for the Academy to match the DGA and Critics Choice selections of Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert.

Predicted Winner: Daniels (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

Runner-Up: Steven Spielberg, The Fabelmans

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett (Tár), Ana de Armas (Blonde), Andrea Riseborough (To Leslie), Michelle Williams (The Fabelmans), Michelle Yeoh (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

Now it gets tough. Blanchett’s towering work could be undeniable as it was to BAFTA and Critics Choice (similar to how Anthony Hopkins from The Father managed a win over Chadwick Boseman in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom two years ago). The BP momentum and SAG could push Yeoh over the line. This is a coin flip and I’m siding with the momentum.

Predicted Winner: Michelle Yeoh, Everything Everywhere All at Once

Runner-Up: Cate Blanchett, Tár

Best Actor

Austin Butler (Elvis), Colin Farrell (The Banshees of Inisherin), Brendan Fraser (The Whale), Paul Mescal (Aftersun), Bill Nighy (Living)

A three-person race dwindled when Farrell lost the BAFTA. It went instead to Butler and he also won the Globe (over Fraser). SAG and Critics Choice went to Fraser. I have gone back and forth on this endlessly. If Fraser won, he would break a precedent of the victorious Actor’s movie being up for Best Picture. You have to go back to 2009 and Jeff Bridges (Crazy Heart) to find the last one whose film wasn’t in the BP lineup. I cannot stress enough that this is 50.5/49.5.

Predicted Winner: Austin Butler, Elvis

Runner-Up: Brendan Fraser, The Whale

Best Supporting Actress

Angela Bassett (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever), Hong Chau (The Whale), Kerry Condon (The Banshees of Inisherin), Jamie Lee Curtis (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Stephanie Hsu (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

Unlike Actress and Actor, this is between three nominees. Curtis surprisingly nabbed SAG while Bassett took Critics Choice and the Globe. Both are actresses whose wins could double as career achievement honors. I have a suspicion that the Academy may instead look at BAFTA winner Condon as their best opportunity to throw Banshees a bone.

Predicted Winner: Kerry Condon, The Banshees of Inisherin

Runner-Up: Angela Bassett, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Best Supporting Actor

Brendan Gleeson (The Banshees of Inisherin), Brian Tyree Henry (Causeway), Judd Hirsch (The Fabelmans), Barry Keoghan (The Banshees of Inisherin), Ke Huy Quan (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

Keoghan is the #2 since he unexpectedly won BAFTA. That said, this is the simplest acting race to project as Quan has won everything everywhere else.

Predicted Winner: Ke Huy Quan, Everything Everywhere All at Once

Runner-Up: Barry Keoghan, The Banshees of Inisherin

Best Adapted Screenplay

All Quiet on the Western Front, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, Living, Top Gun: Maverick, Women Talking

If All Quiet over performs (and it might), it could emerge here. The smart money is on Sarah Polley and WGA honored script for Talking.

Predicted Winner: Women Talking

Runner-Up: All Quiet on the Western Front

Best Original Screenplay

The Banshees of Inisherin, Everything Everywhere All at Once, The Fabelmans, Tár, Triangle of Sadness

Here’s another category where voters could single out Banshees. Still – I’m not going against the strong BP frontrunner.

Predicted Winner: Everything Everywhere All at Once

Runner-Up: The Banshees of Inisherin

Best Animated Feature

Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, Marcel the Shell with Shoes On, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, The Sea Beast, Turning Red

del Toro’s version of the classic tale has taken all precursors that matter. This is one of the uncomplicated calls.

Predicted Winner: Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio

Runner-Up: Marcel the Shell with Shoes On

Best International Feature Film

All Quiet on the Western Front, Argentina, 1985, Close, EO, The Quiet Girl

This might even be more automatic than Animated Feature. As your lone BP contestant, All Quiet will make noise here.

Predicted Winner: All Quiet on the Western Front

Runner-Up: Argentina, 1985

Best Documentary Feature

All That Breathes, All the Beauty and the Bloodshed, Fire of Love, A House Made of Splinters, Navalny

Tough pick. Breathes and Beauty are viable. I’ve picked Fire of Love over Navalny twice in Critics Choice and PGA and missed both times. Not again.

Predicted Winner: Navalny

Runner-Up: Fire of Love

Best Cinematography

All Quiet on the Western Front, Bardo, Elvis, Empire of Light, Tár

When perceived favorite Top Gun: Maverick shockingly failed to make this quintet, the race opened up. Elvis could make history and have the first female winner in Mandy Walker. It’s tempting to pick her, but I’ll go with Quiet.

Predicted Winner: All Quiet on the Western Front

Runner-Up: Elvis

Best Costume Design

Babylon, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Elvis, Everything Everywhere All at Once, Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris

On the other hand, here’s one where Elvis could take the gold. I wouldn’t count out Panther or even Everything if its sweep branches into upsets.

Predicted Winner: Elvis

Runner-Up: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Best Film Editing

The Banshees of Inisherin, Elvis, Everything Everywhere All at Once, Tár, Top Gun: Maverick

Maverick is in the mix, but Everything should extend its haul.

Predicted Winner: Everything Everywhere All at Once

Runner-Up: Top Gun: Maverick

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

All Quiet on the Western Front, The Batman, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Elvis, The Whale

The Whale and Western are possible. I’m giving this one to The King, however.

Predicted Winner: Elvis

Runner-Up: The Whale

Best Original Score

All Quiet on the Western Front, Babylon, The Banshees of Inisherin, Everything Everywhere All at Once, The Fabelmans

This is one of the most open categories. I don’t see Banshees landing this. All 4 others are possible. Babylon or Western might be the smart pick, but this is the one true upset I’m selecting and projecting a Fabelmans/John Williams appreciation victory.

Predicted Winner: The Fabelmans

Runner-Up: Babylon

Best Original Song

“Tell It Like a Woman” from Applause, “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick, “Lift Me Up” from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, “Naatu Naatu” from RRR, “This Is a Life” from Everything Everywhere All at Once

I don’t believe this is cut and dry. The star power of Gaga and Rihanna or an Everything expansion everywhere could make it interesting. “Naatu Naatu” has dominated the precursors and I’m not going with two upsets in the musical competitions.

Predicted Winner: “Naatu Naatu” from RRR

Runner-Up: “Hold My Hand” from Top Gun: Maverick

Best Production Design

All Quiet on the Western Front, Avatar: The Way of Water, Babylon, Elvis, The Fabelmans

This is where Babylon should be Oscar winner Babylon though Elvis lurks.

Predicted Winner: Babylon

Runner-Up: Elvis

Best Sound

All Quiet on the Western Front, Avatar: The Way of Water, The Batman, Elvis, Top Gun: Maverick

And this is where Top Gun: Maverick should get its Oscar. Yet I’m going with a minor upset pick with Western. That means I’m projecting Maverick ends up 0 for 6.

Predicted Winner: All Quiet on the Western Front

Runner-Up: Top Gun: Maverick

Best Visual Effects

All Quiet on the Western Front, Avatar: The Way of Water, The Batman, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, Top Gun: Maverick

No real Maverick shot in VE because Avatar is one of the automatic category picks.

Predicted Winner: Avatar: The Way of Water

Runner-Up: Top Gun: Maverick

That equates to these movies achieving these numbers of wins:

6 Wins

Everything Everywhere All at Once

3 Wins

All Quiet on the Western Front, Elvis

1 Win

Avatar: The Way of Water, Babylon, The Banshees of Inisherin, The Fabelmans, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, Navalny, RRR, Women Talking

I’ll have a recap up Sunday evening or Monday on the blog and the podcast!

Oscars: The Case of Ke Huy Quan in Everything Everywhere All at Once

As the mild-mannered Waymond Wang, husband to Michelle Yeoh in Everything Everywhere All at Once, Ke Huy Quan is the final Supporting Actor entrant in my Case Of posts.

The Case for Ke Huy Quan:

It’s an Oscar storyline for the ages. Nearly 40 years ago, Quan was a child actor appearing in iconic blockbusters as Short Round in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and Data in The Goonies. His career stalled shortly after and he quit acting altogether in the early 90s. After Crazy Rich Asians (featuring his costar Yeoh) hit it big in 2018, Quan decided to get back in the mix. Everything clicked and he’s emerged victorious at the Golden Globes, Critics Choice, and SAG.

The Case Against Ke Huy Quan:

Just when it looked like he was on his way to a sweep, BAFTA threw a curveball and honored Barry Keoghan (The Banshees of Inisherin). If Everything fails to capitalize on its frontrunner status in Best Picture and other races, it could hinder Quan.

Previous Nominations:


The Verdict:

Despite Keoghan’s victory at BAFTA, Quan appears destined for Academy glory next weekend. Of the four acting derbies, this is the easiest to project.

My Case Of posts (all 35 of them!) have concluded. Keep an eye on the blog and podcast (search Movies at the Speed of Speculation on Apple or other apps) for FINAL predictions coming your way on Wednesday, March 8th.

If you missed my earlier Supporting Actor write-ups, you can find them here:

Oscars: The Case of Stephanie Hsu in Everything Everywhere All at Once

Stephanie Hsu’s at turns villainous and sympathetic character(s) in Everything Everywhere All at Once is the final Case Of post for the Supporting Actress nominees at the 95th Academy Awards.

The Case for Stephanie Hsu:

Playing dual roles in the Daniels multi-genre tale, Hsu garnered raves as Michelle Yeoh’s daughter. SAG and Critics Choice nods followed and the Academy doesn’t shy away from honoring exciting relative newcomers (think Ariana DeBose from West Side Story last year).

The Case Against Stephanie Hsu:

The major precursors have spread the love around for Supporting Actress contenders, but it hasn’t included any victories for Hsu. Her costar Jamie Lee Curtis (who won SAG) may have a stronger narrative for the statue given her decades long career. Angela Bassett (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever) took Critics Choice and the Golden Globe (no nod for Hsu there) while Kerry Condon (The Banshees of Inisherin) was honored at BAFTA (where Hsu also missed).

Previous Nominations:


The Verdict:

There are three performers vying for a walk up the stage and Hsu isn’t one of them.

My Case Of posts will continue with Hsu’s costar Ke Huy Quan in Everything Everywhere All at Once!

Entries for the other Supporting Actress hopefuls can be found here:

Oscars: The Case of Michelle Yeoh in Everything Everywhere All at Once

As the laundromat running Evelyn whose many dimensions are explored in Everything Everywhere All at Once, Michelle Yeoh is the final Case Of post for the five Best Actress contenders.

The Case for Michelle Yeoh:

From acclaimed Hong Kong action flicks with Jackie Chan to fighting alongside James Bond in Tomorrow Never Dies to Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon to the overprotective future mother-in-law in Crazy Rich Asians, Yeoh had many career highlights until this multi-genre pic from the Daniels eclipsed them all. The Hollywood Foreign Press honored her with the Golden Globe for Actress in a Musical or Comedy. Last weekend, she took home the SAG for Actress where 16 of the last 22 winners became the Academy’s recipients in the 21st century. Everywhere is the frontrunner for Best Picture and that certainly doesn’t hurt.

The Case Against Michelle Yeoh:

Cate Blanchett in Tár. While Yeoh’s previous victories are a road map to Oscar glory, so are Blanchett’s as she has taken the Globe in the Drama competition, BAFTA, and Critics Choice.

Previous Nominations:


The Verdict:

It cannot be overstated how this is a coin flip between Yeoh and Blanchett. One could argue Yeoh has the late momentum given the recent SAG and Everything‘s likely success in the biggest race of all.

My Case Of posts will continue with Bill Nighy in Living!

For my other entries on the Actress hopefuls, click here:

SAG Awards and PGA Winner Reactions

A weekend of awards precursors was a blessing for Everything Everywhere All at Once. It stormed tonight’s SAG Awards and won the top prize at PGA the evening before. Make no mistake – Everything is now an even stronger frontrunner to take BP at the Oscars.

At PGA, Everything emerged as predicted. Some prognosticators went with Top Gun: Maverick as an upset pick. It wasn’t to be. The Producers Guild also went with Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio in the animated field. This is just as all other major precursors have done. It appears on a glide path for the Academy statue.

My PGA miss was in Documentary Feature as they chose Navalny over Fire of Love. Given that it’s won BAFTA and PGA, Navalny is the favorite. I don’t think it’s automatic (like I do with Pinocchio in Animated), but the odds are certainly in its favor.

Now… let’s get into SAG. Wow. I went 3 for 6. I correctly selected Everything for Best Ensemble. I nailed Stunt Ensemble for Top Gun: Maverick. And Ke Huy Quan made it a near sweep (though BAFTA went with Barry Keoghan for The Banshees of Inisherin) with tonight’s Supporting Actor win. His acting race is the easiest to project for the Oscars.

The other three? They got more interesting. And I missed them all tonight!

By far, the biggest surprise is Jamie Lee Curtis (Everything) being named Supporting Actress over Critics Choice and Golden Globe winner Angela Bassett (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever), who I predicted and BAFTA winner Kerry Condon (Banshees), who was my runner-up. That potentially makes it a three-person derby at the Oscars. It is worth noting that 9 of the past 10 Supporting Actress SAG victors became the Oscar recipient. So… discount Curtis at your own peril.

In the lead acting races, my runner-ups crossed the SAG finish line. It was Michelle Yeoh (Everything) in Actress over Cate Blanchett (Tár) and Brendan Fraser (The Whale) instead of Austin Butler (Elvis), who did get some airtime graciously escorting various winners up the steps. Best Actor and Actress at the Oscars are now legit two-person competitions and I’ll be mulling them over before making final predictions. They’re coming March 8th ahead of the March 12th ceremony!

Bottom line: Everywhere did everything it needed to this weekend and then some while three acting races added real intrigue. Stay tuned!