Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Oscar Nomination Predictions

I believe in a week the nominees for last year's films will be released and I thought I'd throw together a prediction list for the biggest awards (acting, director, and picture). I haven't posted a lot lately, I plan on getting around and covering movies I've seen in the last few months as well as continue that list of movies from the 2000s. Though the list isn't as solid as it was when I started I feel it would be strange to stop part way through. So to compensate I thought I'd keep going and finish it and after post corrections, additions, and alterations. But without further delay here are my predictions for the nominees for the bigger awards this Oscar season (nominees listed alphabetically rather than preference or likelihood to win).

Best Supporting Actor:

Andrew Garfield (The Social Network)
Christian Bale (The Fighter)
Geoffrey Rush (The King's Speech)
Jeremy Renner (The Town)
Mark Ruffalo (The Kids Are All Right)

I would say Bale is a lock for a nomination with Ruffalo and Rush being more than likely. The buzz for Renner has died down since The Town's release though. Garfield sneaks in there and Timberlake has a slight chance since his presence at the Oscars would sure to boost ratings and I would be surprised if I didn't see The Social Network represented as fully as possible. John Hawkes from Winter's Bone has a chance of sneaking in there as well. I would assume Bale is the favorite to win but supporting is a nice race and I'd like to make better predictions once the nominees are actually released.

Best Supporting Actress:

Amy Adams (The Fighter)
Barbara Hershey (Black Swan)
Melissa Leo (The Fighter)
Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit)
Helena Bonham Carter (The King's Speech)

The Actress nominees is a little tricky this year because of Hailee Steinfeld and the fact that her role in True Grit could put her in either supporting or lead. I've heard they've been pushing for lead but I don't see it going that way, especially after 2007 where Casey Affleck was nominated for supporting in a similar situation. I would say Steinfeld is a lead in the picture but her age and less than notable name recognition will drop her to supporting. Leo and Carter are strong locks and Adams seems very likely as well. Hershey sounds to me as the best bet to represent Black Swan though Kunis is likely as well. Hell I'd like to see Ryder represent Swan for supporting but prediction wise I'll have to go with Hershey. Which may be one of my bigger chances I'm taking since Jacki Weaver from Animal Kingdom has a good chance of filling that other supporting role. Leslie Manville from Mike Leigh's Another Year has a shot too but again I think it may come down to a supporting/lead actress issue. Plus there are a lot of other supporting actresses out there like The Kids Are All Right's Julianne Moore.

Best Actor:

Colin Firth (The King's Speech)
James Franco (127 Hours)
Jeff Bridges (True Grit)
Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network)
Ryan Gosling (Blue Valentine)

Can't see Firth, Franco, and Eisenberg missing out this year. Gosling is pretty likely too. Bridges may be knocked out by Robert Duvall for Get Low. It could easily go either way.

Best Actress:

Annette Bening (The Kids Are All Right)
Jennifer Lawrence (Winter's Bone)
Leslie Manville (Another Year)
Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole)

Bening and Portman are good locks and Lawrence is highly likely. Kidman is an academy favorite and Rabbit Hole is already going to be underrepresented. And with Manville, again it's a big factor whether her or Steinfeld are put in supporting or leading categories. Plus Michelle Williams is nipping at their heals from Blue Valentine and Hilary Swank, another academy favorite, is sporting a rather conventional but appreciated performance from Conviction. I would find it interesting to see Swank steal a nomination from Manville or Kidman just so Bening could finally win the award over her after losing out twice in the past.

Best Director:

Christopher Nolan (Inception)
Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan)
David Fincher (The Social Network)
Joel and Ethan Coen (True Grit)
Tom Hooper (The King's Speech)

There are a few people who could sneak in here though Fincher is a lock and probably Aronofsky as well. Hooper and Nolan are highly likely. David O. Russell could sneak in there for The Fighter or Danny Boyle could for 127 Hours.

Best Picture:

Black Swan
The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
The Social Network
The Town
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone

127 Hours is the big name that could knock one of these guys out. The Town and Winter's Bone are probably the main ones that could lose a spot. There are a few other films like Another Year, Blue Valentine, and Rabbit Hole but after 127 Hours I can't see it happening. If The Ghost Writer had come out in November instead of the beginning of the year it would be fighting for one of those wild card spots as well. Though there is always the chance they could pull a Blind Side like they did last year and nominate some purely crowd pleasing film though I would like to think a number of these nominees already satisfy that urge (Inception, The Fighter, The Social Network, The Town, and Toy Story 3). More importantly I think this year has a very solid list of nominations. There isn't a single movie I've seen from those ten that I disliked overall and I could name at least 3 from last year that were more than disappointing to see receive nominations for awards.

I've also been thinking about throwing together a list of my favorite 10 or 20 movies from last year though there are still a few priority things I want to see like 127 Hours, Another Year, Blue Valentine and Rabbit Hole. I have seen all the likely Best Picture nominations so far except Winter's Bone at least. Hopefully I'll be able to see most of my priority movies in the next couple weeks.