My Oscar Nomination Predictions
Tomorrow morning (or later this morning if I don’t post this within the next half hour), the Oscar nominations will be announced. I’m not going to predict the nominees in every category (Documentary Short Subject will be a real barn burner I’m sure), but I would like to predict what actors, directors and films I believe will be announced in just a few short hours.
Best Supporting Actor
Josh Brolin- Milk
Robert Downey, Jr.- Tropic Thunder
Philip Seymour Hoffman- Doubt
Heath Ledger- The Dark Knight
Dev Patel- Slumdog Millionaire
(Outside chance- Ralph Fiennes- The Duchess)
(Long shots- Eddie Marsan- Happy-Go-Lucky, Tom Cruise- Tropic Thunder, John Malkovich- Burn After Reading, Aaron Eckhart- The Dark Knight, James Franco- Milk)
I think Hoffman, Ledger and Brolin are locks.
Best Supporting Actress
Penelope Cruz- Vicky Cristina
Rosemarie DeWitt- Rachel Getting Married
Marissa Tomei- The Wrestler
Kate Winslet- The Reader
(Outside chance- Taraji P. Henson- The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Amy Adams- Doubt)
(Long shots- Frieda Pinto- Slumdog Millionaire, Evan Rachel Wood- The Wrestler, Frances McDormand- Burn After Reading, Misty Upham- Frozen River)
First of all, the long shots are especially long in this category. I think it’s between seven women, and there’s a good chance that both Henson and
Clint Eastwood- Gran
Richard Jenkins- The Visitor
Frank Langella- Frost/Nixon
Sean Penn- Milk
Mickey Rourke- The Wrestler
(Outside (or inside) chance- Brad Pitt- The Curious Case of Benjamin Button)
DiCaprio is a great actor and his performance in
Anne Hathaway- Rachel Getting Married
Sally Hawkins- Happy-Go-Lucky
Angelina Jolie- Changeling
Meryl Streep- Doubt
(Outside chance- Melissa Leo- Frozen River)
(Long shots- Michelle Williams- Wendy and Lucy, Kristen Scott Thomas- I’ve Loved You So Long, Rebecca Hall- Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Kate Beckinsale- Nothing but the Truth, Meryl Streep- Mamma Mia!, Kate Beckinsale- Snow Angels, Kiera Knightly, The Duchess, Cate Blanchett- The Curious Case of Benjamin Button)
There are quite a few possibilities that could surprise people in this category. I think Williams and Blanchett have a fighting chance, as do Kristen Scott Thomas and Beckinsale for Nothing but the Truth. Hathaway, Streep and Winslet are locks, but the battle for the last two slots will be almost evenly spread among three actresses—Jolie, Hawkins and Leo. I’m going to give the slight edge to Jolie who really is a great actress, and I’m going to go way out on a limb here and say that she might just have more name recognition than Sally Hawkins and Melissa Leo. Out of the two, take your pick. Since Hawkins won the Globe, Happy-Go-Lucky came out later in the year than Frozen River, and the character she plays is more endearing than Leo’s, I’ll expect to hear her name announced.
Darren Aronofsky- The Wrestler
Danny Boyle- Slumdog Millionaire
Christopher Nolan- The Dark Knight
David Fincher- The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Gus Van Sant- Milk
(Outside chance- Ron Howard- Frost/Nixon)
(Long shots- Stephen Daldry- The Reader, Sam Mendes- Revolutionary Road, Clint Eastwood- Changeling, Clint Eastwood- Gran Torino, Steven Soderberg- Che, Woody Allen- Vicky Cristina Barcelona, John Patrick Shanley- Doubt, Andrew Stanton- WALL-E, Tarsem- The Fall, Jonathan Demme- Rachel Getting Married)
I’ll probably regret not including Howard but I have my reasons. First of all, the buzz surrounding Frost/Nixon came and went very quickly. Also, this year’s Best Director category, in my opinion, is going to be a platform to reward five exceptionally well-respected relatively off-beat directors who have made revered movies in the past that haven’t been honored with nominations. (Aronofsky- Requiem for a Dream, Boyle- Trainspotting, Nolan- Memento, Fincher- Fight Club, Van Sant- his experimental films) However, Aronofsky and Nolan are far from locks. The Wrestler, as a film, might not garner the same love that its two featured actors will undoubtedly receive. The Dark Knight hasn’t done much on the awards circuit which certainly makes Nolan far from a lock for a nomination. Daldry might just hear his name called considering that first of all, he was nominated for a Globe, and second, with the exception of a movie I’ve never heard of called Eight, Daldry has received a Best Director nomination for every film he’s directed so far! Granted he’s only directed two before The Reader and after Eight (Billy Elliot and The Hours), but he’s got a streak that deserves notice. Revolutionary Road was not well-received, but it’s an exceptionally well directed film, so Mendes certainly has a shot. The Academy does love Clint, that’s for sure. Yet, Changeling disappointed many, and Gran Torino is not in the same league as the other films in terms of its directorial scope. If I’m right in this category, I’m going to get very cocky cause I really think I’m going to hang my head in shame for leaving Howard out.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
(Outside chance- The Dark Knight)
(Long shots- The Reader, Doubt, WALL-E, Rachel Getting Married,
I hate to include Benjamin Button in this one, but I think it’s an impressive enough movie on a technical level to receive many votes. Also, lots of people liked it much more than I did. Yet, I think it has no chance at all of winning. Like I said before, The Dark Knight does not have the awards momentum on its side. Therefore, I don’t expect it will be nominated. It’s still got a chance considering that The Wrestler is one of those films that might not connect with older Academy voters as much as the other four probable nominees. Also, The Dark Knight didn’t do too shabby at the box office! If neither The Wrestler nor The Dark Knight receive a nomination, and keeping in mind that WALL-E never really had a chance from the start considering that now there’s an Animated Picture category, look out for an upset by Doubt or Revolutionary Road since both are ultra-intense dramas with the very highest pedigree of actors in their casts.
The nominations will be announced early this morning, January 22nd. Come back later today to see the nominations!