We’re finally here. It’s Oscars Night. I’ve also managed to watch all but 2 of all the films nominated this year (Maleficent: Mistress of Evil and The Lion King). I didn’t think I’d manage it but we got there. This means I finally feel ready to put down my predictions for how the show’s going to go. However, there are no real definites I guess. I mean, has anyone got over the shock that was Green Book winning Best Picture last year. The Academy is unstable and, as we can see from the nominations, aren’t always concerned about who or what is really the best. The Oscars are even more political and insane than Eurovision. But this isn’t the time for another rant. This is a time to predict the result of a stupid system that will be streamed to the world from a glitzy and expensive award show that really doesn’t need to exist. But at least everyone attending gets to dress up again this year.
Okay, not only has this been taking all the awards over the last few weeks but Sam Mendes’ World War 1 film is the only choice. Look at the nominees in this category. Joker and Ford v Ferrari don’t deserve to be there. Jojo Rabbit and Once Upon A Time In… Hollywood are enjoyable films but they aren’t Best Picture films. Marriage Story and The Irishman are both Netflix films and, God knows, how much the Academy want to prevent praising them. Parasite isn’t in English and, as we know, the Oscars don’t always think subtitles make the Best Picture. Little Women is not only not up for Best Director, which will count against it, but it’s a literary adaptation. One of those hasn’t won Best Picture since 2008 with No Country for Old Men. It’s not going to happen. The only one left? 1917.
Actor in a Leading Role
Joaquin Phoenix – Joker
At this point, it looks as though nobody can knock Phoenix off the top. He’s swept up at the awards. The only thing that could make him stumble is if his campaign came across as too woke for the old gang. Spouting about veganism and diversity in your acceptance speeches might win him plenty of support but it might also push people away. Still, I think he’s the best best. Adam Driver did a much better job in my opinion but that would be giving an award to Netflix when they don’t need to. Plus, he’s young and was in Star Wars. Antonio Banderas is an outsider because he was amazing in Pain and Glory but we’re back to the foreign language thing. How many voters will have actually seen it? (Whilst I’m here, I think Banderas has replaced Driver in my personal favourite. Pain and Glory as hugely surprising.) Leo and Jonatan Pryce weren’t on the top of their game, so I can’t see it being their year either.
Actress in a Leading Role
Rene Zellweger – Judy
Though her performance wasn’t for me, it’s clear who’s getting this award. Unless the voters have a sudden attack of wokeness and want to make up for the almost complete whitewash by giving Cynthia Ervio the award she deserves. Rene is the safe bet. Not only is she not going to upset any applecarts but she’s playing Judy Garland. Giving her the award means the Oscars can make up for snubbing Garland in 1954. A non-offensive white woman that allows them to almost rewrite history. Why pretend it’s going to anyone else? Also, Sairose Ronan = too young. Scarlett Johansson = too Netflix. Charlize Theron = wrong film.
Actor in a Supporting Role
Brad Pitt – Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Brad Pitt deserves this award and will win it. Not only was his performance great but he’s played the game. Look at the campaign he’s run. He’s been funny, self-deprecating, polite, gentlemanly, and very actorly. Plus, all those photos with his ex-wife? Beautiful PR. The other men are great but they’ve not put the work in. Plus, they’re all so frigging old.
Actress in a Supporting Role
Laura Dern – Marriage Story
Laura Dern is incredible enough in Marriage Story that she will most likely become Netflix’s sole award of the night. It’s a great performance and she’s done incredibly this awards season all ready. Kathy Bates is a possibility because she’s fucking great in Richard Jewell but it’s a much less memorable performance. Dern gets to be vicious when Bates gets to be sweet. Plus, Florence Pugh = too young. Margot Robbie = too young. Scarlett Johansson = too many acting nominations.
Animated Feature Film
Toy Story 4
Out of all of the nominations so far, I think this one is the most likely to surprise us. Netflix came up with the two best films in the category but they’re from Netflix. Maybe the Academy can get over it this one time but it’s unlikely. The Toy Story franchise has a history with the Oscars and is a safe bet. It’s popular and people will be familiar with it. Missing Link is good but will people be as familiar with Laika’s work? And How to Train Your Dragon? It’s a franchise that’s never really done it for the voters so far.
Roger Deakins – 1917
All we’ve been hearing about 1917 recently is about the fake one-shot and how technical it is. People are going to respond to that. Plus, Deakins has been overlooked so many times before.
Sam Mendes – 1917
There are some very good names in the directing category with one exception. I think anyone of them but Todd Philips could pull it off. However, Sam Mendes is the logical choice. He’s winning everything and he’s so passionate about the project. It was such a huge undertaking and I think the Academy will take that on board. Scorsese is a master but is The Irishman really the best he’s ever done? Plus, Netflix. Still, he’ll be loved by a lot of people voting.
Makeup and Hairstyling
Bombshell – Kazu Hiro, Anne Morgan and Vivian Baker
How could they not?
Writing (Adapted Screenplay)
There are plenty of possible winners here but I think Greta might just swing it. Not only is it a beautiful adaptation but it breathes new life into a very familiar tale. Greta has a way with dialogue and characterisation that will appeal to the voting writers. I know Jojo won at the BAFTAs but I think it’s too divisive for the Academy. The others just weren’t electrifying enough to win.
Writing (Original Screenplay)
This is one of the categories that I’m least sure about. Quentin Tarantino has won before and is the king of snappy dialogue. He may walk away victorious. Marriage Story is Baumbach’s best film but I just don’t think it’ll get a look in. 1917 is about the technology rather than the screenplay. Parasite is good but not English. Knives Out didn’t work for me because it was too obvious. However, I think it will appeal to the voters for its originality.