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Oscars 2019: Current Predictions for Best Picture, Actor, Actress & more

Now that major festivals like Venice and TIFF have closed, and a lot of this year’s Oscar hopefuls have been screened, it’s now time to start predicting who has the chops to make it to the big leagues. There were already several great movies to come out earlier this year that have found themselves on the Oscar radar, including BLACK PANTHER and EIGHTH GRADE, and TIFF added a bevy of films to the list, which will make this a tough year to predict.

If this year does offer a challenge when trying to foresee nominees and winners, it’s not only because of all the great movies coming out but also because this year the Academy added hundreds of new members who will have the chance to vote.  That means much of the rulebook may have to be thrown out, as the search for that “traditional” Oscar movie may prove fruitless.

Now, every year since the Best Picture category has been expanded has offered a unique batch of BP nominees. You’ll have traditional dramas, sci-fi movies, comedies, and even an action film or two. But now that the voter base is younger and more diverse than ever it means that movies that may have never had a shot even a year or two ago can sneak it. That means things look good not only for movies like A STAR IS BORN (which is crushing the box office) and FIRST MAN (which s not so much), which are more traditional "Oscar movies," but also for movies like BLACK PANTHER, SORRY TO BOTHER YOU and CRAZY RICH ASIANS, which may have had a harder time breaking the race a few years ago. Though we have no clue how the new voters will make their picks, what we can hypothesize is that this Oscar race could look very different than ones in the past, leaving room for plenty of surprises.

The last movie to be seen for the first time during the holiday season (meaning no festival screenings) and then go on to win Best Picture was 2004’s MILLION DOLLAR BABY, so, as a lot of Oscar pundits like to remind people, the movie that will win the big prize has most likely already been screened. Still, there are movies with a ton of buzz around them despite the fact they haven't been screened, like Adam McKay’s VICE with its all-star cast including Christian Bale, Amy Adams and more, and MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS with Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie. With that in mind, most of my predicted nominees include movies and performances that have already been seen and have been making big waves in the last few weeks.

Below are my current predictions for some of the key awards (and Animated Feature, which is just fun), with my list of likely to win at this point starting at the top and going down from there. The exception is Best Picture, which is done alphabetically.

Read on and remember to share your predictions in the comments section!

 

Best Picture (Alphabetical):

Right now, it’s way too early to tell what will win Best Picture, let alone which movie is in the lead. All we have to go on is response out of a few festivals and gut responses. But, in listening to my loud-yet-small gut, my money is currently on A STAR IS BORN to come out the big winner. No movie is getting as much love as this movie, with most in the industry hailing it as the kind of grand, cinematic drama we don’t see the likes of very often. Mix in two certain-to-be-nominated performances by Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga and you have a recipe for a real winner. However, movies that come out of the gate strong have a tendency to get shortchanged towards the end of the race (BOYHOOD, THE SOCIAL NETWORK) so we’ll have to see how the love for STAR holds up.

Here are my picks for a full 10-movie roster (though the final will likely be 8 or 9)

  • A STAR IS BORN
  • BLACKKKLANSMAN
  • BLACK PANTHER
  • EIGHTH GRADE
  • THE FAVOURITE
  • FIRST MAN
  • GREEN BOOK
  • IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK
  • ROMA
  • VICE

Possibilities: CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?, BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY, A QUIET PLACE, MARY POPPINS RETURNS, MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS, BOY ERASED, FIRST REFORMED, MID90S, THE FRONT RUNNER, LEAVE NO TRACE, SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, CRAZY RICH ASIANS, WIDOWS.

Best Director:

There’s been a lot of splitting down the middle when it comes to Best Director and Best Picture recently, sans BIRDMAN and THE SHAPE OF WATER. The Academy tries to spread the love here, and if STAR ends up taking Picture, then my money is on Curaon to take Director. The recent effort from the director is being touted as his masterpiece – and that’s with titles like GRAVITY and CHILDREN OF MEN under his belt. ROMA is being hailed as his most personal, possibly most beautifully filmed movie yet, so giving him the trophy could be their way of honoring both him and film.

Possibilities: John Krasinski, A QUIET PLACE; Yorgos Lanthimos, THE FAVOURITE; Ryan Coogler, BLACK PANTHER; Steve McQueen, WIDOWS; Peter Farrelly, GREEN BOOK; Bo Burnham, EIGHTH GRADE; Adam McKay, VICE.

Best Actor:

The best actor race is a diverse field this year, but right now the performance with the most buzz is Cooper for STAR. The man has already been nominated three times in the last few years (SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK, AMERICAN HUSTLE, AMERICAN SNIPER) and I think it’s safe to say everyone loves this very talented man. He’s getting just as much praise for his acting as he is his directing, and the fact the movie as a whole is getting so much positive buzz that should be enough to keep his name at the top of a lot of lists…for now.

Possibilities: Stephan James, IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK; Robert Redford, THE OLD MAN & THE GUN; Lucas Hedges, BOY ERASED/BEN IS BACK; Steve Carell, BEAUTIFUL BOY; Willem Dafoe, AT ETERNITY’S GATE; Ethan Hawke, FIRST REFORMED.

Best Actress:

Even more so than Cooper, Gaga is being showered with praise and metaphorical roses for her powerful, emotional performance in A STAR IS BORN. This year will be yet another competitive race for Best Actress, with so many talked-about performances to look out for. But still, Gaga seems like almost a lock at this point.

Possibilities: Nicole Kidman, DESTROYER; Kiki Layne, IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK; Felicity Jones; ON THE BASIS OF SEX; Yalitza Aparicio, ROMA; Julia Roberts, BEN IS BACK; Toni Collette, HEREDITARY; Saoirse Ronan, MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS; Carey Mulligan, WILDLIFE.

Best Supporting Actor:

Chalamet, Chalamet, Chalamet, Chalamet. Not only is that a name written on many a’ young girl’s notebooks, but it’s also the name to look out for this Oscar season. His new movie, BEAUTIFUL BOY, may not be getting only solid marks out of TIFF, but one thing everyone seems to be in agreeance on is that this young talent has a great shot of earning a trophy this year, especially considering he likely came very close to winning one last year for CALL ME BY YOUR NAME.

Possibilities: Russell Crowe, BOY ERASED; Adam Driver, BLACKKKLANSMAN; Matthew McConaughey, WHITE BOY RICK; Sam Rockwell, VICE; Steve Carell, VICE; Jake Gyllenhaal, WILDLIFE.

Best Supporting Actress:

This race is a bit more up in the air. There’s not really a clear name that sticks out from the pack, so my gut is saying go for Foy. The actress has been getting major followers since her star turn in the Netflix drama THE CROWN, and the trailers for FIRST MAN show her holding her own against Ryan Gosling. Actresses like Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz are also getting buzz for their work in THE FAVOURITE, so this bit will be interesting to see play out.

Possibilities: Amy Adams, VICE; Michelle Yeoh, CRAZY RICH ASIANS; Natalie Portman, VOX LUX; Any of the great actresses in BLACK PANTHER; Margot Robbie, MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS; Marina de Tavira, ROMA; Linda Cardellini, GREEN BOOK.

Best Adapted Screenplay:

Although A STAR IS BORN could take this too in a sweep, I think this award could easily go to Barry Jenkins’ IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK. Out of a lot of the well-received movies out of TIFF, this was one of the most buzzed-about, even if movies like ROMA and A STAR IS BORN overshadowed it a bit. Though I don’t think it will take home the big prize, I can certainly see Jenkins honored for his work adapting James Baldwin’s classic novel.

  • IF BEALE STREET COULD TALK
  • A STAR IS BORN
  • BLACKKKLANSMAN
  • FIRST MAN
  • CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?

Possibilities: BLACK PANTHER, THE DEATH OF STALIN, THE FRONT RUNNER, WIDOWS, CRAZY RICH ASIANS, BEAUTIFUL BOY.

Best Original Screenplay:

Yorgos Lanthimos’ THE FAVOURITE is the black sheep among the Best Picture contenders, with people falling in love for its zany satire of aristocratic society. It’s one of those movies where the dialogue and the interplay between the cast of complex characters is its strongest suit, and for that, I can see it being a heavy contender in the screenplay category. Then again, I’m also holding out for Adam McKay’s VICE.

  • THE FAVOURITE
  • VICE
  • ROMA
  • EIGHTH GRADE
  • GREEN BOOK

Possibilities: THE BALLAD OF BUSTER SCRUGGS, BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY, SORRY TO BOTHER YOU, A QUIET PLACE, FIRST REFORMED.

Best Animated Movie:

Because of course, it will be INCREDIBLES 2.

  • THE INCREDIBLES 2
  • ISLE OF DOGS
  • RALPH BREAKS THE INTERNET
  • EARLY MAN
  • MIRAI

Possibilities: TEEN TITANS GO!, SPIDER-MAN: INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE, SMALLFOOT, THE GRINCH

As I wrote above, it is way too early to tell what is really leading the charge this year. We will have to wait for some other movies like VICE and BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY to come out (the latter has gotten press screenings, and the response is a bit mixed), and though I think those are strong contenders to make assumptions about, we won’t have a clear picture for at least another month or two. For now, these my gut picks and it will be fun to see how right/wrong I am come the end of the year. This year could be wild what with the new voter base, so for all we know, BLACK PANTHER could win everything. Wouldn't that be sort of amazing?

Remember to share your own picks below, even if it's just who you think will win!

Source: JoBlo

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