Well, Awards Season is officially coming to a close. Ballots for the Academy Awards are due on February 4th, and the show comes early on February 9th. Being honest, the shortened season hasn’t made anyone happy, and with all the bad decisions the Oscars let go of before last year’s ceremony, shortening the season was one that stuck around and it really shouldn’t have.
Luckily, they’ve learned this, and so next year, the show will return to its original date: sometime in Mid March or April, and after the downright strange nominations that we got for the Oscars this year, not only does the Academy NEED a longer season, they also need better voters. As the ones we got comes from acknowledging their favorites or being so “busy” that they couldn’t find their way to see more than 20 movies this year.
Either way, here are the Academy’s nominations, and here’s how well we stacked up against them. Going all the way back to our Very, Very, Very early Oscar Predictions and giving our picks for what we think will be chosen for the golden statue in the Dolby Theater.
And with that, here are the Academy’s nominations for Makeup and Hairstyling:
Ultimately, we didn’t do too bad on this one. We ended up with 4 out of the 5 nominees. While we thought Hustlers was a clear shoo-in for this award, somehow a movie about WW1 beat it out, even though it’d be hard to argue that it was the makeup and hairstyling of that film that stood out over one about women whose main job is to look their best. It seems strange, but it won’t be the only award Hustlers is shut out of this season.
Ones We Got Wrong: Hustlers, Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood, Rocketman
Our prediction: Bombshell.
Next up is Visual Effects, and the Academy’s nominated films are:
Again, we did pretty well. We were shocked to see Star Wars get the spot over Alita: Battle Angel, and before Cats pulled the plug on their entire Oscar campaign, we thought it at least stood a chance in this category, but not with the unfinished product they put out. Still not many complaints here. We’re really rooting for Avengers: Endgame here as it’s the only award the film is nominated for, but since this academy clearly has a bias against superhero films, we doubt it.
Ones We Got Wrong: Alita: Battle Angel, Cats, Gemini Man
Up next is the academy’s nominations for Original Score:
Hildur Guðnadóttir for “Joker”Alexandre Desplat for “Little Women”Randy Newman for “Marriage Story”
Thomas Newman for “1917”John Williams for “Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker”
We knew there was only going to be one spot available for a fantasy film in this category. We had hoped it would go to Alan Silvestri for Avengers: Endgame because Portals alone is more memorable than a lot of the nominees here, but it goes to John Williams whose iconic scores for the Star Wars films goes recognized. Although the selections were always in question, the winner is not.
Ones We Got Wrong: Michael Abels for “US”, Alan Silvestri for “Avengers: Endgame”
Prediction: Hildur Guðnadóttir for “Joker”
And here are the academy’s choices for Best Original Song:
“I Can’t Let You Throw Yourself Away” by Thomas Newman for “Toy Story 4”
“(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” by Elton John or “Rocketman”
“I’m Standing With You” by Diane Warren for “Breakthrough”
“Into The Unknown” by Kristen and Robert Lopez for “Frozen 2”
“Stand Up” by Joshuah Brian Campbell and Cynthia Erivo for “Harriet”
This is a classic case of wanting to pick one winner so bad that you lessen their competition. It’d be harder to give this win to Frozen 2 if you have Jessie Buckley sitting there as well. No one expected Diane Warren’s song from the low-budget Christian film, “Breakthrough” to emerge as a contender, so there’s a surprise for a lot of us, but it also feeds into the Academy going with the names they know more than actually paying attention.
Ones We Got Wrong: “Speechless” from “Aladdin”, “Glasgow (No Place Like Home) from “Wild Rose”, “Catchy Song” from “The Lego Movie Part 2: The Second Part”
Prediction: “Stand Up” from “Harriet”
We move on to the nominees for Best Adapted Screenplay:
Steven Zaillian for “The Irishman”
Taika Waititi for “Jojo Rabbit”
Todd Phillips & Scott Silver for “Joker”
Greta Gerwig for “Little Women”
Anthony McCarten for “The Two Popes”
Not bad. We scored 4 out of 5 in our guesses here. The shocker being Anthony McCarten’s screenplay for “The Two Popes”. Our hearts are broken again seeing the Academy’s disregard for American hero Fred Rogers once again as the screenplay for the narrative film about him also gets snubbed. Man, the Academy is filled with people who did not appreciate the land of make-believe apparently.
Ones We Got Wrong: Lorene Scafaria for “Hustlers”, Micah Fitzerman-Blue, Noah Harpster for “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”
Prediction: Greta Gerwig for “Little Women”
Next up, let’s look at the Academy’s nominations for Best Original Screenplay:
Rian Johnson for “Knives Out”
Noah Baumbach for “Marriage Story”
Sam Mendes & Krysty Wilson-Cairns for “1917”
Quentin Tarantino for “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”
Bong Joon-Ho, Han Jin Won for “Parasite”
Easily one of the more competitive races in the field of nominees. 1917 was the sleeper pick from our guesses, but in our defense, we hadn’t seen it yet by the time we’d made our guesses. This was such a good year for film and for original screenplays in particular that I’m honestly shocked we did this good.
Ones We Got Wrong: Pedro Almodóvar for “Pain & Glory”, Lulu Wang for “The Farewell”, Josh Safdie, Benny Safdie, Ronald Bronstein for “Uncut Gems”
Prediction: Noah Baumbach for “Marriage Story” or Bong Joon-Ho, Han Jin Won for “Parasite” (Note: if Parasite takes this, it’s Best Picture chances are pretty much wrapped up.)
Let’s now look at the Academy’s choices for Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design:
Sandy Powell & Christopher Peterson for “The Irishman”
Mayes C. Rubeo for “Jojo Rabbit”
Mark Bridges for “Joker”
Jacqueline Durran for “Little Women”
Arianne Phillips for “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”
For being early, I was pretty spot-on in this category. I had high hopes that Julian Day would get in for what they did recreating Elton John’s looks in Rocketman, or even Paul Tazewell for capturing the style of the 1800s in “Harriet” but there were no shockers here. Everyone nominated was considered a front runner, and it’ll be interesting to see who emerges from this crop.
Ones We Got Wrong: None.
Prediction: Arianne Phillips for “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”
Up next, the nominees for Best Cinematography:
Rodrigo Prieto for “The Irishman”
Lawrence Sher for “Joker”
Jarin Blaschke for “The Lighthouse”
Roger Deakins for “1917”
Robert Richardson for “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”
On the morning of Oscar nominations, the one name we weren’t expecting to hear for any award was “The Lighthouse”, despite being a top contender earlier in the year, the hype for the film faded as more films came out, but one thing that definitely stood out was its cinematography which is absolutely haunting and captures the madness and insanity of that film in a few shots. Still, is anybody really doubting Deakins at this point?
Ones We Got Wrong: Phedon Papamichael for “Ford v. Ferrari”, Tat Radcliffe for “Queen & Slim”, Claire Mathon for “Portrait of a Lady on Fire”
Prediction: Lawrence Sher for the upset? Doubt it.
Next, we look at the Academy’s selections for Best International Feature:
Corpus Christi – Poland
Honeyland – North Macedonia
LES MISÉRABLES – France
Pain and Glory – Spain
Parasite – North Korea
I think it’s safe to say there was no category I could’ve gotten as wrong as this one. I only landed 2 out of the 5 nominees and those were fairly easy. The other 3 were a complete shock especially considering they nominated Honeyland in both International Feature and Documentary, which is not something anybody was expecting. The most notable misfire is on France’s part for selecting LES MISÉRABLES over Portrait of a Lady on Fire as their representative film. They probably thought it stood a better chance of being nominated for other awards. It did, but the Academy doesn’t work like that.
Ones We Got Wrong: “The Perfect Candidate” (Haifaa Al Mansour, Saudi Arabia), “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” (Celine Sciamma, France), “Hot Bread” (Umid Khamdamov, Uzbekistan)
Prediction: Parasite – North Korea (I mean, duh)
Now let’s take a look at the academy’s choices for Best Animated Feature:
One of the biggest snubs of nomination morning was not seeing Frozen 2 in this category. The shock of that is incomprehensible especially when lesser quality films like I Lost My Body and Missing Link are in its place. But I digress. Missing Link stunned us all winning the Golden Globe, but Toy Story 4 has won every critic’s group award and took home the prize at the Critic’s Choice ceremony. So this still could be anybody’s game.
Ones We Got Wrong: Abominable, Frozen 2, Weathering With You, Bunuel in the Labyrinth of Turtles
Prediction: Klaus (Yeah, we said it.)
Our next category is Best Documentary Feature, and your nominees are:
I’ll just say I was very wrong on this one. Only managing 2 out of the 5 nominees. I’m truly stunned to see leading documentaries snubbed out of this lineup like One Child Nation and Apollo 11. But even without those two impressive offerings, this is still not an easy category to predict.
Ones We Got Wrong: Apollo 11, Hail Satan?, Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story, One Child Nation
Prediction: For Sama.
And here are the nominees for Best Director:
I can’t be too upset at the all-male director’s lineup here as even I predicted it would go this way. Of course, this was before I had seen Lorene Scafaria’s Hustlers or Celine Sciamma’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire or Lulu Wang’s The Farewell or Melina Matsoukas’s Queen & Slim or Alma Ha’rel’s Honey Boy or Marielle Heller’s A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood or even Greta Gerwig’s Little Women, so I guess you could say, I nailed it. Still, it’s hard to deny the immense talent these 5 directors possess and the incredible work they brought forward this year.
Ones We Got Wrong: Fernando Meirelles for “The Two Popes”, Robert Eggers for “The Lighthouse”
Prediction: Quentin Tarantino for “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”
I didn’t get a chance to do an early prediction for these next few categories, but here are our picks to win anyway.
Film Editing: Ford v Ferrari
Production Design: Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood
Sound Editing: 1917
Sound Mixing: 1917
Live-Action Short: The Neighbor’s Window
Documentary Short: Learning to Skateboard in a War Zone (If You’re A Girl)
Animated Short: Hair Love
And now on to Best Supporting Actress, and here are the nominees:
Not seeing Jennifer Lopez and Zhao Shuzhen in this category is a devastating blow to both diversity and lacking an acknowledgment of quality films. No disrespect to Bates and Robbie, who did pretty good work, but neither of them cover the range of emotion or physicality that Zhao or Lopez do in their films. Still, this category is on the path of a sweep. One person has grabbed the Globe, the Critic’s Choice, the SAG, and the BAFTA, this one’s a no-brainer, but indulge us just a second as we pick someone else.
Ones We Got Wrong: Jennifer Lopez in “Hustlers”, Zhao Shuzhen in “The Farewell”, Da’Vine Joy Randolph in “Dolemite Is My Name”
Prediction: Scarlett Johansson in “Jojo Rabbit”
Next up, here are the nominees for Best Supporting Actor:
Here, we didn’t do so hot. We managed to get 3 out of 5, but we were way off with the other two. Much like supporting though, this award has been a sweep as well, going to one person alone all awards season. Even though the Oscars have a tendency to go off from their precursors, this is one we’re pretty sure is likely to stay the course.
Ones We Got Wrong: Timothee Chalamet in “Little Women”, Alan Alda in “Marriage Story”, Robert Downey Jr. in “Avengers: Endgame”
Prediction: Brad Pitt in “Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood”
Here are the nominees for Best Leading Actor in a motion picture:
Now, I just want to brag for a second that this is the only category where I got all five nominees correct. In my defense, I picked 11 choices originally, but still, I got all 5, so I’ll take it. No one’s more disappointed than me that SNL alums Adam Sandler and Eddie Murphy didn’t nab one of these spots, but each man here delivered really exceptional performances. This award has also been a sweep across all of the awards seasons, I mean we thought it might get mixed up somewhere, but hasn’t happened, and while The Academy will probably try to switch things up, we doubt it’ll happen.
Ones We Got Wrong: Eddie Murphy in “Dolemite is My Name”, Robert Pattinson in “The Lighthouse”, Robert De Niro in “The Irishman”
Prediction: Joaquin Phoenix in “Joker”
Now let’s look at the nominees for Best Leading Actress in a motion picture:
Cynthia Erivo marks the only POC nominee out of all the 4 acting categories, and nothing would personally thrill me more than seeing her win this for her criminally underrated performance of Harriet Tubman, and become only the second black woman to ever win an Oscar for a leading role. But much like all the other acting categories, this one has been a sweep all season long but is also the one boasting possibly the biggest potential for an upset. We’ll just have to wait and see. For now, we’re sticking with the front runner.
Ones We Got Wrong: Jodie Turner-Smith in “Queen & Slim”, Awkwafina in “The Farewell”, Lupita Nyong’o in “US”, Alfre Woodard in “Clemency”
Prediction: Renee Zellweger in “Judy”
And finally, we’ve come to the last award of the night. Here are the Academy’s nominations for the Best Picture of the year:
First off, we’re utterly disappointed in the Academy for stopping short again of their full 10 nominations, but considering we landed 6 out of the 9, we’re not too upset. Every film they’ve chosen has had their moment in the sun as a potential front runner, but it looks as though 1917 has peaked at the right time. Winning every award at the start of awards season and hasn’t slowed up yet. There’s a compelling narrative for every nominee to win, so it’s hard for us to place our bets on anyone, but we can say, it’s the one year where any film winning wouldn’t set Twitter on fire, that’s how good 2019 was.
Ones We Got Wrong: Dolemite Is My Name, The Lighthouse, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, The Two Popes
Prediction: Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood
Well, those are our predictions folks! We are often wrong, so we’ll see how we did on Sunday, February 9th.
Till then..see you at the movies.