89th Academy Awards Nomination Predictions – POST-ANNOUNCEMENT REVIEW

On Tuesday, January 24th, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences are going to announce their nominees for the 89th Oscars and that means more fun predictions by ya boi. I’m posting relatively early my predictions for what will find their way to each nomination slate with my brief commentary simply because these past few weeks have been busy with the Miami Jewish Film Festival that I work at so come tomorrow, I’ll be back to back-to-back office+screening days until Thursday Night’s Closing. So I wanna get this out before I have to look like a smart alec because my predictions are always SO CORRECT, AMIRITE?!

Ah, now to take a look at how wrong I am about everything. My predictions on the winners are all non-binding and will be revisited come the week of the ceremony.

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BEST PICTURE

  • Arrival
  • Fences
  • Hacksaw Ridge
  • Hell or High Water
  • Hidden Figures
  • La La Land
  • Lion
  • Manchester by the Sea
  • Moonlight

MY PREDICTION: La La Land
MY PICKLa La Land

Yep, predicting eight nominees because I’m just too optimistic to predict Nocturnal Animals and FUCK OFF, DEADPOOL.

If I may, I had a funny encounter with a friend who was so very traumatized by the idea that Hacksaw RidgeSully, and Patriots Day would be nominated over Moonlight, he REFUSED to recognize that Moonlight was a lock for Best Picture almost immediately upon release. He swore those three films had a higher chance of nomination than Moonlight and he was so heated from the exchange (and the fact that I don’t hate Clint Eastwood as a filmmaker) that I was promptly blocked on facebook. It was the single funniest reason I’ve been blocked on facebook and, at the risk of sounding like a smug loser, I am going to be very pleased when Moonlight gets nominated on Tuesday morning and only Hacksaw gets in by the skin of its teeth.

8/9

Yep… the smugness feels good. However…

Goddamn, I missed Fences after being so on the fe–… after thinking about it for a while. But ah well, my caution has cost me.

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BEST DIRECTOR

  • Damian Chazelle – La La Land
  • Barry Jenkins – Moonlight
  • Kenneth Lonergan – Manchester by the Sea
  • Mel Gibson – Hacksaw Ridge
  • Denis Villeneuve – Arrival

MY IMMEDIATE PREDICTION: Damian Chazelle
MY PICK: Damian Chazelle

Self-explanatory with my Picture slate, behold the return of Mel Gibson’s love.

Called it.

BEST ACTRESS

  • Amy Adams – Arrival
  • Isabelle Huppert – Elle
  • Natalie Portman – Jackie
  • Ruth Negga – Loving
  • Emma Stone – La La Land
  • Meryl Streep – Florence Foster Jenkins

MY IMMEDIATE PREDICTION: Isabelle Huppert
MY PICK: Emma Stone

20th Century Women came too late to get serious awards consideration (between Silence and this movie, I’m mourning this movie’s losses more), Ruth Negga’s early goodwill since Loving‘s Cannes premiere died undeservedly as its release fizzled, and Oscar don’t see the great thing that is Taraji when it’s staring them in the face. Altogether that splits into the certainty that I’m finally gonna have to force myself to watch Florence Foster Jenkins. Forget Streep, I’d trade Adams’ nomination over any of those three easily.

4/5 Correct

Looks like they heard my prayers and replaced Adams with Negga outright. Now I can just glare at one nomination (Streep) instead. That said… what a shocker that Adams didn’t get in.

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BEST ACTOR

  • Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea
  • Andrew Garfield – Hacksaw Ridge
  • Ryan Gosling – La La Land
  • Viggo Mortensen – Captain Fantastic
  • Denzel Washington – Fences

Pretty much the lockiest lock of the ceremony, both in winner (children who live with wolves know Affleck will take the Gold) and nominees.

Nobody is surprised now. Nobody will be surprised then.

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BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

  • Viola Davis – Fences
  • Naomie Harris – Moonlight
  • Nicole Kidman – Lion
  • Octavia Spencer – Hidden Figures
  • Michelle Williams – Manchester by the Sea

No 20th Century Women love means no Greta Gerwig love which means hello Octavia by the skin off her teeth.

Called it once again.

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BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

  • Mahershala Ali – Moonlight
  • Jeff Bridges – Hell or High Water
  • Hugh Grant – Florence Foster Jenkins
  • Lucas Hedges – Manchester by the Sea
  • Dev Patel – Lion
  • Michael Shannon – Nocturnal Animals
  • Aaron Taylor-Johnson – Nocturnal Animals

That Golden Globe win in the middle of Oscar voting scares me enough to believe it will happen. Newcomer Hedges gets knocked off for Kick-Ass’ best Squidbillies impression.

3/5

I’d rather no Nocturnal Animals nomination, but I’ll take it.

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BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

  • Jared Bush & Phil Johnson – Zootopia
  • Damien Chazelle – La La Land
  • Yorgos Lanthimos & Efthymis Fillipou – The Lobster
  • Kenneth Lonergan – Manchester by the Sea
  • Mike Mills – 20th Century Women
  • Taylor Sheridan – Hell or High Water

I really don’t see much awards traction for Captain Fantastic beyond Best Actor. 20th Century Women and Jackie are DOA on awards love. Zootopia is getting an obscenely unnecessary amount of love for more than just how it looks, particularly. The love for its race content might just inch it into Best Original slot.

4/5

Never write out a movie too hard. Mills got one!

LION

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

  • Luke Davies – Lion
  • Eric Heisserer – Arrival
  • Barry Jenkins AND Tarell Alvin McCraney – Moonlight
  • Theodore Melfi & Allison Schroeder – Hidden Figures
  • August Wilson – Fences

All of them potential Best Picture nominees. One based on a much beloved stageplay by the original writer. They’re all in.

5/5 kind of

It’s a fact only known amongst my friends that it bugs the hell out of me that McCraney didn’t get a co-writing credit for Moonlight for reasons too complicated to go into right now. And now Oscar understands me and this is the happiest I’ve been.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

  • Greg Fraser – Lion
  • James Laxton – Moonlight
  • Rodrigo Prieto – Silence
  • Linus Sandgren – La La Land
  • Bradford Young – Arrival

“Marty, we’re really sorry we missed you. At least your movie was really pretty” -Love, Cheryl

My dawg, Bradford Young, FINALLY GOT RECOGNIZED. Not for one of his best but…

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BEST COSTUME DESIGN

  • Colleen Atwood – Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  • Consolata Boyle – Florence Foster Jenkins
  • Madeleine Fontaine – Jackie
  • Jo Sang-gyong – The Handmaiden
  • Joanna Johnston – Allied
  • Renee Ehrlich Kalfus – Hidden Figures
  • Mary Zophres – La La Land

This category loves its historical drama, so why not assume that’s what it’s definitely gonna head for?

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BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

  • Stuart Craig – Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  • Guy Hendrix Dyas – Passengers
  • Jess Gonchor – Hail, Caesar!
  • Jean Rabasse – Jackie
  • Shane Valentino – Nocturnal Animals
  • Patricia Vermette – Arrival
  • David Wasco – La La Land

Why wouldn’t a Tom Ford picture be recognized more for how it looks than what it’s about?

BEST FILM EDITING

  • Tom Cross – La La Land
  • John Gilbert – Hacksaw Ridge
  • Joi McMillion & Nat Sanders – Moonlight
  • Blu Murray – Sully
  • Jake Roberts – Hell or High Water
  • Joe Walker – Arrival

Always means the MOST editing and these are contenders that are so VERY MOST editing. A musical, a war film, and three movies that mess with chronology? Done.

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

  • Arrival
  • Deepwater Horizon
  • Doctor Strange
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
  • The Jungle Book
  • Kubo and the Two Strings
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Yep. Again… MOST.

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BEST HAIR & MAKEUP

  • Deadpool
  • Florence Foster Jenkins
  • Star Trek Beyond
  • Suicide Squad

Academy Award Nominee Deadpool. Trump’s America, now.

BEST SCORE

  • Nicolas Britell – Moonlight
  • Alexandre Desplat – Florence Foster Jenkins
  • Michael Giacchino – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  • Justin Hurwitz – La La Land
  • Mica Levi – Jackie
  • Dustin O’Halloran & Hauschka – Lion
  • Thomas Newman – Passengers
  • John Williams – The BFG

The usual suspects and the new players on the coattails of their Oscar locked films.

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

  • “Audition (The Fools That Dream)” – La La Land
  • “Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Trolls
  • “City of Stars” – La La Land
  • “Drive It Like You Stole It” – Sing Street
  • “The Empty Chair” – Jim: The James Foley Story
  • “How Far I’ll Go” – Moana
  • “I’m Still Here” – Miss Sharon Jones

Usual where movies who don’t have a chance elsewhere get recognized, but La La Land is hefty enough to steal more seats (and probably the Gold). Poor Lin-Manuel Miranda will not become the youngest EGOT winner in this ceremony, I don’t think. While John Carney has never had one of his musical films unrecognized for their songs.

BEST SOUND MIXING

  • 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
  • Arrival
  • Hacksaw Ridge
  • La La Land
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  • Sully

BEST SOUND EDITING

  • Arrival
  • Deepwater Horizon
  • Hacksaw Ridge
  • La La Land
  • Sully

Again, the name of the game is MOST to these voters.

On the fucking point with Sound Editing. Did not expect the 13 Hours recognition for Sound Mixing and while I don’t like the movie as a whole… I’m pleasantly surprised.

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BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

  • Kubo and the Two Strings
  • Moana
  • My Life as a Zucchini
  • The Red Turtle
  • Your Name
  • Zootopia

4/5

Both Disney Features are in and if Zootopia doesn’t win, Moana will. The rest is just an educated guess based on the universal and industry love each has gotten.

 

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BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

  • 13th
  • Fire at Sea
  • I Am Not Your Negro
  • Life, Animated
  • O.J.: Made in America

5/5

O.J. will win. Let’s go home.

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BEST FOREIGN-LANGUAGE FILM

  • Land of Mine
  • A Man Called Ove
  • Paradise
  • The Salesman
  • Toni Erdmann

4/5

The question at this point is WHAT is going to compete with Toni Erdmann‘s win.

My office at the Festival (where we are showing Paradise and Stefan Zweig, two shortlisters) is actually surprised Paradise didn’t get it. I kind of am, but I should have recognized Tanna‘s speed.

One day I might be able to know what I’m doing with the short categories…

So I’ll abstain and wish you all a great rest of the weekend.

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