Saturday, June 11, 2016

Oscars 2017: June Predictions

June is here and that means it's time for me to update my predictions in the major categories. Let's take a look:

Best Picture:
Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk*
Birth Of A Nation
Collateral Beauty 
La La Land 
Manchester By The Sea 

I took off Loving because I have my fears that Loving will be this year's Carol or Foxcatcher whereas it's admired more than loved. Much like those two films, the reviews for Loving were positive yet pretty muted. So I replaced it with Collateral Beauty which not only has a December release date but has a very starry A-list cast which is something they often love. Just ask the people who won for Birdman and Spotlight. I don't know much about the plot but I'm still going to keep a sharp eye out for this one.

Best Director:
Garth Davis, Lion 
Ang Lee, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk 
Nate Parker, The Birth Of A Nation 
Martin Scorsese, Silence* 
Denzel Washington, Fences 

Replaced Jeff Nichols with Denzel Washington. If Fences scores well with the Academy, Washington could be a double nominee for Acting and Directing and actors stepping behind the camera have been recognized before (Robert Redford, Kevin Costner, etc.)

Best Actor:
Joel Edgerton, Loving 
Andrew Garfield, Silence 
Michael Keaton, The Founder*
Nate Parker, Birth Of A Nation 
Denzel Washington, Fences 

Replaced Casey Affleck with Michael Keaton. Even though The Founder is coming out in August, Keaton has plenty of things going for him (Starring in two consecutive Best Picture winners + real-life person + IOU factor + his performance being the movie since he's the titular founder). A handful of juicy ingredients to add to his Big Mac.

Best Actress:
Emily Blunt, The Girl On The Train 
Viola Davis, Fences*
Isabelle Huppert, Elle 
Ruth Negga, Loving 
Emma Stone, La La Land 

No changes. I still think Davis is the frontrunner on paper and I say on paper because the film hasn't finished filming yet. But like Michael Keaton, Davis has key things going for her (IOU factor + potential blockbuster hit with Suicide Squad + having won a Tony for the role she's playing + awards run with How To Get Away With Murder). With the awards she's won for How To Get Away With Murder, I get the sense that the industry is really itching to award her for the right film role when it comes along and this could very well be it.

Best Supporting Actor:
Jovan Adepo, Fences
Armie Hammer, Birth Of A Nation 
Steve Martin, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk 
Ben Mendelsohn, Una
Liam Neeson, Silence*

Replaced Oscar Isaac with Jovan Adepo. I also still have Liam Neeson as the frontrunner to win. But I would also lean towards Mendelsohn as a candidate for the win as well. Not just because I'm a massive fan of his but even though Una doesn't have a U.S. distributor, Mendelsohn will also be in the upcoming Star Wars, has season 2 of Bloodline, and is playing a co-lead role that just earned Jeff Daniels a Tony nomination for Best Lead Actor In A Play. Even if he is a co-lead, Supporting would be an easier path for him. Not a slam dunk, but I'd say watch out.

Best Supporting Actress:
Naomie Harris, Moonlight 
Nicole Kidman, Lion 
Margot Robbie, Suicide Squad 
Kristen Stewart, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk 
Michelle Williams, Manchester By The Sea*

No changes.

Best Original Screenplay:
American Honey
The Lobster 
Manchester By The Sea*

The writers branch always goes for fun, innovative choices. That's why I predict that they might nominate The Lobster. I'm also going to selfishly predict American Honey to get in. They have nominated films about women written by women (Bridesmaids, Carol, Room, etc.) in the writing categories. So I can believe Andrea Arnold can make her way in if the film lands.

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk 
Birth Of A Nation 

This category isn't looking very competitive so far. But we'll wait and see how the rest of the year plays out.