The resident reader of Awards Daily takes his stab at guessing who will receive nominations for the big awards at tomorrow's unveiling ceremony. To be clear, this isn't Andy's ballot, but rather a cold, heartless, pragmatic look at who has an actual shot to bring home a nomination and, possibly, a golden shiny statue.
A glance at the names popping up in the Guilds, the Critics Awards, etc. should leave us with this bunch getting nominated this year:
Jean Dujardin, The Artist
George Clooney, The Descendants
Brad Pitt, Moneyball
Michael Fassbender, Shame
Leonardo DiCaprio, J Edgar
It would not be unsurprising for an upset in the 5th slot, knocking out Fassbender or maybe DiCaprio. Replacement choices could include Oldman, or maybe even Woody Harrelson out of left field. That said, it seems like notoriety should be strong enough for Fassbender (despite the limitations of his film’s rating) and DiCaprio (despite the early peak of his coolly received film) to make the cut.
Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
Michelle Williams, My Week with Marilyn
Viola Davis, The Help
Tilda Swinton, We Need to Talk about Kevin
Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Speaking of poorly made biopics anchored by a strong lead performance, Meryl Streep will find herself in yet another Oscar horse race this year. Will the Weinstein machine be enough to get her a third Oscar? Another question: will the surging buzz for Fincher and TGWTDT be enough to completely shut Glenn Close out of the race?
Best Supporting Actor
Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Albert Brooks, Drive
Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn
Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Nick Nolte, Warrior
Amazingly, this category was pretty unclear to me and has only recently come together nicely. I can’t really see who would be shut out of these five, or who would take their place. The cynic in me wonders if the snobs would yank out chubby jokester Jonah Hill, but hopefully that fear is more irrational than anything.
Best Supporting Actress
Octavia Spencer, The Help
Jessica Chastain, The Help
Shaileen Woodley, The Descendants
Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids
Berenice Bejo, The Artist
An exclusion of either Woodley or Bejo will be a good indicator of a crack in their film’s prospects of becoming this year’s Best Picture recipient. I am slightly worried they might snub McCarthy, but as with Hill, I am unsure who would be the replacement. I would say Janet McTeer, but Albert Nobbs really has made no impact on the race thus far, whereas the ink on McCarthy has been plentiful, as have her accolades.
Martin Scorsese, Hugo
Michel Hanazavicius, The Artist
Alexander Payne, The Descendants
David Fincher, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Tate Taylor, The Help
I could see them going with Spielberg or Allen, but I am guessing the happy success of The Help this summer will carry Taylor into the top five. Assuming Fincher makes the list, it will be yet another testament to his growing respect in the industry. Whether his ultimate Oscar legacy will be that of a Kubrick or Hitchcock (as opposed to the recently honored Scorsese) is up to the Academy.
Best Original Screenplay
Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris
Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Kristen Wiig & Annie Mumolo, Bridesmaids
Tom McCarthy, Win/Win
Will Reiser, 50/50
A nomination for Wiig seems likely, making her potentially the first SNL performer to be recognized by the Academy while still working on the show. This is not the strongest crop of original screenplays (at least compared to how competitive the category has been in recent years), which could allow Woody Allen another opportunity to win and not give a shit.
Best Adapted Screenplay
Aaron Sorkin, Steven Zaillian, Stan Chervin, Moneyball
Alexander Payne, Nat Faxton, Jim Rash, The Descendants
John Logan, Hugo
Tate Taylor, The Help
George Clooney, Grant Heslov, Beau Willimon, The Ides of March
A part of me really feels Zaillian could pop up twice here, alongside his work on TGWTDT. Still, the force is strong with Clooney. I’d go with Zaillian, but I wonder if the Academy can resist making even a slight political statement here.
Midnight in Paris
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
This is a category that is going through a bit of an identity crisis. Since the omission of The Dark Knight in 2009, there has been an ongoing debate about the sorts of films worthy of recognition. Worse, the last few years have seen a strange remapping of the traditional number of nominees. This year, we could see as many as 10 be selected or as few as five, depending on the amount of first place votes a film receives. Most likely these 7-8 will be chosen.
Check back on Thursday for Andy's analysis of who was nominated, why, and who is most likely to take home that pagan statue.