Follow Up Oscar Predictions, 2019

When the Oscar nominations came out this year, I did my first-pass guesses as to who and what would take the statuettes home, and noted I would follow-up closer to time, because things change. And this year, yow, did they — A Star Is Born, the film I suspected would take the win, appears to have faded considerably in the last few weeks as it was passed over again and again by the various other awards ceremonies. At the same time, no one film has emerged as a frontrunner in any of the run-up awards.

Which means: Surprise! No one knows anything, least of all me. So for this year, I’m officially announcing that I don’t have much confidence in my predictions — use for your home Oscar pool at your own risk. That said, here are my best guesses as to who will in this Sunday:

Best Picture: I think Roma has the best chance, as everyone at least seems to like it, a lot of people love it, and at least a few think it’s stunning. For an award that is decided by instant runoff, that should be enough to get it over the line. It’s possible Green Book will come up from the outside, but if it does, expect a lot of post-ceremony kvetching about it. Maybe A Star is Born will still pull it out? But it really does feel as if its star has fallen.

Best Director: Still think it’s Alfonso Cuarón, although at this point the only director I’d say I’m absolutely sure won’t take it is Adam McKay. I’d personally give it to Spike Lee both because the film merits it and as a career award, but then again no one’s letting me vote (I think Lee still has a chance at an Oscar, however, in the screenplay category, screenplay often being the consolation Oscar for directors).

Best Actress: Still think this is Glenn Close, although outside shots from Olivia Colman and Melissa McCarthy (who I didn’t think had a chance when the noms came out) are still possible. Honestly, though, I don’t know why anyone would deny Close at this point.

Best Actor: Everyone seems to think Rami Malek has it, while my own previous guess (Willem Dafoe) doesn’t seem to be part of anyone’s conversation. At this point, unless Bradley Cooper makes a surprise comeback, I think everyone is probably right.

Best Supporting Actress: Buzz seems to be on Regina King, although I think Amy Adams still has a chance. Either is perfectly deserving.

Best Supporting Actor: Star’s fade means that the sure bet I thought existed in Sam Elliott may not be that great of a bet, and people seem to think Mahershala Ali might get his second Oscar in two years. As may be, but I’m not going to throw the towel in on Elliott yet. I think he might surprise folks. We’ll see!

11 thoughts on “Follow Up Oscar Predictions, 2019

  1. I hated Spike Lee’s movie. It had its moments, and some stellar acting, but being repeatedly hit in the head with the Message Bat was no fun. That’s an issue with all of Lee’s movies. He seems to think his audience is too stupid to figure out the message from the story itself rather than being bludgeoned with it. And if I had to guess, that’s why he keeps losing. It is kind of a form of contempt for his audience.

  2. My favorite part of the Oscars is Best Adapted Screenplay, if only to see if the winner thanks the original author of whatever s/he adapted.

  3. Haven’t seen Roma yet; have heard it’s great.

    Much as Glenn Close deserves an Oscar, I don’t understand how she can by nominated now for a 2017 picture. But a lot of stuff happens in the Biz that I don’t understand.

    Like, why the hell don’t they have the Oscars on Saturday? So many people are groggy at work Monday morning.

    I’ve dreamed of winning a Hugo; guess an Oscar would be okay. (Okay, yes, I’ve dreamed of winning for Best Original Screenplay. Have never worn a tux.)

  4. Glenn Close. Glenn Close. Glenn Close. I loved The Favourite, and I thought Melissa McCarthy did a terrific job in Can You Ever Forgive Me, but holy cats: Glenn Close. In a walk.

  5. Data point: Began to watch Roma on Netflix. Even the opening credits bored me to tears, and nothing that happened in the next five minutes changed my mind, so I turned it off. I may be the only one to have that reaction, but that’s one.

  6. Whether Roma (which I haven’t seen) wins or loses may be judged afterward as all tied up with its status as a Netflix movie, more so than as a result of its merits (or lack thereof). If the Academy members voting for Best Picture overcome their distaste for it not being a “movie” according to previous standards, that portends a future for the Oscars similar to what happened when non-broadcast TV shows started competing for Emmys.

  7. Mostly agree with all these, though I think Richard E. Grant, who’s been very visible and well-liked on the awards circuit, has a chance of snagging an Oscar for Can You Forgive Me?. Personally, I’m praying for a tie with Ali, whose performance was one of the best things about Green Book. He seems to be one of those actors who comes across convincingly in just about any role you hand him; there are no Mahershala Ali-type roles any more than there are Dustin Hoffman-type roles. (Anybody reading this who hasn’t seen him in Moonlight and in season one of Luke Cage should check them out.)

    gottacook – Even without a “best picture” win for Roma, which Netflix tried their best to give a “real” theatrical release (despite the big theater chains refusing to play ball), another major turning point in Academy acceptance of Netflix was the three nominations for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, which was barely seen in theaters at all.

  8. Rob T.: Quite right. I wonder how many Oscar categories next year will have (multiple?) nominees from productions seen primarily on streaming services. At some point soon, these token showings in theaters may be dropped, seen as irrelevant by the newer Academy members.

    I did see Buster Scruggs on a 7-year-old 55″ LED TV, and I don’t think I could possibly have appreciated it better in a theater. Extremely well made.

  9. @Pjcamp, when it comes to certain issues, I think people (especially the people of the Academy) are wanting to be preached at, and to see people being preached at (we live in a world where we are now acknowledging that the problem with the old Captain Planet cartoon was that it was too subtle in its message) again.

    In general, the Oscars this year are a mess. I think Spike Lee will get the director’s award though. He is due it, it seems like his time.

  10. Regarding Glenn Close and The Wife, the Oscars eligibility is based on the when the film was released in theatres in the US. So while The Wife is a 2017 film it wasn’t released in the US until August 17 2018, making it a 2018 Oscar film.

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