Thursday, 10 January 2013

Oscar nominations out in Zero Dark Thirty?

It's that time of the year again - Oscar nominations will shortly be announced. This annual event is like Christmas to movie awards watchers like me! Here are my final predictions for the nominations for the 6 major categories of the 85th Annual Academy Awards.

Best Picture
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Miserables
Life of Pi
Moonrise Kingdom
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Best Actress
Jessica Chastain - Zero Dark Thirty
Marion Cotillard - Rust and Bone
Jennifer Lawrence - Silver Linings Playbook
Emmanuelle Riva - Amour
Naomi Watts - The Impossible

Best Actor
Bradley Cooper - Silver Linings Playbook
Daniel Day-Lewis - Lincoln
John Hawkes - The Sessions
Hugh Jackman - Les Miserables
Denzel Washington - Flight

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams - The Master
Sally Fields - Lincoln
Anne Hathaway - Les Miserables
Helen Hunt - The Sessions
Maggie Smith - The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Best Supporting Actor
Alan Arkin - Argo
Robert De Niro - Silver Linings Playbook
Tommy Lee Jones - Lincoln
Philip Seymour Hoffman - The Master
Christoph Waltz - Django Unchained

Best Director
Ben Affleck - Argo
Kathryn Bigelow - Zero Dark Thirty
Tom Hooper - Les Miserables
Ang Lee - Life of Pi
Steven Spielberg - Lincoln

For every category, I can think of other contenders that could very well make it onto the shortlist in place of my predictions but these are my final predictions and I will stick to them! They do not reflect what I think the nominations should be, just what I think they will be. The actual nominations are being announced in less than an hour by Emma Stone and this year's host Seth MacFarlane so I will update this post once they have been released.


My Best Picture nominee predictions lined up with the actual nominees perfectly...except for the fact that the Academy went with nine nominees while I had predicted ten nominees. The only one that I had predicted which ended up being omitted from the Academy's list is 'Moonrise Kingdom'.

We can all look forward to Adele belting out the theme song from 'Skyfall' on the Oscar telecast next month! The Grammy winner is now an Academy Award nominee, as a co-writer of the song.

I didn't think that it would happen but Quvenzhané Wallis has made history as the youngest ever nominee for Best Actress for her debut performance in 'Beasts of the Southern Wild'. At the tender age of 9, Wallis beats the previous record holder Keisha Castle-Hughes, who was nominated in the same category at the age of 13 in 2004 for 'Whale Rider'. She takes the spot that I had predicted was 2008's Best Actress Ocar winner Marion Cotillard's, for her bold performance in 'Rust and Bone'. Cotillard was already a nominee at the Golden Globes, th SAG Awards and the BAFTAs whereas Wallis was not nominated at these other precursor awards at all (although, to be fair, she was not eligible at the SAG since her movie was non-union). This goes to show that the Academy does make these unexpeted, independent choices on their own will.

Another record was broken in the Best Actress category today. At 85, Emmanuelle Riva becomes the oldest Best Actress nominee ever for her performance in Best Picture nominee 'Amour'. Jessica Tandy previously held this record, when she was nominated for playing the title role in 'Driving Miss Daisy' at the age of 80.

Meanwhile, I did pretty badly in the Best Director category, getting only 2 out of 5! The two eventual nominees that I had predicted were Ang Lee and Steven Spielberg. The Academy is usually a fan of actors who emerge as credible directors so it is a bit of a shock that the directors' branch has snubbed Ben Affleck for 'Argo'. Kathryn Bigelow, who became the first woman to win the Best Director Oscar in 2010 for 'The Hurt Locker', was also a shock omission considering the level of acclaim the film has garnered. Perhaps, the controversy surrounding the film's torture scenes and the Senate investigation into the filmmakers' acccess to confidential CIA files made some voters uneasy. Tom Hooper, who won this category just two years ago for 'The King's Speech', was also snubbed for his work on 'Les Miserables'. These three directors' loss were the gains of David O. Russell (perhaps, 'Silver Linings Playbook' is the real threat to 'Lincoln' for that Best Picture Oscar!), Michael Haneke (for one of my personal favourites of 2012 'Amour') and Benh Zeitlin for 'Beasts of the Southern Wild'. This nomination, along with the film's nods in Best Picture, Best Actress and Best Adapted Screenplay, goes to show that no matter how small your film's budget, you can still capture the hearts and imagination of even the most discerning of audiences.

For the first time in 31 years, a movie has achieved a nomination in all four acting categories. 'Silver Linings Playbook' sees leads Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence nominated along side supporting players Robert De Niro and Jacki Weaver. This is the first time that this has happened since 1982, with Warren Beatty's 'Reds'. This was predicted by some award watchers but it was not a given since De Niro had not been nominated at the Golden Globes or the BAFTAs. Meanwhile, this is the first time that Weaver had been cited by anybody. If you're going to be nominated for just one award, how great that it should be an Academy Award!

Click here to get the full list of nominees!