The Oscars are upon us, with only a few months away before the 92nd Academy Award ceremony – so predictions are all over the internet about how the event is going to pan out and who the main contenders might be. We’ve got just a few predictions for Best Picture (and some other nods to other categories) below – but the proof will be in the pudding when the nominees are announced.
1917 – Sam Mendes
Starring Benedict Cumberbatch, the WWI film follows suite with Birdman and is shot as if the emotional action was filmed all in one take. The drama is a natural contender for Best Picture with the technical requirements it takes to achieve a one-take aesthetic to the film but will it hold up to the voters? Sam Mendes, the director, hasn’t made much of an appearance at the Oscars since American Beauty so could 1917 be his comeback?
A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood – Marielle Heller
There are plenty of biopics within this year’s collection of films and within our predictions as they are Oscar-favourites if the past nominations and winners are anything to go by. A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood tells the story of American children’s presenter, Fred Rogers, who is played by Tom Hanks. There are some concerns that it may not translate globally as Rogers is more of a household name in America – but with a star like Hanks, it’s sure to draw audiences in.
In another category, if nominated, this could be Hanks’ third win for Best Actor.
Jojo Rabbit – Taika Waititi
On the surface, a comedy which presents Hitler in a less than truthful light isn’t exactly your normal contender for Best picture. However, when it has Waititi at the helm, it’s sure to defy all expectations and divide audiences in the way that gets them talking. This was especially so as the film won the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto Film Festival – which means that it could stand a chance to win Best Picture.
Joker – Todd Phillips
Another film that divided both audiences and critics, yet everyone would be very surprised if it isn’t a nominee for Best Picture. Despite the concerns over the troubling themes, there is no denying that its original reception at the Venice Film Festival where it received an eight minute standing ovation is a triumph in itself. However, there has been increased controversy over the film with some cinemas refusing to show it due to the violence that they believed it inspired while others had to bring increased security in order to keep their audiences safe. So it might be that the Academy won’t risk it.
In another category, we have our second contender for Best Actor in Joaquin Phoenix who (similarly to his predecessor, Heath Ledger) took to method acting for the role. For it, he had to lose 52 pounds to make himself appear more wolf-like.
Judy – Rupert Goold
The next biopic on our list is the biopic of the world-renowned star from the early days of Hollywood, Judy Garland. After finding fame at a young age in The Wizard of Oz, the film goes on to show what happened to Judy in the twilight years of both her career and her life. Swapping the yellow brick road for pills and failed marriages, the world isn’t looking quite so bright over the rainbow for Judy who is portrayed by Renee Zellweger.
In another category, Renee’s performance could land her in the running for Best Actress as she performed all of the lead vocals herself, taking on powerful songs such as Somewhere Over The Rainbow.
Once Upon A Time In Hollywood – Quentin Tarantino
Tarantino is one of the most renowned directors of recent times – even if his creations often do spark some controversy between some people. Once Upon A Time In Hollywood is no exception to the rule as it has created controversy between viewers due to the fact Tarantino mentioned real life figures such as Charles Manson and Sharon Tate. However, the sister of the actress said she was a fan of the film.
Even for those who aren’t fans of Tarantino’s work, however, the all-star cast of Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Margot Robbie is sure to appeal to the masses and to the Academy as they are all beloved actors. While Leonardo finally snagged his first Best Actor win after many attempts – could this be another win for him? Or could Margot Robbie win Best Actress? Or both?
Rocketman – Dexter Fletcher
Yet another biopic to add to the list but one that stands in good stead at winning despite being a smaller director with a smaller British actor in the lead role, Rocketman could find itself in the running. Following the success of Bohemian Rhapsody, it is clear that the Academy loves films that showcase the success of beloved music figures such as Freddie Mercury and now, Elton John. With masterful direction and powerful music, it won over the box office.
Rising star Taron Egerton seamlessly transformed himself into the Pinball Wizard and is another contender for Best Actor. It would be the first Academy nomination for the young actor who recently celebrated his 30th birthday and would be an excellent birthday present.
The Irishman – Martin Scorsese
Martin Scorsese ruffled a few feathers this year by throwing shade at the new wave of superhero movies but the director could find his piece The Irishman up against one of them if Avengers: Endgame is nominated. With Robert De Nero at his side one more, Scorsese tells the story of the unsolved mystery of who it was that killed Jimmy Hoffa. While the plot isn’t anything out of the ordinary from what Scorsese normally tackles, the masterful use of de-aging visual effects makes the film stand out amongst the rest.
While this could land The Irishman in the lead for Best Film, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Scorsese found himself holding his ninth Best Director award, too. Robert De Nero is no stranger to the Academy, either.
The 92nd Academy Awards will be taking place on the 9th of February, 2020.