Sunday, February 18, 2007

A Trip Down Memory Lane...

Now that the big show is just a week away, I thought it would be a good time to reflect on what I predicted at the beginning of this race. Luckily, I found my predix from late March. Here we go...

Dreamgirls-This seems to be the frontrunner in just about everything. The Academy does love musicals as of late (Chicago, Moulin Rogue!), but something tells me this won’t make it to the end, even with the early teasers and December release…

Flags of Our Fathers-A Clint Eastwood film can usually find its way into the running. Being two years after “Million Dollar Baby,” I wouldn’t predict it to win, but a definite early frontrunner.

All The King’s Men-Started out a frontrunner, until “Dreamgirls” came into play. But it’s so early in the year; we need a space-filler.

Little Children-I’d say Kate Winslet is a lock for Actress, and a Picture nod would only help.

A Prairie Home Companion-Altman just received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy, and his new film is suddenly generating huge buzz.


Marie-Antoinette-A period film, a female-lead and visual stunners point right to last year’s “Memoirs of a Geisha.” It’s all techs and, possibly, leading actress for this one.

Infamous-A movie about Truman Capote’s writing of the book “In Cold Blood.” Well, it’d be a frontrunner if a movie about the exact same thing hadn’t received 5 nominations last year. No chance.

The DaVinci Code-How long will it take everyone to realize that movies based on popular novels released in summer aren’t going to be Oscar frontrunners?!

The Departed-The Academy has shown virtually no love for comedies in recent years (with the exception of “Sideways”). And, with two in my list already (“All the King’s Men,” “Prairie Home Companion), it’s something of impossible.

Current Comments: Heh. I was somehow under the impression that The Departed was a comedy. That was the only one on the list that got the nod.


Robert Altman, A Prairie Home Companion-A frontrunner for a nomination, but I think his dislike of the Academy will make his Lifetime Achievement Award his only one.

Bill Condon, Dreamgirls-Same as Dreamgirls’ Best Picture fate.

Clint Eastwood, Flags of Our Fathers-A nomination would work because of the name, but every sign points to him space-filling.

Martin Scorsese, The Departed-I say this every time he has a film coming out, but…THIS IS GOING TO BE HIS YEAR!

Steven Zallian, All the King’s Men-I’ll still take the early buzz…


Todd Field, Little Children-The Best Picture nod is only to support Winslet, and New Line Cinema hasn’t been the most promising studio lately…

Milos Forman, Goya’s Ghosts-I don’t know why I didn’t put “Ghosts” as a Picture consideration, but he could surely pull it off. He’s an Academy favorite.

Sofia Coppola, Marie-Antoinette-She made it for “Lost in Translation,” but the Academy’s feeling about female directors could scare her nomination away.

Current Comments: Eh, I got Scorsese right. I don't know why I predicted him for Best Director and not Best Picture.


Brad Pitt, Babel-It has to be one amazing performance, because he’s not exactly Oscar bait.

Ryan Phillippe, Flags of Our Fathers-Reese won last year. Can he be known by his name and not Reese Witherspoon’s husband? Possibly: with buzz this weak in his category, he’s locked for now.

Forest Whitaker, The Last King of Scotland-I’ll level. I’ve never even heard of this movie. But the Academy needs to have racial diversity in at least one category, and Actor has seemed to provide that recently.

Sean Penn, All the King’s Men-Respected by the Academy in a talked about film. What more is there to say?

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Departed-“The Aviator” only got him a Globe, so why not give him another nod?


Guy Pearce, Factory Girl-Another film I know nothing about, and am only basing because of the feminine performance. However, with Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s sweep, his chances are looking lesser and lesser.

Toby Jones, Infamous-This is a bad time to be Toby. You sign and complete a baity, star-studded movie only to find that the role you’re playing has already swept America’s hearts. It’s Guy Pearce times a million.

Russell Crowe, A Good Year-His recent rage issues will make the Academy like him less and less. Could one of the best current actors be shunned by the Oscars for life?

Current Comments: Eh, I got Whitaker right. And I totally forgot about the rage issues with Russell Crowe. Sigh. This brings back more memories than I thought it would.


Kate Winslet, Little Children-After nominations for “Sense and Sensibility,” “Titanic,” “Iris” and “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” she should finally get the Oscar she’s been longing for.

Cate Blanchett, Babel-Does anyone remember that Cate won just two years for “The Aviator?” She had no work at all in ’05, and this film could bring her back after her total absence last year.

Anna Paquin, Margaret-Buzz is just too strong to resist.

Nicole Kidman, Fur-This is Nicole’s last shot at remaining a respected actress. “Bewitched” and the forgotten “The Interpreter” put her on the line. This performance is full of potential, and could easily win back her Hollywood respect.

Scarlett Johansson, Scoop-Though it’s not very likely that she’ll remain in the race, I just say, “Why not?” She has to get something other than a measly Globe nomination for her work with Woody Allen.


Beyonce Knowles, Dreamgirls-Okay. Beyonce has a lot of work to do to get into the race. For me, she’ll only be nominated if she clean-sweeps every single precursor.

Salma Hayek, Ask the Dust-A raved performance. The only thing that’s keeping her away from an Oscar is everything but her performance. The movie was released too early and wasn’t loved by critics. “Eternal Sunshine” can only happen when the movie itself is unforgettable.

Kirsten Dunst, Marie-Antoinette-At this point, it is very likely she will be nominated. But, the Ziyi Zhang Geisha snub keeps coming to my mind.

Current Comments: Wow, Winslet really was a sure thing. It makes me surprised that she was nominated now when the movie was so underexposed.


Matt Damon, The Departed-I guess “The Departed” has to be nominated somewhere for something. This seems like a nice category to get attention.

Adam Beach, Flags of Our Fathers-Apparently, the character is loved enough to earn him a nomination.

Javier Bardem, Goya’s Ghosts-After the “The Sea Inside” lack of attention two years ago, he’s due for a nomination.

Robert Downey Jr., Fur-“Fur” is shaping up to be a considerable film for the acting categories. Downey is loved by the public and critics alike, and his choice in films can’t be beat by anyone else in Hollywood.

Paul Bettany, The DaVinci Code-The character is complex and human enough to earn a nomination. Besides, we have to give “The DaVinci Code” a little recognition. I’m not saying that summer movies are always anti-Oscar (remember the “Crash” shocker only a little more than a week ago?).


Eddie Murphy, Dreamgirls-I’ve always had a feeling that Eddie Murphy would win an Oscar someday. This is a beloved role in an Oscar-friendly film. Quite possible.

Gael Garcia Bernal, Babel-He starred in “Bad Education,” a beloved 2004 Mexican film. Maybe he’ll receive a “welcome to the club” nomination

Kevin Kline, A Prairie Home Companion-Kline does comedy well, and could pull it off. The 2006 Best Supporting Actor race is looking to be the most competitive category of the year, as it was last year.

Current Comments: Hey, I was right about Supp. Actor being the most competetive category!


Annette Bening, Running with Scissors-At this point, there is no doubt that she will finally receive her Oscar. That is, unless the role is leading. Then it’s a fierce race between her and Winslet.

Meryl Streep, A Prairie Home Companion-Meryl Streep is one of the two actresses in Hollywood that can get a nomination for just about whatever she does. A lock.

Jennifer Connelly, Little Children-A lock, but will probably only be nominated to support Winslet.

Judi Dench, Notes on a Scandal-Wondering why I didn’t mention the other actress in Meryl’s description? Here she is.

Maria Bello, WTC-Though she may be snubbed yet again (see “The Cooler” and “A History of Violence”), I’ll stay confident on this one.


Jennifer Hudson, Dreamgirls-I’m probably the only Oscar follower at this point that isn’t going crazy over “Dreamgirls.” Does anyone remember that Jennifer is an American Idol finalist and that she’s never been in a major film before? She holds the same fate as Beyonce.

Patricia Clarkson, All the King’s Men-Will last year’s buzz return?

Natalie Portman, Goya’s Ghosts-She’ll get her Oscar someday, but I don’t think here is the right place.

Current Comments: Heh. I guess I was sorta right about Hudson; that she'd have to get every precursor to win/be nominated. And I'm still laughing that I called Streep and Connelly a lock for a nomination and Bening a lock for a win. And I coulda sworn that Judi Dench would be in supporting.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY (I didn't have comments on the screenplays)

Goya’s Ghosts
The Science of Sleep
The Good Shepard
Stranger than Fiction

For Your Consideration
Breaking and Entering
The Departed

A Prairie Home Companion
Little Children
Flags of our Fathers

Notes on a Scandal
The DaVinci Code

Current Comments: Category confusion, category confusion, category confusion.

Makes you feel nostalgic, huh? God I want it to be the 25th.

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