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Oscar Watching: Guild Overload

Members of the motion-picture academy could begin voting for the Oscars as early as Dec. 27, and today marks the final day on which they can turn in their ballots. In other words, nothing that happens after today – save for some kind of technical glitch with the electronic voting and/or issues with mailing – will affect the upcoming Oscar nominations.

However, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) revealed its nominations at 7:30 GMT, and while it’s difficult to imagine Oscar voters waiting to see those before turning in their ballots, there’s a huge overlap of BAFTA and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) – “the British bloc” of the motion-picture academy, if you will.

We also have the nominations from the Directors Guild of America (DGA), Producers Guild of America (PGA), and Writers Guild of America (WGA) – and the National Society of Film Critics winners (NSFC), I suppose – to consider. The Golden Globes, hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, hit on Sunday, too, though they won’t affect the Oscar nominations for obvious reasons. There’s a lot to cover, so, without any further ado, this week’s Oscar predictions.

Best Picture

The films represented by the DGA nominees – 12 Years a Slave, American Hustle, Gravity, Captain Phillips, and The Wolf of Wall Street – feel safe for best picture nods, as they’re also nominated with the PGA. And yeah, 12 Years, Gravity, and Hustle are our “locks” this year.

Also nominated by the producers guild are Her, Nebraska, Saving Mr. Banks, Dallas Buyers Club, and Blue Jasmine. The mentions for Her and Nebraska hardly surprised. Dallas, however, continued its run of unexpected guild recognition – the film was also recognized by SAG and WGA – while Banks needed the boost. Ditto Jasmine, though its stance in the best picture race is more difficult to gauge.

If something about those PGA nods felt a bit off, it might be the lack of Weinstein. None of The Weinstein Co.’s three major contenders – August: Osage County, Lee Daniels’ The Butler, and Philomena – scored nominations. The lack of love for The Butler, once TWC’s most likely picture nominee, is perhaps the most surprising, what with so many credited producers and its huge box-office success. Philomena, however, rallied with BAFTA, and at least August has that motion-picture cast nomination at SAG.

Gravity led the BAFTA nods, but Hustle lives up to its name as it builds momentum. 12 Years and Hustle should win the motion picture Globes on Sunday, by the way.

1. American Hustle (David O. Russell)

2. 12 Years a Slave (Steve McQueen)

3. Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón)

4. Nebraska (Alexander Payne)

5. Captain Phillips (Paul Greengrass)

6. Her (Spike Jonze)

7. Dallas Buyers Club (Jean-Marc Vallée)

8. The Wolf of Wall Street (Martin Scorsese)

9. Philomena (Stephen Frears)

10. Saving Mr. Banks (John Lee Hancock)
11. Inside Llewyn Davis (Ethan and Joel Coen)
12. Blue Jasmine (Woody Allen)
13. Lee Daniels’ The Butler (Lee Daniels)
14. Fruitvale Station (Ryan Coogler)
15. August: Osage County (John Wells)
16. Rush (Ron Howard)
17. Blue is the Warmest Color (Abdellatif Kechiche)
18. Prisoners (Denis Villeneuve)
19. Enough Said (Nicole Holofcener)
20. Before Midnight (Richard Linklater)
21. The Book Thief (Brian Percival)
22. Labor Day (Jason Reitman)
23. All is Lost (J.C. Chandor)
24. Short Term 12 (Destin Cretton)
25. Lone Survivor (Peter Berg)


Best Director

The DGA and BAFTA nominated the same five, Alfonso Cuarón, Paul Greengrass, Steve McQueen, David O. Russell, and Martin Scorsese. So, we should expect Oscar to follow suit, right? Maybe not. The directors in the motion-picture academy like to surprise us – remember Benh Zeitlin’s nomination last year? For what it’s worth, Cuarón or Russell will likely win the Globe on Sunday, though McQueen could upset.

1. Steve McQueen for 12 Years a Slave

2. David O. Russell for American Hustle

3. Alfonso Cuarón for Gravity

4. Paul Greengrass for Captain Phillips

5. Martin Scorsese for The Wolf of Wall Street

6. Alexander Payne for Nebraska
7. Spike Jonze for Her
8. Woody Allen for Blue Jasmine
9. Ethan and Joel Coen for Inside Llewyn Davis
10. Jean-Marc Vallée for Dallas Buyers Club


The lead acting races and “fifth spot” madness…

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The Author

Donovan Warren

Donovan Warren

Donovan Warren loves the wonderful world of film and all that comes with it. He specifically loves long takes, fabulous actresses, and keeping up with the Oscar season - even when it's far too early to make sense of anything.