Awards season is upon us, and tomorrow the nominees for the mackdaddy of movie award shows will be revealed. That’s right, the Oscar nominees will be officially released tomorrow, followed swiftly by floods of angry tweets, Facebook posts and Youtube videos denouncing the Academy for snubbing some of the best films and performances of the past year. Basically, cinephiles the world over will look like this:
Rather than make a list of who I think may walk away with a nomination, here are my predictions for those the Academy will overlook while providing us with another boring, predictable list of Oscar hopefuls tomorrow.
And the Oscar snub goes to…
None of these films are the typical “Oscar bait” that run away with nominations. This is a particularly hard year because so many great films were released, and I think some truly deserving films like Boyhood and The Grand Budapest Hotel will get nominated. Still, it’d be nice to see more “interesting” films grab a nom.
Ava DuVernay, Selma
Christopher Nolan, Interstellar
Jennifer Kent, The Babadook
Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler
David Fincher, Gone Girl
Judging by the DGA nominations, which unforgivingly left Ava Duvernay and Jennifer Kent off of the list in favor of someone like Clint Eastwood (whose American Sniper has not been as well-received by critics), I wouldn’t be too surprised if they too were left off of Oscar’s radar. SImilarly, Christopher Nolan is sure to get snubbed once more, as he has had bad luck with the Academy in the past, and left many underwhelmed by his messy but memorable and awe-inspiring space epic.
All too often, voters forget that great movies don’t direct themselves.
Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler)
Miles Teller (Whiplash)
Dan Stevens (The Guest)
Andy Serkis (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes)
Again, it’s been a pretty great year, so the fact that people like Ralph Fiennes, Benedict Cumberbatch, Eddie Redmayne and Michael Keaton will walk away with noms for The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Imitation Game, The Theory of Everything and Birdman, respectively, is okay with me. However, Miles Teller gave an astounding performance in Whiplash that was overshadowed by J.K. Simmons’ equally incredible supporting role, while Andy Serkis once again amazed with his mo-cap performance as Caesar in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. But, considering that the Academy voters are mostly old white guys who don’t see motion capture as “acting,” I don’t think there’s a chance in hell he’ll get nominated. Which is a shame.
Then of course there’s Gyllenhaal, who may very well get a nomination. I hope he does, but I have a feeling like he might miss out on it this year.
Amy Adams (Big Eyes)
Scarlett Johansson (Under the Skin)Elisabeth Moss (The One I Love)
Marion Cotillard (The Immigrant)
Adams could walk away with a nomination since she’s beloved by the Academy, but with Big Eyes surprisingly absent from the awards conversation, I could easily see her getting left off the list. Same goes for Johansson, who wowed audiences with Under the Skin and was a Chicago Film Critics Award nominee but has been sidelined by other “bigger” performances like Reese Witherspoon in Wild or Rosamund Pike in Gone Girl.
Best Supporting Actor:
Tony Revolori (The Grand Budapest Hotel)
Josh Brolin (Inherent Vice)
Michael Fassbender (Frank)
Chris Pine (Into the Woods)
Riz Ahmed (Nightcrawler)
Chris Pine (Stretch)
This category too is pretty well stacked; JK Simmons is all but guaranteed to get nominated for Whiplash (deservedly so) while Edward Norton, Ethan Hawke and Mark Ruffalo have gotten a significant amount of buzz for Birdman, Boyhood and Foxcatcher. My picks aren’t quite as deserving as they are for nominations, but in another, weaker year perhaps they could have squeezed in.
Best Supporting Actress:
Tilda Swinton (Snowpiercer)
Rene Russo (Nightcrawler)
Jessica Chastain (A Most Violent Year)
Tilda Swinton gave one of the best supporting performances of the year in Snowpiercer, but it – and the film itself – were far too weird for the Academy’s tastes.
Christophe Beck, Edge of Tomorrow
Michael Giacchino, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
James Newton Howard, Nightcrawler
Mica Levi, Under the Skin
Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, Gone Girl
I’m hoping Reznor and Ross get nominated, but considering their Gone Girl score wasn’t quite as big or memorable as their award-winning music for The Social Network, and I could see them slipping under the radar once more like they did with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I was also a huge fan of Beck’s score for Edge of Tomorrow, but that’s not exactly in the Academy’s wheelhouse either.
Jeff Cronenweth, Gone Girl
Robert D. Yeoman, The Grand Budapest Hotel
Best Film Editing:
James Herbert, Edge of Tomorrow
Kirk Baxter, Gone Girl
Tom Cross, Whiplash
Barney Pilling, The Grand Budapest Hotel
Edge of Tomorrow was a film that succeeded largely due to how well it was edited, but I doubt the Academy noticed. Sure bets this year are Boyhood, Birdman and The Imitation Game (all deserving), but I hope tightly-constructed movies like Gone Girl and Whiplash get their due as well.
Best Adapted Screenplay:
John-Henry Butterworth, Jez Butterworth and Christopher McQuarrie, Edge of Tomorrow
Joon-ho Bong and Kelly Masterson, Snowpiercer
Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
Jane Goldman, Matthew Vaughn and Simon Kinberg, X-Men: Days of Future Past
Gillian Robespierre, Obvious Child
James Gunn and Nicole Perlman, Guardians of the Galaxy
Paul Thomas Anderson, Inherent Vice
These films could all have been train wrecks (no pun intended toward Snowpiercer), but weren’t thanks to their screenplays. Unfortunately, with movies like Gone Girl, The Imitation Game, and The Theory of Everything hogging three of the five spots, it’s doubtful these more left-field choices will get nominations.
Additionally, Whiplash is being considered an adapted screenplay rather than an original one because of it being based off of the director’s real-life events. I wonder if that confusion will cost it any much-deserved votes.
Best Original Screenplay:
Phil Lord and Chris Miller, The LEGO Movie
David Wain and Michael Showalter, They Came Together
Simon Barrett, The Guest
Jennifer Kent, The Babadook
Jon Favreau, Chef
Justin Lader, The One I Love
So many well-written films, so few nominee slots…
Best Live-Action Short Film:
Too Many Cooks
Let’s face it, this will never get the awards attention it deserves. It’s far too weird, and is technically an informercial, according to Adult Swim. Oh well.