Oscars 2012- What WILL Happen
Best Picture- I can’t remember a year when it’s ever looked so sewn-up. The Artist is going to win without a shadow of a doubt. How can a film involving a man with that smug a face not scoop the top award? In point of fact, there’s no serious contender this year; so if you’ve got money on The Help…well, I can’t help you.
Best Director- The traditional companion award of Best Director is almost certainly going to go to Michel Hazanavicius for The Artist. I think there’s a shred of a chance that Martin Scorcese could get it for Hugo, but if it went that way then the Academy would have given him two directing Oscars for two of his worst films. Alexander Payne fans will be disappointed but, then again, when are they not?
Best Original Screenplay- Tough one. If I were a betting man I’d say that The Artist is going to scoop this one too (which is a sham). The real contender in this category is Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris which I hope will win but which is looking increasingly like an outsider.
Best Adapted Screenplay- Breathe easy Alexander Payne fans, your man will win this one.
Actor in a Leading Role- Despite the fact that it really ought to be Damien Bichir taking home this award (props to the Academy for recognising his turn in a forgotten picture), this is a two horse race between Clooney and Jean Dujardin. The sheer rapture with which the artist has been received mean that it’s probably Dujardin’s year, which is something of a shame given that Clooney’s heartbreaking performance is one of his best ever.
Actress in a Leading Role- I really felt as though Viola Davis was going to be the favourite for this role but The Help seems to be a tad over saturated in the acting department (and the Oscar that it’s going to win is coming later). It’s definitely going to be Meryl‘s year (again) which is fine although the reality is that it’s probably the most showy and least subtle of all the nominees.
Actor in a Supporting Role- Plummer and Sydow are both due but the derision with which Stephen Daldry’s film is being received has opened this up as very much Plummer‘s year. Jonah Hill should be happy to be nominated, K Bran will bring the class and Nolte will bring the glass.
Actress in a Supporting Role- The bizarre decision to nominate Jessica Chastain for The Help rather than The Tree of Life has meant that this category is a straight fight between The Help’s Octavia Spencer and The Artist’s Berenice Bejo. The Artist has all the love in the world but the feeling seems to be that Bejo’s performance is not really a supporting turn and I suspect that this is the only nomination The Artist is going to drop on the night.
Animated Film- Probably Rango? Looks like a bit of a shitty non-Pixar late. Bloody Cars 2 and all that…
Cinematography- I suspect that Guillaume Schiffman is going to win for The Artist, which is fair given that it’s an amazing cinematography achievement. That said Emmanuel Lubezki’s work on Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life is probably the single most stunning piece in modern cinema. But, then again, this is a category that Wally Pfister won last year for Inception. Inception.
Foreign Language Film- It’s a typically hard to guess category but there seems to be a strong leaning towards the Iranian film A Separation and Spain’s failure to even nominate The Skin I Live In (?!?!) has left that category looking fairly safe.