I normally don't post on weekend as a rule, but this weekend is the 87th Academy Awards so I'll make an exception. Below is my prediction for this year's Oscars.
BEST MOTION PICTURE OF THE YEAR
It’s a toss-up between Birdman and Boyhood. Both are the realization of the director’s vision and it’s a tough call. What some people expect to happen is that the honor is going to be split between the two pictures with Birdman getting best picture and Boyhood getting best director or vice versa.
I’m not going to hedge and go all-in for Boyhood simply because I think it’s tough to actively work on a film for 12 summers.
PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE
All indication leads to Michael Keaton and his portrayal in Birdman but I’m partial to Eddie Redmayne’s performance in The Theory of Everything.
It’s a tight race, but I’m going with youth.
Pick: EDDIE REDMAYNE.
PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
J.K. Simmons because he's a journeyman actor who's pretty great in everything and his award momentum shows no sign of slowing down.
Pick: J.K. SIMMONS
PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE
I’ll be surprise if Julianne Moore doesn’t win. This is probably the only one that I have the most confident in.
Pick: JULIANNE MOORE
PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
Boyhood’s unique filming arrangement (every summer for 12 years) is difficult and Patricia Arquette’s ability to maintain character throughout is an achievement in itself.
Pick: PATRICIA ARQUETTE
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM OF THE YEAR
There was no standout animated film this year and while The Boxtrolls has the most unique premise, I think that Dreamworks Animation had more marketing might and so this film would most likely win.
Pick: HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2
ACHIEVEMENT IN CINEMATOGRAPHY
Birdman’s difficult camera work and the cinematography required illustrate Lubezki’s amazing skill.
Pick: EMMANUEL LUBEZKI FOR BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF
ACHIEVEMENT IN COSTUME DESIGN
Just like the costumes in the film. Sometimes, that’s all there is to it.
Pick: MILENA CANONERO FOR THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL.
ACHIEVEMENT IN DIRECTING
Like I said, a toss-up between Alejandro G. Iñárritu and Richard Linklater. Still, I think committing to a film for 12 summers illustrates perseverance and deserves multiple accolades.
Pick: RICHARD LINKLATER FOR BOYHOOD
BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
A documentary about Snowden that generated a lot of reviews and raised awareness of privacy issue.
BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT
Honestly don’t know anything about this so just picking one that was picked up by HBO, usually not a bad indication.
Pick: CRISIS HOTLINE: VETERANS PRESS 1
ACHIEVEMENT IN FILM EDITING
For the same reason I picked it to win best director, it’s difficult to edit a coherent film with so much material, especially a film that spans 12 actual years.
Pick: SANDRA ADAIR FOR BOYHOOD
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM OF THE YEAR
I wanted to see the film because of the buzz that I’ve heard about it. Although, I think Ida is a strong contender.
Pick: LEVIATHAN (RUSSIA)
ACHIEVEMENT IN MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING
Because the duo made the galactic team so believable.
Pick: ELIZABETH YIANNI-GEORGIOU AND DAVID WHITE FOR GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC WRITTEN FOR MOTION PICTURES (ORIGINAL SCORE)
His score inspired the “emotional core” of the story.
Pick: HANS ZIMMER FOR INTERSTELLAR
ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC WRITTEN FOR MOTION PICTURES (ORIGINAL SONG)
I think "Everything is Awesome" is too commercial for the voters so I think people will vote for something with a message.
Pick: GLORY FROM SELMA (MUSIC AND LYRIC BY JOHN LEGEND & COMMON)
ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION DESIGN
Same reason I picked it for Costume Design.
Pick: PRODUCTION DESIGNER ADAM STOCKHAUSEN AND SET DECORATOR ANNA PINNOCK FOR THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL.
BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM
A very cute short that had a lot of buzz. But, The Dam Keeper also has very good visual and a positive message. Think Feast has more awareness though so going with it.
BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM
Honestly don’t know anything about this so just picking one that sounds the most interesting to me — “An Afghan teenager living in a refugee center in Switzerland encounters difficulties wiring money to her family and asks a young Swiss woman for help.”
ACHIEVEMENT IN SOUND EDITING
Generally, it’s difficult for a war movie to succeed without good sound editing and mixing.
Pick: ALAN ROBERT MURRAY AND BUB ASMAN FOR AMERICAN SNIPER
ACHIEVEMENT IN SOUND MIXING
Pick: JOHN REITZ, GREGG RUDLOFF AND WALT MARTIN FOR AMERICAN SNIPER
ACHIEVEMENT IN VISUAL EFFECTS
Groot and Rocket Racoon would not be possible without them.
Pick: STEPHANE CERETTI, NICOLAS AITHADI, JONATHAN FAWKNER AND PAUL CORBOULD FOR GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
This is another tough one. I think it’s between The Imitation Game and The Theory of Everything. I like both films. In fact, I like The Theory of Everything more but I think the marketing push by The Weinstein Company would give The Imitation Game the edge.
Pick: GRAHAM MOORE FOR THE IMITATION GAME
Tough call again as I’m torn between Birdman and Nightcrawler. I think the Nightcrawler script is more edgy and so that’s my pick but I think Birdman is going to win.
Pick: DAN GILROY FOR NIGHTCRAWLER
I didn’t realize it, but my picks mean that I think Birdman will only receive one award (Cinematography). Seeing how the film is the one with the biggest buzz and what I’m predicting is essentially a major upset for the film. I don’t think an upset is likely so we’ll see how wildly inaccurate my predictions are. Should be fun.