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Monday, February 4, 2008

Updated Look at the Oscars

This has been lifted from my Oscar page off the main site. Click HERE for a look at even more award news.

Best Picture
1. No Country for Old Men
2. There Will Be Blood
3. Juno
4. Michael Clayton
5. Atonement
After last year’s doubt in this category, this year seems to be a no brainer. Yeah, we all said that back in 2005, but this is a little different. At least I haven’t heard any members of the Academy publicly boycott the film. Still think Blood has the best shot for an upset. It’s the obvious choice as the alternative to No Country. The problem is that most voters won’t be looking for an alternative. Juno is the likable film that everyone wants to succeed, but it just isn’t going to happen. Michael Clayton and Atonement are around for the ride.

Best Director
1. Joel & Ethan Coen, No Country for Old Men
2. Paul Thomas Anderson, There Will Be Blood
3. Julian Schnabel, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
4. Tony Gilroy, Michael Clayton
5. Jason Reitman, Juno
The DGA just does too good of a job predicting this race. I know they have had two misfires this decade (2000 and 2002), but the Coens are in great shape. They are too well liked and respected not to win this award. Anderson will be back. Schnabel beautifully directed Diving Bell, but the film never really caught on with the Academy (go see this film if you haven’t). Gilroy and Reitman are along for the ride.

Best Actor
1. Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will Be Blood
2. George Clooney, Michael Clayton
3. Johnny Depp, Sweeney Todd
4. Viggo Mortensen, Eastern Promises
5. Tommy Lee Jones, In the Valley of Elah
There is no way Day-Lewis loses. No way. I don’t even feel like writing anything new about this race. Check out the Oscar Archives because this race is over. Click HERE.

Best Actress
1. Julie Chrisite, Away from Her
2. Marion Cotillard, La Vie en Rose
3. Ellen Page, Juno
4. Laura Linney, The Savages
5. Cate Blanchett, Elizabeth: The Golden Age
This is shaping up to be another boring race. Unlike Best Actor, I do think it’s possible for Julie Christie to lose. It’s a question of whether people really admired Marion Cotillard’s performance (I loved it). Dare I say it’s better than Christie’s. As much as I love Ellen Page, she just didn’t deliver the kind of performance as the other two frontrunners.

Best Supporting Actor
1. Javier Bardem, No Country for Old Men
2. Casey Affleck, The Assassination of Jesse James
3. Tom Wilkinson, Michael Clayton
4. Hal Holbrook, Into the Wild
5. Philip Seymour Hoffman, Charlie Wilson's War
I also don’t know what refreshing and new analysis I can add to this race. I’m sure he may have lost one or two critic awards, but Bardem has won everything. The Oscars should be no different.

Best Supporting Actress
1. Ruby Dee, American Gangster
2. Cate Blanchett, I'm Not There
3. Amy Ryan, Gone Baby Gone
4. Tilda Swinton, Michael Clayton
5. Saoirse Ronan, Atonement
Am I jumping on the bandwagon too early? Maybe, but I think you can make a real good case of her. Supporting acting categories have been known as lifetime achievement categories and this could be another example (Alan Arkin last year). Blanchett won in 2004. Ryan is a newcomer. Ronan is too young. Swinton is good, but not great. Then, there is Dee. 83 years old. An industry veteran. Her performance might have been short, but who cares? Unless, I REALLY begin to hear otherwise, I like her to win this Oscar.

Best Original Screenplay
1. Juno
2. Michael Clayton
3. Ratatouille
4. The Savages
5. Lars and the Real Girl
This will be Juno’s consolation prize. It will give people who loved this movie a chance to reward it. I don’t have a problem with that at all. It’s a great script. As are the other nominees, but this prize belongs to Diablo Cody.

Best Adapted Screenplay
1. No Country for Old Men
2. There Will Be Blood
3. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
4. Atonement
5. Away from Her
I’d love to see something other than No Country win this category. I just don’t think it will happen. If No Country wins the WGA, then this category should easily go to them. I’ve had the pleasure to watch all these films and honestly I can say I enjoyed every one of them. This is an extremely strong group of scripts.

For all 24 categories, you can click HERE.

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