The ONLY Oscar Blogger, who lives in walking distance to the Kodak Theater!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

3rd Annual Oscar Contest Results

My apologies for the delay. We had 157 people enter the 3rd Annual Oscar Contest. I had hoped to get 100 people and we did much better than that. It took me longer than anticipated to add up the ballots. 

I can happily say that no one had 23 picks, so there will be no $100 Fandango Bucks given (Maybe next year?). I also want to thank Fletch from Blog Cabins and LAMB for helping make this contest a great success.

As promised, we are giving prizes to the top two finishers. Those prize details will be emailed to the winners, but they include an Oscar poster and iTunes gift card for the winner. Second place is taking home a AMC gift card and a t-shirt. Both scored 19 picks, so congratulations to them. The winner was decided on a category tiebreaker. If you have any questions, then click HERE.



Here's some interesting quick facts:
87/157 picked The Hurt Locker for Best Picture
27/157 picked Precious for Best Adapted Screenplay
28/157 picked The Hurt Locker for Best Sound Editing
29/157 picked The Secret in Their Eyes for Best Foreign Language Film
16/157 picked Music by Prudence for Best Documentary - Short Subject
11/157 picked Logorama for Best Animated Short

Husband/Wife, Boyfriend/Girlfriend (we had no boyfriend/boyfriend or girlfriend/girlfriend battles this year) Results:
Dylan Fields "Fletch" (16) beats Mrs. Fletch (14)
Allison Keeler (13) edges out Kyle Dickinson (12)
Trisha Tamashiro (15) handily beats Julian Gray (12)
Dres Fischer-Centeno (16, he copied my ballot, so don't feel bad Stacia) wins in a landslide over Stacia Stolzenberg (10)
Mike Tufo (9) edges out Lori Cersosimo (7)
Melissa Cersosimo (9) takes out Lou Cersosimo (4) - I obviously didn't get my Oscar predicting skills from my parents.

As for the scores, here are all people with score 17 and higher...
19 Picks
1. Gordon Purcell
2. Chelsea

18 Picks
Brian Bedard
Paul Jarnagin
Chris Miller
Nick Bragg
Kelly Conlin
Megan
Kirby Holt
Will Byrnes
Stephanie Perkins

17 Picks
Chris Pritzlaff
Fei Meng
Lisa
Rick Doctrow
Davey Morrison
Buddy Haardt
Mom Fields
Edwin Drood
Elizabeth Strong
Xavi Morcillo
Matthew Russo
Michael Colin
Patricia Mistric
Probek
Roy Geiger
David Humphrey
Paul Kim

If you think there may have been a mistake, I will happily look over your ballot again. I did do everything by hand, but I'm very confident that the top scores are accurate. Please contact me within the next three days if you think there is a problem. After that, all scores are final.



Thanks everyone for participating. I'll hopefully see everyone for the 4th Annual Oscar Contest!

Corey Haim Welcomed Me to Hollywood

Click HERE to read an old post I did on my encounter with Corey Haim back in 2008.

I got to write something small about Corey Haim and his death at the age of 38. Was he the biggest child star? No. He didn't even make that many classic films. I think more of his appeal was the "Two Corey's" gimmick. Still, how can someone not like The Lost Boys?

As written in that previous post, I met Corey Haim randomly when I was working in the film industry only a few weeks after I started a job at a management company. A casting director rented office space from us and she was casting Crank 2. Corey had a small role in it and stopped by to read some lines. The reason this encounter is so memorable is the fact that as he was heading back to the casting director's office, he shook my hand, and said, "Welcome to Hollywood." That became somewhat of a running joke in the office that Corey Haim welcomed me to Hollywood.

During my brief conversation with him, he was a rather eccentric guy. You could tell he had been through a lot. He looked washed up, but his personality was great. He talked to me while I was covering the reception desk. He even took off his shirt and showed me his bat tattoo on his shoulder, which he got after doing The Lost Boys. He also talked about the excitement over the new film, which was a direct to video called The Lost Tribe. He had a cameo at the end of that film and told me there were plans to make another. I'm unsure if that was ever filmed.

Corey is not the only former child actor I've met in Hollywood. I also got extremely drunk with the kid from Free Willy (Jason James Richter) one night at a bar in Hollywood. Both guys were nice in their own ways, but you can see that being a child actor put a toll on them. So many of them struggle with substance abuse and have tough careers as an adult. That's what makes it even more sad when you hear news like this. Being a child actor is not as easy as it looks.

I guess the point of this whole thing is how you just never know. I'm just sad about the news. It's just odd to think that almost two years after that encounter, he's gone and I'm out of the industry (in a sense). Makes me kind of realize how things can change so sudden and you can't take anything for granted. His death just triggered something in me and I really need to make a better effort to get back into Hollywood. I'm too out of the loop right now. I need to write more and get another movie off the ground. It will always be my number one passion and I sometimes I do really miss it.

So thanks Corey for the welcome, the hospitality, and the reminder.

Nomahhhhh

Notice the five H's? That's a little tribute to Nomar Garciaparra, who retired today as a member of the Boston Red Sox. I have to write something about Nomar for the simple reason that he was one of a kind. It's hard to really understand how big he was unless you were in Boston especially during his golden age of 1997-2000. He unanimous won Rookie of the Year. He won two batting titles. He had a 30 game hit streak. He almost won the MVP in 1998 (finished second). The guy was heading to the hall of fame. Maybe even more important at the time, the guy was a legend and the biggest athlete in Boston. He made Sox fans forget about Mo Vaughn and Roger Clemens leaving. He quickly became a fan favorite with his unorthodox throwing style, unusual name, and unique batting approach. Remember that routine? His name was perfect for Boston. Nomah was the second coming of Ted Williams. Even Ted Williams himself loved him.

Garciaparra infamously rejected a 4 year, 60 million deal, which in hindsight was probably the dumbest thing he ever did. The days of everyone loving Nomar were ending. Sox fans were getting impatient too. Remember this is before the World Series win when life was different.

I have to say that him leaving Boston in 2004 really was a sad day for me. I thought he was a Sox player for life. He was a rare breed of a guy that came up from the minors and developed into a star. Everything fell apart though after 2001 with injuries and bad relationships with the media.

He was dealt on July 31, 2004 to the Chicago Cubs and was never the same player. Injuries continued to plague him and it was kind of sad. I always talk to my friend about how he had such a sad career in a sense. It started with so much hope and promise, but it ended the exact opposite. He watched his former team win the World Series months after he was traded. His play declined so much that he ended up switching positions to first base and eventually third. He was playing for one and two year deals since that was the best he could do. The hall of fame talk was now a joke. His career was somewhat of a joke as well considering how great he was in his early years.

When he came back to Boston in 2009, wounds had healed and it was pretty special to see him get a standing ovation. It was somewhat fitting, but you have to wonder what could have been? What if he never got hurt? What if he could have handled Boston and stayed there for his whole career? Would have the Sox ever won the World Series with him on the roster? I don't know, but part of me wishes we could have found out.

Nomah was special and I'm glad that I got to see him play at Fenway. Thanks for the memories...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Oscar Contest Results Coming Very Soon

I've counted all 157 ballots and I'm fairly confident we have a winner. We actually had two people who scored 19, but the tie was broken with the category tiebreaker. I'm going to withhold the names until I talk to Fletch over at Blog Cabins and LAMB and we decide the prize distribution. I hope to have that figured out by tomorrow night at the latest. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Thoughts on the Oscars

Here we are a day after the 82nd Annual Academy Awards. Thinking about the show as a whole, I still think it was average. Felt way too long and I drank a little over a bottle of wine. I can only imagine how it felt to someone sober. Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin were okay. They had a few good laughs, but they were definitely no Hugh Jackman. In general, the whole show was almost as good as last's year, but never felt like it got to that level.

The Neil Patrick Harris song and dance was a failure in my opinion. Watching the Best Acting categories was too drawn out. Last year with the five nominees was a brilliant idea. This year with a nominee's friend introducing them just lacked the same punch. I feel like Adam Shankman and Bill Mechanic had good intentions, but it just didn't deliver as well as hoped.

Still, I had a fun time last night. Had roughly ten people over and we drank some wine and ate some popcorn. Predictions wise I didn't do as well as I had hoped. I only got 16/24, which for me is considered bad. I still haven't finished correcting all the Oscar contest ballots, but as of right now there's a four way tie with 18 picks a piece. It definitely looks like my 22 picks is safe and the Fandango Bucks will not be given. Maybe next year?

Here are a few thoughts on the actual award...

Avatar losing both sound categories reminds me of when Transformers lost both sound categories to The Bourne Ultimatum. Everyone had Transformers and it lost both. I didn't think that would happen to Avatar simply because it was a much better film. Yet, the Academy chose to go more realistic and that was a huge surprise to me. Once it lost both, I knew the chances of it winning Picture were pretty much done. Before the show, it seemed like a conservative strategy to go Avatar on both sound categories just to ensure at least one win. It backfired completely.

Then, oddly enough Avatar comes back and wins cinematography. The Academy didn't make a lot of sense last night. If anything, I figured The Hurt Locker would edge Avatar in Cinematography and get swept in the sound categories. It happened the other way and I have no idea why. Maybe, all three categories were really close and they just fell that way.

The short categories just screwed everyone last night. Everyone that covers the awards knows those categories can be toss ups, but even the films that won no one talked about. For example, in Best Doc - Short Subject it was either going to be Last Truck or China. It was Music for Prudence. I heard a little about this film, but it definitely seemed like it was firmly the third choice. I had a feeling Nick Park may lose Best Short - Animated, but I had to stick with him. I mean the guy has a great track record with the Academy. The New Tenants winning Best Short - Live Action was also a surprise as the two most talked about films were The Door and Kavi. This is the first year where I have completely been shut out of the shorts and that definitely hurt my score.

The biggest surprise of the night though had to be Precious winning Best Adapted Screenplay. Everyone had Up in the Air winning. I mean it was winning all the screenplay awards and I was shocked it lost. At least some people said The Hurt Locker could win the sound categories. Few people thought Precious had a chance to win this. After that win, I thought there was an outside chance that Gabourey Sidibe could upset in Best Actress. It didn't happen, but it was still a good night for Precious.

As much as people didn't want Sandra Bullock to win Best Actress I have to say she gave one of the best speeches of the night. She also pulled off the rare feat of winning an Oscar and Razzie in the same year.

The Hurt Locker winning Best Picture just seemed rushed. Tom Hanks tweeted after that it was planned that way, but I find that hard to believe. No one in my apartment even knew they announced the winner. It happened so fast. I still think it was the wrong choice, but it wasn't a horrible one. It is a damn good film and I think it's the best film about Iraq so far. I just felt like Avatar was a more important film and should have been recognized.

I'm sure I'll have more thoughts later. I just wanted to post something before I head to class. Hopefully the Oscar contest results will be up by tomorrow night.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Live Blogging: The Oscars!


Welcome ladies and gentlemen to the 3rd Annual Oscar live blog! Yes, we are here again. E! is now live and I'm going live with them. Tonight is a big night. It's where heroes become legends. It's when dreams become realities. It's always a special day for movie lovers.

Unlike last year, I'm not right outside the Kodak. I'm rather a little less than 10 miles from the Kodak, but don't expect me to go down there. I'm be here in Culver City, but I promise to do a good job until I drink so much wine that I don't know what is going on anymore. That may be accelerate depending how quickly my ballot falls apart.

Like last year, I'm wearing my official Academy Awards t-shirt that I got last year. I'm also sitting in the same chair as last year. I'm hoping these are lucky charms. Let's see if it works.

Here we go...

*KEEP REFRESHING FOR LATEST UPDATES*


9:04 p.m. I got 16/24. Very disappointing. What can you do? Some years you do really well. Others you don't. That's the Oscars. What the hell can you do? There's always next year. At least I think my 22 wins is safe and no Fandango bucks will be given.

9:01 p.m. This is the second straight year when a very low budget film has won Best Picture. It's inspiring, but I still feel like Avatar was the more important picture to award. Oh well...

9:00 p.m. The Hurt Locker wins Best Picture. Way too quick and really awkward. No one knew they were even presenting Best Picture at my place. Not sure how I feel about that, but whatever.

8:56 p.m. Kathryn Bigelow wins it. Not a huge surprise, but still a big deal. Congrats to her.

8:53 p.m. Best Director is next. This should be a lock.

8:49 p.m. The Blind Side wins it for Sandra Bullock. My apartment is going crazy.

8:46 p.m. This is a long ass show. Damn.

8:41 p.m. Best Actress is coming up. This should be interesting. Will it be Bullock?

8:33 p.m. I liked how they had five friends introduce the nominees, then had the previous Actress winner announce the winner. Jeff Bridges wins it.

8:25 p.m. Best Actor next. This should be Bridges.

8:18 p.m. I just punched my friend in my head. Secret In Their Eyes has won! Hell yes!

8:15p.m. Foreign Language Film is next. This is huge.

8:09 p.m. The Cove wins Best Doc and The Hurt Locker wins Best Editing. Add two more wins for me regardless of how bad I'm doing tonight.

7:55 p.m. Avatar wins it. This was expected. Yay again. I feel like I'm doing much better than I am.

7:54 p.m. Up wins Best Score. Yay!

7:51 p.m. My sister just reminded me that they used a Beatles song. Props to Lori.

7:44 p.m. Honestly don't care how bad these Oscars are. My friends are here and I'm having fun.

7:39 p.m. In Memorian...

7:38 p.m. Avatar wins Best Cinematography. This Oscars makes no sense to me.

7:34 p.m. What a messed up Oscars. Nothing makes sense this year. Oh well...

7:28 p.m. Hurt Locker sweeps sound categories. Literally I just have to say, "Wow." Honestly, that's bullshit.

7:24 p.m. Anna Kendrick is part of Best Sound Editing. I think.

7:20 p.m. Julian is molesting me. Horror movie montage is going on. Not too bad.

7:11 p.m. Costume goes to Young Victoria. I'm redeeming myself.

7:09 p.m. Avatar wins it. I'll take it.

7:06 p.m. Art direction is coming up. This should be Avatar.

7:00 p.m. Mo'Nique wins it. Well deserved. Precious is doing much better than I anticipated.

6:58 p.m. Come on Anna Kendrick!

6:52 p.m. Star Trek wins Makeup. Yay! Precious wins with a huge upset in Adapted Screenplay. Literally a huge upset. Wow. I'm shocked.

6:38 p.m. Wow, this is really weird. Lots of upsets. My ballot is completely fucked.

6:35 p.m. Well, at least my record looks safe. Haha.

6:34 p.m. Wow I suck right now. Logorama wins.

6:31p.m. I take that back. Best animated short.

6:29 p.m. Docs categories next. Oh no!

6:19 p.m. There goes the perfect ballot. Fuck. Haha.

6:17 p.m. Hurt Locker wins. This could set the tone for the rest of the night. Not liking Avatar's chances anymore.

6:14 p.m. Hurt Locker or Inglourious Basterds? This is huge.

6:13 p.m. Looks like screenwriting is next. Adapted or original?

6:09 p.m. We're betting the next person to lose has to drink the olive juice. Gross!

6:07 p.m. Kyle is trying to caress me. We have many bottles of wine and many of us are not sober. It's like a free for all.

6:05 p.m. Weary Kind wins it. 3/3 folks. It feels good.

6:02 p.m. Original song up next. Early for Best Original Song. I guess they are not performing the songs tonight.

5:59 p.m. Up wins it. 2/2 so far. Two easy, predictable categories, but it's okay. It has eased my anxiety.

5:58 p.m. Animated feature up next.

5:54 p.m. Almost done with my first bottle of wine. This is not going to be good. At this point, who cares?

5:51 p.m. The perfect ballot stay intact. Haha.

5:50 p.m. Christoph Waltz wins! Very deserving and expected. He was so good in this film. No puns, but that's okay.

5:45 p.m. Best Supporting Actor opens the show.

5:40 p.m. I'm liking this so far. Props to Shankman and Mechanic.

5:38 p.m. The two host plan is going well so far. I mean Alec and Steve work well off each other. Both are very funny. Martin obviously has done this before and it's showing. Alec is just a funny guy as well.

5:36 p.m. Set design very nice. Very similar to last year. I like it. It has a combo of retro, but also very modern. Does that make any sense? Regardless I like it.

5:35 p.m. Here comes Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin. I hope this work out well. I'm a bit nervous.

5:33 p.m. Neil Patrick Harris is wearing a very shiny suit. I feel like this is too much of a broadway show already.

5:32 p.m. Digging the setup. Like how they introduced the best acting nominees.

5:31 p.m. Here we go.

5:27 p.m. 157 Oscar contest ballots. Thank you everyone. This should be very interesting. I think my record could be in trouble. This is it. I'm fucking nervous.

5:17 p.m. Julian has just arrived and proceeded to take off his pants.

5:15 p.m. T minus 15 minutes to the Oscars.

5:07 p.m. Watching the Oscars with my friends make this a much more interesting Oscars. Shout outs to Brian, Dres, and Kyle. Also, shout outs in advance to Julian and Nolan whenever the hell they show up.

5:05 p.m. I just don't dig the ABC coverage. They seem to try too hard.

5:02 p.m. Anna Kendrick is on ABC now. I'm in love and I'm not afraid to admit it.

5:00 p.m. Seacrest is almost done. Coverage this year was okay. Then again, every year feels okay. Switching to ABC.

4:52 p.m. I have to say Sandra Bullock looks like she is dressed like a winner. This could very well be her night.

4:49 p.m. I think I'm just going to stick to E! until the show. I just have a man crush on Seacrest.

4:35 p.m. Less than 30 minutes away from ABC's coverage. I'm getting a little nervous. Not going to lie.

4:31 p.m. Clooney has some long hair today. That's interesting.

4:29 p.m. I've drank less wine this year than last. That's a good sign.

4:15 p.m. I'm not liking Sarah Jessica Parker right now. Her dress is a fail in my opinion.

4:14 p.m. Wow Miley Cyrus's Mom is hot. My friend would fuck the shit out of her.

4:05 p.m. Time is just flying. This red carpet show is going okay.

3:58 p.m. Carey Mulligan and Sandra Bullock both looking fine right now. Then again, I think everyone looks hot on the red carpet.

3:49 p.m. I've finally caught up with the Oscar contest entries. We got over 150 entries. My fingers hurt.

3:14 p.m. Anna Kendrick has made an appearance on the red carpet. My day is now complete.

3:04 p.m. Seacrest is live on E! and Sam Worthington is his first guest. Another IE connection, how ironic.

2:50 p.m. Jessica Lowndes is on E!. That is one of my old boss's clients. It's amazing how big she has gotten in the last couple years. She's not a household name, but she's making a name for herself on 90210.

2:45 p.m. E! looks like they are going live on the red carpet in 15 minutes.

2:36 p.m. Now we have a bra segment. Wow. The Oscar contest entries are just coming in like rapid fire. We are going to pass 150, which is amazing. I think my record could fall today. I really didn't want to give away those fandango bucks either. Haha.

12:59 p.m. Now E! is doing a swimsuit segment. Otherwise, the coverage for E! has been so-so. Then again, there's a lot of time to burn until Seacrest shows up.

12:03 p.m. Hell yes. E! is talking about boobs right now. I love this segment.

11:13 a.m. I'm going to work on putting these Oscar ballots in my excel sheet. If anything interesting happens on E! I'll post. Otherwise, I may be gone for a little.

11:07 a.m. E! has just gone live. Let's hope the coverage this year doesn't suck.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Ode to the Big Stars 3


I've posted this the last two years the night before the Oscars. It has become a tradition on this blog. I feel like it sums up the feeling the night before the Oscars. Everyone is tense, sleep deprived, and possibly coked out.

So, here is my final post before the live blog tomorrow. All these months of hard work lead to this: The 82nd Annual Academy Awards!

I'll see you tomorrow at the Oscars...

2009 Top Ten List Update

I'm still going to post this, but I have a feeling it will be next weekend. I still want to see a couple films, so give me a couple more days. My apologies in advance.

Live Blog Tomorrow Update

E! goes live at 11:00 a.m. PST. I will probably also go live around the same time. I'll be watching the show with some friends this year. Not sure how the live blog will go, but only time tell.

Final Oscar Predictions

Best Picture
Who Will Win: Avatar
Who Should Win: Avatar
Who I Want to Win: Avatar
Thoughts: Between ten nominees and the preferential ballot, this has turned into a very interesting roller coaster this season. Come Sunday I honestly believe it will come down to only two films: Avatar and The Hurt Locker. It's nothing against Basterds, Up in the Air, Precious, etc., but these are the two films everyone is talking about. Harvey Weinstein says he is going to get Basterds over the top. He also said that about The Reader last year. He did it once with Shakespeare in Love, but I just don't see him doing it again this year. I love Quentin's film, but I just don't see it happening.

The Hurt Locker has received great support from the guilds, but the guilds aren't always right. If there is one thing I've learned about the Academy, it's they mostly don't give a damn about what else has happened. Ask Brokeback Mountain and they will tell you it sucks. For some reason, I don't see them embracing Hurt Locker at the end of the day for the top prize. It may very well receive the most 1st place votes, but I still think Avatar is in better position to capitalize on 2nd place votes.

I don't know why, but I just have a feeling the word "Avatar" is going to be said when they open the last envelope on Sunday night. I think the preferential ballot helps this film a lot. I think the $700 million helps a lot. I think the older members of the Academy are going to think it is an amazing film. Every so often, the Academy has an opportunity to award a film that is groundbreaking. Whether the film does it visually or socially, the Academy should try to embrace those rare opportunities. They failed four years ago with Brokeback Mountain. Will they fail again with Avatar? The story is not original, but it is an experience and a monumental achievement in filmmaking. It is breathtaking especially if you watch it in IMAX 3D. So what if Avatar doesn't have any acting nominations? Or a screenplay nod? Or struggled at the guilds? No one thought it would break the box office record. It did. If I'm going down on Sunday night, I'm going down with this film. Avatar for the win.

Best Director
Who Will Win: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
Who Should Win: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
Who I Want to Win: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
Thoughts: It's amazing that a woman has never won a Best Directing Oscar. This should be the first. It is deserving too. This film is intense and suspenseful. It is gritty and real. Bigelow also has the DGA, so I feel like this is a safe pick.

Best Actor
Who Will Win: Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
Who Should Win: Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
Who I Want to Win: Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
Thoughts: First Morgan Freeman was the frontrunner over the summer. Then, it was George Clooney in the fall. Now, Jeff Bridges has been on a roll. He has been around for years and is from a great Hollywood family. Everyone is pulling for him and he will get rewarded for a great role in a film more people need to see. This is lock.

Best Actress
Who Will Win: Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side
Who Should Win: Gabourey Sidibe, Precious
Who I Want to Win: Carey Mulligan, An Education
Thoughts: I could easily see this being one of the shockers on Oscar night. Bullock has done well this season, but is the Academy going to give it to her? This just reminds me of 2006 with Eddie Murphy. Sidibe gave an amazing performance in Precious, but I just don't see her pulling votes from Sandra or Meryl. That was just an intense role. Still, I have to pull for my girl, Carey Mulligan who I fell in love with this year.

Best Supporting Actor
Who Will Win: Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds
Who Should Win: Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds
Who I Want to Win: Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds
Thoughts: No one is beating Waltz. He was great in this film and role. Hopefully he prepared a good speech. Haha.

Best Supporting Actress
Who Will Win: Mo'Nique, Precious
Who Should Win: Mo'Nique, Precious
Who I Want to Win: Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
Thoughts: Like the other supporting race, this one is all over. Mo'Nique has won everything and she should win the Oscar. I'm just glad that Anna Kendrick got some love this year. I knew she was going places as soon as I saw Rocket Science a few years ago. Her future is definitely bright.

Best Original Screenplay
Who Will Win: Inglourious Basterds
Who Should Win: Inglourious Basterds<
Who I Want to Win: Inglourious Basterds<
Thoughts: This is arguably Tarantino's best script. I just love the dialogue in it. He's an incredible writer. He will probably lose Best Picture, but I just feel like he can beat Mark Boal here. Let us also not forget that while Boal won the WGA, he didn't have to face Quentin. Why? He's not in the guild.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Who Will Win: Up in the Air
Who Should Win: Up in the Air
Who I Want to Win: Up in the Air
Thoughts: Like Basterds, I see this film winning something. This feels like the best shot for Jason Reitman.

Best Animated Feature
Who Will Win: Up
Who Should Win: Up
Who I Want to Win: Up
Thoughts: As much as I like Fantastic Mr. Fox, I can't deny how great Up is. I personally liked this better than WALL-E. Although, I always follow that with WALL-E is a better film. Pixar should have this one in the bag yet again.

Best Art Direction
Who Will Win: Avatar
Who Should Win: Avatar
Who I Want to Win: Avatar
Thoughts: This is one category Avatar should easily win. The world they create is unbelievable and I don't know how you don't award it.

Best Cinematography
Who Will Win: Avatar
Who Should Win: The White Ribbon
Who I Want to Win: The White Ribbon
Thoughts: This is a tough category to predict. I haven't even seen The White Ribbon, but I have seen a few clips. It's beautiful and it's black and white. It won the ASC, but I don't think enough members have seen it. The Hurt Locker and Avatar seem to be neck and neck. I just look at The Hurt Locker and think it's too gritty. Kind of reminds me of Children of Men, which lost to a more conventional and fantasy film, Pan's Labyrinth. I think this could very well happen this year and that should open the door for Avatar.

Best Costume Design
Who Will Win: The Young Victoria
Who Should Win: The Young Victoria
Who I Want to Win: The Young Victoria
Thoughts: It's all about period films in this category. Victoria won the CDG and seems to be the popular choice here.

Best Documentary - Feature
Who Will Win: The Cove
Who Should Win: N/A
Who I Want to Win: No Preference
Thoughts: The Cove has been the popular choice here for a while. Just remember only a small portion of the Academy votes on this, which explains upsets in this category. Though it seems like it should still pull through. I don't see a solid alternative.

Best Documentary - Short
Who Will Win: The Last Truck
Who Should Win: N/A
Who I Want to Win: No Preference
Thoughts: This is my least favorite category. Why? I always get it wrong, so don't pick the same film as me. I think it is between The Last Truck and China's Unnatural Disaster. I am leaning towards Last Truck since I hope it hits home with voters more. I could be completely wrong. I also think there's a chance it could go to Music by Prudence. This category is a crapshoot. Again it's another that requires members attend a special screening to vote.

Best Film Editing
Who Will Win: The Hurt Locker
Who Should Win: The Hurt Locker
Who I Want to Win: The Hurt Locker
Thoughts: The Hurt Locker should have this one wrapped up unless the Academy just goes crazy for Avatar.

Best Foreign Language Film
Who Will Win: The Secret in their Eyes
Who Should Win: N/A
Who I Want to Win: No Preference
Thoughts: I don't see The White Ribbon winning this. I see it either going to A Prophet or The Secret in their Eyes. I'm going with Secret since I heard it went over well within the Academy screening. Again, another category that requires you to attend special screenings to vote. This explains why films such as Amelie and Pan's Labyrinth have lost in the past.

Best Makeup
Who Will Win: Star Trek
Who Should Win: Star Trek
Who I Want to Win: Star Trek
Thoughts: Star Trek should easily win this. The makeup for some of the aliens is always cool and it's more popular than the other two nominees.

Best Original Score
Who Will Win: Up
Who Should Win: Up
Who I Want to Win: Up
Thoughts: The score in Up is really good and it sets the tone for the entire film. It should win.

Best Original Song
Who Will Win: "The Weary Kind", Crazy Heart
Who Should Win: "The Weary Kind", Crazy Heart
Who I Want to Win: "The Weary Kind", Crazy Heart
Thoughts: This song is kinda depressing, but it's damn good. The Disney songs should cancel each other out to give this to Crazy Heart.

Best Short - Animated
Who Will Win: A Matter of Loaf and Death
Who Should Win: N/A
Who I Want to Win: No Preference
Thoughts: This is a Wallace and Gromit film. Nick Park does extremely well at the Oscars, so it has to be the favorite. The only way it loses is if people want to spread the wealth and give it to another filmmaker.

Best Short - Live Action
Who Will Win: The Door
Who Should Win: N/A
Who I Want to Win: No Preference
Thoughts: This is a category I have no idea really, but I've been hearing good things about The Door. The spoiler here could be Kavi.

Best Sound Mixing
Who Will Win: Avatar
Who Should Win: Avatar
Who I Want to Win: Avatar
Thoughts: I'm going with Avatar, but I could see The Hurt Locker winning this. Last year, Slumdog won this category. Avatar just can't be overlooked in any of the tech categories.

Best Sound Editing
Who Will Win: Avatar
Who Should Win: Avatar
Who I Want to Win: Avatar
Thoughts: In regards to the sound categories, this is a much safer bet. I can't see Avatar losing this unless the Academy went Hurt Locker crazy, which is possible. The betting man has to go with Avatar.

Best Visual Effects
Who Will Win: Avatar
Who Should Win: Avatar
Who I Want to Win: Avatar
Thoughts: If Avatar is only going to win one Oscar, then this is it. I would be absolutely shocked if it lost here considering how groundbreaking the visual effects were.

*I do reserve the right to change any of these predictions. If that happens, I will notify you through this blog.