Early Tuesday morning, the 2019 Academy Awards nominees were announced for the Feb. 24 ceremony. Despite the awards show being plagued with controversy and viewership dropping every year for the last four years, the Oscars are still relevant to watch.
Below are predictions for this year’s nominees for top picture and performances.
Best Supporting Actor– Mahershala Ali (“Green Book”), Adam Driver (“BlacKkKlansman”), Sam Elliot (“A Star is Born”), Richard E. Grant (“Can You Ever Forgive Me?”), Sam Rockwell (“VICE”).
This award is Ali’s to lose. The two biggest competitors are Grant and Elliott, but it’d be shocking to see this taken away from Ali, who won the same award for “Moonlight” in 2017. The two biggest snubs were Timothée Chalamet (“Beautiful Boy”) and Bryan Tyree Henry (“If Beale Street Could Talk”). Their respective films didn’t have enough buzz to push them to a nomination.
Best Supporting Actress– Amy Adams (“VICE”), Mariana de Tavira (“Roma”), Regina King (“If Beale Street Could Talk”), Emma Stone (“The Favourite”), Rachel Weisz (“The Favourite”).
Tavira earning a nomination is a great sign for “Roma” to win Best Picture. The actresses in “Roma” have been shut out from other major award ceremonies, so this shows the Academy places plenty of focus on the Netflix film despite it never reaching theaters. King seemed destined to win after the Golden Globes, but Adams has a chance after King was weirdly snubbed from the Screen Actors Guild awards.
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Best Director– Alfonso Cuarón (“Roma”), Yorgos Lanthimos (“The Favourite”), Spike Lee (“BlacKkKlansman”), Adam McKay (“Vice”), Pawel Pawlikowski (“Cold War”).
Bradley Cooper went from being a lock to win the award back in November to not even earning a nomination. Pawlikowski scoring the nomination instead was the most shocking moment of the morning. While expected, it’s still disappointing that Ryan Coogler still does not have an Oscar nomination. Lee finally gets his directing nomination, but will likely get his win in the Adapted Screenplay category.
Cuarón is the overwhelming favorite to win due to his winning streak so far this season. As is typical, no female directors were nominated despite impressive movies such as “Can You Ever Forgive Me?,” “Leave No Trace” and “You Were Never Really Here” from these individuals.
Best Actor– Christian Bale (“VICE”), Bradley Cooper (“A Star is Born”), Willem Dafoe (“At Eternity’s Gate”), Rami Malek (“Bohemian Rhapsody”), Viggo Mortensen (“Green Book”).
The work that Bale put in to play Dick Cheney, along with his stellar reputation amongst other actors, makes him the current favorite to win his second Oscar. “Bohemian Rhapsody” momentum seems never-ending despite the frightening controversy surrounding its director, so Malek is still in play. Poor Ethan Hawke, who put together the best performance of his career in “First Reformed,” is still searching for his first Oscar.
Best Actress– Yalitza Aparicio (“Roma”), Glenn Close (“The Wife”), Olivia Colman (“The Favourite”), Lady Gaga (“A Star is Born”), Melissa McCarthy (“Can You Ever Forgive Me?”).
This is the most stacked category of the award show. The award is a three-person race between Gaga, Close and Colman. Colman has won all the comedic performances while Gaga and Close have been neck-and-neck in drama (they tied for the award in the Critics’ Choice Awards). This is Close’s seventh nomination without a single win, and that storyline and her Golden Globes speech (yes, that matters) will probably push her to victory.
Best Picture – “Black Panther,” “BlacKkKlansman,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “The Favourite,” “Green Book,” “Roma,” “A Star is Born,” “VICE.”
Recently, there have been many controversies surrounding “Green Book” including the film’s real-life inaccuracies and a problematic tweet from its main writer. Despite that, it has cleaned up so far during award season, including an important win at the Producers Guild Awards last week. But director Peter Farrelly being left off of Best Director is a sign of the momentum slowing down. “Roma” — with its ten nominations— has become the new favorite, and it’ll be interesting to see how much Netflix pushes to have its first own Academy Award-winning movie.
“If Beale Street Could Talk” — a beautifully crafted movie directed by Barry Jenkins — missing a nomination is the biggest disappointment. It is great to see “Black Panther” receive its much-deserved nomination, even if it has no chance of winning. “Bohemian Rhapsody” won’t win either, but that’s because it’s just not a very good movie (Queen songs can be good and the movie can be bad at the same time). “VICE” is probably too polarizing to get enough votes, and “A Star Is Born” lost all of its momentum. “BlackkKlansman” and “The Favorite” are the wildcards, but it’s shaping up to be a “Green Book” and “Roma” showdown for the ultimate award.