The Oscar telecast is this weekend and it’s without a host for the first time in 30 years.
The last time that happened, Rob Lowe ended up singing with Snow White and none of us have fully recovered to this day. Between the hostless Oscars, the poor handling of their myriad controversies, and the relatively flat slate of films, I’m probably looking forward to this year’s ceremony less than ever before.
But that won’t stop me from making my foolish predictions once again.
Feel free to borrow these predictions for office pools. I have a better-than-average track record, so copy away. Unlike more recent years, this year I’m going to give you predictions for all 24 categories. Why? I have no idea. Maybe it will make the night more fun, like a four-hour Bingo game.
The psychology of predicting stuff is pretty straightforward: we all like to be right and predicting things in advance demonstrates we have some specialized knowledge. We all know that’s baloney, though, especially if you’ve ever done an NCAA bracket where your mom picked better than you based on the uniform colors.
Still, it’s fun to think our knowledge or insights helped us pick well.
For a few of these Oscar categories, I’ll have a runner-up pick, but for most, I just make a definitive prediction. Here goes, starting with the biggie, Best Picture.
This is a really tricky one because most critics believe Roma was the best picture of the year, but it debuted on Netflix (as well as some art house theaters for Oscar consideration), so for the Academy to give it to Roma is an acknowledgment that streaming services are actually legit ways to open a movie. That would be a philosophical sea change for them.
However, Green Book, the presumptive runner-up and crowd pleaser, has been mired with controversy about the stories point of view (white guy talking about racism) and the director (behaving badly on earlier movie sets), so who knows. That one could take all kinds of funny turns.
Wouldn’t it be wild if Black Panther snuck in there and won?
I’ll stick with my gut and say they’ll go with the film most are saying is the best of the year. Here are all the picks for this year’s Oscars:
Best Picture – Roma, but don’t be too surprised by Green Book
Best Actress – Glenn Close
Best Actor – Rami Malek, but could go to Christian Bale
Best Supporting Actress – Regina King
Best Supporting Actor – Mahershala Ali
Best Director – Alfonso Cuaron, though Spike Lee has a serious chance
Best Adapted Screenplay – BlacKkKlansman
Best Original Screenplay – The Favourite
Best Cinematography – Roma
Best Editing – Vice
Best Production Design – Black Panther, but The Favourite could sneak in
Best Costume Design – The Favourite, but Black Panther could take this one
Best Makeup – Vice
Best Score – Black Panther
Best Song – Shallow (A Star is Born)
Best Sound Editing – First Man
Best Sound Mixing – A Star is Born
Best Visual Effects – Avengers: Infinity War
Best Animated Feature – Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse
Best Animated Short – Bao
Best Foreign Language Film – Roma
Best Documentary – Free Solo
Best Documentary Short – Period. End of Sentence (though Black Sheep is a strong contender)
Best Live Action Short – Marguerite
Let’s hope for some good surprises–and a broadcast that is actually good, despite all the trouble of the past year.