92nd Academy Award Predictions

Doing it a little differently this year: going to do a “Will Win/Should Win” list. Whatever I have listed as “Will Win” means that’s what I think will win the award (and my pick for my various Oscars pools.). “Should Win” is my personal choice and what I’d have voted for if I was a member of the Academy. I’ll update with the actual winners after the show (★indicates correct prediction).

Best Picture
Will Win: 1917
Should Win: 
Actual Winner: Parasite

1917 is the safe bet: it’s a war movie, gorgeously shot, and has already won plenty of the other major awards this season. Parasite is the one that should win. Easily my favorite movie of last year, and the one that left the biggest impression. I’ve been describing it as a South Korean Coen Brothers’ movie: it’s a perfect blend of heartfelt drama, intense violence, and dark comedy. Though it’s ‘haves vs. have-nots’ theme transcends any cultural or language barriers, I don’t think the Academy is ready to award Best Picture to a non-English film.

Best Director
Will Win: Sam Mendes, 1917
Should Win: Bong Joon-ho, Parasite
Actual Winner: Bong Joon-ho, Parasite

Same rationale as above. Also, I can’t help but think the Academy voters category take into account the nominee’s full filmography (not just their nominated film) more so than any other category. With that, Mendes is the safe bet.

Best Actress
Will Win: Renée Zellweger, Judy
Should Win: Renée Zellweger, Judy
Actual Winner: Renée Zellweger, Judy

Honestly, I haven’t seen Judy yet. But from the trailers I’ve seen and the articles I’ve read, this should be a shoo-in.

Best Actor
Will Win: Joaquin Phoenix, Joker
Should Win: Adam Driver, Marriage Story
Actual Winner: Joaquin Phoenix, Joker

I liked Joker, I really did. But it’s gotten way too much attention for no good reason. It’s not as controversial as some want you to think: it is an R-rated crime drama after all. Adults can handle moral ambiguity and glorified violence. And it’s not a particularly great take on the character of the Joker, either. It’s just the same angry white guy revenge fantasy we’ve seen in The King of Comedy, Falling DownFight Club, etc.–just dressed up as a clown. No, the real best actor this year was Adam Driver. Between The Rise of SkywalkerThe Report, and Marriage Story, Driver deserves at least an Oscar and a half. The supporting cast might have some of the more memorable moments, but it’s Driver’s performance alone that kept me from tuning out of what would otherwise have been a pretty boring movie.

Best Supporting Actress
Will Win: Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Should Win: Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Actual Winner: Laura Dern, Marriage Story

I can’t say anything that hasn’t already been said. Dern steals every scene she’s in. She’s cleaned up at all the other awards, and deservedly so.

Best Supporting Actor
Will Win: 
Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Should Win: Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Actual Winner: Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Another one that should be a shoo-in, not necessarily because of Pitt’s performance, but because of the lack of any real competition. Hanks as Fred Rogers is almost so on-the-nose it’s uncomfortable, Pesci and Pacino from The Irishman cancel each other out, and no one actually watched The Two PopesOnce Upon a Time in Hollywood was fun, and Pitt was the center of that fun. He deserves it.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Will Win: Jojo Rabbit
Should Win: Jojo Rabbit
Actual Winner: Jojo Rabbit

Best Original Screenplay
Will Win:
Should Win: Knives Out
Actual Winner: Parasite

Rian Johnson deserves a gold statue just for Benoit Blanc’s donut hole rant.

Best Cinematography
Will Win: 1917
Should Win: 
Actual Winner: 1917

Roger Deakins is brilliant, and 1917 might be his most ambitious work to date.

Best Costume Design
Will Win: Little Women
Should Win: 
Little Women
Actual Winner: Little Women

Best Film Editing
Will Win: Parasite
Should Win:
Ford v Ferrari
Actual Winner: Ford v Ferrari

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Will Win: Bombshell
Should Win:
Actual Winner: Bombshell

Best Production Design
Will Win: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Should Win: 
Actual Winner: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

The house in Parasite is as much a main character as any of the humans, and the set designers deserve that recognition. However, Hollywood loves movies that pay respect to the good ol’ days, so Once Upon a Time wins it.

Best Score
Will Win: Joker
Should Win: 
Actual Winner: Joker

Best Song
Will Win: “I’m Gonna Love Me Again,” Rocketman
Should Win: 
I’m Gonna Love Me Again,”Rocketman
Actual Winner: “I’m Gonna Love Me Again,” Rocketman

Best Sound Editing
Will Win: 1917
Should Win: 
Actual Winner: Ford v Ferrari

With a lack of any real ambitious science fiction in this category, the war movie has the leg up.

Best Sound Mixing
Will Win: 1917
Should Win: 
Actual Winner: 1917

Seems like in the last 10 years, Mixing only goes to a music movie or the winner of Editing. With no musicals nominated, 1917 wins by default.

Best Visual Effects
Will Win: 1917
Should Win:
The Lion King
Actual Winner: 1917

1917 is a worthy choice, no doubt. I appreciate it’s practical effects and the simulated one-shot gimmick. But Lion King is gorgeous. Just look how many people were fooled into thinking it was legitimate live-action footage.

Best Animated Feature
Will Win: Toy Story 4
Should Win:
Toy Story 4
Actual Winner: Toy Story 4

It’s the only one I saw.

Best Documentary Feature
Will Win: American Factory
Should Win:
American Factory
Actual Winner: American Factory

Ditto. It’s the only one I saw. Plus I’m sure the Academy would love to give the Obamas an Oscar.

Best International Film
Will Win: Parasite
Should Win:
Actual Winner: Parasite

When it’s already nominated for Best Picture overall, this one is kind of a gimme.

Best Animated Short
Will Win: Hair Love
Should Win:
Hair Love
Actual Winner: Hair Love

Seems to be between Hair Love and Kitbull. The latter was sweet, but man, Hair Love hits you in all the feels.

Best Documentary Short
Will Win: Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)
Should Win:
Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)
Actual Winner: Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)

Only saw the trailer, but when the trailer alone gets you all choked up, you know you’ve got a winner.

Best Live Action Short
Will Win: The Neighbors’ Window
Should Win:
The Neighbors’ Window
Actual Winner: The Neighbors’ Window

Honestly, this was the first one that popped up after I Google’d “Best Live Action Short.” Good enough for me.

20/24 (83.3%)

Previous Results:
2019: 16/24 (66.7%)
2018: 22/24 (91.7%)
2017: 16/24 (66.7%)
2016: 15/24 (62.5%)
2015: 17/24 (70.8%)
2014: 18/24 (75.0%)
2013: (no predictions)
2012: 19/24 (79.2%)
2011: 11/24 (45.8%)


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