2013 was one of the best years for films in a while. While the awards season started a few weeks ago at the Golden Globes, people are most looking forward to the 86th Annual Academy Awards, which airs this Sunday, March 2 on ABC and will be hosted by Ellen Degeneres. Many have begun to make their predictions on which films will take home the prestigious Oscar statue, and below are my predictions for the seven big awards. (For a full list of the nominees, click here.)
Something to keep in mind…pretty much anytime an actor/actress either (a) loses a ton of weight (b) shaves their head, or (c) dresses as the opposite gender, they are pretty much guaranteed an Oscar…cough, cough… Anne Hathaway (Les Misérables), Dustin Hoffman (Tootsie), Tom Hanks (Philadelphia) and many more. This year is no exception…ahem, Dallas Buyers Club.
Dallas Buyers Club
12 Years a Slave
The Wolf of Wall Street
Winner: 12 Years a Slave
Honorable Mention: American Hustle
These twelve films represent the best-of-the-best of cinema this past year. Having seen the above movies, my pick for best picture has to go to 12 Years a Slave, with American Hustle coming in as a close second. While 12 Years a Slave did not experience the box office success of American Hustle, it has been no stranger to award shows this season, picking up best picture at the Golden Globes and the BAFTAs. It is hard not to be moved by this touching, sobering film, and the Academy will hopefully recognize this notion.
Christian Bale – American Hustle
Bruce Dern – Nebraska
Leonardo DiCaprio – The Wolf of Wall Street
Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Years a Slave
Matthew McConaughey – Dallas Buyers Club
Winner: Matthew McConaughey
Honorable Mention: Leonardo DiCaprio
This award, in my opinion, is definitely between DiCaprio and McConaughey. Many people think that while McConaughey delivered a more moving performance, it is about time that Leo picks up a shiny Oscar. That being said, I still believe that McCounaughey will win for his performance in Dallas Buyers Club. His performance was not only physically challenging but it provokes much more emotion from the audience than DiCaprio’s conceited character in The Wolf of Wall Street.
Amy Adams – American Hustle
Cate Blanchett – Blue Jasmine
Sandra Bullock – Gravity
Judi Dench – Philomena
Meryl Streep – August: Osage County
Winner: Cate Blanchett
Honorable Mention: Amy Adams
While these five ladies make this competition fairly unpredictable, Cate Blanchett’s dazzling performance in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, consisting of full-fledged mental breakdowns and panic attacks, will most likely snag her a second Academy Award.
Barkhad Abdi – Captain Phillips
Bradley Cooper – American Hustle
Michael Fassbender – 12 Years a Slave
Jonah Hill – The Wolf of Wall Street
Jared Leto – Dallas Buyers Club
Winner: Jared Leto
Honorable Mention: Bradley Cooper
Leto’s breakout role in Dallas Buyers Club earned him his first Academy Award nomination and his inspiring performance is almost certainly going to earn him his first Oscar. His portrayal of Rayon, a cross-dresser in Dallas Buyers Club, is heart-wrenching and mesmerizing. There really is no question about whether or not he will win.
Sally Hawkins – Blue Jasmine
Jennifer Lawrence – American Hustle
Lupita Nyong’o – 12 Years a Slave
Julia Roberts – August: Osage County
June Squibb – Nebraska
Winner: Lupita Nyong’o
Honorable Mention: Jennifer Lawrence
While this race is neck-and-neck between first-time nominee Nyong’o and previous Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence, Nyong’o delivered a performance in 12 Years a Slave that has already garnered several awards, beating Lawrence on many occasions, leading me to believe that Nyong’o will pick up the Oscar. Either way, these two young actresses are quite deserving of this award, delivering equally stunning performances in two very different films.
David O. Russell – American Hustle
Alfonso Cuarón – Gravity
Alexander Payne – Nebraska
Steve McQueen – 12 Years a Slave
Martin Scorsese – The Wolf of Wall Street
Winner: Alfonso Cuarón
Honorable Mention: Steve McQueen
The race between Cuarón and McQueen is one of the closest categories this year, but Cuarón’s direction of Gravity will most likely be the winner of this year’s Oscar for Directing. The time and talent it took to develop a film like Gravity has certainly not gone unnoticed this awards season, and the Academy will most likely notice it as well.
Animated Featured Film
Despicable Me 2
Ernest & Celestine
The Wind Rises
Honorable Mention: The Wind Rises
The new Disney animated musical flick, Frozen, charmed audiences of all ages this past winter, and hopefully the Academy as well. What’s not to love about a singing snowman and a girl that freezes everything when she loses her temper?
Make sure to watch the 86st Annual Academy Awards on ABC to see if these predictions were right!
Pictures & sources courtesy of: http://oscar.go.com/nominees