2014 Oscar Predictions - Quick Updates to the Major Categories - AwardsCircuit.com - By Clayton Davis

2014 Oscar Predictions – Quick Updates to the Major Categories

With two big days in the books, where does the race stand...?

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With the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild unveiling their nominations over the past two days, the race has taken a shape, many didn’t see happening.  Jean-Marc Vallee’s Dallas Buyers Club has risen considerably while actors like Barkhad Abdi and Daniel Bruhl have become the hands on favorite to be nominated in their respective categories.  Oprah Winfrey got a huge blow earlier today, missing out on a Golden Globe nomination for her work in the shutout civil rights film, Lee Daniels’ The Butler.  There’s a lot to consider.

Rather than making you wait a long time for me to update the official Oscar Prediction pages (which takes longer than you all think), I thought I’d give a quick update via this space.

BEST MOTION PICTURE

  1. 12 Years a Slave (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
  2. Gravity (Warner Bros.)
  3. The Wolf of Wall Street (Paramount Pictures)
  4. Nebraska (Paramount Pictures)
  5. Captain Phillips (Sony Pictures)
  6. Saving Mr. Banks (Walt Disney Pictures)
  7. Inside Llewyn Davis (CBS Films)
  8. Dallas Buyers Club (Focus Features)
  9. American Hustle (Sony Pictures)

ALTERNATES:

  • Her (Warner Bros.)
  • Lee Daniels’ The Butler (The Weinstein Company)
  • Philomena (The Weinstein Company)

Could this be the first year in quite some time that the Weinstein Company doesn’t have a Best Picture nominee in their midst?  It can be argued which film in their arsenal has the legs to make a representation.  Lee Daniels’ The Butler and August: Osage County both managed multiple SAG nominations including Best Cast Ensemble while Philomena was nominated for a Golden Globe today in Best Picture (Drama).  My guess is that they have to sit this year out.

We also have to come to terms that we’re not (or never) getting ten Best Picture nominees ever again and a film or two is going to be left off on the sidelines.  Unfortunately, I’m not entirely convinced that Spike Jonze’s Her, despite its win with the National Board of Review and Los Angeles Film Critics, is going to make the cut in the end.  No SAG nominations shows some weakness, which you can make the argument that an Ensemble nomination would not be appropriate despite strong performances by Joaquin PhoenixAmy Adams, and Scarlett Johansson.

The Golden Globes also put the nail in the coffin on any outside shot of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty or Lone Survivor sneaking into the category.  I thought the latter had a real chance with its emotional pull.  Who knows?  Perhaps they still look that way in the end.  

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Clayton Davis

Editor-in-Chief & Owner at The Awards Circuit
Clayton Davis started to write professionally in his sophomore year of college when Johnny Alba, the editor and owner of the old Oscar prediction site, The Oscar Igloo, had an opening for staff writers. Clayton wrote for The Igloo for nearly four years before being appointed editor and revamping and renaming The Oscar Igloo into the now popular mega-site, The Awards Circuit. Since then, Clayton has become a proud member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association where he votes and attends the kick off to awards season show, The Critics Choice Awards. Most recently, Clayton is a now an active member of the International Press Academy, which hosts the popular Satellite Awards as well as the newly integrated Broadcast Television Journalists Association, which hosts the Critics Choice Television Awards. In June 2014 he became the year's first accepted member to New York Film Critics Online. He has been quoted in various outlets (CNN.com, Bloomberg.com, TheWrap.com, AceShowbiz.com, SlashFilm.com, ScottFeinberg.com) and continues to raise the bar for film-talking enthusiasts around the globe.

  • UBourgeois

    I think you’re fooling yourself if you think David O. Russell isn’t in the five. He’s been appearing in director lineups everywhere.

    • Anthony Moseley

      I think Russell will probably make it in over Scorcese or Greengrass.

      • Clayton Davis

        There’s a chance that happens. But I would put my money on those two making it in before Russell.

    • Robert MacFarlane

      I agree. You need to put your own personal apathy towards the movie aside, Clay. The guilds and awards lineups have been going crazy for it.

      • Clayton Davis

        People seem to think I hate the movie. I don’t. I gave it two and a half stars. There’s definite positives. None of the critics groups equal Oscar voters. SAG went for it in Ensemble and Supporting Actress, that by no means “lock” it up.

        • Robert MacFarlane

          Now you’re just in willful denial.

        • Dan Hogan

          We know you didn’t hate it. We just think you’re crazy putting it so low :)

        • John

          By no means is American Hustle in 9th place in terms of Best Picture ranking…. What?

    • Clayton Davis

      He’s in the hunt but he is by no means locked in.

  • Jamie Teller

    You really think DBC will get in over Her? I can’t see that happening. All DBC has gotten thus far is McConaughey and Leto noms. Personally, I think the directing there is more interesting than the acting, but I think I’m alone in that.

    • Jamie Teller

      Also, for the love of God, don’t nominate Jennifer Garner.

      • Kev Dantzler

        I know right!!! Theres some buzz about her performance and Im like… huh? #scratchinghead

        • Jamie Teller

          Honestly, DBC is one of the 3 most overrated films of the year for me. I didn’t even think the performances were THAT great (McConaughey was better in Mud). So yeah, aside from Leto’s probable win, this will be forgotten about pretty quickly.

          • Alex

            The thing is that the SAG ensemble nom increases its chances of getting in BP a lot. Nevertheless, I totally understand why Her was snubbed from all categories, so I’m with you in the sense that I think Her is much better positioned than DBC, especially considering the love that it’s getting from the critics.

          • Joshua Black

            okay, ill bite, what are the other two?

            • Jamie Teller

              Gravity (a good film, but in my opinion, kind of a shallow one) and Blue is the Warmest Color (grossly overlong and lacking in insight).

  • Kev Dantzler

    I think taking David out of the BD race is a bold move but I don’t agree… I wouldn’t underestimate him at this point… remember, he is getting a lot of love from other awards… I think Paul Greengrass would be a safer bet to NOT get a nomination

    • Dan Hogan

      But the academy loves Greengrass. I always remember that lone director slot from 2006.

  • Kev Dantzler

    I’m so glad that you changed your decision around Chiwetel being left out of the Oscar Nominations…. I would bet money that he is on the top of the list for a nomination… if anyone should be worried, its Tom Hanks since he is getting more raves for Saving Mr Banks

    • Clayton Davis

      Hanks’ “Saving Mr. Banks” campaign seems to be dying. “Captain Phillips” should be his representation. I’m worried for Redford, and believe it or not, a little bit of McConaughey. Whitaker and DiCaprio would sneak in.

      • Anthony Moseley

        I don’t necessarily consider McConaughey a frontrunner, but I don’t think he’ll be snubbed. Sure, he hasn’t gotten the notices that Ejiofor, Dern and Redford have so far, but he’s the only contender other than Ejiofor that has been consistently nominated by nearly every awards committee.

        I think Hanks and Redford are most likely on the bubble. It looks like Robert Redford could be this year’s John Hawkes, though I think it will be DiCaprio who takes his spot because I honestly think Whitaker’s Oscar chances died at the GG nominees. I suppose there’s a chance that Bale or Phoenix could sneak in, or even an outside chance that Elba could due to Nelson Mandela’s recent passing (which I correctly predicted would help his GG chances).

        I’m surprised that Hanks isn’t getting more love for SMB. Thought for sure that would be a role that critics would eat up.

    • moviewatcher

      WHAT? Hanks is getting more rave reviews for SMB than for Captain Phillips? That’s simply not true. Many are saying CP is one of his very best performances and that those last 20 minutes are some career-best work. SMB, they’re saying he makes the Disney/Travers scene special and that they work and that he’s good, but by no means raves.

  • Kev Dantzler

    COuldn’t agree more with the Best Actress line up… if anyone misses, it will be my love, the incredible Meryl Streep :-(… and that’s by a long shot

  • Kev Dantzler

    I must be the only person in the world that finds Barkhad Abdi’s performance highly overrated…. I may have to see Captain Phillips AGAIN to discover what the hype is about

    • Clayton Davis

      I’m with you there. He’s very good but he’s not in my personal list of Best Supporting Actor. I thought Hanks outshined him, though many think otherwise.

    • Robert MacFarlane

      Disagree to an absurd degree. Hanks was great, but Abdi had a far more complex role and performance.

      • Kev Dantzler

        Looks like we have to agree to disagree LOL… im just curious though… was there a particular scene that was oscar worthy or was it the body of work? He was okay, but I do believe that there are worthier performances.

        • Lon

          “Look at me! Look at me! I’m the captain now.” The classic line of the film on every single trailer and was on every viewer’s lips after watching it was completely improvised by Abdi. Stellar acting worthy of all the the awards

    • Anthony Moseley

      I think a lot of people are high on him simply because it’s his first ever performance. If the exact same performance had been made by a veteran actor, the performance most likely would have largely been ignored.

      • Jamie Teller

        I was a bit let down by Abdi because I let expectations get the better of me. He does a fine job, but he doesn’t really do anything but tell Tom Hanks everything will be okay. So I blame the script 20%, and myself 80%.

  • Kev Dantzler

    Oprah’s GG snub was a huge blow…. at this point, the only upset would be her scoring a nomination and knocking Octavia or Sally out of the running… Lupita BETTER have this in the bag LOL #praying

    • Clayton Davis

      I wish she had it in the bag but Oprah is her main competition. Squibb could also pull in a lot of votes for herself.

      • Dan Hogan

        I think it’s a Lupita v Squibb race. I’d be happy with either.

  • Amanda

    American Hustle 9°? O. Russell 7°? Lawrence 4° and vulnerable? WTF?? AH has 89 in Metacritic and 97% in Rotten Tomattoes, and Lawrence is the bride to america and the outstanding the film…. What is your problem with O. Russell and his films??

    • Jamie Teller

      I can sympathize, to be honest.

    • Clayton Davis

      I didn’t call Lawrence vulnerable…I was making a point that Harvey Weinstein hopes she’s vulnerable. There are many films in the 90’s on RT that have no shot at making it in for Best Picture. I don’t think as many “LOVE” Hustle as they simply “LIKE” it. 97% on RT doesn’t reflect that.

      And I have no problem with Russell. I love The Fighter and I really liked Silver Linings Playbook. I also adore I Heart Huckabees when everyone trashes it. “Hustle” wasn’t everything it was supposed to be. Plain and simple.

      • Manning Franks

        Clayton is right, if you look right below the 97% on RT, you will see the average rating is 8.2/10 which is respectable and impressive. However, when you take into account the fact that 12 Years, Gravity, All Is Lost, Captain Phillips and Llewyn Davis all are higher than it, with a 9, 9.1, 8.4, 8.4 and 8.6 respectively. It loses its steam a bit. Hustle could be this years Argo, which has a 8.4 right now. A general consensus vote. While I do believe that American Hustle has a greater chance at getting nominated than you give it credit for, it is far from a lock from what everyone says. Heck, if that Oprah snub taught me anything today; its that anything can happen!

      • John

        Clay you’re not the one voting here.

  • Phillip Milner

    Clayton has a made hate relationship with O’Russel

  • Hiro Dominion

    It seems your obsession for a John Goodman nomination is finally at an end.

    • Dan Hogan

      Yeah, I’ve been waiting for that one to give up the ghost for a while. I’m bummed Goodman didn’t get a nod for Argo or Flight… but I will always treasure Red State as my favorite performance of his.

      • Hiro Dominion

        I personally thought he should have been nominated over Michael Lerner is Barton Fink. It was a complete robbery

        • Robert MacFarlane

          Or The Big Lebowksi. Comedy gold, that one.

    • Anthony Moseley

      Sadly it seems like the Academy just doesn’t like Goodman as much as the rest of us.

  • Dan Hogan

    Whether or not you’re downplaying Hustle because you dislike it (I totally understand your podcast answer–I know you “liked” it), I still think you’re bonkers to have it at 9, below Dallas Buyers and Banks at that. Heavily nominated at SAG and Globe have got to translate to more than a bubble spot. I bet it’s at 5 or 6, with Russell in the 4-6 range as well. And I’d probably put Lawrence at 3 behind June and Lupita. And while you’re right that everyone “liking” the movie won’t give it the win, remember how often the BP winner is the consensus pick (Argo?). How many people really thought Argo was the best movie of the year? Only Joey. But everybody “liked” it….

  • Jack Tylers

    PICTURE:
    1. 12 Years a Slave
    2. Gravity
    3. American Hustle
    4. Captain Phillips
    5. Nebraska
    6. Her
    7. The Wolf of Wall Street
    8. Inside Llewyn Davis
    9. The Butler
    10. Saving Mr. Banks

    DIRECTOR:
    1. Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
    2. Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity
    3. David O. Russell, American Hustle
    4. Paul Greengrass, Captain Phillips
    5. Spike Jonze, Her

    ACTOR:
    1. Bruce Dern, Nebraska
    2. Chiwetel Ejifor, 12 Years a Slave
    3. Matthew McConaghey, Dallas Buyers Club
    4. Tom Hanks, Captain Phillips
    5. Robert Redford, All Is Lost

    ACTRESS:
    1. Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
    2. Sandra Bullock, Gravity
    3. Emma Thompson, Saving Mr. Banks
    4. Judi Dench, Philomena
    5. Meryl Streep, August: Osage County

    SUPPORTING ACTOR:
    1. Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
    2. Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave
    3. James Gandolfini, Enough Said
    4. Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
    5. Daniel Bruhl, Rush

    SUPPORTING ACTRESS:
    1. June Squibb, Nebraska
    2. Lupita Nyongo, 12 Years a Slave
    3. Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
    4. Oprah, The Butler
    5. Julia Roberts, August: Osage County

    • Ryan Hynes

      i’m definitely noticing that there seems to be a subtle bias against Cate Blanchett in favor of Sandra Bullock on here; how’s anyone else detected it?

  • Hiro Dominion

    I think Bradley Cooper has a good chance for getting an Oscar Nod.

  • No

    Do not understand why you would think Will Forte would be on the bubble? Understand you love the film, but he is fine in it. As good of a performance as he will ever give, but not on the level of his competitors.

    • Jamie Teller

      Also, putting him Supporting is kind of ridiculous. He’s really the lead. And the performance is just dandy, but it’s not Oscar-worthy.

  • Eric Brown

    ADAPTED SCREENPLAY:
    12 Years A Slave
    The Wolf Of Wall Street
    Captain Phillips
    August In Osage County
    Blue Is The Warmest Color

    ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY:
    Saving Mr. Banks
    Inside Llewyn Davis
    Her
    The Butler
    American Hustle