OSCAR PREDICTIONS: Best Original Screenplay

Updated: September 21, 2017

AND THE PREDICTED NOMINEES ARE

1

Martin McDonagh
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

PROS:
Previous nominee for "In Bruges" and feels very reminiscent of "Fargo."
CONS:
Original Screenplay is competitive and it also helps to be a Best Picture nominee. Can the film achieve both?

2

Anthony McCarten
“Darkest Hour” (Focus Features)

PROS:
Previous nominee for "In Bruges" and feels very reminiscent of "Fargo."
CONS:
Original Screenplay is competitive and it also helps to be a Best Picture nominee. Can the film achieve both?

3

Woody Allen
“Wonder Wheel” (Amazon Studios)

PROS:
The most nominated writer of all-time. Always a contender.
CONS:
Is it an "on year" or "off year?"

4

Guillermo del Toro
“The Shape of Water” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

PROS:
An original tale that may have the writers gushing over its story and structure.
CONS:
He did it for "Pan's Labyrinth" but his quality has waned over the years. Can he bounce back?

5

Emily V. Gordon, Kumail Nanjani
“The Big Sick” (Amazon Studios)

PROS:
An original tale that may have the writers gushing over its story and structure.
CONS:
He did it for "Pan's Labyrinth" but his quality has waned over the years. Can he bounce back?

NEXT IN LINE

6

Christopher Nolan
“Dunkirk” (Warner Bros.)

PROS:
Even when they pass on Nolan in Director, they often cite him in screenplay.
CONS:
The film has such little dialogue. This category, likely more than anything, will show strength for a Best Picture winner.

7

Adrian Molina, Lee Unkrich
“Coco” (Pixar)

PROS:
Even when they pass on Nolan in Director, they often cite him in screenplay.
CONS:
The film has such little dialogue. This category, likely more than anything, will show strength for a Best Picture winner.

8

Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor
“Downsizing” (Paramount Pictures)

PROS:
Alexander Payne has found love in the screenplay category before. This seemingly original story sounds like something this branch goes for.
CONS:
Payne and Taylor find love in Adapted. Will it be too much of HONEY I SHRUNK MYSELF?

9

Paul Thomas Anderson
“Untitled Paul Thomas Anderson Film” (Focus Features)

PROS:
If there's any hope for PTA to win an Oscar, a screenplay award seems much more attainable.
CONS:
The late release. And the film is STILL without a title?

10

Simon Beaufoy
“Battle of the Sexes” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

PROS:
Previous winner for "Slumdog Millionaire" has found love afterwards with "127 Hours" and prior to his win with "The Full Monty."
CONS:
Writers have no problem skipping if it isn't up to par (i.e. "Salmon Fishing in the Yemen").

OTHER TOP TIER CONTENDERS

11

Greta Gerwig
“Lady Bird” (A24)

PROS:
She's said to fit like a glove in the director's chair but screenplay may be a more appropriate place for her to get her nod.
CONS:
Original Screenplay has lots of competition, with lots of comedies trying to make their play.

12

Margaret Betts
“Novitiate” (Sony Pictures Classics)

PROS:
It's a well thought out look at young women struggling with their faith. Could be an indie surprise on the circuit.
CONS:
It's rather small and it may just be about Leo.

13

Sean Baker, Chris Bergoch
“The Florida Project” (A24)

PROS:
When critics are heavy on a film, and Oscar can't find much room for it in Best Picture, screenplay becomes a nice consolation prize, especially when the director is attached.
CONS:
The film is rather heavy and depressing. Especially for something marketed as lightweight.

14

Frank Cottrell Boyce, Simon Vaughan
“Goodbye Christopher Robin” (Fox Searchlight Pictures)

PROS:
They like their "light" and "warm-hearted" scripts. Think "Finding Neverland" and "Life of Pi."
CONS:
Will there be passion for the film?

15

Michael Mitnick
“The Current War” (The Weinstein Company)

PROS:
Harvey will be pushing as much of this film as he can.
CONS:
This is from the writer of "The Giver" and the HBO cancelled "Vinyl."

16

Taylor Sheridan
“Wind River” (The Weinstein Company)

PROS:
Fresh of his first nomination in this category for "Hell or High Water." He may become a "default" choice.
CONS:
The writing of women is still problematic and the Elizabeth Olsen is loudly criticized.

17

Jordan Peele
“Get Out” (Universal Pictures)

PROS:
People love the movie and if there's any category for it get in, Original Screenplay is it (likely WGA nominee).
CONS:
It feels like one of those things that will seem close because of precursors and come up short.

18

Darren Aronofsky
“mother!” (Paramount Pictures)

PROS:
Aronofsky's writing has given us things like "Requiem for a Dream." It's a terrific, biblical piece.
CONS:
Some people say he overplays his hand and is brow-beating at times trying to make his point.

19

Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, George Clooney, Grant Heslov
“Suburbicon” (Paramount Pictures)

PROS:
The Coen Brothers are a favorite within AMPAS. Paired with other favorites like Clooney and Heslov, the final product should bite...
CONS:
...not according to reviews out of Venice.

20

Jenny Bicks, Bill Condon
“The Greatest Showman” (20th Century Fox)

PROS:
"La La Land" getting an Original Screenplay nod may have started a trend.
CONS:
It's such a rarity.

ALSO IN CONTENTION

21

Margaret Betts
“Novitiate” (Sony Pictures Classics)

PROS:
It's a well thought out look at young women struggling with their faith. Could be an indie surprise on the circuit.
CONS:
It's rather small and it may just be about Leo.

22

William Nicholson
“Breathe” (Bleecker Street)

PROS:
Two-time Oscar-nominated writer of "Gladiator" and "Shadowlands." This could be an easy pick for the British voting bloc.
CONS:
Original is VERY competitive this year. He'll need to show strength early and sustain.

23

Yorgos Lanthimos
“The Killing Of A Sacred Deer” (A24)

PROS:
Two-time Oscar-nominated writer of "Gladiator" and "Shadowlands." This could be an easy pick for the British voting bloc.
CONS:
Original is VERY competitive this year. He'll need to show strength early and sustain.

24

Sebastián Lelio, Gonzalo Maza
“A Fantastic Woman” (Sony Pictures Classics)

PROS:
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CONS:
No data found.

25

Joon-ho Bong
“Okja” (Netflix)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

26

Arnaud Desplechin
“Ismael’s Ghosts” (Magnolia Pictures)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

27

Donald E. Stewart, Scott Cooper
“Hostiles” (No U.S. Distribution)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

28

Edgar Wright
“Baby Driver ” (TriStar Pictures)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

29

Mike White
“Beatriz at Dinner” (Roadside Attractions)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

30

Peter Landesman
“Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down The White House” (Sony Pictures Classics)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

OTHER POSSIBILITIES

31

Noah Baumbach
“The Meyerowitz Stories (New And Selected)” (Netflix)

PROS:
Screening at the festivals and it has its lovers. Baumbach seems like one of those future writing winners.
CONS:
Netflix's Oscar campaign will need to be stellar.

32

Ruben Östlund
The Square” (Magnolia Pictures)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

33

Stanley Tucci
“Final Portrait” (Sony Pictures Classics

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

34

Michael Haneke
“Happy End” (No U.S. Distribution)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

35

Angela Robinson
“Professor Marston & the Wonder Women” (Annapurna Pictures)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

36

Azazel Jacobs
“The Lovers” (A24)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

37

Dan Gilroy
“Roman Israel, Esq.” (Sony Pictures)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

38

Steven Soderbergh
“Logan Lucky” (Bleecker Street)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

39

Paddy Considine
“Journeyman” (No U.S. Distribution)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

40

David Robert Mitchell
“Under The Silver Lake” (A24)

PROS:
No data found.
CONS:
No data found.

CLICK THE CATEGORY TO SEE THE OSCAR PREDICTIONS:

MOTION PICTURE | DIRECTOR |
LEAD ACTOR | LEAD ACTRESS | SUPPORTING ACTOR | SUPPORTING ACTRESS | 
ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY | ADAPTED SCREENPLAY | ANIMATED FEATURE |
PRODUCTION DESIGN | CINEMATOGRAPHY | COSTUME DESIGN | FILM EDITING | MAKEUP & HAIRSTYLING | SOUND MIXING | SOUND EDITING | VISUAL EFFECTS |
ORIGINAL SCORE | ORIGINAL SONG |