Oscars: Guilds Give Gas to ‘The Big Sick,’ ‘Molly’s Game,’ and ‘I, Tonya’ as Academy Voting Opens


The majors guild are announcing and now, only now, can you see the correlation between their nominations and what Oscar voters are thinking since they are littered with actual AMPAS members.

With the Producers Guild of America, Writers Guild of America, and Art Directors Guild announcing in the last days, you can see where the love is starting to pour in.  The two films that got the biggest boosts were Aaron Sorkin‘s “Molly’s Game” and Craig Gillespie‘s “I, Tonya.”  With Sorkin’s film, it nabbed nominations from all three guilds, indicative of mainstream support.  It’s actually propelled the notion that Jessica Chastain may be more a closer thing than we initially realized but I think we need to start paying attention to Idris Elba to pop up and steal a spot as the “WTF?” mention of the season.  After getting famously snubbed for “Beasts of No Nation” in 2015, Elba is due for Oscar recognition and may have just found himself with a vehicle to ride in with.

With “I, Tonya,” it’s been creeping up on the circuit slowly but surely.  Always feeling like a sure thing for stars Margot Robbie and Allison Janney in Lead and Supporting Actress, the film is also heavily in contention for a Makeup and Film Editing nomination.  Add to the mix that scribe Steven Rogers was just cited by the WGA, it’s now firmly in the mix there, considering it beat out contenders like “The Post” and “The Florida Project.”  If it’s pulling three, four, or five nominations on the morning, connect that with PGA, and you have yourself a Best Picture nominee.  Granted, there are other comedies in the mix like “The Big Sick,” who got its fair share of recognition and “Get Out,” if you believe it’s actually a comedy.

The Big Sick” is sitting with PGA, SAG, and WGA, all the makings of a Best Picture nominee and Amazon Studios has been pushing hard for it after their other contenders fell by the wayside, unfortunately.  Original Screenplay is looking more secure while Holly Hunter’s nomination stiffens up.  Could we start talking about another spot or two below the line?

Looking at the Director’s race, we could be in store for an unprecedented lineup of women and minority filmmakers.  Netflix’s “Mudbound” is only sitting with SAG and WGA, but is hoping to propel itself into Oscar morning a la “Beasts of the Southern Wild” did a few years back.  Netflix is banking on Dee Rees making a showing with the Directors Guild of America next week but other names like Greta Gerwig from “Lady Bird,” Jordan Peele from “Get Out,” and Guillermo del Toro from “The Shape of Water” is gearing up for big plays there.

And then there are the veterans.  Steven Spielberg (“The Post”), Ridley Scott (“All the Money in the World”), Christopher Nolan (“Dunkirk“), and Paul Thomas Anderson (“Phantom Thread”) all have industry support while newcomers like Sean Baker (“The Florida Project”), Luca Guadagnino (“Call Me by Your Name“), and Scott Cooper (“Hostiles“) may be in the hunt.  With “I, Tonya” surging, we need to start looking at Gillespie while “Blade Runner 2049” is a directorial achievement that may be sexy enough to pull in Oscar-nominee Denis Villeneuve.

On the acting side of things, we’re looking for those big, historic misses that are going to turn heads.  In Lead Actor, Timothee Chalamet (“Call Me by Your Name”), James Franco (“The Disaster Artist”), and Daniel Kaluuya (“Get Out”) are all doing battle against Tom Hanks (“The Post”), Daniel Day-Lewis (“Phantom Thread”), and Denzel Washington (“Roman J. Israel, Esq.“) for spots.

Supporting Actor is sitting pretty with three spots seemingly secured for Willem Dafoe (“The Florida Project”), Richard Jenkins (“The Shape of Water”), and Sam Rockwell (“Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri”).  Christopher Plummer (“All the Money in the World”) may get a huge boost with a Golden Globe win which is entirely possible while Woody Harrelson (also from “Three Billboards”) is looking to break a 26-year-old drought for double supporting nominees from the same film.

And finally, Supporting Actress looks too easy to call based on the SAG five that were nominated but Octavia Spencer (“The Shape of Water”) is hoping to ride in with her Globe nomination while Lesley Manville (“Phantom Thread”) and Melissa Leo (“Novitiate“) hope to become those surprise entries on the morning with no prior precursor support.  Speaking with a few voters over the past few weeks, so many names have been thrown about as potential nominees like Julia Roberts from “Wonder” or Lois Smith from “Marjorie Prime.”  They may pull in some love too.

Check out the latest Oscar Predictions on the sidebar and click through each category to see the ranking of each contender.