Oscar Predictions 2011 and Welcome Back

Let me just start by welcoming you back to FilmStank. It’s been holidays, and we’ve enjoyed the time off, planning for this next year, and just relaxing. But holidays are over, as I’m sure is the same for most of you, and so the blogs will begin to pour out again, so let me begin 2011 with a blog about the approaching Academy Awards.

 

Oscar Predictions 2011

Well, the Academy Awards are upon us again, and it’s better late than never for me to come up with my own predictions as to who are going to take home the top gongs. I think this year is a tough one to decipher as there are so many great films, both classic Academy Award films and the not so classic Academy Award films, and with the changing times, you never know for sure whom the Academy is going to pick as the best in their field. But I think I have a pretty good idea, check it out.

 

Best Writing, Based on Previous Material: The Social Network – Aaron Sorkin

Best Writing, Directly for the Screen: Inception – Christopher Nolan

Best Director: Tom Hooper – The King’s Speech

Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo – The Fighter

Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale – The Fighter

Best Actress: Natalie Portman – Black Swan

Best Actor: Colin Firth – The King’s Speech

Best Picture: The King’s Speech

 

 

Best Writing, Based on Previous Material: The Social Network – Aaron Sorkin

Let’s start at the bottom, and work our way up. Quite briefly, I think the type of film The Social Network, I think the contemporary subject of the film, and the way Aaron Sorkin developed the book titled Accidental Billionaires into the screenplay used for this film will win him this Oscar on the night.

 

Best Writing, Directly for the Screen: Inception – Christopher Nolan

To be honest, I’m a little hesitant to putting Christopher Nolan’s name as my prediction to winning. I think there’s something wrong with the relationship between Christopher Nolan and the Academy; whilst he’s been nominated 3 times now (2 for Inception, and 1 for Memento), he’s been snubbed more than once. First for The Dark Knight where he failed to earn any nomination himself, and now for a director’s nod for Inception, which in my opinion he should have easily won.

There are a lot of potential winners in this category, but I think Chris Nolan deserves this award the most, and I really hope to Academy give it to him.

 

Best Director: Tom Hooper – The King’s Speech

In my opinion, this is the toughest category of the year, and for me it’s a process of elimination with a few points. Here they are; first of all, I think Joel and Ethan Cohen (Director’s for True Grit) are the least favourite to win in this category due to the fact the film is a remake, and it is rare that a remake will win at the Oscars (The Departed is an exception to this). Also, they have each got 4 Oscars to their name, so I think the Academy knows they are well decorated enough to win this year, and the film wasn’t outstanding from the rest. So let’s take them off the list. The next four nominees are the directors what I would most people would agree are the front-runners to the Best Picture win. I don’t think The Social Network is going to sweep the awards for some reason, and I think if it wins the writing award, it won’t win this award. David O. Russell did an exceptional job with his work on The Fighter, but I think the acclaim is more focused on the acting, rather than the direction. This leaves me with Darren Aronofsky and Tom Hooper. There’s one main reason I have picked Tom Hooper above the rest, and that is because generally the Best Picture award goes hand in hand with the Best Director award.

 

 

Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo – The Fighter

Again, a really tough category, and as much as I would love Jacki Weaver to win this award for her outstanding performance in one of the greatest Aussie flicks, Animal Kingdom, I don’t think the Academy will have picked her. Amy Adams was brilliant as always in The Figher, but unfortunately was overshadowed by the performance of her co-star, Melissa Leo. Helena Bonham Carter did an exceptional job in The King’s Speech, but I think she too will fall short of glory in this field. Remaining are Melissa Leo and Hailee Steinfield, both of which gave great performances, but as I heard another writing describe, I don’t think Hailee Steinfield has paid her dues. She’s 14 years old, and she’s only just become known for her role in True Grit, but I think the more matured Melissa Leo will have the Academy voting for her.

 

 

Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale – The Fighter

I think the two front-runners for this category are Christian Bale and Geoffrey Rush, despite exceptional performances by the other actors in this category. It’s tough to determine who the Academy will choose out of Bale and Rush, as this is Bale’s first nomination, and at the age of 37 he is (relatively) quite young for someone to win an Oscar. Rush is a seasoned performer, and one of the greatest Actors of our time, but he has already been awarded the top acting gong for his performance in Shine. Ultimately, I believe Bale will win as his performance is flawless and there is no sign of Christian Bale in the character, and despite this being his first nomination, he has a huge resume of films under his belt, and the Academy might think it time to give him what he deserves.

 

 

Best Actress: Natalie Portman – Black Swan

Whilst all the nominees gave unbelievable performances in this category, I believe the performance Natalie Portman gave in Black Swan will earn her the top gong. A truly disturbing, yet brilliant performance took a lot of guts for Portman to tackle, and for her to execute in the way that she did, I’d say she deserves this award.

 

 

Best Actor: Colin Firth – The King’s Speech

The easiest of all the categories, and if it doesn’t result in the way predicted, there will be a lot of surprised people in Hollywood. Whilst the rest of the nominees gave good performances, none stood out as much as Colin Firth’s perfect performance. Honestly, you cannot fault this man with his performance in The King’s Speech, it was a truly outstanding job, and he more than deserves the title of the Best Actor of 2010.

 

 

Best Picture: The King’s Speech

Now, let’s get down to business. First things first, with the inclusion of another 5 nominees (making a total of 10 nominees) in this category for last years Academy Awards, you can usually determine which films are the true nominees. This can be simply determined by a few things. First, look at the amount of nominations the film has, if it’s 3 or less, you can generally say it’s not a front-runner; unfortunately each film nominated has a minimum of four nominations, so no dismissals yet.

Secondly, and it pains me that this is the case, but Animated films nominated for Best Picture never win, even though they most likely have an equal (if not greater) chance of winning; so we therefore eliminate Toy Story 3.

Thirdly, usually at least 4 of the 5 films that were nominated for Best Director are also nominated for Best Picture; therefore requiring me to eliminate The Kid’s Are All Right, 127 Hours and Winter’s Bone from the race (I believe Inception may still be a front-runner despite its lack of nomination for Best Director. Additionally, there is usually one film that is specially nominated for Best Director, but not Best Picture and in my opinion, Joel and Ethan Cohen fit this description; so I’m going to eliminate True Grit from the race, despite its critical acclaim. This leaves us with, wait for it, 5 films to choose from, which is a standard amount of Best Picture nominees. This includes Inception, The Social Network, The King’s Speech, Black Swan and The Fighter.

Okay, now it’s time for me to release the pride, and admit Inception won’t win, due to its lack of a Best Director nomination. As I mentioned in the Best Director paragraph, I think the Academy will choose The Fighter to be more of a performance driven film more-so than anyone else, therefore leading me to believe it won’t win Best Picture. This leaves me with what I believe to be the true front-runners. Now, I believe Black Swan pushes the boundaries too far in its content, and its lack of wins (in my predictions) in other categories will prevent it from securing the top prize. The only way to decipher who will win between The Social Network and The King’s Speech is that The King’s Speech is a classic Academy Awards film (don’t let that detract from it’s brilliance), where as The Social Network is a contemporary film which may hinder it winning the top prize. The King’s Speech checks all the boxes; it’s a history film, it’s based on a true story, and it has an uplifting story. So I believe The King’s Speech will take the top gong on the night of the Oscars, and I think it more than deserves this title.

 

 

I’d love to hear your thoughts on who you think will win. Do you disagree or agree with my choices. Let me know in the comment section below.

 

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3 Comments on “Oscar Predictions 2011 and Welcome Back”

  1. Lauren Says:

    Great predictions Sam. Totally agree. I enjoyed your explanation of your choices, especially for best picture.
    I would love Geoffrey Rush to win because he is brilliant and The Kings Speech was amazing but I agree that Christian Bale will take it out.


  2. Sam,

    Firstly, it seems that your oscar-radar was really on. You pretty much hit the nail on the head in the majority of categories.

    Your analysis of how to choose the best picture was quite insightful. There does seem to be a significantly greater weight placed on films with historical significance or something along those lines.

    I guess the social network was a little too modern to be considered history, despite the fact that it too was based on a true story.

    For some reason I just find it unimaginable that a film with Justin Timberlake in it could take out the top prize. Hence I had ruled it out some time ago. Perhaps I’m still holding onto resentment for JT leaving N*Sync. Moving right along 🙂

    I saw The King’s Speech last night. I thought it was painfully hilarious!

    Dave @ filmstank


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