More Unfounded Oscar '08 Stuff

I really wish I could come up with a better title than that. Still, after the jump, a follow up on some conversations I’ve had with people today…All right, in thinking about my previous post, talking about it with Dan of The Danifesto and Rachel of All Things Fangirl — their links are in my blogroll — as well as my homeboys on Facebook through which the post is linked, I want to revise and expand my predictions to nominees. I normally don’t call this stuff until the day of the ceremony — the handicapping of the awards is one of my pet peeves, especially when it’s way early in the game — but it’s December and that seems soon enough.

I said this on Facebook, but I think a lot of the nominees this year are going to be nominated because they have great acting in them. As we all know, actors make up the largest block of voters in the Academy, and so pictures that have great acting and or ensembles tend to do better than most. See: The Queen. This is why fucking Crash won. (And since it can’t be said enough, Fuck Crash.)

So that’s why I think Milk will do very well, that’s why Doubt will surprise people, and that’s why we might see a repeat of 2002 in the Best Actor race.

I’m only going to call the nominees for ones which I can pick more than three categories in. (I can also see Batman picking up a Best Adapted Screenplay nomination for.)

BEST PICTURE

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Dark Knight
Doubt
Milk
Slumdog Millionare

(As an aside, I think if you haven’t seen The Times of Harvey Milk yet, you need to, and you need to now. Also, read And The Band Played On. Because it’s amazing. And it will fuck your shit up.)

BEST DIRECTOR

Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionare
David Fincher, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Christopher Nolan, The Dark Knight
John Patrick Shanley, Doubt
Gus Van Sant, Milk

The Academy likes to go for those “Nominate the picture but not the director” but I don’t really see them nominating Frost/Nixon for picture, so Howard could easily take Fincher’s slot. Because boy, has he gotten screwed before.

BEST ACTOR

Josh Brolin, W.
Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Doubt
Frank Langella, Frost/Nixon
Sean Penn, Milk
Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler

Here’s why I think this is 2002 part II: That year, one of the reasons Adrian Brody won was because the vote was split between the two titans, Nicholson and Day-Lewis. Obviously, this year we have that times three — Penn, Rourke, and Langella. Rourke’s been the sure thing in terms of noms for a while now, but will he win? Does he have the juice? Obviously, he’s really well regarded among his peers, but what about the Old Folks Homes (aka the people who gave Roberto Benigni his Oscar), who might like something like Langella’s performance better? I think you could very easily see a split between those generations and have a third party walk away with it.

BEST ACTRESS

Anne Hathaway, Rachel Getting Married
Meryl Streep, Doubt
Kate Winslet, Revolutionary Road

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Again, Ledger is the lock, but who fills out the category? My gut tells me that Richard Dreyfuss’ brilliantly evil Dick Cheney for W and possibly Oliver Platt. My Super Duper Dark Horse Candidate Of 2008 is Brendan Gleeson for In Bruges. Oh, and Ralph Fiennes for The Reader.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

I don’t have a goddamn clue, aside from Viola Davis. Who I hear is amazing in Doubt.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Dustin Vance Black, Milk
Robert D. Stiegel, The Wrestler
Andrew Stanton, Wall-E
Martin McDonagh, In Bruges

In Bruges, which was the best playwright to director transition since House of Games, is going to get screwed. I know it. But I can dream, can’t I?

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Peter Morgan, Frost/Nixon
Christopher and Jonathan Nolan, The Dark Knight
Eric Roth, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
John Patrick Shanley, Doubt

(I’d forgotten Roth had written Button. They love them some Roth at the Oscars.)

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

“The Wrestler,” Bruce Springsteen

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

Wall-E.

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