Oscars 2017: BFCA (Critics Choice) Nominations

We have our Critics Choice nominations. My general perception of them is — I usually like hearing their opinion, there are far too many categories, and they’re generally fairly helpful in seeing how the Oscars are gonna turn out. They always announce early, so they become the de facto signpost of where things are headed, more so than the Golden Globes, who are gonna announce next week.

Generally, BFCA gets most, if not all of the Best Picture nominees on their list. Last year, all they missed was Hidden Figures and had the rest. Typically they only miss one, if that. Which is pretty cool, especially since in recent years the Oscars have generally had solid taste.

Anyway, let’s get into it. The Critics Choice nominations for 2017:


The Big Sick

Call Me by Your Name

Darkest Hour


The Florida Project

Get Out

Lady Bird

The Post

The Shape of Water

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Big fan of this list. I’ve seen all ten. I wholeheartedly agree with eight of them, and am more than fine with the other two. If all ten of these are your Best Picture nominees, I’m perfectly happy with that.

Thinking about what else is out there… not a whole lot else really feels like it’ll make Best Picture waves. I mean, Phantom Thread could make it, but anything else? Disaster Artist, I have a hard time thinking that musters any support outside Screenplay and a looong shot for Franco in Actor. I, Tonya? Unlikely, but possible. That needs to make PGA before I believe that can happen. Molly’s Game feels unlikely but possible. Downsizing seems to be a disappointment all around. Detroit hasn’t caught on anywhere and will need PGA to get on. Might have come out too early. Mudbound has that Netflix thing working against it. PGA is a must for that. Wonder Woman I’ve never taken seriously as a Best Picture contender. I’m sure there’s more I’m not thinking of. But really, outside of Phantom Thread, I think this the list. Oh, and I guess there’s The Greatest Showman. But that’s out in three weeks and they haven’t even really started screening it for people. Methinks that’s them trying to limit the bad reviews and hope people pay to see it.

The films that seem like the big locks to make it on for sure: Call Me By Your Name, Get Out, Florida Project, Lady Bird, Dunkirk, The Post, Shape of Water. That’s 7. We usually get 8-9 total. I’d say Darkest Hour makes the most sense next. Three Billboards is dicey, because McDonagh is not universally beloved. I’d need to see PGA there to think it likely. And The Big Sick seems to have faded. A PGA nomination puts that right back in the thick of things.

Too early to even think about a winner. But I think these are the films that have seemed strong throughout, so if anything that completely solidifies what I think your contenders are.


Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water

Greta Gerwig, Lady Bird

Luca Guadagnino, Call Me By Your Name

Martin McDonagh, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk

Jordan Peele, Get Out

Steven Spielberg, The Post

There were seven nominees last year too. What the hell, guys?

At this point, Nolan, del Toro, Spielberg and Guadagnino seem like locks. I’m worried they’re gonna leave Guillermo off, even though they shouldn’t. That leaves one more spot. Peele just feels like he’ll end up with the Picture/Screenplay combo and not Director, but who the hell knows how much they’ll overreact. McDonagh is a no unless they really love the movie, which at this point seems very improbable to me. Gerwig might legitimately get this, though I’ll believe that when I see it.

Don’t rule out a Joe Wright possibility. Though with him not being nominated for Atonement the year that was a major contender, that seems unlikely. Darkest Hour always felt like an empty Best Picture nominee. It’ll get Picture, Oldman, maybe a screenplay and some technicals, but that’s it. And Paul Thomas Anderson is always possible too. Though there — Actor, Screenplay, Costumes, Production Design. That feels like how that goes.

I’m also keeping in mind Sean Baker, Dee Rees (depending on how the reaction of that film is), Kathryn Bigelow, and I’m even gonna wait and see if they go all in on the statements and give Patti Jenkins something.

Very likely the top five is del Toro, Gerwig, Guadagnino, Nolan and Spielberg, with Peele a possible inclusion over any of those, with Paul Thomas Anderson as a potential dark horse. This is all DGA pending, but I think we all know that. I just like putting my thoughts down as they are at any given time. I don’t care about being wrong, I just want to keep the conversation going.


Timothée Chalamet, Call Me by Your Name

James Franco, The Disaster Artist

Jake Gyllenhaal, Stronger

Tom Hanks, The Post

Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out

Daniel Day-Lewis, Phantom Thread

Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour

Seven nominees? Way to narrow it down, guys.

Oldman is a lock. So that’s one.

Day-Lewis, if the film is received strongly enough, could run that through to a final nomination. Won’t win, but I could see him getting on. 50/50 at this point, maybe slightly more given his stature.

Chalamet has the support for the film going for him and his age going against him. At this point, I’d say he’s likely. But I want to see what the guilds do.

Gyllenhaal needs major guild support to even think about a nomination. Getting nominated for this over Nightcrawler would look pretty shitty.

Franco — it legitimately feels like this could happen, which is fucking nuts. I don’t even wanna guess, I just wanna see how it goes.

Kaluuya seems really unlikely.

Hanks seems like a lock. Didn’t love the performance, but with him, I never do until the third or fourth time I see the movie. So we’ll see.

Other contenders…

Denzel. Surprised that got left off. I think it’s the best work he’s done in 15 years. Sure, the film was divisive, but this is the least ‘Denzel’ he’s been. Plus, coming off a near win for Fences (which would have been a win had the climate of 2017 been around last year), how can they not double up?

I’d put Idris Elba here for Molly’s Game, but it seems like they’re trying to run him into Supporting, which should overall help him in trying to get a nomination. May be category fraud, but it’s not like this year is bursting at the seams.

Jackman has an outside shot for the Logan/Greatest Showman combo. It felt throughout the year he’d get the Showman nod even though it was really for the Logan performance. But unless Greatest Showman comes on real strong real fast (and let’s face it… it doesn’t seem like a Wolf of Wall Street), his prospects seem dubious. Unless SAG nominates him for Logan specifically, I don’t see it as a likely nomination.

There are other, fringe contenders, but they need multiple guilds to get anywhere. Like, if Robert Pattinson manages a SAG Good Time nomination (which would shock most of us), then I wouldn’t feel comfortable calling him a likely nominee unless I saw BAFTA or the Globes or someone else go there too. That’s just me.

Chalamet, Day-Lewis, Franco, Hanks, Oldman. Is that gonna be the category? Amazing. This is one of those years nobody could have guessed back in January.


Jessica Chastain, Molly’s Game

Sally Hawkins, The Shape of Water

Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Margot Robbie, I, Tonya

Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird

Meryl Streep, The Post

Yeah, this seems about right. This seems like it’ll probably be your category, with Robbie being the people’s choice and Streep edging her out because she’s fucking Meryl Streep.

Unless someone gets on through guilds, not seeing a whole lot more out of this one. Judi Dench was never getting nominated. That movie made zero waves. Annette Bening would need some guild support, but even after the 20th Century Woman snub, why would they go with this one? Wonder Wheel seems DOA, so no Winslet. Emma Stone hasn’t gotten enough traction for Battle of the Sexes, but I suspect a Globe and/or SAG nomination is in her future. I think the other six are strong enough to stave her off, but who knows.

I think five of these six will be your category.

Oh wait — Jennifer Lawrence. She’s hanging around there too. Totally forgot about that one. I wanna see if SAG and the Globes catapult her back into the thing.


Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project

Armie Hammer, Call Me By Your Name

Richard Jenkins, The Shape of Water

Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Patrick Stewart, Logan

Michael Stuhlbarg, Call Me by Your Name


Armie Hammer is cool, but Stuhlbarg was so great in that movie. And yes, sure, Armie Hammer has the most screen time, is kind of a co-lead, and makes sense as the nominee. But Stuhlbarg is so wonderful in that final monologue, that stuck out to me more than all of Hammer’s entire performance.

Dafoe has been the lock throughout and seems destined to possibly win. Though I’m all in on the Sam Rockwell train and hope one of those two wins and both are nominated. Outside of that, do whatever the fuck you want.

Patrick Stewart — bound to be on this list, but I’m legitimately curious to see if he manages SAG. I’m really not ruling that out. Seems unlikely, but this is an unlikely year. Let’s wait and see.

Richard Jenkins made the most sense from Shape of Water. Curious to see if he makes the guilds. Michael Shannon got ignored there for a very solid (and tricky) villain role. But that makes sense. Jenkins was the crowd pleaser.

If Idris Elba is being pushed supporting, I don’t see how you leave him off. But hey… 2015.

Woody Harrelson would be nice, but it seems like Rockwell’s getting all the buzz there. Ben Mendelsohn is quite good in Darkest Hour, but is the kind of actor who seems destined to be ignored. Ray Romano is a red herring. No way. That’s Holly Hunter or nothing, that movie.

Not really a whole lot else there.

You’re probably getting Dafoe, Rockwell, one or two Call Me By Your Name nominees, and then maybe Jenkins. But Supporting Actor gets weird stuff on. Michael Shannon came out of almost nowhere last year to top Aaron Taylor-Johnson. That’s gonna be dependent on the guilds and what films hit most for Best Picture and require acting nominations.


Mary J. Blige, Mudbound

Hong Chau, Downsizing

Tiffany Haddish, Girls Trip

Holly Hunter, The Big Sick

Allison Janney, I, Tonya

Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird

Octavia Spencer, The Shape of Water

What’s with all the Mary J. Blige love? She’s barely in that movie. But whatever. The narrative is the narrative.

Hong Chau is good, and if anything I think of that as a makeup for Inherent Vice (not that she’d ever have been nominated for that). No way she gets anywhere without SAG. But they have been pushing her as the best thing about that movie, so anything’s possible. And she is the best thing about that movie, so there’s that too.

Hunter, Janney and Metcalf are basically locked in at this point. Haddish seems very likely (and good for her). And Octavia Spencer — I don’t get it, she seems to be doing the same performance every time, but they seem to like that performance, so what do I know? At least here it seems more well-rounded than the last two she was nominated for.

Would love to see some sort of Novitiate love for Julianne Nicholson or Melissa Leo, but that won’t happen. If they really love Darkest Hour, Kristin Scott Thomas could come along with Oldman, but that feels unlikely. That character was woefully underdeveloped. Julie Walters was awesome in Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, but I don’t see that happening.

Again, wait on the guilds. Some films are gonna need acting nominations to justify being Best Picture contenders.


The Big Sick

Get Out

Lady Bird

The Post

The Shape of Water

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Makes sense. I suspect your category is in here. Not even gonna think about what else can get on (though Darkest Hour springs to mind, along with Phantom Thread and I, Tonya). But I’m totally happy with all of these.


Call Me by Your Name

The Disaster Artist

Molly’s Game



WONDER. Wow. The other four, of course. But Wonder. That’s interesting, and I’m actually quite pleased. Doubt it’ll get anywhere. But you know, there’s always these stray ones. This is a year where Original is stronger than Adapted. Which I love. That fifth spot is open, so now it’ll be which movie gets on in its stead.


Baby Driver

Blade Runner 2049


The Post

The Shape of Water

Well Baby Driver and Dunkirk were obvious. This is wholly dependent on the guild and the Best Picture nominees. So not a whole lot to talk about here.


Blade Runner 2049

Call Me By Your Name



The Shape of Water


And here we get to watch Deakins lose again. Shit happens though, right? 14 times?

Dunkirk, Blade Runner, Shape of Water, probably Call Me By Your Name. All very likely. Mudbound, maybe. The guild will be important there.

I wish Phantom Thread had a shot, but Anderson shot that himself and there’s no credited DP, so I keep hearing that it’s not eligible. But I’d straight up give him that award right now if I could.

Darkest Hour seems a likely candidate. Wonderstruck could sneak on because of the black and white, but that movie’s so lost who the hell knows. This is the only category for it. The Post — ehh. Mother would be interesting, but I doubt it. Production Design maybe. Greatest Showman is a wild card in a bunch of these categories, too.


Beauty and the Best

Blade Runner 2049


Murder on the Orient Express

Phantom Thread

The Shape of Water

Yes to all of these. The Post too. The Greatest Showman (sight unseen), Darkest Hour. What else am I missing? Seems like your category is coming from there.

Mudbound? Maybe. The Beguiled? Ehh. The guild will hold a lot of sway, but I suspect your category will come from above.


Beauty and the Beast

Blade Runner 2049

Phantom Thread

The Shape of Water

Wonder Woman

Just fucking give it to Phantom Thread already.

Also, sneaky Wonder Woman nomination, since it’s period.

This category never goes they way you think. So put little stock into this outside of the major, major choices.


Beauty and the Beast

Darkest Hour

I, Tonya

The Shape of Water


We’ll get a shortlist for this, so this one doesn’t matter.


Blade Runner 2049


The Shape of Water

Thor: Ragnarok

War for the Planet of the Apes

Wonder Woman

Yes, those were the most popular films of the longlisted choices. So of course. Let’s wait for the shortlist before we start talking about this one.


The Breadwinner


Despicable Me 3

The LEGO Batman Movie

Loving Vincent

Despicable… goddamnit. What the fuck, guys?

They do this, though. Last year they nominated fucking Trolls.

The Breadwinner, Coco and Loving Vincent are all totally on. Lego Batman is 50/50. Cars is in there — I mean, we’ve covered this at length already. You guys know where this one stands.


Blade Runner 2049

Darkest Hour


Phantom Thread

The Post

The Shape of Water

Hans Zimmer is on here twice. John Williams, of course. Jonny Greenwood never gets Oscar love (if he’s even fucking eligible). Score is Score. Let it go however it’s gonna go.


“Evermore,” from Beauty and the Beast

“Mystery of Love,” from Call Me By Your Name

“Remember Me,” from Coco

“Stand Up for Something,” from Marshall

“This Is Me,” from The Greatest Showman

This is meaningless. I don’t even have the eligibles yet. Just nod and move on until we see more.


Mckenna Grace, Gifted

Dafne Keen, Logan

Brooklynn Prince, The Florida Project

Millicent Simmonds, Wonderstruck

Jacob Tremblay, Wonder

Dafne Keen is the only one that made is all go, “Holy shit.” The rest are all good. But she doesn’t lose this in a just vote.



Lady Bird


The Post

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri


Could have sworn Get Out would be on here when I saw that category title. But these five make sense. They actually went with the intent of the category. So that’s cool.


Baby Driver


Thor: Ragnarok

War for the Planet of the Apes

Wonder Woman

I mean, sure. Surprised Dunkirk wasn’t considered action, given the loose criteria here. But these five do fit what I believe to be the purpose of the category.


The Big Sick

The Disaster Artist

Girls Trip

I, Tonya

Lady Bird

Yes, these work.


Steve Carell, Battle of the Sexes

James Franco, The Disaster Artist

Chris Hemsworth, Thor: Ragnarok

Kumail Nanjiani , The Big Sick

Adam Sandler, The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)

Sandler is murky, but whatever. Carell — sure? The other three, absolutely.


Tiffany Haddish, Girls Trip

Zoe Kazan, The Big Sick

Margot Robbie, I, Tonya

Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird

Emma Stone, Battle of the Sexes

So she can be supporting in the main category but lead here? Or do they not differentiate from role size down here in the remedial categories?

One of these nominees is in a coma for half the movie!


Blade Runner 2049

Get Out


The Shape of Water

Couldn’t even get a fifth one on there? Not even a token It Comes at Night or Alien: Covenant nomination?


BPM (Beats Per Minute)

A Fantastic Woman

First They Killed My Father

In the Fade

The Square


People really loving that BPM, huh? Okay. This is the basic bitch Foreign Language category. You can’t expect them to not go this way. The shortlist will tear this to shreds, so it won’t matter.

– – – – – – – – – –

And now for the TV nominations… which I can care less about.

Best Drama Series

American Gods

The Crown

Game of Thrones

The Handmaid’s Tale

Stranger Things

This Is Us


Best Actor in a Drama Series

Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us

Paul Giamatti, Billions

Freddie Highmore, Bates Motel

Ian McShane, American Gods

Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul

Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan

These are all actors.

Best Actress in a Drama Series

Caitriona Balfe, Outlander

Christine Baranski, The Good Fight

Claire Foy, The Crown

Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black

Elisabeth Moss, The Handmaid’s Tale

Robin Wright, House of Cards

As long as Tatiana Maslany is eligible for that show, she should win. But she won’t, because Elisabeth Moss will win.

Best Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Bobby Cannavale, Mr. Robot

Asia Kate Dillon, Billions

Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones

David Harbour, Stranger Things

Delroy Lindo, The Good Fight

Michael McKean, Better Call Saul


Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Gillian Anderson, American Gods

Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones

Ann Dowd, The Handmaid’s Tale

Cush Jumbo, The Good Fight

Margo Martindale, Sneaky Pete

Chrissy Metz, This Is Us

This category is one of “Oh, so (that person) is on (that show). Okay.”

Also, someone is named Cush.

Best Comedy Series

The Big Bang Theory



The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Modern Family


I’ve heard of most of these.

Best Actor in a Comedy Series

Anthony Anderson, Black-ish

Aziz Ansari, Master of None

Hank Azaria, Brockmire

Ted Danson, The Good Place

Thomas Middleditch, Silicon Valley

Randall Park, Fresh Off the Boat

Randall Park or Anthony Anderson. That is all.

Best Actress in a Comedy Series

Kristen Bell, The Good Place

Alison Brie, GLOW

Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Sutton Foster, Younger

Ellie Kemper, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Constance Wu, Fresh Off the Boat

Constance Wu should win No idea what at least two of those shows are.

Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Tituss Burgess, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Walton Goggins, Vice Principals

Sean Hayes, Will & Grace

Marc Maron, GLOW

Kumail Nanjiani, Silicon Valley

Ed O’Neill, Modern Family

I like the majority of these people.

Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory

Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Betty Gilpin, GLOW

Jenifer Lewis, Black-ish

Alessandra Mastronardi, Master of None

Rita Moreno, One Day at a Time

What the fuck is this Mrs. Maisel show? (That was rhetorical. Don’t tell me. I don’t care.)

Where the hell did Rita Moreno come from? I mean, it’s cool and all, but let’s not pretend like this random ass category matters enough for a token veteran nomination.

Best Limited Series

American Vandal

Big Little Lies


Feud: Bette and Joan


The Long Road Home

Who drew the goddamn dicks?

Best Movie Made for TV


I Am Elizabeth Smart

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

Sherlock: The Lying Detective

The Wizard of Lies

There should be a category “Best Film Made for Steve,” and they should never tell us who Steve is.

Best Actor in a Movie Made for TV or Limited Series

Jeff Daniels, Godless

Robert De Niro, The Wizard of Lies

Ewan McGregor, Fargo

Jack O’Connell, Godless

Evan Peters, American Horror Story: Cult

Bill Pullman, The Sinner

Jimmy Tatro, American Vandal

That’s a lot of people.

Best Actress in a Movie Made for TV or Limited Series

Jessica Biel, The Sinner

Alana Boden, I Am Elizabeth Smart

Carrie Coon, Fargo

Nicole Kidman, Big Little Lies

Jessica Lange, Feud: Bette and Joan

Reese Witherspoon, Big Little Lies

I’m all here for the Carrie Coon love.

Best Supporting Actor in a Movie Made for TV or Limited Series

Johnny Flynn, Genius

Benito Martinez, American Crime

Alfred Molina, Feud: Bette and Joan

Alexander Skarsgård, Big Little Lies

David Thewlis, Fargo

Stanley Tucci, Feud: Bette and Joan

Tucci! The Tucc!

No, but seriously, it’s Thewlis, right?

Best Supporting Actress in a Movie Made for TV or Limited Series

Judy Davis, Feud: Bette and Joan

Laura Dern, Big Little Lies

Jackie Hoffman, Feud: Bette and Joan

Regina King, American Crime

Michelle Pfeiffer, The Wizard of Lies

Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Fargo

Rooting for Winstead, and not just because it’s the only one in the category I’ve seen.

Best Talk Show



Jimmy Kimmel Live!

The Late Late Show with James Corden

The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen

Really? This is a category?

What the fuck is Harry? Is it Harry Connick Jr? I was gonna make a joke that it was and realized that it was a legitimate possibility. Not even gonna look it up, because at this point I’m certain this is Harry Connick Jr.

Best Animated Series


Bob’s Burgers

BoJack Horseman

Danger & Eggs

Rick and Morty

The Simpsons

Anything but Rick and Morty

Best Unstructured Reality Series

Born This Way

Ice Road Truckers


Live PD

Ride with Norman Reedus

Teen Mom

I feel better about myself the less I’ve heard of in this category. Feeling pretty good. I know three, but two of them are because they’ve been around for like ten years and I came across them back when I was more exposed to that shit.

Still wish this category didn’t exist, though.

Best Structured Reality Series

The Carbonaro Effect

Fixer Upper

The Profit

Shark Tank

Undercover Boss

Who Do You Think You Are?

What the fuck does that… you know what? I don’t even fucking care. Just burn all of it down.

Best Reality Competition Series

America’s Got Talent


Dancing with the Stars

Project Runway

RuPaul’s Drag Race

The Voice

Why are we still here?

Best Reality Show Host

Ted Allen, Chopped

Tyra Banks, America’s Got Talent

Tom Bergeron, Dancing with the Stars

Cat Deeley, So You Think You Can Dance

Joanna and Chip Gaines, Fixer Upper

RuPaul, RuPaul’s Drag Race


– – – – – – – – –

Are we done? Holy fuck, thank god. What the hell was that?

Anyway, those are your nominees. The upside is, they’re early, so you get to see where things are likely headed, and the downside is  they’re early, so there’s literally nothing else to talk about at the moment.

So here we are.

I’ve got more shortlists coming up as I can write them. Then next week we get into the year-end stuff.


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