Every year before the Oscars I break down each of the 24 categories. I do this to familiarize everyone with the category, how it typically goes, voting-wise, historically and also as a precursor to my picks article, allowing me to get most of the heavy lifting out of the way beforehand.
What I do is go over each category’s history, give you all the previous winners and nominees, then list the current year’s nominees. And then I’ll go over how each of the guilds (if there is a corresponding guild) have voted, how that corresponds to the Oscars (some guilds mean a lot to how a category will play out. Others mean nothing). It’s basically everything you need to know in order to make an informed decision when you make your picks on Oscar night. And then I also rank the nominees at the end in terms of where I see them in terms of their likelihood to win. So you know what the general favorites are.
Today is Best Cinematography. This is your annual reminder that Roger Deakins has never won this category. (more…)
The ASC Awards were the second awards from last night we’re dealing with.
To start — they’re not the end-all, be-all for what’s gonna win the Oscar. Going back, they’re 13 for 30 all time. Of the past 24 years, they’re at an even 50%. 12/24. So they’re not something you need to listen to, necessarily.
This year in particular, it’s a pretty open category. You expect La La Land to be a favorite. You expect Silence and Arrival to get votes. Lion will get votes too. And I’m sure Moonlight will as well. It’s pretty open. This will be one of those categories you think about for a while, since so many of them feel practically locked already.
But anyway — your ASC winner this year was Grieg Fraser for Lion. Making that more of a favorite than it was. at this point that and La La Land have to be considered #1 and #2. We’ll see what BAFTA has to say next weekend (though they’re 50% over the past 20 years too, so that’s not gonna necessarily help us all that much).
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A lot of shortlists today. They’re coming fast and furious in time for nominations day next week. We begin with the American Society of Cinematographers and their nominations.
I haven’t particularly clocked what the best shot films were this year, and without a mental checklist of the big names of the past few years/most years (no Chivo, no Deakins) having films this year, I’m feeling like the list they chose is pretty much chalk. It feels like the obvious choices. But when pressing myself for alternatives, I couldn’t really think of a whole lot. I’m sure I could if I really thought about it, but on an initial attempt, I feel like they did okay.
Here are your ASC nominees: (more…)
So the Oscars were last night. A lot to talk about.
This is where we officially close the book on 2015 and move into 2016. I’ll try to give everything its due, but there was a point about an hour into the ceremony where I was just kind of over it and wanted to move on.
Overall it was a strange year. They really spread the wealth around. Mad Max won six, I think, and then The Revenant won 3 and Spotlight won 2 and then everything else only won 1. Crazy.
A lot of major stats fell and a lot of crazy shit happened. So let’s get into it: (more…)
My friend introduced me to this last year. I had no idea people did it, and I honestly think it’s the best way to pick the Oscars. Here’s how it works:
You take every category and rank all of the nominees in terms of order you think they’re going to win. If your #1 choice wins, you get 1 point. If #2 wins, you get to. Etc. And in the end, you tally your score up. And the lowest score (24 being the lowest) wins. It’s very simple, and the only time it gets confusing is if a tie happens, which is pretty rare in the history of the Academy (even though one did happen in 2012).
I prefer it because it’s based more on diagnosing the category than simply picking a winner. And diagnosing categories is my specialty.
Here’s my scorecard for this year’s Oscars: (more…)
My giant ballot article went up a few hours ago. This is the abridged version of that, for easy reference during the ceremony.
Here’s everything you should be taking, and what I’m taking. Very succinct, with cliff notes versions of all the categories.
And in a bit, I’m gonna post my scorecard for how I’m gonna rank myself on that. (Note: The rankings here may be slightly different from the ones I’m picking on the Scorecard.)
Here are the quick picks for the 88th Academy Awards: (more…)
Everything you need for Oscar night in one place. I make things as simple or as complex as you want them to be. You can read all 34,000 words like the insane person who wrote them, or you can skip through and look purely for my picks. It’s up to you. All I can promise is a respectable showing in your office/party pool and enough knowledge to make you look like you know what you’re talking about.
This article acts as both my own personal ballot as well as a tool for guessing what will win in every category. On the personal side, this acts as an extension of my Oscar Quest. I rank each category based on my thoughts having seen all the nominees and pick what I’d vote for if I were casting a ballot. That’s just for me. The practical side is more interesting. I run down every category, discuss the nominees in depth. I give you all the precursor information you need, then break down the categories. I tell you what’s most likely going to win, what its biggest competition is, and which nominee has a chance at sneaking up to surprise everyone with a win. I also link to all the category breakdowns I’ve been writing over the past couple of weeks (hint: you can click the name of each category to get to them) if you want every bit of information you can possibly get.
Then, at the very end, I plainly say “Here’s what I am taking on my ballot” and “Here is what you should take, because it is the safest and smartest decision, based on everything I’ve presented above.” I also color code everything, so you can easily find stuff. No one else goes this nuts with their coverage. Trust me. This is why you come to me. (more…)