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  • Writer's pictureRobyn

2021 Oscar Nominations: Final Predictions

What a year. Last February, when I screamed and jumped off my couch following Parasite's dark horse Best Picture win, I could not have imagined that only weeks later the world would be swallowed up by a deadly virus. 2020 was a devastating year for the film industry and film fans alike, with jobs decimated, movies delayed into oblivion or dumped on streaming platforms, and many movie-goers reluctant to spend loads of money to watch stuff on their small screens at home.

This has felt like the awards season that never ends (it goes on and on my friend!) It's also a fairly bleak year for film, with many of the Oscar contenders small pictures that unearth the darkest and most heart-shattering crevices of society. These are films that tell America who she is... and it's not always pretty. As I like to say, the film about the woman who lives in her van is the most life-affirming of all the potential Best Picture candidates. Here are my major category final predictions for the 2021 Academy Award nominations:

Best Picture

  1. Nomadland

  2. The Trial of the Chicago 7

  3. Minari

  4. Promising Young Woman

  5. Mank

  6. The Father

  7. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

  8. Sound of Metal

  9. Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

  10. Judas and the Black Messiah


  1. Chloe Zhao (Nomadland)

  2. Aaron Sorkin (The Trial of the Chicago 7)

  3. Lee Isaac Chung (Minari)

  4. Emerald Fennell (A Promising Young Woman)

  5. David Fincher (Mank)

Actor in a Leading Role

  1. Chadwick Boseman (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom)

  2. Riz Ahmed (Sound of Metal)

  3. Anthony Hopkins (The Father)

  4. Gary Oldman (Mank)

  5. Mads Mikkelsen (Another Round)

Actress in a Leading Role

  1. Carey Mulligan (Promising Young Woman)

  2. Frances McDormand (Nomadland)

  3. Viola Davis (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom)

  4. Andra Day (The United States v. Billie Holiday)

  5. Vanessa Kirby (Pieces of a Woman)

Actor in a Supporting Role

  1. Daniel Kaluuya (Judas and the Black Messiah)

  2. Sacha Baron Cohen (The Trial of the Chicago 7)

  3. Leslie Odom Jr. (One Night in Miami...)

  4. Paul Raci (Sound of Metal)

  5. David Strathairn (Nomadland)

Actress in a Supporting Role

  1. Youn Yuh-jung (Minari)

  2. Olivia Colman (The Father)

  3. Maria Bakalova (Borat Subsequent Moviefilm)

  4. Jodie Foster (The Mauritanian)

  5. Glenn Close (Hillbilly Elegy)

Writing (Original Screenplay)

  1. The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Aaron Sorkin)

  2. Promising Young Woman (Emerald Fennell)

  3. Minari (Lee Isaac Chung)

  4. Mank (Jack Fincher)

  5. Palm Springs (Andy Siara)

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

  1. Nomadland (Chloe Zhao)

  2. One Night in Miami... (Kemp Powers)

  3. The Father (Florian Zeller)

  4. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (Ruben Santiago-Hudson)

  5. Borat Subsequent Moviefilm (Sacha Baron Cohen, Anthony Hines, Dan Swimer, Peter Baynham, Erica Rivinoja, Dan Mazer, Jena Friedman, Lee Kern)

Best Animated Feature

  1. Soul

  2. Wolfwalkers

  3. Onward

  4. The Croods: The New Age

  5. Over the Moon

Documentary (Feature)

  1. Time

  2. Crip Camp

  3. Dick Johnson is Dead

  4. Welcome to Chechnya

  5. Collective

International Feature Film

  1. Another Round (Denmark)

  2. Dear Comrades! (Russia)

  3. Collective (Romania)

  4. La Llorona (Guatemala)

  5. Quo Vadis, Aida? (Bosnia)


  1. Nomadland (Joshua James Richards)

  2. Mank (Erik Messerschmidt)

  3. The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Phedon Papamichael)

  4. News of the World (Dariusz Wolski)

  5. Judas and the Black Messiah (Sean Bobbitt)


  1. Nomadland (Chloe Zhao)

  2. The Father (Yorgos Lamprimos)

  3. Sound of Metal (Mikkel E. G. Nielsen)

  4. Minari (Harry Yoon)

  5. The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Alan Baumgarten)

Best Production Design

  1. Mank

  2. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

  3. News of the World

  4. Tenet

  5. Mulan

Best Costume Design

  1. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

  2. Emma

  3. Mank

  4. Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn

  5. Mulan

Makeup and Hairstyling

  1. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

  2. Pinocchio

  3. Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)

  4. Hillbilly Elegy

  5. Mank

Music (Original Score)

  1. Soul (Jon Batiste, Trent Reznor, and Atticus Ross)

  2. Minari (Emile Mosseri)

  3. Mank (Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross)

  4. The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Daniel Pemberton)

  5. The News of the World (James Newton Howard)

Music (Original Song)

  1. “Husavik” (Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga

  2. “Speak Now” (One Night in Miami...)

  3. “Io Sì (Seen)” (The Life Ahead (La Vita Davanti a Se)

  4. “Fight For You” (Judas and the Black Messiah)

  5. “Rain Song” (Minari)

Best Visual Effects

  1. Tenet

  2. The Midnight Sky

  3. Mank

  4. Soul

  5. Welcome to Chechnya

Best Sound

  1. Sound of Metal

  2. Tenet

  3. News of the World

  4. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

  5. Nomadland

Best Animated Short

  1. Out

  2. If Anything Happens I Love You

  3. Opera

  4. Burrow

  5. Genius Loci

Best Documentary Short Film

  1. A Love Song for Latasha

  2. Abortion Helpline, This is Lisa

  3. Hunger Ward

  4. A Concerto Is a Conversation

  5. Do Not Split

Best Live Action Short Film

  1. The Human Voice

  2. The Letter Room

  3. Feeling Through

  4. Two Distant Strangers

  5. Da Yie


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