• Robyn

Final Oscar Predictions 2021


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And thus concludes what feels like the longest Oscar season in all of history. Phew. Last spring, there were questions of whether there could even be a 2021 Academy Awards ceremony in the COVID era. Would enough films be released in time? Would they even be any good? Would First Cow, Emma, and The Invisible Man make the cut because they were the only films that had a theatrical run in 2020? Would this year be a gift to independent cinema?


Well, it turns out the latter was true to some degree. Yes, studios ended up delaying a number of big tent pole flicks while theaters remained closed in favor of striking deals with streaming platforms to release smaller films that would play better on laptops and TVs. Many of those films ended up this year's biggest honorees. (Sadly, though, Emma only received a couple of technical nominations.) But that's not the whole story.


During this long awards season I wrote about the prevalence of elder decline in film this past year, how loss of livelihood was a major storytelling theme in 2020, and how I believe movies have always had their place on the small screen. I analyzed the survivalism of the 2021 Oscar directing nominees and why AMPAS voters honored so many fresh faces this year among the nominated performances. I also highlighted how this year's major Academy Awards nominees shared a suspicion about American life. No matter what, though, Nomadland remains my favorite film of last year.


Here are my predictions for the 93nd Academy Awards:

Best Picture

Will win: Nomadland

Might upset: Nothing.

Should have been nominated: Never Rarely Sometimes Always

My Pick: Nomadland


Best Director

Will win: Chloe Zhao (Nomadland)

Might upset: No one... but there's a lot of love out there for Thomas Vinterberg (Another Round)

Should have been nominated: Eliza Hittman (Never Rarely Sometimes Always)

My Pick: Chloe Zhao (Nomadland)


Best Actor

Will win: Chadwick Boseman (Ma Rainey's Black Bottom)

Might upset: Anthony Hopkins (The Father)

Should have been nominated: Andy Samberg (Palm Springs)

My Pick: Anthony Hopkins (The Father)


Best Actress

Will win: Frances McDormand (Nomadland)

Might upset: If Frances McDormand, Viola Davis, and Carey Mulligan end up splitting the vote, I could see Vanessa Kirby (Pieces of a Woman) magically winning.

Should have been nominated: Sidney Flanigan (Never Rarely Sometimes Always)

My Pick: Frances McDormand (Nomadland)


Best Supporting Actor

Will win: Daniel Kaluuya (Judas and the Black Messiah)

Might upset: No one.

Should have been nominated: Will Patton (Minari) and David Strathairn (Nomadland)

My Pick: Paul Raci (Sound of Metal)


Best Supporting Actress

Will win: Youn Yuh-jung (Minari)

Might upset: Glenn Close (Hillbilly Elegy) or Maria Bakalova (Borat Subsequent Moviefilm)

Should have been nominated: Olivia Cooke (Sound of Metal)

My Pick: Youn Yuh-jung (Minari)

Best Original Screenplay

Will win: Promising Young Woman

Might upset: Trial of the Chicago 7

Should have been nominated: Palm Springs and Never Rarely Sometimes Always

My Pick: Minari


Best Adapted Screenplay

Will win: Nomadland

Might upset: The Father

Should have been nominated: Emma

My Pick: The Father


Best Film Editing:

Will win: Trial of the Chicago 7

Might upset: Sound of Metal

Should have been nominated: Palm Springs

My Pick: The Father


Best Animated Feature Film:

Will win: Soul

Might upset: Wolfwalkers

Should have been nominated: The Wolf House

My Pick: Wolfwalkers


Best International Feature:

Will win: Another Round

Might upset: Quo Vadis, Aida?

Should have been nominated: La Llorona

My Pick: n/a


Best Documentary – Feature:

Will win: Crip Camp

Might upset: My Octopus Teacher or Collective

Should have been nominated: The Painter & the Thief

My Pick: Crip Camp


Best Original Score:

Will win: Soul

Might upset: Minari

Should have been nominated: Promising Young Woman

My Pick: Soul


Best Original Song:

Will win: “Speak Now” (One Night in Miami)

Might upset: “Io Sì (Seen)” (The Life Ahead)

Should have been nominated: n/a

My Pick: "Husavik" (Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga)


Best Cinematography:

Will win: Nomadland

Might upset: Mank

Should have been nominated: Never Rarely Sometimes Always

My Pick: Nomadland


Best Production Design:

Will win: Mank

Might upset: Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Should have been nominated: Emma

My Pick: The Father


Best Costume Design:

Will win: Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Might upset: Mank

Should have been nominated: Birds of Prey

My Pick: Pinocchio


Best Makeup and Hairstyling:

Will win: Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Might upset: Pinocchio

Should have been nominated: Birds of Prey

My Pick: Pinocchio


Best Visual Effects:

Will win: Tenet

Might upset: The Midnight Sky

Should have been nominated: Soul

My Pick: Tenet


Best Sound:

Will win: Sound of Metal

Might upset: Tenet

Should have been nominated: n/a

My Pick: Sound of Metal


THE BEST OF THE REST


Best Animated Short Film: If Anything Happens I Love You

Best Documentary – Short Subject: A Concerto is a Conversation

Best Live Action Short Film: Two Distant Strangers





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