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2004 MTV Video Music Awards: Winner Predictions

Oh, MTV, what has happened to you? This year’s list of Video Music Award nominees reads more like a TRL line-up.

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2004 MTV Video Music Awards: Winner Predictions

Oh, MTV, what has happened to you? This year’s list of Video Music Award nominees reads more like a TRL line-up. But what do you expect from a channel that doesn’t even play music videos anymore? In the past year, Fuse (formerly MuchMusic) has bitten a chunk out of MTV’s core audience. And guess what they’re peddling? Music. MTV2, MTV’s supposed all-music-all-the-time offshoot, is snuggled comfortably right next to Fuse on my cable box, but quite honestly, I can’t tell the difference anymore. It’s blocks of bad hip-hop videos vs. blocks of bad hard rock videos. Hmmm…I think I’ll watch Best Week Ever instead. What’s more, MTV is now paying record labels for exclusive rights to videos by certain artists. Looks like another shot in the foot to an industry bent on rendering itself irrelevant. That’s right, kids, you’ll eat what you’re served, and don’t ask any questions. (Now, if only I could stop watching VH1’s I Love the ’90s I’d sit down and try to remember the last time I saw a video on that channel.) The VMA ceremony is being held in Miami for the first time this year so things should be sufficiently gross. Maybe Prince will make out with Usher and André 3000!

VIDEO OF THE YEAR

OutKast, “Hey Ya!” (Will Win)

Usher featuring Lil Jon & Ludacris, “Yeah!”

Britney Spears, “Toxic”

D12, “My Band”

Jay-Z, “99 Problems” (Should Win)

Sal Cinquemani: I have no idea what D12 is doing here. Does Eminem own shares of MTV or something?

Ed Gonzalez: Black girls screaming for Outkast the way white chicks used to scream for the Beatles? The subversion ends there, and while Outkast are the frontrunners, MTV could go out on a limb and reward “99 Problems,” Mark Romanek’s iconographic representation of black culture, because it is the best video of the year.

SC: It’s hard to believe, but Britney Spears has never won a VMA.

Alexa Camp: She does have a few STDs though.

BEST MALE VIDEO

Usher featuring Lil Jon & Ludacris, “Yeah!” (Will Win)

Jay-Z, “99 Problems”

Justin Timberlake, “Senorita”

Kanye West featuring Syleena Johnson, “All Falls Down” (Should Win)

Prince, “Musicology”

AC: This one is Usher’s to lose.

SC: And hopefully he will. Has MTV even played “Musicology”?

EG: I don’t believe for a second that a prepubescent Prince ever used a vacuum cleaner for a microphone, and since this award should go to a clip that challenges and reinvents the way the male is represented in the music video medium, Kanye West should win (sorry Jay-Z!).

SC: I never really paid attention to Kanye’s video until just now. It’s very good.

AC: Is that Dionne from Clueless?

EG: In the end, a Gen Y-pandering MTV will no doubt give this one to Usher for shaking his bon-bon.

BEST FEMALE VIDEO

Britney Spears, “Toxic” (Will and Should Win)

Beyoncé, “Naughty Girl”

Alicia Keys, “If I Ain’t Got You”

Jessica Simpson, “With You”

Christina Aguilera, “The Voice Within”

SC: Well, isn’t this one giant collection of crap. Ms. Keys was nominated for the wrong video. “You Don’t Know My Name” should have been a lock—and a win.

AC: Seriously. What a bunch of has-beens. The average age in this category is 57. Where’s Hilary Duff?

EG: Though I prefer the Britney video where she kills herself and never makes music again, her “Toxic” is a nifty little video installation companion to Joseph Kahn’s Torque. Xtina’s “The Voice Within” ain’t stripped down, it’s just plain lazy, and no amount of fierceness can save Beyoncé’s “Chicago in En Vogue Minor.”

SC: Yeah, and what’s with all that twitching?

Eric Henderson: She must have just heard that Jessica Simpson song. Same thing happens to me every time I hear it.

AC: Nice of you to join us Eric.

BEST GROUP VIDEO

No Doubt, “It’s My Life”

D12, “My Band” (Will Win)

Hoobastank, “The Reason”

Maroon 5, “This Love” (Should Win)

Good Charlotte, “Hold On”

SC: “Hold On” is a glorified Public Service Announcement.

AC: Yeah, I hate Wilson Phillips.

EG: If they’re solely rewarding a band’s ability to visually interact with each other, No Doubt and Hoobastank should win here. Pity then that their videos are lame hipster wank jobs. As for Good Charlotte’s “Hold On,” it makes me want to kill myself, and that can’t be a good thing. D12 will win because it’s the only video here that’s up for the top prize, but Maroon 5’s “This Love” is the most fuckable clip of the year.

EH: Choke. More like the most rape-worthy.

AC: Does that mean you guys want to fuck the video? That’s kinky. Even for Ed.

BEST RAP VIDEO

Jay-Z, “99 Problems” (Will and Should Win)

D12, “My Band”

50 Cent featuring Snoop Dogg & G-Unit, “P.I.M.P.” Remix

Ludacris, “Stand Up”

Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz featuring Ying Yang Twins, “Get Low”

SC: It’s between Jay-Z and Ludacris, who’s proving himself to be the male Missy when it comes to freaky videomaking.

AC: Speaking of which, where is “Pass That Dutch”?

EG: The real tragedy of this category is not that Missy is noticeably absent but that a video as beautiful as “99 Problems” has to compete with the likes of “P.I.M.P.” and “Get Low.” Morally and aesthetically, these acts represent everything that Jay-Z and Mark Romanek are trying to rectify. Lucky for pop culture, Jay-Z will win this battle.

BEST R&B VIDEO

Usher, “Burn”

Alicia Keys, “If I Ain’t Got You” (Will Win)

Brandy featuring Kanye West, “Talk About Our Love”

Beyoncé, “Me, Myself and I” (Should Win)

R. Kelly, “Step in the Name of Love”

EG: Poor Usher, living all alone in his multi-million dollar pad with no girlfriend to sit on his Oriental decor. Equally ridiculous is Brandy’s color-starved domestic melodrama, R. Kelly’s wholesome boat trip, and Beyoncé’s Midnight Love identity crisis. Because the “You” in Alicia Keys’s video refers both to a guy and a piano, MTV will likely reward the singer with a moon man, ostensibly because they’ll prefer her complex double entendre to Usher’s insatiable fire metaphor.

SC: I actually like “Me, Myself and I.” Four Beyoncés are always better than one.

AC: She should just clone herself and give Kelly and Michelle the boot on the next Destiny’s Child record.

EH: R. Kelly’s dance partner’s great big maternal thighs are the most compelling single element in this line-up. We should all leave him alone, since it’s obvious he prefers women cut from a more mature cloth.

BEST HIP-HOP VIDEO

Outkast, “Hey Ya!” (Will Win)

Black Eyed Peas, “Hey Mama”

Kanye West featuring Syleena Johnson, “All Falls Down” (Should Win)

Nelly featuring P. Diddy and Murphy Lee, “Shake Ya Tailfeather”

Chingy featuring Ludacris and Snoop Dogg, “Holidae In”

SC: Can someone please explain the difference between Best Rap Video and Best Hip-Hop Video? Actually, nevermind. I don’t care.

EH: I think it used to be the line between what soccer moms will and won’t tolerate on the SUV ride home, but I’m not sure anymore.

EG: Yeah, I can’t tell the difference either. All I know is that Nelly needs to hop on the next train out of the Latin ghetto and take Justin Timberlake with him.

AC: “Shake Ya Tailfeather” is like a dance interpretation of our music video forum.

BEST DANCE VIDEO

Usher featuring Lil Jon & Ludacris, “Yeah!” (Will Win)

Black Eyed Peas, “Hey Mama”

Beyoncé, “Naughty Girl”

Britney Spears, “Toxic”

Missy Elliott, “I’m Really Hot” (Should Win)

EG: Do they vote for the video with the best dancing or do they vote for the video that makes you want to dance the most? Missy. Missy. Missy. But since she doesn’t play on KTU, or isn’t mixed by DJ Scribble for his Jersey Shore contingency, I suppose this one is Usher’s to lose.

AC: Are any of these actually “dance” videos? Maybe “Toxic.” I guess that should win by default.

SC: “Toxic” embodies everything that was wrong with music videos from 1999 until 2003: too much greenscreen and too much Joseph Kahn.

AC: And not enough Taylor Dayne.

EH: The house renaissance is truly over. (Sob.)

BEST ROCK VIDEO

Jet, “Are You Gonna Be My Girl” (Should Win)

The Darkness, “I Believe in a Thing Called Love” (Will Win)

Hoobastank, “The Reason”

Evanescence, “My Immortal”

Linkin Park, “Breaking the Habit”

SC: Jet’s video is simple and inventive. That’s my pick.

EH: Why do I get the feeling Justin Hawkins of The Darkness got plastic surgery with the intention of making himself uglier? I think their mission is to put the “ick” back into dick rock.

AC: I just don’t get The Darkness. Am I missing something?

EG: After seeing The Darkness video, I somehow can’t get the image of Tiny Tim touching himself out of my head. Why would MTV want to reward a provocation like this?

BEST POP VIDEO

Britney Spears, “Toxic” (Will Win)

Jessica Simpson, “With You”

Hilary Duff, “Come Clean”

No Doubt, “It’s My Life” (Should Win)

Avril Lavigne, “Don’t Tell Me”

SC: This is Britney’s to lose. And hopefully she’ll lose it to No Doubt.

AC: Just like her virginity.

EH: Best Popped Cherry.

BEST NEW ARTIST

Jet, “Are You Gonna Be My Girl”

Maroon 5, “This Love”

JoJo, “Leave (Get Out)”

Kanye West featuring Syleena Johnson, “All Falls Down” (Will and Should Win)

Yellowcard, “Ocean Avenue”

The Darkness, “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”

AC: You know, even though I don’t like The Darkness, I love Michael Bolton. Does that count?

SC: I think the director of “Ocean Avenue” saw Run Lola Run and Memento a few too many times…and then he got high…and then he made a music video…and then it got nominated for two VMAs.

EG: And then JoJo ate Hilary Duff. God, how many movies have I seen with that monster in it?

EH: The JoJo video is precious. Little tyke thinks she’s accrued the sort of life experience that would give her head-jerks and hand-to-the-sky testifying some measure of depth. If only Dakota Fanning had made a video, there’d be a real contest.

MTV2 AWARD

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Maps” (Will Win)

Elephant Man, “Pon De River”

Yellowcard, “Ocean Avenue”

Twista featuring Kanye West and Jamie Foxx, “Slow Jamz”

Franz Ferdinand, “Take Me Out”

Modest Mouse, “Float On” (Should Win)

SC: What’s the purpose of this category?

EG: Has anyone noticed that Franz Ferdinand’s “Take Me Out” is a video interpretation of the Pixies’ Doolittle album cover? Regardless: I know that “Maps” is the best song in the category, but Modest Mouse’s dreamy “Float On” has the cute cutout sheep.

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY IN A VIDEO

Usher featuring Lil Jon & Ludacris, “Yeah!” (Will Win)

Black Eyed Peas, “Hey Mama”

Missy Elliott, “I’m Really Hot” (Should Win)

Beyoncé, “Naughty Girl”

Sean Paul, “Like Glue”

AC: Usher should win for “Yeah!”

SC: And Michael Jackson should accept the award.

EG: Yeah.

BREAKTHROUGH VIDEO

Franz Ferdinand, “Take Me Out”

Modest Mouse, “Float On”

Kanye West featuring Syleena Johnson, “All Falls Down”

New Found Glory, “All Downhill From Here”

White Stripes, “The Hardest Button to Button” (Will and Should Win)

Steriogram, “Walkie Talkie Man”

SC: “Take Me Out,” “Float On,” and “All Downhill From Here” will cancel each other out, giving the White Stripes a worthy win. They’re proving themselves to be quite the little video pioneers, aren’t they?

EG: It looks like it took Michel Gondry 20 years to make “Walkie Talkie Man,” but his musical math equation for the White Stripes’ less-is-more “The Hardest Button to Button” blows my mind every single time I see it.

EH: So does this category. Really, is there anyone shallow enough to not realize that MTV is straining for credibility here by tabbing the truly buzzworthy clips, but selling out to superstardom in the “Video of the Year” category.

BEST DIRECTION IN A VIDEO

Jay-Z, “99 Problems” (Director: Mark Romanek) (Will and Should Win)

No Doubt, “It’s My Life” (Director: David LaChapelle)

Outkast, “Hey Ya!” (Director: Bryan Barber)

The White Stripes, “The Hardest Button to Button” (Director: Michel Gondry)

Steriogram, “Walkie Talkie Man” (Director: Michel Gondry)

EG: Michel Gondry’s videos are those of a stoned algebra teacher. Mark Romanek’s videos are products of a sober, socially conscious poet and iconographer. I’m not high right now so I’m leaning toward the latter.

SC: If Johnny Cash’s “Hurt” can get nominated you’d think Loretta Lynn’s “Miss Being Mrs.” would get some recognition.

EH: The Gondry clips will probably cancel each other out, and LaChapelle’s incandescent starfuckery is getting a little bit tired.

BEST SPECIAL EFFECTS IN A VIDEO

Incubus, “Megalomaniac” (Will Win)

Outkast, “Hey Ya!”

The White Stripes, “The Hardest Button to Button”

Modest Mouse, “Float On”

Steriogram, “Walkie Talkie Man” (Should Win)

SC: Can the White Stripes really win here? Is it really special effects or is it just great editing?

EH: It’s amazing that videos like “The Hardest Button to Button” and “Walkie Talkie Man” can grab tech nominations by the score but still come up clippa non grata in the spotlight categories.

EG: “Walkie Talkie Man” should win.

BEST ART DIRECTION IN A VIDEO

Steriogram, “Walkie Talkie Man”

No Doubt, “It’s My Life” (Will Win)

Outkast, “Hey Ya!”

Alicia Keys, “You Don’t Know My Name”

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Maps” (Should Win)

EG: Again, “Walkie Talkie Man.”

SC: I’d be content to see either Alicia Keys or the Yeah Yeah Yeahs take this one home.

AC: Has anyone else noticed how popular the word “yeah” is this year?

BEST EDITING IN A VIDEO

Jay-Z, “99 Problems” (Should Win)

The White Stripes, “The Hardest Button to Button” (Will Win)

Jet, “Are You Gonna Be My Girl”

Simple Plan, “Perfect”

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Maps”

SC: Now this is what a major category ought to look like. “The Hardest Button to Button” is the obvious choice here, but something subtle (“99 Problems”) or even subtler yet (“Maps”) could steal.

EG: Romanek’s photo log for Jay-Z’s “99 Problems” wouldn’t have the effect that it does if the pages didn’t turn when they do.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY VIDEO

Jay-Z, “99 Problems” (Will and Should Win)

No Doubt, “It’s My Life”

Beyoncé, “Naughty Girl”

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, “Maps”

Christina Aguilera, “The Voice Within”

SC: It’s between “99 Problems” and “Maps,” two of the best videos of the year.

EG: If the folks at MTV don’t check off “99 Problems” then they’re just blind.

SC: Who votes for this shit anyway?

EH: I sure wouldn’t.

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Awards

2019 Oscar Nomination Predictions

How has Oscar royally screwed things up this year? Let us count the ways.

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Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

How has Oscar royally screwed things up this year? Let us count the ways. The hastily introduced and unceremoniously tabled (for now) “best popular film” Oscar. The impending commercial-break ghettoization of such categories as best cinematography and best film editing, but most certainly not best song and best animated feature. The abortive attempts to unveil Kevin Hart as the host not once, but twice, stymied by the online backlash over years-old anti-gay Twitter jokes and leading AMPAS to opt for George Glass as this year’s master of ceremonies. The strong-arming of its own membership to deter rank-and-file superstars from attending competing precursor award shows. If these end up being the last Oscars ever, and it’s starting to feel as though it should be, what a way to go out, right? Like the floating island of plastic in the Pacific, the cultural and political detritus of Oscar season has spread far beyond any previous rational estimates and will almost certainly outlive our functional presence on this planet. And really, when you think about it, what’s worse: The extinction of mankind or Bohemian Rhapsody winning the best picture Oscar? In that spirit, we press on.

Picture

Vice

There will be plenty of time, too much time, to go deep on the many ways Green Book reveals the flawed soul of your average, aged white liberal in America circa 2019. For now, let’s just admit that it’s as sure a nominee as The Favourite, Roma, and A Star Is Born. (There’s snackable irony in the fact that a movie called The Front Runner became very much not an Oscar front runner in a year that doesn’t appear to have a solid front runner.) And even though few seem to be predicting it for an actual win here, Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman has an almost spotless precursor track record, showing up almost across the board among the guilds. Predicting this category would’ve been easy enough when Oscar limited it to five films, but it’s strangely almost as easy this year to see where the line will cut off between five and 10. Adam McKay’s Vice may be without shame, but you don’t have to strain hard to see how people could mistake it for the film of the moment. Bohemian Rhapsody is certainly lacking in merit, but, much like our comrade in chief, Oscar has never been more desperate for people to like and respect him, and a hit is a hit. Except when it’s a Marvel movie, which is why Black Panther stands precariously on the category’s line of cutoff, despite the rabid enthusiasm from certain corners that will likely be enough to push it through.

Will Be Nominated: BlacKkKlansman, Black Panther, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Favourite, Green Book, Roma, A Star Is Born, and Vice

Closest Runners-Up: If Beale Street Could Talk and A Quiet Place

Should Be Nominated: BlacKkKlansman, Burning, First Reformed, Let the Sunshine In, and Zama

Best Director

Yorgos Lanthimos

Everyone can agree that Bohemian Rhapsody will be one of the best picture contenders that doesn’t get a corresponding best director nomination, but virtually all the other nominees we’re predicting have a shot. Including Peter-flashing Farrelly, whose predictably unsubtle work on Green Book (or, Don and Dumber) netted him a widely derided DGA nomination. The outrage over Farrelly’s presence there took some of the heat off Vice’s Adam McKay, but if any DGA contender is going to swap out in favor of Yorgos Lanthimos (for BAFTA favorite The Favourite), it seems likely to be McKay. As Mark Harris has pointed out, Green Book is cruising through this awards season in a lane of its own, a persistently well-liked, well-meaning, unchallenging throwback whose defiant fans are clearly in a fighting mood.

Will Be Nominated: Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Alfonso Cuarón (Roma), Peter Farrelly (Green Book), Yorgos Lanthimos (The Favourite), and Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman)

Closest Runners-Up: Ryan Coogler (Black Panther), Barry Jenkins (If Beale Street Could Talk), and Adam McKay (Vice)

Should Be Nominated: Lee Chang-dong (Burning), Claire Denis (Let the Sunshine In), Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman), Lucrecia Martel (Zama), and Paul Schrader (First Reformed)

Best Actress

Yalitza Aparicio

Had Fox Searchlight reversed their category-fraud strategizing and flipped The Favourite’s Olivia Coleman into supporting and Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone into lead, the five best actress slots would arguably have been locked down weeks, if not months, ago, unless Fox’s bet-hedging intuits some form of industry resistance to double female-led propositions. As it stands, there are four locks that hardly need mention and a slew of candidates on basically equal footing. Hereditary’s Toni Collette has become shrieking awards show junkies’ cause célèbre this year, though she actually has the critic awards haul to back them up, having won more of the regional prizes than anyone else. The same demographic backing Collette gave up hope long ago on Viola Davis being able to survive the Widows collapse, and yet there by the grace of BAFTA does she live on to fight another round. Elsie Fisher’s palpable awkwardness in Eighth Grade and winning awkwardness navigating the Hollywood circuit have earned her an almost protective backing. But we’re going out on a limb and calling it for the rapturously received Roma’s Yalitza Aparicio. Voters could, like us, find it not a particularly great performance and still parlay their good will for her into a nomination that’s there for the taking.

Will Be Nominated: Yalitza Aparicio (Roma), Glenn Close (The Wife), Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born), and Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)

Closest Runners-Up: Toni Collette (Hereditary), Viola Davis (Widows), and Elsie Fisher (Eighth Grade)

Should Be Nominated: Juliette Binoche (Let the Sunshine In), Toni Collette (Hereditary), Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Regina Hall (Support the Girls), and Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)

Actor

John David Washington

Take Toni Collette’s trophies thus far in the competition and double them. And then add a few more. That’s the magnitude of endorsements backing First Reformed’s Ethan Hawke. And his trajectory has the clear markings of an almost overqualified performance that, like Naomi Watts’s in Mulholland Drive, cinephiles decades from now will wonder how Oscar snubbed. If Pastor Ernst Toller and Sasha Stone are right and God is indeed watching us all and cares what the Academy Awards do, Hawke’s nomination will come at the expense of John David Washington, whose strength in the precursors thus far (SAG and Globe-nominated) is maybe the most notable bellwether of BlacKkKlansman’s overall strength. Because, as with the best actress category, the other four slots are basically preordained. Unlike with best actress, the bench of also-rans appears to be one solitary soul. A fitting place for Paul Schrader’s man against the world.

Will Be Nominated: Christian Bale (Vice), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), Viggo Mortensen (Green Book), and John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman)

Closest Runners-Up: Ethan Hawke (First Reformed)

Should Be Nominated: Yoo Ah-in (Burning), Ben Foster (Leave No Trace), Ethan Hawke (First Reformed), Meinhard Neumann (Western), and John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman)

Supporting Actress

Emily Blunt

Every Oscar prognosticator worth their bragging rights has spent the last couple weeks conspicuously rubbing their hands together about Regina King’s chances. The all-or-nothing volley that’s seen her sweep the critics’ awards and win the Golden Globe, and at the same time not even get nominations from within the industry—she was left off the ballot by both SAG and the BAFTAs—are narrative disruptions among a class that lives for narratives and dies of incorrect predictions. But despite the kvetching, King is as safe as anyone for a nomination in this category. It doesn’t hurt that, outside the pair of lead actresses from The Favourite, almost everyone else in the running this year feels like a 7th- or 8th-place also-ran. Except maybe Widows’s Elizabeth Debicki, whose fervent fans probably number just enough to land her…in 7th or 8th place. Vice’s Amy Adams is set to reach the Glenn Close club with her sixth Oscar nomination, and if she’d only managed to sustain the same loopy energy she brings to Lynne Cheney’s campaign-trail promise to keep her bra on, she’d deserve it. Which leaves a slot for supportive housewives Claire Foy, Nicole Kidman, and Emily Blunt. Even before the collapse of Mary Poppins Returns, we preferred Blunt’s chances in A Quiet Place.

Will Be Nominated: Amy Adams (Vice), Emily Blunt (A Quiet Place), Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk), Emma Stone (The Favourite), and Rachel Weisz (The Favourite)

Closest Runners-Up: Claire Foy (First Man), Nicole Kidman (Boy Erased), and Margot Robbie (Mary, Queen of Scots)

Should Be Nominated: Sakura Ando (Shoplifters), Zoe Kazan (The Ballad of Buster Scruggs), Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk), Rachel McAdams (Disobedience), and Haley Lu Richardson (Support the Girls)

Supporting Actor

Timothée Chalamet

The same people who’re curiously doubting Regina King’s nomination chances seem awfully assured that Sam Elliott’s moist-eyed, clearly canonical backing-the-truck-up scene in A Star Is Born assures him not only a nomination but probably the win. Elliott missed nominations with both the Golden Globes and BAFTA, and it was hard not to notice just how enthusiasm for A Star Is Born seemed to be cooling during the same period Oscar ballots were in circulation. Right around the same time, it started becoming apparent that BlacKkKlansman is a stronger draw than anyone thought, which means Adam Driver (who everyone was already predicting for a nod) won’t have to suffer the representationally awkward fate of being the film’s only nominee. Otherwise, the category appears to favor previously awarded actors (Mahershala Ali and Sam Rockwell) or should have been previously awarded actors (Chalamet). Leaving Michael B. Jordan to remain a should have been previously nominated actor.

Will Be Nominated: Mahershala Ali (Green Book), Timothée Chalamet (Beautiful Boy), Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman), Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), and Sam Rockwell (Vice)

Closest Runners-Up: Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born) and Michael B. Jordan (Black Panther)

Should Be Nominated: Timothée Chalamet (Beautiful Boy), Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman), Hugh Grant (Paddington 2); Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), and Steven Yeun (Burning)

Adapted Screenplay

Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Get beyond the best picture hopefuls BlacKkKlansman and If Beale Street Could Talk, which seem deservedly locked, and A Star Is Born, which is even more deservedly iffy, and you’ll see the screenwriters’ branch deciding just how seriously to take themselves this year, and whether they’re feeling like spiritually reliving the moments that found them nominating Bridesmaids and Logan. If so, then expect Crazy Rich Asians and Black Panther to factor in here. If they most definitely don’t feel frisky, then maybe the foursquare First Man has a shot at reversing its overall downward trajectory. If they’re seeking that “just right” middle ground, then Can You Ever Forgive Me? and The Death of Stalin are in.

Will Be Nominated: BlacKkKlansman, Can You Ever Forgive Me?, The Death of Stalin, If Beale Street Could Talk, and A Star Is Born

Closest Runners-Up: Black Panther, Crazy Rich Asians, and First Man

Should Be Nominated: BlacKkKlansman, First Man, Leave No Trace, The Grief of Others, and We the Animals

Original Screenplay

First Reformed

It’s not unusual for some of the year’s most acclaimed movies whose strength isn’t necessarily in their scripts to get nominated only in the screenwriting categories. First Reformed, which even some of its fiercest defenders admit can sometimes feel a bit like Paul Schrader’s “It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me” greatest-hits package, stands to be another of them. But it’ll be a close call, given the number of other equally vanguard options they’ll be weighing it against, like Sorry to Bother You, which arguably feels more urgently in the moment in form, Eighth Grade, which is more empathetically post-#MeToo, and even Cold War, which had a surprisingly strong showing with BAFTA. Given the quartet of assured best picture contenders in the mix, First Reformed is going to have to hold off all of them.

Will Be Nominated: The Favourite, First Reformed, Green Book, Roma, and Vice

Closest Runners-Up: Cold War, Eighth Grade, and Sorry to Bother You

Should Be Nominated: The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Bodied, First Reformed, Sorry to Bother You, and Western

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Awards

2018 Tony Nominations: Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical Lead, Followed by Angels in America

The Tony nominations were announced Tuesday morning, with Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants: the Musical leading the way with 12 nominations.

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2018 Tony Nominations: Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical Lead, Followed by Angels in America
Photo: Helen Maybanks

Nominations for the 72nd Tony Awards were announced this morning by Katharine McPhee and Leslie Odom Jr. Leading the pack with 12 nominations each is Mean Girls and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, followed by The Band’s Visit, Angels in America, and Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel, all three with 11. And with 10 nominations is Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two and the revival of My Fair Lady. The awards will be broadcast live from Radio City Music Hall on Sunday, June 10 on CBS.

See below for a full list of the nominations.

Best Book of a Musical
The Band’s Visit, Itamar Moses
Frozen, Jennifer Lee
Mean Girls, Tina Fey
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Kyle Jarrow

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Angels in America, Music: Adrian Sutton
The Band’s Visit, Music & Lyrics: David Yazbek
Frozen, Music & Lyrics: Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
Mean Girls, Music: Jeff Richmond, Lyrics: Nell Benjamin
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical, Music & Lyrics: Yolanda Adams, Steven Tyler & Joe Perry of Aerosmith, Sara Bareilles, Jonathan Coulton, Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, The Flaming Lips, Lady Antebellum, Cyndi Lauper & Rob Hyman, John Legend, Panic! at the Disco, Plain White T’s, They Might Be Giants, T.I., Domani & Lil’C

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play
Andrew Garfield, Angels in America
Tom Hollander, Travesties
Jamie Parker, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Mark Rylance, Farinelli and The King
Denzel Washington, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play
Glenda Jackson, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
Condola Rashad, Saint Joan
Lauren Ridloff, Children of a Lesser God
Amy Schumer, Meteor Shower

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical
Harry Hadden-Paton, My Fair Lady
Joshua Henry, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
Tony Shalhoub, The Band’s Visit
Ethan Slater, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical
Lauren Ambrose, My Fair Lady
Hailey Kilgore, Once On This Island
LaChanze, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
Katrina Lenk, The Band’s Visit
Taylor Louderman, Mean Girls
Jessie Mueller, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play
Anthony Boyle, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Michael Cera, Lobby Hero
Brian Tyree Henry, Lobby Hero
Nathan Lane, Angels in America
David Morse, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play
Susan Brown, Angels in America
Noma Dumezweni, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Deborah Findlay, The Children
Denise Gough, Angels in America
Laurie Metcalf, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical
Norbert Leo Butz, My Fair Lady
Alexander Gemignani, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
Grey Henson, Mean Girls
Gavin Lee, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Ari’el Stachel, The Band’s Visit

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical
Ariana DeBose, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
Renée Fleming, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
Lindsay Mendez, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
Ashley Park, Mean Girls
Diana Rigg, My Fair Lady

Best Scenic Design of a Play
Miriam Buether, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
Jonathan Fensom, Farinelli and The King
Christine Jones, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Santo Loquasto, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh
Ian MacNeil and Edward Pierce, Angels in America

Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Dane Laffrey, Once On This Island
Scott Pask, The Band’s Visit
Scott Pask, Finn Ross & Adam Young, Mean Girls
Michael Yeargan, My Fair Lady
David Zinn, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical

Best Costume Design of a Play
Jonathan Fensom, Farinelli and The King
Nicky Gillibrand, Angels in America
Katrina Lindsay, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Ann Roth, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
Ann Roth, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh

Best Costume Design of a Musical
Gregg Barnes, Mean Girls
Clint Ramos, Once On This Island
Ann Roth, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
David Zinn, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Catherine Zuber, My Fair Lady

Best Lighting Design of a Play
Neil Austin, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Paule Constable, Angels in America
Jules Fisher + Peggy Eisenhauer, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh
Paul Russell, Farinelli and The King
Ben Stanton, Junk

Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Kevin Adams, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Jules Fisher + Peggy Eisenhauer, Once On This Island
Donald Holder, My Fair Lady
Brian MacDevitt, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
Tyler Micoleau, The Band’s Visit

Best Sound Design of a Play
Adam Cork, Travesties
Ian Dickinson for Autograph, Angels in America
Gareth Fry, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Tom Gibbons, 1984
Dan Moses Schreier, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh

Best Sound Design of a Musical
Kai Harada, The Band’s Visit
Peter Hylenski, Once On This Island
Scott Lehrer, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel
Brian Ronan, Mean Girls
Walter Trarbach and Mike Dobson, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical

Best Direction of a Play
Marianne Elliott, Angels in America
Joe Mantello, Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
Patrick Marber, Travesties
John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
George C. Wolfe, Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh

Best Direction of a Musical
Michael Arden, Once On This Island
David Cromer, The Band’s Visit
Tina Landau, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Casey Nicholaw, Mean Girls
Bartlett Sher, My Fair Lady

Best Choreography
Christopher Gattelli, My Fair Lady
Christopher Gattelli, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
Steven Hoggett, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two
Casey Nicholaw, Mean Girls
Justin Peck, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel

Best Orchestrations
John Clancy, Mean Girls
Tom Kitt, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical
AnnMarie Milazzo and Michael Starobin, Once On This Island
Jamshied Sharifi, The Band’s Visit
Jonathan Tunick, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel

Best Play
The Children, Author: Lucy Kirkwood
Farinelli and The King, Author: Claire van Kampen
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two, Author: Jack Thorne
Junk, Author: Ayad Akhtar
Latin History for Morons, Author: John Leguizamo

Best Musical
The Band’s Visit
Frozen
Mean Girls
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical

Best Revival of a Play
Angels in America
Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women
Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh
Lobby Hero
Travesties

Best Revival of a Musical
My Fair Lady
Once On This Island
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel

Recipients of Awards and Honors in Non-competitive Categories

Special Tony Awards for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre
Chita Rivera
Andrew Lloyd Webber

Special Tony Awards
John Leguizamo
Bruce Springsteen

Regional Theatre Tony Award
La MaMa E.T.C. New York City

Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award
Nick Scandalios

Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre
Sara Krulwich
Bessie Nelson
Ernest Winzer Cleaners

Tony Nominations by Production
Mean Girls – 12
SpongeBob SquarePants: The Musical – 12
Angels in America – 11
The Band’s Visit – 11
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel – 11
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts One and Two – 10
My Fair Lady – 10
Eugene O’Neill’s The Iceman Cometh – 8
Once On This Island – 8
Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women – 6
Farinelli and The King – 5
Travesties – 4
Frozen – 3
Lobby Hero – 3
The Children – 2
Junk – 2
Summer: The Donna Summer Musical – 2
Children of a Lesser God – 1
Latin History for Morons – 1
Meteor Shower – 1
1984 – 1
Saint Joan – 1

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Awards

Oscar 2018 Winner Predictions

This is a complete list of our predicted winners at the 2018 Academy Awards with links to individual articles.

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Oscar 2018 Winner Predictions
Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures

This is a complete list of our predicted winners at the 2018 Academy Awards with links to individual articles.

Picture: Get Out
Director: Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water
Actor: Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour
Actress: Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Supporting Actor: Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Supporting Actress: Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
Original Screenplay: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Adapted Screenplay: Call Me by Your Name
Foreign Language: A Fantastic Woman
Documentary Feature: Icarus
Animated Feature Film: Coco
Documentary Short: Heaven Is a Traffic Jam on the 405
Animated Short: Revolting Rhymes
Live Action Short: The Eleven O’Clock
Film Editing: Dunkirk
Production Design: The Shape of Water
Cinematography: The Shape of Water
Costume Design: Phantom Thread
Makeup and Hairstyling: Darkest Hour
Score: The Shape of Water
Song: “Remember Me,” Coco
Sound Editing: Dunkirk
Sound Mixing: Dunkirk
Visual Effects: War for the Planet of the Apes

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