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2016 Oscar Nomination Predictions

Every year, Oscar bloggers put on a pretty good show in pointing out how, unlike all previous years, this year is truly a wild, unpredictable free-for-all.

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2016 Oscar Nomination Predictions
Photo: The Weinstein Company

Every year, Oscar bloggers put on a pretty good show in pointing out how, unlike all previous years (which were inevitably forgone conclusions long before the ballots were even tallied), this year is truly a wild, unpredictable free-for-all. Maybe it’s only an affectation that allows them an opportunity to furtively inflate their own sense of accomplishment when they end up nailing at least 85 percent of the eventual nominees. But damned if this isn’t one of those years where you can at least forgive the indulgence.

Every day for the last week has seen some guild slate or another either kill or revive almost every film’s chances at least once, each twist and turn cueing a chorus of “I told you so” from those momentarily proven right. “You see? I told you Carol was too cold and cerebral.” “No way they’re going to be able to restrain themselves from nominating Star Wars: The Force Awakens when it’s slaying box-office records.” “I knew you were all underestimating how much people loved Ex Machina when it was literally the only quality studio film in theaters for a three-month span.”

While it would be an exaggeration to categorize all this sound and fury about something signifying next to nothing “fun,” at the very least the hubbub this Oscar year offers welcome respite from the grinding monotony of the presidential race. Though even there, and most certainly unlike this year’s Best Director prospects, at least the possibility exists that a woman will get a nomination.

BEST PICTURE

Mad Max: Fury Road

Standing at the calm center of the Oscar race storm is Spotlight, which has been the presumed taster’s choice of 2015 since before it even opened, but really cemented its status as the only mortal lock in the category when it started defeating the Film Comment poll-winning Carol among some of the loftiest of critics’ groups. You know we’ve stepped through the looking glass when the group that sidestepped the Boyhood locomotive last year in favor of Jean-Luc Godard’s 3D dog-and-poop show say, with a straight face, that a Tom McCarthy film trumps all this year. Even Spotlight’s precursor performance hasn’t been entirely spotless; some started chewing a fingernail or two when it failed to get nominated for an ACE Eddie Award (unlike Ant-Man), but there’s no one betting against it earning a seat at the Eucharist.

Beyond that, you could at least entertain arguments against nearly every one of the remaining hopefuls. The Big Short was a late-arriver, but its performance in the guild heats has been nothing short of impressive (only cinematographers understandably shrugged their shoulders, as they also did over Spotlight). One of the two most BAFTA-nominated movies, Carol, missed out on the PGA nod, and also the SAG’s speciously “important” best ensemble category. But it’s maintained position as the most viable option for the AMPAS demographic that got The Tree of Life and Amour into the main drag recently.

Unless, of course, that honor goes to Mad Max: Fury Road, a movie absolutely no one knows how seriously to take as a major Oscar contender, but might just earn the highest number of first-place ballot placements. Well, that or Bridge of Spies. Post-War Horse, it’s difficult to determine just where the Academy’s limit for embracing late-Spielberg classicism is, but as Bridge of Spies tied with Carol for the most BAFTA nods, we’re guessing this movie isn’t it.

The sense that there’s anywhere from 15 to 20 movies with legitimate shots at a nomination is making it difficult for some to know whether the sliding scale in this category will tip toward the minimum or the maximum. But until we see evidence to the contrary, and because these changes were implemented by the AMPAS specifically to get more films into best picture and avoid any further embarrassment over their shameful preference for historical dramas over superhero movies, we’re going to keep betting on more, not fewer.

And because the system honors consensus, this year might see a lot more well-received populist entertainments—for sure The Martian, though perhaps not Straight Outta Compton (despite its guild nods from actors, writers, and producers)—and fewer divisively received, slogging wankjobs. (Well, okay, maybe one, given The Revenant’s warm reception at the Golden Globes.)

Will Be Nominated: The Big Short, Bridge of Spies, Carol, Creed, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Martian, The Revenant, Room, Sicario, Spotlight

Closest Runners-Up: Brooklyn, Ex Machina, Inside Out, Straight Outta Compton, Trumbo

Should Be Nominated: Creed, Heart of a Dog, In Jackson Heights, Mad Max: Fury Road, Magic Mike XXL

BEST DIRECTOR

Todd Haynes

You’d think it would be more insulting that Ridley Scott is a long-standing frontrunner in the category for delivering a sci-fi movie so comparatively light on its feet that people are marveling at how much if doesn’t feel like a Ridley Scott film. Then again, Thomas McCarthy’s certainly going to get nominated for Spotlight, which doesn’t feel like a movie directed by anyone at all (BAFTA certainly felt that way), so maybe the stakes are just lower all around in this race.

Given the Altman-esque cast of dozens all jockeying for attention in the Best Picture race, Best Director doesn’t feel like it has all that many names on everyone’s lips. One of them, Alejandro González Iñárritu, just took the prize last year and his chest-puffing pomposity has only gotten more pronounced since, but for every person who sees in The Revenant a heroic statement on man’s legacy of inherited violence, there’s another who’d find lukewarm bison liver more palatable than Iñárritu’s warmed-over Terrence Malick-Werner Herzog overtures. That said, if the warm reception he received during last night’s Golden Globes ceremony is any indication, he’s still fooling enough people that a nomination seems inevitable.

The BAFTA nominations confirmed the undeniable groundswell for The Big Short. And though even Thomas McCarthy isn’t intimidated by Adam McKay’s visual sensibilities, McKay’s film delivers its NPR-listener-courting infotainment with the smirk of Nero fiddling away. That leaves George Miller and Todd Haynes dueling for the last spot. Though Miller huffs enough testosterone to dissolve Iñárritu on contact, the likelihood the latter is in play at all suggests voters prefer their toxic masculinity to at least have the courtesy of being insufferably self-important, and not irrepressibly fun. Ergo, we’re betting on there being a lot of disappointed fanboys when the architect behind Imperator Furiosa takes a back seat to Haynes’s Her-Sapphic Park.

Will Be Nominated: Adam McKay, The Big Short; Todd Haynes, Carol; Alejandro González Iñárritu, The Revenant; Thomas McCarthy, Spotlight; Ridley Scott, The Martian

Closest Runners-Up: Ryan Coogler, Creed; George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road; Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies

Should Be Nominated: Laurie Anderson, Heart of a Dog; Hou Hsiao-hsien, The Assassin; George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road; Abderrahmane Sissako, Timbuktu; Peter Strickland, The Duke of Burgundy

BEST ACTRESS

Jennifer Lawrence

Easy, easy, easy, easy, hard. That’s how choosing the five nominees for Best Actress will feel to voters this year. You’ll find few people arguing against nominations for Brie Larson, Cate Blanchett, Saoirse Ronan, and Charlotte Rampling. But then, oy. First and foremost, will the category fraud police prevent Alicia Vikander (The Danish Girl) or Rooney Mara (Carol) from slumming in supporting? And, if so, would the reasonably level playing field for the fifth slot here allow one of them an easy nod? If Rampling is in the category, what does that do for or against the chances of Lily Tomlin, Maggie Smith, or Blythe Danner? Are Sarah Silverman and Helen Mirren’s surprise SAG nominations anything other than respectively welcome and less-than-welcome flukes from early on in the precursor season? Will there be enough anti-MRA voters in the actors’ branch to engineer a path for Charlize Theron to slip into the mix? Is Sicario’s late surge in the game real enough to benefit Emily Blunt? Or will the AMPAS look at all their options and simply default to the candidate whose prerelease buzz can outweigh her movie’s subsequent nosedive? Congrats, Jennifer Lawrence, you are the likely beneficiary of voters’ disinterest in overthinking tough decisions.

Will Be Nominated: Cate Blanchett, Carol; Brie Larson, Room; Jennifer Lawrence, Joy; Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years; Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Closest Runners-Up: Emily Blunt, Sicario; Rooney Mara, Carol; Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Should Be Nominated: Brie Larson, Room; Julianne Moore, Freeheld; Elisabeth Moss, Queen of Earth; Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years; Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

BEST ACTOR

Michael B. Jordan

Speaking of voter disinterest, the only category with what everyone is presuming to already have a winner-elect this year, Best Actor, suffers from an entirely different problem than its distaff cousin. Whereas everyone is expected to have one slot reserved for Leonardo DiCaprio’s Night of the Living Pelt Trader, the other four choices are likely to be filled by a combination of serviceable star performances lifted by the popularity of the films containing them and, like with Jennifer Lawrence, roles that put actors on “the list” when the films were still in preproduction. And though their film’s fortunes have since fallen in best picture, well, why change course here at this late stage of the game?

In the former camp is Matt Damon’s disco-bashing, poop-hoarding cosmonaut Robinson Crusoe in The Martian. Damon’s performance is a solid fit for the movie’s profile, lightly likable without ever really getting ugly for art. And then in the latter category are Michael Fassbender’s Shakespearean spin on Steve Jobs and Eddie Redmayne’s trembling, wilting, blushing transgender pioneer in The Danish Girl. Fassbender has proven among the few actors capable of devouring Aaron Sorkin’s dialogue instead of the other way around. But Redmayne’s disastrously miscalculated feints, nervous tics, and nosebleeds will probably appeal to exactly the same crowd that can’t fathom citing Tangerine’s vibrant Mya Taylor. Pencil all three in.

Bryan Cranston is a legitimate threat for the last spot for yielding to dull biopic shenanigans (though we’re frankly smelling whiffs of Hitchcock), as is Johnny Depp’s latest masquerade ball. But if you ask us it’s down to Steve Carell, who serves as the conscience of The Big Short (crying and dry-heaving at each new fiduciary obscenity) and Michael B. Jordan, who may be the Academy’s only hope to avoid another year of #OscarSoWhite.

Will Be Nominated: Matt Damon, The Martian; Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant; Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs; Michael B. Jordan, Creed; Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Closest Runners-Up: Steve Carell, The Big Short; Bryan Cranston, Trumbo; Johnny Depp, Black Mass

Should Be Nominated: Christopher Abbott, James White; Tom Courtenay, 45 Years; Michael B. Jordan, Creed; Ben Mendelsohn, Mississippi Grind; Jacob Tremblay, Room

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Kristen Stewart

So far as the critics are concerned, there’s only one choice here. And in recent years, when critics have really rallied around a performance that wouldn’t otherwise be considered standard Oscar fare, Oscar has started listening. (Just ask Emmanuelle Riva.) But this time it’s a pretty big ask. Kristen Stewart? The actress who moped her way through the Twilight series? For an Olivier Assayas movie that maybe only critics actually saw? No one’s going to convince us a performance this nuanced isn’t on the bubble, but given last year’s Best Actress-winning Still Alice gave Oscar voters a dry run to consider the idea of Stewart as serious thesp, we think she’s in.

And then, of course, so are the two leading performances being fraudulently demoted to supporting—at the expense of Alicia Vikander’s fascinating albeit far more fanboy-friendly work in Ex Machina. Because Stewart plus Rooney Mara plus Vikander makes for an awfully introspective, internalized slate, we could easily see voters getting thirsty to include Jennifer Jason Leigh’s turn in The Hateful Eight, regardless of their widely-presumed disinterest in the movie as a whole. Most prognosticators favor Kate Winslet’s dazzling display of unpredictable accent changes in Steve Jobs, though it’s beyond us why no one notices how clearly superior Katherine Waterston is in that same film. Instead, we’re playing it risky, ignoring precursors and betting on Joan Allen earning her first nomination since swiping Björk’s back in 2000.

Will Be Nominated: Joan Allen, Room; Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight; Rooney Mara, Carol; Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria; Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Closest Runners-Up: Rachel McAdams, Spotlight; Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina; Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Should Be Nominated: Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight; Cynthia Nixon, James White; Jada Pinkett Smith, Magic Mike XXL; Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria; Mya Taylor, Tangerine

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Mark Ruffalo

Jennifer Jason Leigh can rest easier than the rest of her cast-mates who are bloodily cancelling each other out over here, which especially pains us to say in the cases of Tim Roth and Walton Goggins. But not half as much as it pains us to say there’s virtually no chance for the incredibly endearing Emory Cohen to land a nomination along on-screen wife Saoirse Ronan’s for Brooklyn. It should chide us that Jacob Tremblay’s clearly leading performance in Room is getting the same second-class treatment fellow child actor Hailee Steinfeld’s did, but at least he’ll get invited to the dance (and we’re so looking forward to his eventual pop single). Category fraud works a treat with kids, but probably won’t do anything for Paul Dano’s chances in Love & Mercy.

And though vote-splitting will affect The Hateful Eight cast’s chances, the same probably won’t be said for the cast of Spotlight. Michael Keaton’s Best Actor award from the New York Film Critics Circle may have just sealed his fate, allowing the focus to turn to Mark Ruffalo, who gets the only traditionally splanchnic Oscar clip in the whole movie, as Spotlight’s best shot at an acting nod. Michael Shannon in 99 Homes emerged as nearly as big a critics’ choice as Kristen Stewart, but his impending omission feels like the classic Oscar boondoggle that rankles the awards blogosphere. It’s looking like the rest of the category will be filled with vets of three distinct varieties—movie star (Sylvester Stallone), character actor (Mark Rylance), and perpetual Oscar nominee (Christian Bale).

Will Be Nominated: Christian Bale, The Big Short; Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight; Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies; Sylvester Stallone, Creed; Jacob Tremblay, Room

Closest Runners-Up: Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation; Benicio del Toro, Sicario; Michael Shannon, 99 Homes

Should Be Nominated: Evan Bird, Maps to the Stars; Emory Cohen, Brooklyn; Walton Goggins, The Hateful Eight; Tom Noonan, Anomalisa; Sylvester Stallone, Creed

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

The Hateful Eight

Eligibility issues routinely plague the WGA’s status as a legitimate Oscar precursor, ensuring some of the Academy Award frontrunners have to be assessed blindly. Of course, WGA nominees Spotlight, Bridge of Spies, and, arguably, Sicario would’ve been to varying degrees probable here even if they hadn’t been WGA-eligible. Spotlight is going to get nominations in nearly every viable category, Bridge of Spies affords the writers the chance to honor the Coens for a film they didn’t also direct, and Sicario feels nearly as red-hot at the guilds as The Big Short.

And as divisive as his film has proven, Quentin Tarantino’s brand name seems likely to at least earn him a ticket to ride. That narrows the odds for WGA-nominee Straight Outta Compton, which will have to fight off Ex Machina, 99 Homes, and Inside Out. We’re betting voters will take most strongly to Pixar’s cotton candy-delicate version of thorny child psychology.

Will Be Nominated: Bridge of Spies, The Hateful Eight, Inside Out, Sicario, Spotlight

Closest Runners-Up: Ex Machina, 99 Homes, Straight Outta Compton

Should Be Nominated: About Elly, Heart of a Dog, Inside Out, Mistress America, Timbuktu

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Brooklyn

Our boldest prediction of the year? That the writers’ branch will summon within themselves enough restraint to ignore a hagiographic tribute to an Oscar-winning screenwriter, if only because it bends the life and difficult times of Dalton Trumbo into the most unflattering biopic-friendly format. It’s a big gamble on our part, especially given Trumbo’s shockingly healthy precursor performance up to this point. Fortunately, this is among the most crowded fields of the year, with only Adam McKay and Charles Rudolph’s ambitious, if sporadically condescending, distillation of one of the most complex financial cataclysms of our era sure to be included.

Nick Hornby’s adaptation of Brooklyn is lovely, warm, and humorous. Carol and Room both boast attractive structural architecture—one circular, the other sharply bifurcated—and the former in particular puts glorious things in Cate Blanchett’s mouth. Aaron Sorkin and Charlie Kaufman are big enough screenwriting superstars that anything they do automatically merits the benefit of the doubt, though it’s a lot easier to see Sorkin’s latest three acts in support of American exceptionalism making a bigger impact than Kaufman’s aching wallow in American alienation and paranoia.

And then there are the two last men standing, between which we’re presuming Oscar will favor The Martian’s sardonic quips. Unless, of course, they like their grand gestures to climax with dialogue that would be specious coming from Freddy Krueger’s mouth, much less Tom Hardy’s.

Will Be Nominated: The Big Short, Brooklyn, Carol, The Martian, Steve Jobs

Closest Runners-Up: The Revenant, Room, Trumbo

Should Be Nominated: Anomalisa, Brooklyn, Carol, Chi-raq, 45 Years

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Awards

2019 Tony Nominations: Hadestown and Ain’t Too Proud Lead Field

Both shows were joined in the Best Musical category by Beetlejuice, The Prom, and Tootsie.

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Hadestown
Photo: Matthew Murphy

Nominations for the 73rd Tony Awards were announced this morning, with CBS This Morning co-host Gayle King and actors Bebe Neuwirth and Brandon Victor Dixon revealing the nominees in the top eight categories. Leading the pack with 14 nominations Hadestown, followed by Ain’t Too Proud—The Life of the Temptations with 12. Both shows were joined in the Best Musical category by Beetlejuice, The Prom, and Tootsie.

See below for a full list of the nominations.

Best Musical
Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of The Temptations
Beetlejuice
Hadestown
The Prom
Tootsie

Best Play
Choir Boy by Tarell
The Ferryman
Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
Ink
What the Constitution Means to Me

Best Revival of a Play
Arthur Miller’s All My Sons
The Boys in the Band
Burn This
Torch Song
The Waverly Gallery

Best Revival of a Musical
Kiss Me, Kate
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play
Paddy Considine, The Ferryman
Bryan Cranston, Network
Jeff Daniels, To Kill a Mockingbird
Adam Driver, Burn This
Jeremy Pope, Choir Boy

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play
Annette Bening, Arthur Miller’s All My Sons
Laura Donnelly, The Ferryman
Elaine May, The Waverly Gallery
Janet McTeer, Bernhardt/Hamlet
Laurie Metcalf, Hillary and Clinton
Heidi Schreck, What the Constitution Means to Me

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical
Brooks Ashmanskas, The Prom
Derrick Baskin, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Alex Brightman, Beetlejuice
Damon Daunno, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!
Santino Fontana, Tootsie

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical
Stephanie J. Block, The Cher Show
Caitlin Kinnunen, The Prom
Beth Leavel, The Prom
Eva Noblezada, Hadestown
Kelli O’Hara, Kiss Me, Kate

Best Book of a Musical
Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations, Dominique Morisseau
Beetlejuice, Scott Brown and Anthony King
Hadestown, Anaïs Mitchell
The Prom, Bob Martin & Chad Beguelin
Tootsie, Robert Horn

Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Be More Chill, Joe Iconis
Beetlejuice, Eddie Perfect
Hadestown, Anaïs Mitchell
The Prom, Matthew Sklar and Chad Beguelin
To Kill a Mockingbird, Adam Guettel
Tootsie, David Yazbek

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play
Bertie Carvel, Ink
Robin De Jesús, The Boys in the Band
Gideon Glick, To Kill a Mockingbird
Brandon Uranowitz, Burn This
Benjamin Walker, Arthur Miller’s All My Sons

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play
Fionnula Flanagan, The Ferryman
Celia Keenan-Bolger, To Kill a Mockingbird
Kristine Nielsen, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
Julie White, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
Ruth Wilson, King Lear

Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical
André De Shields, Hadestown
Andy Grotelueschen, Tootsie
Patrick Page, Hadestown
Jeremy Pope, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Ephraim Sykes, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations

Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical
Lilli Cooper, Tootsie
Amber Gray, Hadestown
Sarah Stiles, Tootsie
Ali Stroker, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!
Mary Testa, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!

Best Scenic Design of a Play
Miriam Buether, To Kill a Mockingbird
Bunny Christie, Ink
Rob Howell, The Ferryman
Santo Loquasto, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
Jan Versweyveld, Network

Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Robert Brill and Peter Nigrini, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Peter England, King Kong
Rachel Hauck, Hadestown
Laura Jellinek, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!
David Korins, Beetlejuice

Best Costume Design of a Play
Rob Howell, The Ferryman
Toni-Leslie James, Bernhardt/Hamlet
Clint Ramos, Torch Song
Ann Roth, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
Ann Roth, To Kill a Mockingbird

Best Costume Design of a Musical
Michael Krass, Hadestown
William Ivey Long, Beetlejuice
William Ivey Long, Tootsie
Bob Mackie, The Cher Show
Paul Tazewell, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations

Best Lighting Design of a Play
Neil Austin, Ink
Jules Fisher + Peggy Eisenhauer, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus
Peter Mumford, The Ferryman
Jennifer Tipton, To Kill a Mockingbird
Jan Versweyveld and Tal Yarden, Network

Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Kevin Adams, The Cher Show
Howell Binkley, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Bradley King, Hadestown
Peter Mumford, King Kong
Kenneth Posner and Peter Nigrini, Beetlejuice

Best Sound Design of a Play
Adam Cork, Ink
Scott Lehrer, To Kill a Mockingbird
Fitz Patton, Choir Boy
Nick Powell, The Ferryman
Eric Sleichim, Network

Best Sound Design of a Musical
Peter Hylenski, Beetlejuice
Peter Hylenski, King Kong
Steve Canyon Kennedy, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Drew Levy, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!
Nevin Steinberg and Jessica Paz, Hadestown

Best Direction of a Play
Rupert Goold, Ink
Sam Mendes, The Ferryman
Bartlett Sher, To Kill a Mockingbird
Ivo van Hove, Network
George C. Wolfe, Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus

Best Direction of a Musical
Rachel Chavkin, Hadestown
Scott Ellis, Tootsie
Daniel Fish, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!
Des McAnuff, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations
Casey Nicholaw, The Prom

Best Choreography
Camille A. Brown, Choir Boy
Warren Carlyle, Kiss Me, Kate
Denis Jones, Tootsie
David Neumann, Hadestown
Sergio Trujillo, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations

Best Orchestrations
Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose, Hadestown
Simon Hale, Tootsie
Larry Hochman, Kiss Me, Kate
Daniel Kluger, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!
Harold Wheeler, Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations

Recipients of Awards and Honors in Non-competitive Categories

Special Tony Awards for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre
Terrence McNally
Rosemary Harris
Harold Wheeler

Special Tony Awards
Jason Michael Webb
Sonny Tilders
Marin Mazzie

Regional Theatre Tony Award
TheatreWorks Silicon Valley

Isabelle Stevenson Tony Award
Judith Light

Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre
Broadway Inspirational Voices
Peter Entin
Joseph Blakely Forbes
FDNY Engine 54

Tony Nominations by Production
Hadestown – 14
Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of the Temptations – 12
Tootsie – 11
The Ferryman – 9
To Kill a Mockingbird – 9
Beetlejuice – 8
Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Oklahoma! – 8
Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus – 7
The Prom – 7
Ink – 6
Network – 5
Choir Boy – 4
Kiss Me, Kate – 4
Arthur Miller’s All My Sons – 3
Burn This – 3
The Cher Show – 3
King Kong – 3
Bernhardt/Hamlet – 2
The Boys in the Band – 2
Torch Song – 2
The Waverly Gallery – 2
What the Constitution Means to Me – 2
Be More Chill – 1
Hillary and Clinton – 1
King Lear – 1

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Awards

Oscars 2019: Complete Winners List

The 91st Academy Awards are now behind us, and the telecast told us just about nothing that we don’t already know about AMPAS.

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Green Book
Photo: Universal Pictures

The 91st Academy Awards are now behind us, and the telecast told us just about nothing that we don’t already know about AMPAS. Which isn’t to say that the ceremony wasn’t without its surprises. For one, whoever decided to capture Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s performance of “Shallow” from A Star Is Born in one single take that would end with the pair sitting side by side, rapt in each other and framed in Bergman-esque repose, should hereby be responsible for every Oscar ceremony moving forward.

For some, though not us, Green Book’s victory for best picture came as surprise. As our own Eric Henderson put it in his prediction: “Those attacking the film from every conceivable angle have also ignored the one that matters to most people: the pleasure principle. Can anyone blame Hollywood for getting its back up on behalf of a laughably old-fashioned but seamlessly mounted road movie-cum-buddy pic that reassures people that the world they’re leaving is better than the one they found? That’s, as they say, the future that liberals and Oscar want.”

In the end, the awards went down more or less as expected, with the only real shock of the evening being Oliva Colman’s stunning upset over Glenn Close in the best actress race. (Glenn, we hope you are on the phone right now trying to get that Sunset Boulevard remake to finally happen.) Black Panther proved more indomitable than expected, winning in three categories (none of which we predicted), and Free Solo pulling a victory over RBG that was the first big sign of the evening that, then and now, AMPAS members vote above all else with their guts.

See below for the full list of winners from the 2019 Oscars.

Picture
Black Panther
BlacKkKlansman
Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite
Green Book (WINNER)
Roma
A Star Is Born
Vice

Director
Spike Lee, BlacKkKlansman
Pawel Pawlikowski, Cold War
Yorgos Lanthimos, The Favourite
Alfonso Cuarón, Roma (WINNER)
Adam McKay, Vice

Actor
Christian Bale, Vice
Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born
Willem Dafoe, At Eternity’s Gate
Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody (WINNER)
Viggo Mortensen, Green Book

Actress
Yalitza Aparicio, Roma
Glenn Close, The Wife
Olivia Colman, The Favourite (WINNER)
Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born
Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Supporting Actor
Mahershala Ali, Green Book (WINNER)
Adam Driver, BlacKkKlansman
Sam Elliott, A Star Is Born
Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Sam Rockwell, Vice

Supporting Actress
Amy Adams, Vice
Marina de Tavira, Roma
Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk (WINNER)
Emma Stone, The Favourite
Rachel Weisz, The Favourite

Adapted Screenplay
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
BlacKkKlansman, Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott, and Spike Lee (WINNER)
Can You Ever Forgive Me?, Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty
If Beale Street Could Talk, Barry Jenkins
A Star Is Born, Eric Roth, Bradley Cooper, and Will Fetters

Original Screenplay
The Favourite, Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara
First Reformed, Paul Schrader
Green Book, Nick Vallelonga, Brian Currie, and Peter Farrelly (WINNER)
Roma, Alfonso Cuarón
Vice, Adam McKay

Foreign Language Film
Capernaum (Lebanon)
Cold War (Poland)
Never Look Away (Germany)
Roma (Mexico) (WINNER)
Shoplifters (Japan)

Documentary Feature
Free Solo, Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi (WINNER)
Hale County This Morning, This Evening, RaMell Ross
Minding the Gap, Bing Liu
Of Fathers and Sons, Talal Derki
RBG, Betsy West and Julie Cohen

Animated Feature
Incredibles 2, Brad Bird
Isle of Dogs, Wes Anderson
Mirai, Mamoru Hosoda
Ralph Breaks the Internet, Rich Moore and Phil Johnston
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman (WINNER)

Cinematography
Cold War, Lukasz Zal
The Favourite, Robbie Ryan
Never Look Away, Caleb Deschanel
Roma, Alfonso Cuarón (WINNER)
A Star Is Born, Matthew Libatique

Film Editing
BlacKkKlansman, Barry Alexander Brown
Bohemian Rhapsody, John Ottman (WINNER)
Green Book, Patrick J. Don Vito
The Favourite, Yorgos Mavropsaridis
Vice, Hank Corwin

Production Design
Black Panther, Hannah Beachler (WINNER)
First Man, Nathan Crowley and Kathy Lucas
The Favourite, Fiona Crombie and Alice Felton
Mary Poppins Returns, John Myhre and Gordon Sim
Roma, Eugenio Caballero and Bárbara Enrı́quez

Original Score
BlacKkKlansman, Terence Blanchard
Black Panther, Ludwig Goransson (WINNER)
If Beale Street Could Talk, Nicholas Britell
Isle of Dogs, Alexandre Desplat
Mary Poppins Returns, Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman

Original Song
All The Stars from Black Panther by Kendrick Lamar, SZA
I’ll Fight from RBG by Diane Warren, Jennifer Hudson
The Place Where Lost Things Go from Mary Poppins Returns by Marc Shaiman, Scott Wittman
Shallow from A Star Is Born by Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando, Andrew Wyatt and Benjamin Rice (WINNER)
When A Cowboy Trades His Spurs For Wings from The Ballad of Buster Scruggs by David Rawlings and Gillian Welch

Costume Design
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Mary Zophres
Black Panther, Ruth E. Carter (WINNER)
The Favourite, Sandy Powell
Mary Poppins Returns, Sandy Powell
Mary Queen of Scots, Alexandra Byrne

Visual Effects
Avengers: Infinity War, Dan DeLeeuw, Kelly Port, Russell Earl, and Daniel Sudick
Christopher Robin, Chris Lawrence, Mike Eames, Theo Jones, and Chris Corbould
First Man, Paul Lambert, Ian Hunter, Tristan Myles, and J.D. Schwalm (WINNER)
Ready Player One, Roger Guyett, Grady Cofer, Matthew E. Butler, and David Shirk
Solo: A Star Wars Story, Rob Bredow, Patrick Tubach, Neal Scanlan, and Dominic Tuohy

Sound Mixing
Black Panther, Steve Boeddeker, Brandon Proctor, and Peter Devlin
Bohemian Rhapsody, Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin, and John Casali (WINNER)
First Man, Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño, Ai-Ling Lee, and Mary H. Ellis
Roma, Skip Lievsay, Craig Henighan, and José Antonio García
A Star Is Born, Tom Ozanich, Dean Zupancic, Jason Ruder, and Steve Morrow

Sound Editing
Black Panther, Benjamin A. Burtt and Steve Boeddeker
Bohemian Rhapsody, John Warhurst (WINNER)
First Man, Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
A Quiet Place, Ethan Van der Ryn and Erik Aadahl
Roma, Sergio Diaz and Skip Lievsay

Makeup and Hairstyling
Border, Göran Lundström and Pamela Goldammer
Mary Queen of Scots, Jenny Shircore, Marc Pilcher, and Jessica Brooks
Vice, Greg Cannom, Kate Biscoe, and Patricia Dehaney (WINNER)

Live Action Short Film
Detainment, Vincent Lambe
Fauve, Jeremy Comte
Marguerite, Marianne Farley
Mother, Rodrigo Sorogoyen
Skin, Guy Nattiv (WINNER)

Documentary Short Subject
Black Sheep, Ed Perkins
End Game, Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman
Lifeboat, Skye Fitzgerald
A Night at the Garden, Marshall Curry
Period. End of Sentence., Rayka Zehtabchi (WINNER)

Animated Short
Animal Behaviour, Alison Snowden and David Fine
Bao, Domee Shi (WINNER)
Late Afternoon, Louise Bagnall
One Small Step, Andrew Chesworth and Bobby Pontillas
Weekends, Trevor Jimenez

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Oscars 2019: Who Will Win? Who Should Win? Our Final Predictions

No one is okay with the Academy Awards the way they are, and everyone seems sure that they know how to fix them.

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Roma
Photo: Netflix

No one is okay with the Academy Awards the way they are, and everyone seems sure that they know how to fix them. Cut out the montages, bring back honorary award presentations, give stunt performers their own category, let ranked-choice voting determine every category and not just best picture, overhaul the membership ranks, hold the event before the guilds spoil the surprise, find a host with the magic demographic-spanning mojo necessary to double the show’s recent audience pools, nominate bigger hits, nominate only hits. Across the last 24 days, Ed Gonzalez and I have mulled over the academy’s existential crisis and how it’s polluted this year’s Oscar race so thoroughly that it feels eerily similar to the 2016 election cycle all over again. We’re spent, and while we don’t know if we have it in us to do this next year, we just might give it another go if Oscar proves us wrong on Sunday in more than just one category.

Below are our final Oscar predictions. Want more? Click on the individual articles for our justifications and more, including who we think should win in all 24 categories.

Picture: Green Book
Director: Alfonso Cuarón, Roma
Actor: Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody
Actress: Glenn Close, The Wife
Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali, Green Book
Supporting Actress: Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk
Original Screenplay: Green Book
Adapted Screenplay: BlacKkKlansman
Foreign Language: Roma
Documentary Feature: RBG
Animated Feature Film: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Documentary Short: Period. End of Sentence
Animated Short: Weekends
Live Action Short: Skin
Film Editing: Bohemian Rhapsody
Production Design: The Favourite
Cinematography: Cold War
Costume Design: The Favourite
Makeup and Hairstyling: Vice
Score: If Beale Street Could Talk
Song: “Shallow,” A Star Is Born
Sound Editing: First Man
Sound Mixing: Bohemian Rhapsody
Visual Effects: First Man

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Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Picture

The industry’s existential crisis has polluted this race so thoroughly that it feels eerily similar to the 2016 election cycle all over again.

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Green Book
Photo: Universal Pictures

“I’m hyperventilating a little. If I fall over pick me up because I’ve got something to say,” deadpanned Frances McDormand upon winning her best actress Oscar last year. From her lips to Hollywood’s ears. No one is okay with the Academy Awards the way they are, and everyone seems sure that they know how to fix them. Cut out the montages, bring back honorary award presentations, give stunt performers their own category, let ranked-choice voting determine every category and not just best picture, overhaul the membership ranks, hold the event before the guilds spoil the surprise, find a host with the magic demographic-spanning mojo necessary to double the show’s recent audience pools, nominate bigger hits, nominate only hits.

But first, as McDormand herself called for during her speech, “a moment of perspective.” A crop of articles have popped up over the last two weeks looking back at the brutal showdown between Saving Private Ryan and Shakespeare In Love at the 1999 Academy Awards, when Harvey Weinstein was at the height of his nefarious powers. Every retrospective piece accepts as common wisdom that it was probably the most obnoxious awards season in history, one that indeed set the stage for every grinding assault we’ve paid witness to ever since. But did anyone two decades ago have to endure dozens of weekly Oscar podcasters and hundreds of underpaid web writers musing, “What do the Academy Awards want to be moving forward, exactly? Who should voters represent in this fractured media environment, exactly?” How much whiskey we can safely use to wash down our Lexapro, exactly?

Amid the fox-in-a-henhouse milieu of ceaseless moral outrage serving as this awards season’s backdrop, and amid the self-obsessed entertainers now wrestling with the idea that they now have to be “content providers,” all anyone seems concerned about is what an Oscar means in the future, and whether next year’s versions of Black Panther and Bryan Singer’s Bohemian Rhapsody have a seat at the table. What everyone’s forgetting is what the Oscars have always been. In other words, the industry’s existential crisis has polluted this race so thoroughly that it feels eerily similar to the 2016 election cycle all over again, and Oscar’s clearly splintered voting blocs may become ground zero for a Make the Academy Great Again watershed.

In 1956, the Oscars took a turn toward small, quotidian, neo-realish movies, awarding Marty the top prize. The correction was swift and sure the following year, with a full slate of elephantine epics underlining the movie industry’s intimidation at the new threat of television. Moonlight’s shocking triumph two years ago was similarly answered by the safe, whimsical The Shape of Water, a choice that reaffirmed the academy’s commitment to politically innocuous liberalism in artistically conservative digs. Call us cynical, but we know which of the last couple go-arounds feels like the real academy. Which is why so many are banking on the formally dazzling humanism of Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma and so few on the vital, merciless fury of Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman.

And even if we give the benefit of the doubt to the academy’s new members, there’s that righteous, reactionary fervor in the air against those attempting to “cancel” Green Book. Those attacking the film from every conceivable angle have also ignored the one that matters to most people: the pleasure principle. Can anyone blame Hollywood for getting its back up on behalf of a laughably old-fashioned but seamlessly mounted road movie-cum-buddy pic that reassures people that the world they’re leaving is better than the one they found? That’s, as they say, the future that liberals and Oscar want.

Will Win: Green Book

Could Win: Roma or BlacKkKlansman

Should Win: BlacKkKlansman

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Awards

Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Adapted Screenplay

After walking back almost all of its bad decisions ahead of this year’s Oscars, there’s no way AMPAS isn’t going to do the right thing here.

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BlacKkKlansman
Photo: Focus Features

Eric and I have done a good job this year of only selectively stealing each other’s behind-the-scenes jokes. We have, though, not been polite about stepping on each other’s toes in other ways. Okay, maybe just Eric, who in his impeccable take on the original screenplay free-for-all detailed how the guilds this year have almost willfully gone out of their way to “not tip the Oscar race too clearly toward any one film.” Case in point: Can You Ever Forgive Me? winning the WGA’s adapted screenplay trophy over presumed Oscar frontrunner BlacKkKlansman. A glitch in the matrix? We think so. Eric and I are still in agreement that the race for best picture this year is pretty wide open, though maybe a little less so in the wake of what seemed like an easy win for the Spike Lee joint. Nevertheless, we all know that there’s no Oscar narrative more powerful than “it’s about goddamn time,” and it was so powerful this year that even the diversity-challenged BAFTAs got the memo, giving their adapted screenplay prize to Lee, Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, and Kevin Willmott. To bamboozle Lee at this point would, admittedly, be so very 2019, but given that it’s walked back almost all of its bad decisions ahead of this year’s Oscars, there’s no way AMPAS isn’t going to do the right thing.

Will Win: BlacKkKlansman

Could Win: Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Should Win: BlacKkKlansman

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Awards

Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Original Screenplay

This season, Hollywood is invested in celebrating the films they love while dodging the cultural bullets coming at them from every angle.

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Green Book
Photo: Universal Pictures

You know, if it weren’t for the show’s producers effectively and repeatedly saying everything about the Academy Awards is terrible and needs to be changed, and the year’s top-tier contenders inadvertently confirming their claims, this would’ve been a comparatively fun and suspenseful Oscar season. None of us who follow the Academy Awards expect great films to win; we just hope the marathon of precursors don’t turn into a Groundhog Day-style rinse and repeat for the same film, ad nauseam.

On that score, mission accomplished. The guilds have been handing their awards out this season as though they met beforehand and assigned each voting body a different title from Oscar’s best picture list so as not to tip the Oscar race too clearly toward any one film. SAG? Black Panther. PGA? Green Book. DGA? Roma. ASC? Cold War. ACE? Bryan Singer’s Bohemian Rhapsody. Even awards-season kryptonite A Star Is Born got an award for contemporary makeup from the MUAHS. (That’s the Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild, not the sound Lady Gaga fans have been making ever since A Star Is Born’s teaser trailer dropped last year.)

Not to be outdone, the Writers Guild of America announced their winners last weekend, and not only did presumed adapted screenplay frontrunner BlacKkKlansman wind up stymied by Can You Ever Forgive Me?, but the original screenplay prize went to Eighth Grade, which wasn’t even nominated for an Oscar. Bo Burnham twisted the knife into AMPAS during his acceptance speech: “To the other nominees in the category, have fun at the Oscars, losers!” In both his sarcasm and his surprise, it’s safe to say he speaks on behalf of us all.

As is always the case, WGA’s narrow eligibility rules kept a presumed favorite, The Favourite, out of this crucial trial heat. But as the balloting period comes to a close, the question remains just how much enthusiasm or affection voters have for either of the two films with the most nominations (Roma being the other). As a recent “can’t we all just get along” appeal by Time’s Stephanie Zacharek illustrates, the thing Hollywood is most invested in this season involves bending over backward, Matrix-style, to celebrate the films they love and still dodge the cultural bullets coming at them from every angle.

Maybe it’s just tunnel vision from the cultural vacuum Oscar voters all-too-understandably would prefer to live in this year, but doesn’t it seem like The Favourite’s tastefully ribald peppering of posh-accented C-words would be no match for the steady litany of neo-Archie Bunkerisms spewing from Viggo Mortensen’s crooked mouth? Especially with First Reformed’s Paul Schrader siphoning votes from among the academy’s presumably more vanguard new recruits? We’ll fold our words in half and eat them whole if we’re wrong, but Oscar’s old guard, unlike John Wayne, is still alive and, well, pissed.

Will Win: Green Book

Could Win: The Favourite

Should Win: First Reformed

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Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Sound Mixing

For appealing to voters’ nostalgia for drunken karaoke nights of yore, one film has the upper hand here.

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20th Century Fox
Photo: 20th Century Fox

Given what Eric wrote about the sound editing category yesterday, it now behooves me to not beat around the bush here. Also, it’s my birthday, and there are better things for me to do today than count all the ways that Eric and I talk ourselves out of correct guesses in the two sound categories, as well as step on each other’s toes throughout the entirety of our Oscar-prediction cycle. In short, it’s very noisy. Which is how Oscar likes it when it comes to sound, though maybe not as much the case with sound mixing, where the spoils quite often go to best picture nominees that also happen to be musicals (Les Misérables) or musical-adjacent (Whiplash). Only two films fit that bill this year, and since 2019 is already making a concerted effort to top 2018 as the worst year ever, there’s no reason to believe that the scarcely fat-bottomed mixing of Bryan Singer’s Bohemian Rhapsody will take this in a walk, for appealing to voters’ nostalgia for drunken karaoke nights of yore.

Will Win: Bryan Singer’s Bohemian Rhapsody

Could Win: A Star Is Born

Should Win: First Man

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Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Sound Editing

If it were biologically possible to do so, both Ed and I would happily switch places with A Quiet Place’s Emily Blunt.

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First Man
Photo: Universal Pictures

If it were biologically possible to do so, both Ed and I would happily switch places with A Quiet Place’s Emily Blunt, because we’d much rather give birth in a tub while surrounded by murderous blind creatures than have to once again write our predictions for the sound categories. As adamant as we’ve been that the Academy owes it to the nominees to air every category, which they agreed to after an extended “just kidding,” it might have given us pause had the sound categories been among the four demoted by Oscar. But no, we must now endure our annual bout of penance, aware of the fact that actually knowing what the difference is between sound editing and sound mixing is almost a liability. In other words, we’ve talked ourselves out of correct guesses too many times, doubled down on the same movie taking both categories to hedge our bets too many times, and watched as the two categories split in the opposite way we expected too many times. So, as in A Quiet Place, the less said, the better. And while that film’s soundscapes are as unique and noisy as this category seems to prefer, First Man’s real-word gravitas and cacophonous Agena spin sequence should prevail.

Will Win: First Man

Could Win: A Quiet Place

Should Win: First Man

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Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Actress

Sometimes it’s important to just step back and pay your respects to a remarkable actress.

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Glenn Close
Photo: Sony Pictures Classics

Sometimes it’s important to just step back and pay your respects to a remarkable actress for having given a performance that, while not your, um, favourite nominated one, is still deserving of an Oscar victory lap. Now, if only others felt the same. Very early on in the awards season, there was already a sense that this award could become a career-achievement coronation for the six-time losing Glenn Close—and that people were going to have a problem squaring that with the fact that her Oscar would be tied to a film perceived to be a piffle. That’s not an inaccurate perception, but it’s difficult to remember a time when critics have used that as an excuse to not do their homework.

In short, have you seen The Wife? Indeed, until the awards-media system’s attention shifted full time into covering AMPAS’s A Series of Unfortunate Oscar Decisions, it seemed as if every day brought us a new article by some pundit about the Oscar race in which it strangely sounded as if the The Wife was still a blind spot for the writer. Which is shame, because Close gives good face throughout the film. Certainly, few Oscar-nominated films this year are as absurd as The Wife, but I’ll do battle with anyone who thinks Close is getting by on her legend alone. Close’s triumph is recognizing The Wife’s inherent ludicrousness and elevating it, and without condescension, with a kabuki-like verve that seeks to speak to the experiences of all women who’ve been oppressed by their men. It’s a turn worthy of Norma Desmond.

Today, the most reliable Oscar narrative is the overdue performer. And if you take stock in that narrative, then you’ll understand why I texted Eric, my fellow Oscar guru, the following on the morning of November 29: “I think Close is going to Still Alice at the Oscars.” After that morning, when the New York Film Critics Circle officially kick-started the Oscar season (and gave their award for best actress to Regina Hall in Support the Girls), no actress ran the table with the critics and guilds, but most of the cards that matter did fall into place for Close, and much as they did for Julianne Moore ahead of her winning the Oscar for Still Alice.

This was a done deal when Close won the Golden Globe, received a standing ovation, and gave the night’s most impassioned speech, immediately after which Eric conceded that my instincts had been right. Of course, that was no doubt easy for him to admit given that, by that point, the oxygen had already seeped out of A Star Is Born’s awards campaign, leaving only Olivia Colman in Close’s way. Colman has worked the campaign trail in spectacular ways, giving speeches that have been every bit as droll as this, but in the end, she doesn’t have the SAG, and as bold and subversive as her performance certainly is, it isn’t sufficiently big enough to convince enough AMPAS members that Close should continue waiting for Oscar.

Will Win: Glenn Close, The Wife

Could Win: Olivia Colman, The Favourite

Should Win: Olivia Colman, The Favourite

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Oscar 2019 Winner Predictions: Film Editing

Sigh, can we just edit this whole Oscar season from our memories?

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Bohemian Rhapsody
Photo: 20th Century Fox

Sigh, can we just edit this whole Oscar season from our memories? AMPAS has officially brought more queens back from the brink than this year’s season of RuPaul’s Drag Race All-Stars. Now that the academy has reneged on its plans to snip four categories from the live Oscar telecast, after first attempting damage control and assuring members that it will still run those four awards as not-so-instant replays in edited-down form later on in the show, we can once again turn our attention to the other editing that’s so vexed Film Twitter this Oscar season. We yield the floor to Twitter user Pramit Chatterjee:

Very fuck! The academy would’ve been shooting itself in the foot by not airing what’s starting to feel like one of this year’s most competitive Oscar categories—a category that seems like it’s at the center of ground zero for the voters who, as a fresh New York Times survey of anonymous Oscar ballots confirms, are as unashamedly entertained by a blockbuster that critics called utterly worthless as they are feeling vengeful against those who would dare call a film they loved racist. Interestingly enough, the New York Times’s panel of voters seems palpably aware that Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman is the nominee this year that’s going to go down in history as the “right thing” they’ll be embarrassed for not “doing.” No arguments from this corner. Lee’s film is narratively propulsive and knotty in ways that ought to translate into a no-brainer win here. (My cohort Ed recently mused that he’d give the film the Oscar just for the energy it displays cutting back and forth during phone conversations.)

We’re glad that the academy walked back its decision to not honor two of the most crucial elements of the medium (editing and cinematography) on the live Oscar telecast, but what we’re left with is the dawning horror that the formless flailing exemplified by the clip above might actually win this damned award. Guy Lodge sarcastically mused on the upside of Pramit’s incredulous tweet, “I’ve never seen so many people on Twitter discussing the art of film editing before,” and honestly, it does feel like Bryan Singer’s Bohemian Rhapsody getting publicly dog-walked like this stands to teach baby cinephiles-in-training the language of the cut as well as any of the myriad montages the show producers intended on airing in lieu of, you know, actually awarding craftspeople. But only a fraction of the voting body has to feel sympathy for John Ottman (whose career, for the record, goes all the way back with Bryan Singer), or express admiration that he managed to assemble the raw materials from a legendarily chaotic project into an international blockbuster. The rest of the academy has their ostrich heads plunged far enough into the sand to take care of the rest.

Will Win: Bryan Singer’s Bohemian Rhapsody

Could Win: BlacKkKlansman

Should Win: BlacKkKlansman

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