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2006 MTV Video Music Awards: Winner Predictions

Happy birthday, MTV. You’re 25. A little old to be playing with 12 year olds, doncha think?



2006 MTV Video Music Awards: Winner Predictions

Happy birthday, MTV. You’re 25. A little old to be playing with 12 year olds, doncha think? But that’s exactly what the premier music channel is doing at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards. Now that the Breakthrough Video category is legal (it turned 18 last year), it seems MTV is no longer interested. And, for the first time, the channel is allowing its viewers to help pick the winners at the ceremony. This attempt at appealing to the interactive generation could spell disaster for what’s left of the award show’s credibility: Over the past few years, the VMAs have become more and more like a popularity contest than an acknowledgement of craft in the music video medium, and involving the TRL hyper-voting contingent could feasibly push things over the edge. It also makes predicting winners almost as difficult as naming all of the Pussycat Dolls. So we urge you not to place any bets using our predictions and instead simply bask in the joy of knowing that our picks for who should win are, as always, right on the money.


Christina Aguilera, “Ain’t No Other Man”

Madonna, “Hung Up” (Should Win)

Panic! at the Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies”

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California” (Will Win)

Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, “Hips Don’t Lie”

Sal Cinquemani: Unless something goes awry (and it very well could), I’d place my bets on the two pioneers here, Madonna and Red Hot Chili Peppers. The three other times Madonna has been nominated in this category, the videos have been iconic (“Like a Prayer,” “Vogue,” and “Ray of Light”), so that puts “Hung Up” in nice company but that’s probably the award in and of itself. The video has a serious handicap since it’s the oldest one in all of the categories it’s nominated and it didn’t exactly stage a coup on the U.S. charts. RHCP have never won Video of the Year before, so this could be MTV’s chance to give the band props. Although I should mention that it just doesn’t feel right (this is not their big renaissance) and the video is mediocre at best.

Eric Henderson: Too bad they don’t give out awards for Costume Design, because I might give Christina Aguilera’s video much better odds if it were nominated for even one single tech category. But it was mysteriously snubbed for Director, Editing, Cinematography (dig those John Carpenter-esque horizontal lens flares), and even Art Direction. I’m not a huge fan of it, generally—it’s like a corny, forced version of the cover art for Missy’s The Cookbook—but, I mean, the thing has opening credits, people! I guess because RHCP’s video practically comes with footnotes that all say “rock history,” it’ll have an edge with people who can’t get past the fact that Xtina listens to her 78s on a silvery-sparkled wireless headset.

Ed Gonzalez: Yeah, I can’t get past the silvery-sparkled wireless headset, and if I were Mike D’Angelo, I wouldn’t give any of these videos higher than a 78. Xtina’s video is a po’ woman’s version of En Vogue’s “Giving Him Something He Can Feel” (the slapdash editing is embarrassing, betraying an otherwise attractive old-school vibe). The RHCP clip has none of the wit of Nirvana’s “In Bloom” and none of ecstasy that fueled OutKast’s “Hey Ya!,” but the MTV people seem to love it, and the band seems due for the top prize.


Busta Rhymes f/ Mary J. Blige, Rah Digga, Missy Elliott, Lloyd Banks, Papoose, & DMX, “Touch It Remix”

James Blunt, “You’re Beautiful”

Kanye West f/ Jamie Foxx, “Gold Digger” (Should and Will Win)

Nick Lachey, “What’s Left Of Me”

T.I., “What You Know”

EH: Remember what I just said about opening credits? Forget I said it. T.I. needs to give screen time to the name of the craft service coordinator, since they were the only ones doing their job on that set. On the other hand, Busta spreads the title card wealth for the entire duration of his video—superimposed, shouted out, worn on T-shirts. “Touch It Remix” even finds time for a funereal homily. More video than the skeletal song merits, but I’ll take any chance to see Rah Digga’s biceps I can get. That they show up in the proximity of a step dancing routine and what looks like a formal homage to the artistry of the ringtone ad just sweetens the deal. Sometimes having no ideas adds up to more than just one.

EG: I’m so bummed that Brooke’s hair doesn’t feature more prominently throughout the Busta video that I have to begrudgingly give my vote to Kanye West. Also, am I the only one who thinks James Blunt commits suicide at least four minutes too late in his video?

SC: It’s between the bling and the Blunt here, and rightfully so: “Gold Digger” and “You’re Beautiful” are the two best videos in the category. I’m surprised “Gold Digger” didn’t score a Video Of The Year nod; the simple red light district/pin-up vibe works well, and any video that downplays Jamie Foxx’s involvement gets my vote. “Touch It” is nice to look at but it doesn’t exactly beg for repeat viewings, and Nick Lachey has no business being here other than MTV making good on his solo reality show that never made it to the airwaves.


Christina Aguilera, “Ain’t No Other Man” (Will Win)

Kelly Clarkson, “Because Of You”

Madonna, “Hung Up” (Should Win)

Nelly Furtado f/ Timbaland, “Promiscuous”

Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, “Hips Don’t Lie”

EH: I like the mise-en-scène of this version of “Promiscuous” better than the original.

EG: Madonna’s video almost convinced me that I could touch my toes for the first time in my life without bending my knees, but I like the mise-en-scène of this version of “Hung Up” better than the original.

SC: I prefer this one, but just for the costumes and choreography, not the “mise-en-scène.” Anyway, despite being the artist with the most wins in this category, Madge doesn’t have the greatest track record: this is her 12th nomination for Female Video but she’s only won three times. I think Christina will take this one based on the illusion that it’s original—like the song itself, there seems to be something missing. But she’s become somewhat of an MTV darling and her fanbase is rabid. Foaming at the mouth and all. And are those implants? Looks like baby’s been emulating Mariah a little too much.


The All-American Rejects, “Move Along”

Fall Out Boy, “Dance, Dance”

Gnarls Barkley, “Crazy” (Should Win)

Panic! at the Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (Will Win)

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California”

SC: If the Best Group Video should ideally incorporate the group members in an inventive, compelling way, then The All-American Rejects’ “Move Along” shouldn’t win, but the crafty clip certainly plays to that group’s strength: pretty-boy lead singer Tyson Ritter. It’s between RHCP and Gnarls Barkley, with a possible upset by Panic! at the Disco.

EG: What other things did you learn about Tyson Ritter after Googling his name?

SC: I didn’t Google his name, I got it from the poster on your wall.

EH: I think All-American Rejects are the dark horse in this one, not Panic! at the Disco. Don’t underestimate the sizable voting demographic who call Garden State the best movie ever made.

SC: Yeah, but they’re not watching MTV, are they? And they’re certainly not voting.

EG: True, Panic! at the Disco’s video may be a little too spastic for people trying to match their clothes with the wallpaper in their rooms, but I still think it’s between them and RHCP.

EH: I’ve been officially done with RHCP ever since they left behind George Clinton, so I can’t say I was all that impressed when the Mothership Connection was reduced to a linking device between acid and glam. Especially since the song itself makes “Under The Bridge” sound like “Psychoalphabetadiscobioaquadoloop.”


50 Cent, “Window Shopper”

Busta Rhymes f/ Mary J. Blige, Rah Digga, Missy Elliott, Lloyd Banks, Papoose, & DMX, “Touch It Remix” (Should and Will Win)

Chamillionaire, “Ridin’”

T.I., “What You Know”

Yung Joc f/ Nitty, “It’s Goin’ Down”

EH: The real question is: Who is Fiddy going to threaten in this line-up like he did Fat Joe last year?

SC: Watching two rappers with significant speech impediments (Fiddy and Mase) express frustration while talking to a European sales person during the intro to “Window Shopper” was comical to me, but the video goes downhill from there—and fast.

EG: The Busta and T.I. videos are the only ones that don’t seem to be advertising how much bling these rappers were able to acquire after signing record contracts. The race, though, is probably between Fiddy and Busta. I’ll give it to the latter: He’s never won before, and given the amount of people rapping alongside him, the video is this category’s Crash.

EH: Then which is this category’s Brokeback? The one about goin’ down or the one about ridin’?

SC: The one about shopping.


Beyoncé f/ Slim Thug, “Check on It”

Chris Brown, “Yo (Excuse Me Miss)”

Jamie Foxx f/ Ludacris, “Unpredictable”

Mariah Carey, “Shake It Off”

Mary J. Blige, “Be Without You” (Will Win)

Editor’s Note: We will be abstaining from choosing who should win in this category due to our inability to reach a consensus on which video is “least bad.”

SC: Mimi’s video fails on many levels, not least of which is her Fergie impersonation on the bleachers and that vintage Hollywood long-take that’s reminiscent of Janet’s ode to Touch of Evil in “When I Think Of You,” but it’s probably the best of the sorry lot here. Hype Williams’s clip for Beyoncé’s “Check on It” is a lot like the song itself: nauseating. Some Pepto might be in order.

EG: Just thinking about “Check on It” makes me want to go to the bathroom, only I’m afraid to because I might pee pink. To the video’s credit, the oceans of satin sheets do complement Beyoncé’s gyrations.

SC: The three-bar style worked much better on LL Cool J and J. Lo’s “Lose Control.” In light of the quality of most of these videos, I’m actually surprised that one didn’t get a nomination this year.

EH: “Check on It” may shriek pink, but I can’t get over how much the song sounds like “The Ballad Of The Green Berets.” Another notch in Beyoncé’s already sealed (or, rather, catering 2 u) reputation as the reigning queen of R&B for the epoch of Laura Bush.

SC: Speaking of overzealous dance moves, Chris Brown is like some creepy choreographer/stalker in his video.

EG: That kid is all teeth.

EH: I wouldn’t “next” him or anything, but he’s no Craig David.

SC: I wouldn’t even let either of them get on the Next bus.

EG: Speaking of getting on the back of the bus, Crash almost got as much love from MTV as it did from The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Consider a victory for Mary J. Blige a consolation prize for Terrence Howard losing the Oscar.


Black Eyed Peas, “My Humps” (Will Win)

Common, “Testify” (Should Win)

Daddy Yankee, “Rompe”

Kanye West f/ Jamie Foxx, “Gold Digger”

Three 6 Mafia, “Stay Fly”

SC: Unfortunately, I didn’t see Common’s “Testify” until the nominations were announced. Otherwise, it probably would have made my Top 10 last year.

EH: I’m no more a fan of “Testify” than I am of the album it came from (leave it to Common’s overstated omniscience to make something like Kanye/Foxx’s dapper duo look like a paragon of modesty), and I’d rather see “Gold Digger” win a Pulitzer before seeing one more rhinestone-encrusted quarter land in Fergie’s humpy drawers. Unfortunately, “My Humps” was willed into a hit single by (among others) iTunes customers. So there’s no reason now to lose faith in the perseverance of text message-happy retards on the Internet with too much time on their humps. Democrazy at work.

EG: I don’t know if the Black Eyed Peas song is trying to raise breast cancer awareness, but I would rather have sex with Jerri Blank than feel Fergie’s lump any day.


Madonna, “Hung Up” (Should and Will Win)

Nelly Furtado f/ Timbaland, “Promiscuous”

Pussycat Dolls f/ Snoop Dogg, “Buttons”

Sean Paul, “Temperature”

Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, “Hips Don’t Lie”

SC: Evidently, Snoop Dogg can name all of the Pussycat Dolls, so maybe we should defer to him on who’s going to win.

EG: I feel really close to all 47 members of the Pussycat Dolls: In the past year, I think I’ve seen all of their snatches up close and personal on the pages of Perez Hilton. But, alas, my hips don’t lie, and Madonna’s “Hung Up” has changed the way I look at the grooves in the speakers of my Aiwa stereo system.

SC: Madonna has never won in this category, surprisingly enough. Her two most notable losses were in 1990 (“Vogue” lost to “U Can’t Touch This”!) and 1998 (“Ray Of Light” lost to another Jonas Akerlund-directed clip, Prodigy’s “Smack My Bitch Up”). This would seem to be her one lock (it’s the only true “dance” song, after all), but recent winners have skewed urban.

EH: I dunno, Madonna does hump a Radio Raheem-sized boom box in this one. Which is one of the better things she’s done since Erotica and which might be enough to offset Karen Lynn Gorney’s wardrobe.


30 Seconds To Mars, “The Kill”

AFI, “Miss Murder”

Green Day, “Wake Me Up When September Ends” (Should and Will Win)

Panic! at the Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies”

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California”

SC: Back-to-back wins are a frequent occurrence in this category, so Green Day’s mini-movie could score here. Then again, it doesn’t have the multiple nominations that RHCP and Panic! both have.

EG: I suppose MTV, especially Kurt Loder, thinks the Green Day video is really cunning, but I dug it a lot more when I thought the only thing Jamie Bell did to hurt Evan Rachel Wood’s feelings was have sex with her mother.

EH: Wake me up when this category ends.


Christina Aguilera, “Ain’t No Other Man”

Madonna, “Hung Up”

Nelly Furtado f/ Timbaland, “Promiscuous” (Will Win)

Pink, “Stupid Girls” (Should Win)

Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, “Hips Don’t Lie”

EH: Dullest category, year in, year out. Even though the fact that Shakira’s is the only video nominated in the Viewer’s Choice line-up, portending a possible surge of popular support, it’ll probably just go to the dullest video of the lot.

SC: So…“Promiscuous” then? Pink’s “Stupid Girls” is the only video here not nominated for Best Female Video. I haven’t the faintest idea what that means but don’t be surprised if she’s thrown a bone for her lampooning of all things “pop.”

EH: Yeah, it’s nearly as good as Jessica Simpson’s way with a roller rink ice cream cone.

EG: The video pops all right, but certainly not as much as Nelly Furtado’s song or Shakira’s hips. A vote split could benefit Xtina and Madge, but I’ll give this one to Furtado by a pubic hair.


Angels and Airwaves, “The Adventure”

Avenged Sevenfold, “Bat Country”

Chris Brown f/ Juelz Santana, “Run It!”

James Blunt, “You’re Beautiful”

Panic! at the Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (Will Win)

Rihanna, “S.O.S.” (Should Win)

SC: This isn’t the Grammys, so James Blunt isn’t the shoo-in he’ll probably be with NARAS come winter.

EH: No, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the VMAs don’t follow suit with the Grammys in awarding stuff that’s up for the top prize in lower categories. And, since the moment for “You’re Beautiful” passed when one of Blunt’s former lovers revealed he didn’t, um, measure up, that leaves the field clear for Panic! Six million YouTube hits don’t lie.

EG: Rihanna all the way, because I haven’t been so thrilled by a scene inside a hall of mirrors since Lady in Shanghai.

EH: Nice to see flash done correctly. I haven’t been so thrilled by a masturbation-referencing dance routine involving mirrors since “The Pleasure Principle.”

SC: I was just about to cry foul and say that Rihanna’s technically not a new artist, but her debut wasn’t released in time to qualify for the 2005 VMAs. Incredibly, she’s managed to squeeze out two albums since last year’s ceremony.


10 Years, “Wasteland” (Director: Christopher Sims)

AFI, “Miss Murder” (Director: Marc Webb)

Common, “Testify” (Director: Anthony Mandler)

Gnarls Barkley, “Crazy” (Director: Robert Hales) (Should Win)

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California” (Director: Tony Kaye) (Will Win)

EH: I’ve got nothing against videos with fractured-unto-faux-profound titles like “Former Yugo…SLAVE,” but I feel like Christopher Sims forgot to include a shot of Djimon Hounsou with a graphic reading “Give! Us! Free!”

SC: Since there are no big names here, decisions will either be based on popularity or quality, so it’s a race between Tony Kaye’s rock-through-the-ages homage and Hales’s ink-blot clip, respectively.

EH: There’s really nothing in the Adobe After Effects style of “Crazy” that doesn’t feel completely cliché now that every cable network’s bumper spots use it. But there remains something inherently personal in the program—it’s the laptop equivalent of a mixtape, and coupling that with the Rorschach patterns adds up to a deft if obvious visual accompaniment to the song’s casually tossed-off DSM-IV sentiments.

EG: What he said.

SC: What did he say? I didn’t understand a word of it.


Christina Aguilera, “Ain’t No Other Man”

Madonna, “Hung Up” (Should Win)

Pussycat Dolls f/ Snoop Dogg, “Buttons” (Will Win)

Sean Paul, “Temperature”

Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, “Hips Don’t Lie”

EG: The Pussycat Dolls are all pelvic thrust. This is a good thing, but given all the love for “Hung Up” this year, I imagine MTV’s base would rather have Madonna teasing their cocks. Still, Xtina’s video probably hits the desired overlap of “originality” and craftiness to carry it to victory.

EH: Unless Nomi Malone presents the award this year, in which case both Xtina and Madonna should start worrying about losing this one to the Pussycat Dolls.

SC: Are we still calling Christina Aguilera Xtina just to piss her off? Like calling Madonna the Material Girl?

EG: Yes.

SC: Rules are made to be broken, especially on MTV, but it’s worth noting that it’s been over a decade since the winners in this category and Best Dance Video have aligned. The Material Girl’s update of the Saturday Night Fever dance moves might not be considered original enough, and are crumping and parkour, the other two styles of dance featured in the video, really choreographed?

EH: Okay, I could’ve choreographed “Hips Don’t Lie.” Of course hips don’t lie! How can they when all they’re doing is demonstrating the physics of a fulcrum? The step dance in “Touch It Remix” has more choreography than this whole category.

SC: And Shakira’s disembodied hips could’ve choreographed “Buttons”! It’s just sexy walking. But that Nicole Scherzinger—yes, I named one of the Pussycat Dolls, but I had to call Snoop first—is like a bionic stripper. She should win a Moon Man for those indubitable chair tricks alone.

EH: Well there’s some architecturally pleasing poses thrown in with the Cats’ feigned prowling and one-upmanship. The video’s like an episode of Next directed by Bob Fosse.

EG: Did you know that there are as many “hips don’t lie” jokes and references to Orson Welles films in this article as there are Kubrick homages in this year’s lot of nominees?


Angels and Airwaves, “The Adventure”

Beck, “Hell Yes”

Missy Elliott, “We Run This”

Pearl Jam, “Life Wasted” (Should and Will Win)

U2, “Original Of The Species”

EH: There always seems to be a Peter Gabriel video struggling to get out of every Missy Elliot clip. But in a weird twist of fate, Pearl Jam (of all artists) has upstaged Missy’s shtick.

EG: Funny, I thought the Peter Gabriel video was trying to get out of the U2 clip.

SC: And I thought the Peter Gabriel video was rolling its stop-motion eyes, wondering where the fuck the Breakthrough Video category went.

EH: Why wasn’t Beck’s “Hell Yes” nominated for choreography?

SC: It should have been! At the very least, it’s the best video in this category, but it admittedly doesn’t have the best special effects.


10 Years, “Wasteland”

Common, “Testify”

Panic! at the Disco, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies”

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California” (Will Win)

Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, “Hips Don’t Lie” (Should Win)

EH: Does hubris count as art direction? If so, my vote is a tie between Common and the Chili Peppers.

SC: Do little creepy mummy midgets count for art direction? If so, my vote goes to Shakira.

EG: I think Suri Cruise is inside that mummy suit. But seriously, it seems strange that this could be Shakira’s best chance at a victory. The video’s fusion of Latin and Haitian cultural styles is more appealing than Panic! at the Disco’s annoying No Doubt-meets-Deadwood aesthetic, but then there are the RHCP, whose video could sweep.

SC: Yeah, sweep up the trash in the theater after the show.


The All-American Rejects, “Move Along” (Should and Will Win)

Angels And Airwaves, “The Adventure”

Gnarls Barkley, “Crazy”

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California”

U2, “Original Of The Species”

EH: Though the rhythms of the quicksilver animation in “Crazy” is seamless…um, just that. There are no seams, hence no edits. Odd nomination for a slate that didn’t make room for a single dance-oriented video. Rihanna’s clip, for one, would’ve brightened this dour category up.

SC: “S.O.S.” should have been nominated for Best Lighting. “Move Along” is the obvious pick here, and it probably should win, but MTV has occasionally been known to go with subtler choices in this category.

EG: I’m tired of picking Red Hot Chili Peppers.

EH: I’m wondering if the same might not be true of the voters. You know, those famous MTV attention-spans and all? Maybe this could tip favor to an even more self-congratulatory group rocking their dotage.

SC: You’re talking about Angels And Airwaves, right?


AFI, “Miss Murder”

Ashlee Simpson, “Invisible”

James Blunt, “You’re Beautiful”

Red Hot Chili Peppers, “Dani California” (Should and Will Win)

Prince, “Black Sweat”

EH: Prince? Who do the VMAs think they are, the AMAs?

EG: Isn’t it sad that Ashlee Simpson had to cut part of her nose off in order to get a nomination in this category?

EH: Does the nominating committee just take it for granted that “black and white” is congruent with “best”? Simpson’s desecration of Million Dollar Baby, in which the less butch boxette gets the chance to get up from the canvas and finish the job, trashes Clint Eastwood’s carefully coordinated colors schemes (which provide no easy compass for moral alignment) for a video that is black and white in the worst sense of the phrase. RHCP ditch monochrome as a way of signaling progress. As for Prince, the word “ashy” comes to mind.

SC: Okay, fine. RHCP deserve this one, although MTV should take it away from them the following day just because of that Kurt Cobain thing. I would rather have seen them impersonate themselves circa 1994—you know, back when silver body paint was considered a “breakthrough”?


“Final Night Round 3” (Electronic Arts)

“Burnout Revenge” (Electronic Arts) (Will Win)

“NBA 2K6” (2K Games)

“Driver: Parallel Lines” (Atari) (Should Win)

“Mark Ecko’s Getting Up”

EG: Tempted as I was to download these soundtracks, I chose instead to compare their GameSpot scores to determine the victor here. With a scorching 8.8—a 0.4 lead over “Mark Echo’s Getting Up”—this will be “Burnout Revenge”’s award to lose.

EH: I don’t play any other video games aside from The Sims, so I had to turn to Wikipedia to see what songs accompanied these games. “Mark Ecko” has that Nina Simone song other Slant writers can’t get enough of (“Sinnerman”). “Burnout Revenge” has the highest percentage of songs nominated for other VMAs, so it’s got that going for it. But Grandma Henderson dropped the controller long enough to inform me that the soundtrack for the 1978 half of “Driver: Parallel Lines” is, quote, “her jam.”

SC: Red Hot Chili Peppers.


“Hitman, Blood Money” (Jesper Kyd)

“Ghost Recon, Advanced Warfighter” (Tom Salta)

“Dreamfall, The Longest Journey” (Even “Magnet” Johansen)

“Elder Scrolls IV, Oblivion” (Jeremy Soule) (Should Win)

“Electroplankton” (User Generated Soundtrack) (Will Win)

EG: It’s tempting to pick “Electroplankton” given its ostensibly innovative music-based construction, but gamers seem to appreciate it more as an application than a game. “Oblivion” could win since it’s supposed to be one of the best RPGs ever made.

EH: Hey, I’ve played “Electroplankton”! Man, my soundtrack to that game was fantastic. Give me the award.

SC: Beep. Beep. Boop. Bop. Beep. Blip. Boink. Geek.



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.



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.

Black Panther
Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite
Green Book (WINNER)
A Star Is Born

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

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

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)

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.



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.



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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