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90th Annual Oscar Nominee Predictions

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Madison Campbell, Staff Writer

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The 2018 award season may be well underway already, but with last Tuesday’s announcement of this year’s Academy Award nominations, the Oscar race is just beginning. The nominees feature shoo-in winners, beloved-yet-long-shot newcomers, and household names as well. The critically-acclaimed The Shape of Water leads the pack with a whopping 13 nominations, including nods for best picture, best director, and best actress.

For all the awards this year the competition is high, and the movies, actors, directors, and actresses being honored by even being nominated are well deserving of the honor. Here are some of my predictions for who will take home the night’s biggest awards. Spoiler Alert: The Shape of Water doesn’t win all of them.

Best Actor

Nominees for Best Actor

Looking at the previous winners of best actor so far, history will most likely repeat itself with veteran Gary Oldman beating out Daniel Day-Lewis, Daniel Kaluuya, and Denzel Washington. However, if the Academy upsets and recognizes a younger star, look to newcomer Timothée Chalamet. The 22-year-old actor is nominated for his breakthrough role in the beautiful Call Me by Your Name. The award shows have jockeyed between honoring Chalamet and Oldman, but in the case of the Academy Awards, experience is everything; and when you have a powerful role, movie, and career as well, it’s hard for a first-time nominee to win.

My Prediction: Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour

Best Actress

Nominees for Best Actress

Best Actress is a toss-up category. Frances McDormand of Three Billboards is the front runner for sure, following her powerful performance of a mom wanting justice for her deceased daughter. She’s won the title at most award shows this season, beating out one of Hollywood’s most beloved actresses, Meryl Streep. However, after McDormand gave a speech urging other award shows to recognize the younger actors and actresses, there’s a chance that could happen. If that’s the case, enter 23-year-old Saoirse Ronan from Lady Bird.

My Prediction: Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri 

Best Supporting Actor

Nominees for Best Supporting Actor

This Category is Three Billboards vs. Three Billboards (amongst others). Sam Rockwell and Woody Harrelson are both nominated for their roles in the film, alongside Willem Dafoe, Christopher Plummer, and Richard Jenkins. Plummer gained recognition for his role in All the Money in the World, where he replaced Kevin Spacey and re-filmed all his scenes in just a week prior to the release. Jenkins stars in The Shape of Water, while Dafoe acts in The Florida Project. I think the front-runner of this category is Willem Dafoe, who shines in his role as a motel manager in the shadows of Disney World.

My Prediction: Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project

Best Supporting Actress

Nominees for Best Supporting Actress

It’s arguable to say this year that the two front-runners are creating a mom vs. mom battle. After  seeing I, Tonya, I would love to see Allison Janney win for her role of Tonya Harding’s foul-mouthed, chain-smoking monster of a mother. However, I would also love to see Laurie Metcalf of Lady Bird walk away with the Oscar, for her role of the titular character’s bickering-loving mom. Beyond them, Octavia Spencer, Mary J. Blige, and Lesley Manville round out the all-star lineup of nominees. So far, polls point towards Janney winning her first Academy Award, beating out the other talented nominees.

My Prediction: Allison Janney, I, Tonya

Best Picture

A mother’s fiery passion for finding justice, a love story set somewhere in Northern Italy, and a mute woman discovering a mysterious sea creature don’t have much in common; except for the fact they are one-third of the nominees for best picture. There are a whopping nine nominees in the biggest category of the night this year, with all of them well-deserving of the coveted title.

Nominees for Best Picture

The more well-known nominees include Get Out, a thriller involving eerily-too-real racial relations, and Christopher Nolan’s wartime film, Dunkirk. These two films are the only nominees to make the list of the top 50 highest grossing films this year, with the other nominees either flying under the radar, or being newer to theaters. The coming-of-age dramedy Lady Bird has the potential to be recognized, however a win may be hindered due to the fact it was an independent release. Phantom Thread, which features Daniel Day-Lewis, also faces the same problem; so much so that I didn’t even know this film existed until about two weeks ago.

The Post has a line-up filled with A-List celebrities such as Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, however the film will most likely be unable to beat The Shape of Water; and after the results of the SAG Awards and Golden Globes earlier this month, I think it’s safe to say that the latter will be taking home the Oscar. For a close second, the wildly popular and beloved Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri could win as well. Darkest Hour will be most likely receiving nods in the individual categories as well.

Though not prospected to win best picture, the beautiful-yet-sorrowing love story Call Me by Your Name is currently the front runner for best adapted screenplay, with some deeming it the shoo-in winner. In my opinion after seeing the movie twice in a week span (and crying both times), The Academy should just mail the award to James Ivory and call it a day. The Shape of Water can be expected to win for best original screenplay as well.

My Predictions:

The Shape of Water, Best Picture

Call Me by Your Name, Best Adapted Screenplay

The Shape of Water, Best Original Screenplay

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90th Annual Oscar Nominee Predictions