Oscars: Dave Karger predicts the nominees

Here are my latest predictions for who’ll get nominated in the eight main Oscar races on Feb. 2. My Best Picture picks are immediately below; the other seven categories are after the jump.

Best Picture
District 9
An Education
The Hurt Locker
Inglourious Basterds
Star Trek
Up in the Air

Oh, how much easier this would be if there were only five Best Picture nominees this year: It’d be Up in the Air (which won the National Board of Review prize), The Hurt Locker (winner of the Producers Guild, Directors Guild, and Broadcast Film Critics awards), Golden Globe and box-office champ Avatar, film-festival winner Precious, and SAG Award victor Inglourious Basterds and we’d call it a day. It’s those other five slots that are tougher to suss out. An Education has strong support from actors (witness its SAG nod for best cast) and across-the-pond voters. Invictus has the necessary prestige to make the cut, while Best Animated Feature front-runner Up should manage to break out of the cartoon ghetto. If voters want to go the populist route, the top contender is the adult romance It’s Complicated. But since it’s the No. 1 and No. 2 votes on the Academy’s ranked ballots that truly count, films with a smaller cult of enthusiastic followers—think District 9 and Star Trek—is poised to become a spoiler. Which means the flashy, filled-with-Oscar-faves musical Nine may fall victim to its nasty reviews and lackluster box office. I’m also increasingly worried for the Coen brothers’ A Serious Man, which seems to be fading a bit. As for Golden Globe winner The Hangover, it’s now an outside contender for one of the 10 slots but by no means a sure thing.

Check out the rest of my predictions after the jump.

Best Actor
Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
George Clooney, Up in the Air
Colin Firth, A Single Man
Morgan Freeman, Invictus
Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker

Four performances have dominated this race and show no signs of budging: George Clooney, Jeff Bridges, Colin Firth, and Morgan Freeman all received the trifecta of Golden Globe, SAG Award, and Broadcast Film Critics Association nominations. Tobey Maguire also landed a Globe nod for Brothers, but the film has taken some knocks from critics, which hurts his chances; ditto BFCA nominee Viggo Mortensen for the drama The Road. In a race with another onscreen soldier, Ben Foster (so raw and moving in The Messenger), I think the last spot goes to Jeremy Renner. With victories at SAG, the Golden Globes, and the Broadcast Critics Awards, Bridges is certainly the guy to beat.

Best Actress
Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side
Helen Mirren, The Last Station
Carey Mulligan, An Education
Gabourey Sidibe, Precious
Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia

Meryl Streep will easily break her own record and earn Academy Award nomination No. 16 for Julie & Julia, but she’s got competition in The Blind Side‘s Sandra Bullock, who tied her for Best Actress at the BFCA awards and topped her for the SAG prize. (They both picked up Golden Globes.) Meanwhile, Carey Mulligan and Gabourey Sidibe are the indie standouts of the year. Emily Blunt made the BFCA and Globe short lists for her impressive turn in The Young Victoria and could do the same here, but the Academy may round out the race with a past winner, The Last Station‘s Helen Mirren.

Best Supporting Actor
Matt Damon, Invictus
Woody Harrelson, The Messenger
Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones
Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds

Christoph Waltz, who’s won every major award so far (including SAG, Globe, and BFCA) and Woody Harrelson are the definites here, followed by Matt Damon, who’d earn his first nomination in 12 years. With Me and Orson Welles‘ Christian McKay becoming more and more of a long shot, the last two slots will likely go to veterans who’ve never been nominated despite decades of strong work: Stanley Tucci (so fabulous in Julie & Julia but more likely to get noticed for his villainous role in The Lovely Bones), Christopher Plummer (resolute as a dying Tolstoy in The Last Station), or An Education‘s Alfred Molina, who may find himself drawing the short straw this year.

Best Supporting Actress
Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
Mo’Nique, Precious
Julianne Moore, A Single Man
Samantha Morton, The Messenger

Awards magnet Mo’Nique is the clear front-runner here, having picked up trophies from SAG, BFCA, and the Golden Globes. Up in the Air’s Anna Kendrick also picked up a few critics’ prizes, while Kendrick’s costar Vera Farmiga also seems a good bet. The Screen Actors Guild overlooked Julianne Moore, but her boozy BFF in A Single Man should do the trick with the Academy. As Nine‘s buzz continues to fade, Golden Globe and  SAG Award nominee Penélope Cruz may find herself edged out. Inglourious Basterds‘ Diane Kruger made the SAG list, but the likeliest stealth contender is The Messenger‘s Samantha Morton, who has snuck in at the last minute before.

Best Director
Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
James Cameron, Avatar
Lee Daniels, Precious
Jason Reitman, Up in the Air
Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds

One certainty in this year’s Oscar race: A woman will be nominated for Best Director, for the fourth time ever, in the form of Directors Guild winner Kathryn Bigelow. Jason Reitman and Quentin Tarantino should each score their second nods in this race, while past winners James Cameron (who won the Golden Globe) and Precious‘ Lee Daniels (who scored the fifth Directors Guild nomination) stand the best shot at rounding out the category. Outside contenders include District 9‘s Neill Blomkamp, Up‘s Pete Docter, and An Education‘s Lone Scherfig, in which case there’d be two women nominated in the same year for the first time.

Best Original Screenplay
Mark Boal, The Hurt Locker
Joel Coen & Ethan Coen, A Serious Man
Pete Docter & Bob Peterson, Up
Scott Neustatder & Michael H. Weber, (500) Days of Summer
Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds

There are essentially six screenplays fighting for the five spots here. The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Basterds, Up, and A Serious Man, all strong overall contenders, seem like foregone conclusions. Nancy Meyers scored a Golden Globe nomination for her insightful and funny It’s Complicated script, but the guys from (500) Days of Summer can see Meyers on insightful and funny and raise her another all-important adjective: inventive. A spoiler here could be James Cameron, who could do with Avatar what he failed to with Titanic: earn a screenplay nod.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Wes Anderson & Noah Baumbach, Fantastic Mr. Fox
Neill Blomkamp & Terri Tatchell, District 9
Geoffrey Fletcher, Precious
Nick Hornby, An Education
Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner, Up in the Air

Up in the Air, Precious, and An Education are the surest bets, while the writers’ branch has recognized both members of Fantastic Mr. Fox‘s clever team before. For the fifth slot, it could be Nora Ephron for Julie & Julia or Tom Ford (co-credited with David Scearce) for his impressive overhaul of A Single Man. But if voters don’t want to let a designer into the club, Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell’s District 9 may be too unsettling to ignore.

Here’s my running tally of all the critics’ award winners as well as my precursor tally of all the important top-10 lists and major guild prizes. And don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (@davekarger) for Oscar news and updates between now and the big night.

Comments (425 total) Add your comment
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  • Anna

    Those are some good predictions, which pretty much align with my own. For best actress, I think the fifth slot is definitely between Blunt and Mirren. For supporting actress, I really hope that Moore is in, and one of the “Up In The Air” women are out. I really don’t think either of their performances were that special.
    I am *crossing my fingers* that (500) Days Of Summer gets in for Orignial Screenplay and/or Best Picture.

    • Telly B

      (500) Days Of Summer was the most annoyingly affected, overtly precious, self-enamored indie that always thinks it’s better than what it actually is. Full of hipster cliches, and “quirky” moments…it reminds me of the parody indie film that Alanis Morrissette so brilliantly spoofed in a Youtube video…

      Hopefully Summer will get snubbed…

      • Anna

        I guess we weren’t watching the same movies then. I also don’t like “indies that try too hard”, as well as Alanis Morisette’s hilarious parody. I really don’t think (500) Days is in that category though. Sorry.

      • alonso

        AGREE 100%! So pretencious!! hated 500 days of summer

      • gary

        I agree totally. I hated this movie. It had nothing going for it. I was bored stiff and couldn’t wait till it ended. A movie for nitwits.

      • brooky

        (500) Days of summer is great, but its screenplay is flawless. IT BETTER GET A NOM!

      • Addison

        500 days of Summer was a beautiful movie. And what made it such a standout was that it wasn’t pretentious. It was simple and pleasing. Easy for anyone to understand and relate to because the writers nailed the characters emotions so accurately. It definitely deserves a nomination.

      • Jennifer

        HA HA! Aaron….you read my mind.

      • datemybbwfriends

        I hope Avatar wins

      • Aaron

        Ugh, you sound like the most pretentious film student ass.

        It was an inventive film with a smart script and great performances. Get over it.

      • Ellen Ripley

        AVATAR FOR THE WIN. The most extraordinary movie experience of the year. A movie that will remembered for generations.

      • mike b

        Why are you hating 500 days of summer for being too indie? What about up in the air? Who cares, a good movie is a good movie.

      • Lois

        I love the film I fell that those who don’t are the cliche types

      • ZRob

        I have to agree with Telly B. Just found (500) Days too, too affected for its own good. I was really disappointed.

      • Matt

        Totally. And those two characters were just super annoying. She was a self-centered b*tch, and he was a total wussy wiener.

    • Mac

      Wow, you don’t think the two actress’s in Up in the Air are that great? The trifecta of Mo’nique, Kendrick, and Farmiga make Supporting Actress the strongest it has been in a long time, the most solid category out of them all. Thrown in any of Morton, Moore, and I think you could make a case for any of them (although Mo’nique will win – such a great performance!).

    • nunnya

      I’m with you Anna. 500 Days of Summer was my favorite movie of the year. Inglorious Basterds is my second fave.

    • Danny

      I think (500) Days of Summer, is not only deserving a screenplay and picyure nod, but Joseph Gordon-Levitt deservers his due as well ! A great film, from this guys point of view.

    • Bill Paxton

      AVATAR FOR THE WIN. The most extraordinary movie experience of the year. A movie that will remembered for generations.

      • burris

        to jodipo: I couldn’t agree more! I went to see Avatar with friends and the whole time was telling myself you saw this movie when you were 12! To be quite honest Ferngully had a better story! Fergully=Fairies, Avatar=Aliens.

      • 42man

        To Miranda: “And why they released something with such a sad ending during the happy Christmas season is beyond me.” I can’t believe I just read that. I mean, seriously, your enjoyment of a film depends on whether it has a happy ending or not? Let me tell you something: Life doesn’t have a happy ending. And Up In The Air had the balls to tell people that, to inspire them to do with their life what they CAN, and you write it off as “not fitting the Christmas season?”

        Avatar was visually incredible. Avatar was technologically groundbreaking. But Avatar was not emotionally resonant. It didn’t reflect a truly original cultural or universal struggle, other than the constantly recycled theme of saving the earth. And if you label Up In The Air as a TV movie, you’re clearly not seeing the craft at work.

        You have a right to like it. You also have a right to be stupid. It just makes me angry that you are though.

      • jodipo

        t. Toleman, your opinion of Avatar is a typical sheep’s bleating. Avatar was visually pretty, but I have seen its story before… it was called Ferngully and they did it in half the time with a 5th of the budget. Their fairies were aleso more emotionally connected than Avatars. The film may be in 3d, but the characters are totally 1 dimensional. No way does it deserve to win movie of the year… but it most likely will anyway. One mroe reason for James Cmaerons already swelled head to have a hard time fitting through the door.

      • Sarah

        I agree with Ben. Technically, absolutely astounding and SHOULD win in those categories. Directing, I don’t know. Picture? Perhaps, but ‘Up in the Air’ seems to be a critics favorite.

      • T. Toleman

        To The Truth:

        Interesting name. Inaccurate, but interesting. Star Wars had nothing to it of note other than special effects. It simply retells the oldest story known to mankind. Avatar does, also. It’s Star Wars for a new generation. If the monomyth has worked this long, it will continue to do so.

      • The Truth

        Avatar has no staying power. Its all based on its special effects. Once more movies come out with its level or better it will be eclipsed and forgotten. I can’t even see slackers sitting in their parent’s basement quoting lines to each other from it. Star Wars, Godfather, Lord of the Rings they have staying power. Once you get bored of the special effects Avatar has nothing else to keep you watching.

      • T. Toleman

        In a year of some very good films, better than last year in this fellow’s opinion, Avatar stands out as quintessentially cinematic. Up in the Air, Invictus, and even Inglorious Basterds could have been plays or books and worked equally well. Avatar wouldn’t have. It is a movie’s movie.

      • Emma

        Avatar lacked the emotional storyline for a best picture win. I just saw A Serious Man and that was amazing. Witty, hilarious, yet incredibly thought-provoking. I hope the Coen brothers win an Oscar for something!

      • Miranda

        Totally agree. Just saw Avatar today and it was awesome and I didn’t see it in 3D. I wasn’t expecting to be that overwhelmed. One of the best movies I saw all year! A movie that I don’t understand why it’s on the list is Up In The Air. I love George Clooney but I was really disappointed in the movie. It was worthy of being a TV movie of the week but NOT nominated for Best Pix of the Year! And why they released something with such a sad ending during the happy Christmas season is beyond me. Go Avatar for the win!!

      • Ben

        Completely disagree. Will get nominated and SHOULD win technical categories, but it was totally uninvesting in its emotional content.

    • Sarah

      Pretty good predictions, although I’m not sure about Lee Daniels being nominated for Best Director.

      • LiLi

        I really hope Lee Daniels gets nominated. While watching Precious all I kept thinking was how the story would’ve been half as effecting if directed by someone with less vision.

    • John O.

      I would be really surprised if A SERIOUS MAN gets nominated for Best Picture. Not only was it a weak film, but there doesn’t seem to be much support for it out there. (The Golden Globes snubbed it for Best Picture.) I think PRECIOUS is overrated and does not deserve to get nominated for Best Picture either. I’m getting tired of these “documentary-like” films trying to pass themselves off as narrative films–and I think the Academy is too. I think this is the main reason why DEPARTURES won the Oscar for Best Foreign Film last year over “documentary-like” films, such as THE CLASS and WALTZ WITH BASHIR.

      • Jenny

        Waltz with Bashir was a documentary. Just told in a narrative-like style.

  • Kevin Malone

    Avatar wins!!!!!

    • alan of montreal

      Since the majority of Oscar voters belong to the acting branch, and since they are likely to be turned off by Avatar because of its use of animation to replace actors, and since they tend to favour films with a lot of good performances, I highly doubt that Avatar will win. It’s going to come down to The Hurt Locker, Up in the Air, Inglourious Basterds or Precious.

      • LiLi

        The Academy is not known for its innovation. Avatar will win without question.

      • Josh

        Plus Cameron and Zemeckis has stated the motion capture as a way to enhance an actors tools so they can have completley transformative preformances that are completley their own. And some big name people like Angelina Jolie, Sigourney Weaver, Tom Hanks, Jim Carrey and John Malkovich have used the technology and all seem to be fans of it. I think the academy will realize that Avatar is the picture that will have the most resonance in the film community as well as in viewers minds. But otherwise its going to the Hurt Locker or Up in the Air even if Inglourious Basterds deserves it more.

      • Johnification

        Except all of the characters in Avatar ARE performed by actors. Zoe Saldana is IN that movie, not just her voice, but her face, her choices, her movement, her emotions.

  • Marianne

    1st of all 500 Days of Summer needs to be in the BP race. First of all it was a great movie, original story and acted well…plus since there are so many serious/dramatic films being taken into consideration, it would be nice to 500 days of Summer in there. Plus if it wins at the GG, that might very well make it a frontrunner.

    Sandra Bullock and Meryl Streep for best actress? Really. At this point, Meryl could show up in any movie and be nominated, and although I like Sandra (and she was funny in this years Proposal) I don’t think this was a strong enough role. Plus didn’t EW give the movie a rating of C or something? I want Emily Blunt nominated!!!

    The Supporting actress looks good/fair. I don’t think it really matters who gets it…Mo’Nique will win anyway. Same goes to Supporting Actor. I personally would like to see Joseph Gordon-Levitt nominated for Best Actor….though George will most likely win. Best Director seems good, although Clint Eastwood, doesn’t really need ANOTHER award or nomination.

    Well overall, it doesn’t seem like a bad prediction list, although it needs some tweaking. I would wait until The Golden Globes and SAG winners have been announced to really see where its all headed.

    • cobagibu

      Sandra’s role in the Blindside not a strong enough role? I would like to know which movie you were watching, because I don’t think it was the same one I saw…

      • Bradley Badder

        Can I ask what film you were watching that performance was STELLAR Thee Best of her career!
        Really don’t think we watched the same movie!

      • Lily

        Fingers crossed for Sandra Bullock & Kathryn Bigelow & AVATAR.

    • deana

      The main reason Sandra Bullock will get the nomination is because she has a longstanding reputation as possibly the nicest person in Hollywood. She’s paid for extra craft services, health services, massages, etc. for the crew members on every film she’s starred in; she donates to lots of charities; and you cannot find a costar who doesn’t have wonderful things to say about her. Nobody expects Bullock to win, but this is the only role she’s ever likely to have that is nomination-worthy, and I think she’ll get it just as a reflection of all the goodwill she’s earned over the years.

      • Ellie

        Fair enough, but I wouldnt rule her out just yet. She is one of Americas most beloved stars, and she definitely worked hard this year. That will surely be taken into consideration by the academy come voting time. And anyway, if Helen Hunt, Julia Roberts, Reese Witherspoon can win, and Catherine and Gwyneth can win over Streep, then Bullock has a chance.

      • Jennifer

        I can live with that.

    • Jenny Roberts

      I agree that EMILY BLUNT should be nominated… She is outstanding..

    • Bedo

      Blindside got nothing but GREAT reviews from the critics. It was a great movie/story & Sandra did a great job acting in it.

      • Shane

        Actually, The Blind Side has gotten so-so reviews for the most part. Sandra Bullock was singled out for her performance. The movie itself is like an ABC after school special (albeit, a very long one). In any event, Sandra was very good but Meryl Streep was better and deserves the Oscar this year for Julie and Julia.

      • Emily

        Go Sandra Bullock! I hope she wins. She rocks. She’s been AMAZING since SPEED.

      • Bradley Badder

        To Kudos, just one thing it did kill in the B.O which just brings Bullock into focus more! In fact two things that you are the extremely small minority that I have witnessed state that her performance wasn’t too good,but could you do the duty of naming another star that could pull it off better??

      • kudos

        sandras role and performance was not that great, think about it would we mention her if blind side didn’t kill in the box office.

      • Zach

        It has like a 73% on Rotten Tomatoes. That’s good, but not great, reviews.

      • Marianne

        see EW did give a C


    • Ronnie Deshe

      There is now way 500 Days of Summer will win at the Golden Globes – not even a remote chance.

  • Andrew

    I want Abbie Cornish nominated. It sounds like you have totally written off Bright Tsar

    • Menchy

      Lol Bright Tsar. Which Tsar is Bright Tsar about? Peter the Great? Ivan the Terrible?

      • keith

        Don’t be a douche.

      • April

        Thank you for making me LOL at 5 am! Yes, it was a typo, but it was a funny typo that just begged for mocking! Let’s be good natured, folks!

      • Natalie

        “Tsar” and “czar” are both completely acceptable versions of the word…

      • Ben

        Tsar? Were you thinking about czar when you made that bad joke? It was a just a typo, no need to make fun of it.

      • alyourpal

        hehe well I thought it was funny

    • Bradley Badder

      I agree :D, in fact after reading the whole converstion I have wet pants!!

  • Chris G

    I agree with others that I would love to see 500 Days of Summer nominated. Dave, you think there’s even the slightest chance it could sneak in there? It would make my day.

  • Todd J.

    Quality predictions….although I think that District 9 deserves a nomination over Invictus, Precious and A Serious Man (all of which are mediocre at best).

    I hope that Avatar WINS Best Picture.

    • Anna

      me too!

    • Matthieu

      District 9 does not deserve a best screenplay nom, because of a bad plot. Yup, I’m saying it. Bad plot. Why exactly did the main character attack Christopher? Made no sense that the character did that. Oh, that’s right, they needed 25 more minutes of action so of course he crashes the jet-thing. It was lazy writing in an otherwise clever script, and completely took me out of the movie.

      • kudos

        agree with clay, thats not dragging on thats good story. SPOILER he attacks him and later helps him despite turning into an alien.

      • Clay

        Really? He attacks Christopher because he wanted to be human in the near future. Not MAYBE in three years. He wanted to get to the mother ship and try to fix himself before Christopher leaves

    • Meg

      alright district nine was better than a serious man and precious but dont insult invictus please i loved that movie

      • Ronnie Deshe

        You’ve gotta be kidding. Invictus is easily the worst of those three. There was neither character development nor plot development, and to be honest… Morgan Freeman really wasn’t that good.

    • kudos

      though avatar had many flaws(script was sub par and story was unoriginal) and im not jumping on the cgi bandwagon. just yet it may possibly be better than the other noms( haven’t seen them all). i wouldn’t be upset at all if it won.

  • keith

    Now this is more like it! It’s hard to find fault with any of these predictions.

  • cobagibu

    Avatar does not belong in the Best Picture category…Best Director, Best Special Effects, definitely, but there is little story and the story that is there is cliched with no surprises how the movie ends, Best Picture nominees have to have great story, Avatar does not

    • Eric

      Slumdog, Titanic, and LotR have all been recent-ish winners of BP, and none of them had anything resembling a great story. BP is about the whole package (or in Slumdog’s case, really just about the offensively tacked-on dance sequence that ran over the credits).

      • chattypatra

        Eric, you really think that Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King was not a great story? I’m amazed!

      • cobagibu

        great story or not…it was still story, there was still some plot elements…Avatar’s “story” if you took out the CG effects could have been told in a 30 minute cartoon…

      • dylansdad

        @ZoeStars–The first sentence of the introduction to LOTR: “J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings is often erroneously called a trilogy, when it is in fact a single novel, consisting of six books plus appendices, somtimes published in three volumes.”

      • ZoeStars

        @rerun-LOTR is actually three books. The three movies were based on each of the three books. That is why they made three. It’s just more common nowadays to see all three novels published as one volume.

        Also, you may not have liked the books or the movies, but don’t hate on it as there are millions of people out there who do love it. What J.R.R Tolkien did with those novels changed the face of fantasy writing, so give the novels props for that.

      • Q

        I adore the LOTR films. However, the story for the films is very simplistic. Star Trek also has an extremely poor script. It is full of plot holes and silly dialogue.

      • rerun

        Haha, LOTR = poor story. It was so poor they made 3 films out of it. Total flash in the pan book.

      • kudos

        wow lotr not a great story, it was only adapted from the greatest fantasy novel ever written. i agree with slumdog horrible story and it won. but i still think star trek was better than avatar.

      • keith

        Well, I’ll disagree with you here. Slumdog and especially LOTR (all three movies) had great stories. Return of the King even won the screenplay oscar. I don’t see Avatar even getting nominated for its screenplay.

    • Jordan

      Will everyone who is dissing Avatar for having a “cliche” story please tell me where it has been done before besides Dances with Wolves?

      • Shane

        Pocahontas, Dances With Wolves, Fern Gully, The Last Samurai…

      • Gale

        Pocahontas and Ferngully. If you look on You Tube you can find comparisons of Avatar to both movies.

        Personally I thought Avatar was good, but not THAT good. Certainly not the best picture of the year to me. Not only because the plot wasn’t original, but because the characters had no depth. You could tell where each character would end up within the first few minutes of seeing them.

    • Claire

      Agreed! Star Trek for the win ha.

  • Brett

    Samantha Morton is so overrated it’s ridiculous. She could have no lines and be in a film for 30 seconds and be nominated.

    I think Penelope Cruz in Broken Embraces is by far the best performance of the year and deserves a Best Actress nomination.

    • Mo

      In Spain, Broken Embraces is considered on of the 10 worst movies of the year and Cruz’s role one of the 10 worst performances. Interesting what Spanish people think of a Spanish film.

  • Sally in Chicago

    I hate that they went to 10 pictures….more choices, more options….how do you think the voters are thinking? They’ll toss the movies that don’t hold their attention during the first act….
    Six nominees would have been a better number and compromise.

  • Gordon

    Streep gave one of the best performances of the year. I hope she wins.

    • keith

      Me, too. She was wonderful as Julia Child. And I’ll never be happy until she has at least a 3rd oscar. If Jack Nicholson can have three, then she sure as hell better have three.

      • chattypatra

        I agree. She hasn’t won in years, and has definitely earned it!

      • me

        the academy loves when actors play “real” folks. even that aside, meryl deserves an Oscar. she was as much julia as jamie foxx was ray charles. she deserves it!

    • Chris

      I would love it if she won. She was fantastic. And @chattypatra and keith, I agree that she needs to get that 3rd win after all this time…it’s driving me nuts! haha

      • om

        Completely agree! Meryl’s performance was a delight. As usual, she was mesmerizing. And, as she was robbed for last year’s DOUBT, she should win this year.

      • Leo

        Viva Meryl!

  • keith

    If this is the list, then I like the idea of ten nominees for Best Pic. If films like It’s Complicated and Nine and The Blind Side end up on the list, then I’m not for it. Those films have been largely considered disappointments artistically.

    I like the idea of raising the profile of films that might not otherwise make the 5 slot cut. For example, An Education would probably not make a list of 5 nominees. But the nomination will raise it’s profile and more people will see it. I’m all for that.

    Also, given that a NEW vote is taken after the nominees are announced to decide the winner, you never know how the game may shift. I’m not seeing it happen so much this year, but in the future, a film could come out of nowhere if it gains some momentum and win. Voters will be considering films they probably would have otherwise just skipped. Of course, I’m assuming the voters actually watch the movies nominated. ha!! :)

  • Becky

    No love for Abbie Cornish’s wonderful Fanny Brawne in Bright Star? She was incredible in that movie.

    • keith

      I wish. Unfortunately, Bright Star seems to have disappeared from the race. Cornish (and I think the film) are deserving. But, the stars just aren’t aligning in its favor unfortunately. But who knows? There is usually at least always one big surprise nomination in the acting categories–here’s hoping Cornish makes the cut. I’d prefer her to get nominated rather than Bullock.

  • cobagibu

    the problem with the Oscars is that the nominees are chosen and voted on by their peers, that’s nice and all, but I would rather have an award ceremony that is a combination of the Oscar’s and People’s Choice…let the people who actually bought the tickets decide who wins…and keep the Golden Globes separation of drama and musical/comedy

    • yep

      yeah, but itf its ever people’s choice, Twilight wins it….let the professionals handle it, because believe it or not, the movie buffs only make up a small percentage of the population

      • RyRyNYC

        I literally just got a cold shiver down my back when I read Twilight for best pic… not to hate on people’s taste but that is as far away from an oscar nom as Transformers 2.

      • erin

        Cynically, I’d like to see it happen, so that what has been experienced by music-lovers can be experienced by movie-lovers also: to see any remnants of the media as an art form go down the toilet. If Lady Gaga and Miley Cyrus can win awards for music, then why not Twilight for film?
        It’s the end of culture.

      • chattypatra

        Oh, please, don’t even go there, yep! I shudder to think of a nomination for Twilight. Never!

    • James

      We have those already, they’re called the MTV Movie Awards. Also, the People’s Choice Awards. And the Blockbuster Awards.
      Avenues already exist for overrated schlock to “win something.” I expect the Academy members to have better taste than the movie-going public. Snobby, sure, but usually true.

      • RubyBaby

        The BAFTA awards (British Film and TV Academy) feature an award voted for by the public – the Rising Star for young actors. The five nominees are selected by a jury but the public votes for the winner. I think the BAFTAs used to do this for a film award (as I think LOTR Fellowship won it) alongside the actual nominations for best film voted for by BAFTA members. So it can be done a little bit more professionally than the best kiss MTV type awards.

      • kudos

        movie goers as a whole should not vote than it becomes a popularity contest and transformers 2 would be in the running.

      • Joe

        The idea of people having a say in the Oscars is better in theory. Because then fricking Twilight would be nominated for best picture and thats something i could live with.

      • cobagibu

        okay…as per my comment, a combination of the two (and I specifically DID NOT mention the MTV awards, we do not need to see awards for best kiss)…I consider myself fairly intelligent (not Einstein, but not Alfred E. Newman either)…and you are degrading the average movie goer by stating that the Academy members would have better taste that the movie-going public…I throughly enjoyed Titanic, but then I also enjoyed The Reader, Schindler’s List, Precious, and An Education…I’ve often been known to escape into the Pirates of the Caribbean movies as well as curl up and watch an old Ingmar Bergman flick…so I would not be qualified?

    • Brian

      @cobagibu: Your idea is not going to work. If the Oscars were based on any sort of popular vote, Twilight would have won Best Picture in 2009, and New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn would already have sewn up their wins in 2010, 2011, and 2012. Dede is right: 80% of the population have shitty taste in just about everything. This accounts, among other things, for Jay Leno’s high ratings back when he hosted ‘Tonight.’ The Oscars should be what it is: a institution in which “the people” don’t get a voice. It’s Academy’s show, not yours.

    • Bradley Badder

      2nd that

    • Dede

      I am going to have to disagree with you in a BIG way. At least 80% of the population are idiots. Leave the voting and nominating to the professionals. Although, I do like the idea of Best Comedy and Best Drama instead of Best Picture. Comedies never get the respect they deserve.

  • jfms777

    Meryl Streep deserves a nom, and deserves to win. She “makes it look so easy;” that is the reason certain haters tend to dismiss her. There is no other actor around–male or female–who “makes it look so easy.” That is talent.

    • Bradley Badder

      You know what can’t we all just agree with Bullock that there should be a Special Streep award every year and all the films she’s been in that year we pick the best performance and give her an Oscar!

      • Jordan

        Lol exactly!

    • madd


    • om


    • katie


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