Tuesday, March 13, 2018

How did my Oscar predictions fare? Pretty well, actually

I opened and closed Diversity, representation, inclusion, and fantasy all winners at the 90th Academy Awards with a summary report and a promise to expand on it later.
I want to get fantasy out of the way.  The big winner was "The Shape of Water" with four Oscars, Best Picture, Best Director, Original Score, and Production Design.  Two speculative fiction movies won two awards each, "Blade Runner 2049" earning Cinematography and Visual Effects and "Coco" winning Animated Feature Film and Original Song.  Two other speculative fiction films won one Oscar each, "Get Out" for Original Screenplay and "Dear Basketball" for Animated Short Film.  That's a total of ten awards out of the nineteen categories in which speculative fiction films were nominated.  That's definitely better than the six wins out of sixteen nominations speculative fiction films earned last year and better in an absolute sense than the nine wins out of fifteen nominations in 2016, most of which went to "Mad Max: Fury Road."

I'll discuss the speculative fiction movies more later.*
*I plan on writing about the political implications of "Icarus" winning Best Documentary Feature, the political themes in some of the Live Action Short Films and Documentary Short nominees, and finally comparing my predictions from 'The Shape of Water' and 'Blade Runner 2049' lead speculative fiction nominees at the Oscars and other entries with reality.  Stay tuned.
I took care of the first two goals with 'Icarus' wins Best Documentary, making a political point at Putin's expense and Politics and diversity among Oscar nominated short subjects, so it's time to follow through with the third.  Follow over the jump for my Oscar predictions with reality.

I begin with my hopes for Best Picture.
As I've been writing all awards season, the top two speculative fiction movies of 2017 have been "The Shape of Water" and "Get Out."  Yes, "Blade Runner 2049" may have one more nomination than "Get Out," but it isn't nominated for the most prestigious awards; "Get Out" is.  Just the same, "Get Out" is very unlikely to win this category.  Instead, it looks to be a contest between "The Shape of Water" and "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri."  I'm rooting for the romance with a fish-man, but I'm not optimistic, as most of the voters are actors and they awarded "Three Billboards" the equivalent of Best Picture at the SAG Awards.
That "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" beat "The Shape of Water" for Best Film at the BAFTA Awards made me even less optimistic, but my wish came true.

For directing, I wrote "Guillermo Del Toro has won this award at all the awards shows that give out such an award so far, so I'm not expecting him to stumble now."  He didn't stumble, so he won.

I wrote something similar for Actor in a Leading Role.
I had the same thing to say about Gary Oldman that I did for Del Toro.  He's won all the awards for leading actor that he is eligible for, so I don't expect him to lose now.  Sorry, Daniel Kaluuya.
Oldman won.  As I wrote three months ago in 'The Shape of Water' leads speculative fiction at the 2018 Critics' Choice Movie Awards, "There is nothing like a good Winston Churchill."

"This is Frances McDormand's role to lose, so I don't think Sally Hawkins has much of a chance" was how I sized up the contest for Actress in a Leading Role and that's how it played out, as I already embedded McDormand's acceptance speech in my first entry about the Oscar winners.
I'm sorry to see that Hong Chau didn't make the cut.  That might be enough to convince the Saturn Awards nomination committee to include her in their awards.  As for Octavia Spencer, she's a great actress but I think this one is going to Allison Janney.
That was my appraisal of the race for Actress in a Supporting Role.  It went as I thought with Janney winning.

I continued my streak by predicting "The Oscar will most likely go to Sam Rockwell" for Actor in a Supporting Role.  It did.

"I think this award will go to "Call Me by Your Name" was my prediction for Adapted Screenplay and that's exactly what happened.

I held off on making a prediction for Original Screenplay until after the WGA Awards, when "Get Out" won that category.
This is a close category that I can't call until the WGA Awards on February 10th.  Still, I'm glad to write that "Get Out" has a very good chance.
Now I can say that "Get Out" is favored at the Oscars.
And it won.  Yay!

For Animated Film, I wrote "'Coco' has this award in the bag.  It had better hope the bag isn't wet."  I returned to that metaphor in 'Coco,' 'Rick and Morty,' and 'Samurai Jack' among Annie winners, writing after "Coco" swept all the awards for which it was eligible "I can officially say the bag is dry."  "Coco" won.

"I suspect either "A Fantastic Woman" or "The Square" will get the Oscar" was my forecast for Foreign Language Film and "A Fantastic Woman" won.  Chalk up one-half for that category.

In Cinematography, I was bullish about a different speculative fiction movie, writing "This is one category where I think 'Blade Runner 2049' has a good chance of winning, followed by 'The Shape of Water.'"  "Blade Runner 2049" won, as I predicted.

I stumbled in the next category, Film Editing, writing "As much as I'd like 'The Shape of Water' to win this, I think this category is between 'Baby Driver' and 'I, Tonya' with 'Baby Driver' favored."  None of them won.  Instead, "Dunkirk" did.

I withheld my prediction for Production Design until later.
Oh, look, the first of two nominations for "Beauty and the Beast," the second highest grossing film of last year.  It's joined by two other speculative fiction films, "Blade Runner 2049" and "The Shape of Water."  Of the three, both the "The Shape of Water" and "Blade Runner 2049" have won awards for production design, although I would give more weight to the Critics' Choice Movie Award won by "The Shape of Water" than the six local critics groups who awarded "Blade Runner 2049" their honors in this category.  Still, it won't matter until the Art Directors Guild Awards tomorrow.  That's when I can actually begin to call this category.
"The Shape of Water" won at the Art Directors Guild Awards, so it became the favorite and it won.

"I think the favorite is "Phantom Thread," although I can't be definitive until the Costume Designers Guild announces its winners...."  So I wrote for Costume Design when I looked at the nominees.  When I wrote about the winners at the Costume Designers Guild Awards, I was surprised, as "The Shape of Water" won for Period Film.
I thought "The Shape of Water" had a chance, as it was also nominated at the BAFTA Awards and Critics' Choice Awards, but I was not optimistic, as it was competing against "Phantom Thread," which won at both the BAFTA Awards and the Critics' Choice Award for Best Costume Design.  I'm now more optimistic about its chances for an Oscar in this category, even though I still think "The Phantom Tread" is the favorite.  While I was rooting for "Wonder Woman" along with "The Last Jedi," I thought "Beauty and the Beast" was the favorite.  I am glad to be wrong.  Unfortunately, "Wonder Woman" is not nominated in any category at the Oscars, so this win means nothing there.
I was right not to get my hopes up too much for "The Shape of Water," as "The Phantom Thread" won the category.

I wrote "this is a contest between 'Darkest Hour' and 'Wonder' with the former favored" for Makeup and Hairstyling.  The Makeup and Hair Stylists Guild Awards cemented my opinion of the contest, as "Darkest Hour" swept its categories while "Wonder" was shut out.  "Darkest Hour" won.

"I think this award will go to Alexandre Desplat for 'The Shape of Water.'"  So I predicted and so it went with Desplat winning.

I didn't make a prediction for Original Song here at Crazy Eddie's Motie News.  Instead, I made it in Midweek Cafe and Lounge, Vol. 49 over at Booman Tribune, where I called "Remember Me" from "Coco" "one of the favorites to win Best Original Song."  The other was "This is Me" from "The Greatest Showman."  In response to that, I wrote "I'd rather have 'Remember Me' win."  I got my wish.  Also, it counts.

I made no predictions for Sound Editing and Sound Mixing, although I was hoping that "The Last Jedi" might eke out wins here even though I was sure that it wouldn't win a single Academy Awards.  As I result, I missed calling these categories for "Dunkirk."  As a matter of fact, I didn't catch any of the three Oscars that went to "Dunkirk."  Whiff!

I had another miss with Visual Effects, writing "I'm rooting for 'The Last Jedi' but think 'War for the Planet of the Apes' is the favorite for its motion capture work."  I was even more confident when "War for the Planet of the Apes" was one of the biggest winners at Visual Effects Society Awards.
Fox’s War for the Planet of the Apes took four prizes including the marquee Outstanding Visual Effects in a Photoreal Feature.
Its other three awards were for Outstanding Animated Character in a Photoreal Feature, Outstanding Effects Simulations in a Photoreal Feature, and Outstanding Compositing in a Photoreal Feature.  Its four wins bolsters my prediction that "War for the Planet of the Apes" is the favorite to win Best Visual Effects at the Oscars.  Hail Caesar!
Then "Blade Runner 2049" won for Special Visual Effects at the BAFTA Awards and I started to have second thoughts, worrying that "Maybe I was premature in declaring 'Hail Caesar' after 'War for the Planet of the Apes' won at the Visual Effects Society Awards.  'Blade Runner 2049' is its biggest competition."  "Blade Runner 2049" won and I lost the point.

I changed my mind about Animated Short Film, as I originally wrote "My pick is 'Lou,' which is a Pixar short."  After the Annie Awards, I switched my pick, writing "'Dear Basketball' won Best Animated Short Subject.  I now know the favorite in that category and expect to see Kobe Bryant on the stage next month...."  Bryant won the award.

I called 15.5 winners out of 18 categories in which I made a prediction.  Adding in my calling "Faces, Places" instead of "Icarus" winning Documentary Feature, that's 15.5 out of 19 categories, which is 81.6%  I'm happy with that.

I'm done with the Oscars for this year.  Stay tuned for Pi Day.

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