Just for the hell of it, here are my predictions for the major categories of the 80th Academy Awards, with brief comments on my selections. I think 2007 was an exceptionally strong year, particularly in its latter quarter, so it’s been a very exciting awards season, and I’m very much looking forward to the Oscars for the first time in several years.
|Best Picture||No Country For Old Men||No Country For Old Men||I can see reasons for each of the other candidates to garner a lot of votes, but this is the Coens’ year, and deservedly so.|
|Director||Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood)||Joel and Ethan Coen (No Country For Old Men)||Without intending to diminish the greatness of PTA’s achievement, I think the Coens’ was even greater. However, I think the voters will want to recognize PTA here, while giving the Coens the nod for Best Picture.|
|Actor||Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood)||Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood)||Nobody can touch DD-L’s performance this year, even Academy favorite Clooney.|
|Actress||Marion Cotillard (La Vie en Rose)||Ellen Page (Juno)||I think the backlash against indie darling Juno will be too great, with preference going to the art-house favorite instead–which, by all accounts, features a great performance by Cotillard (though this is one I’ve not seen).|
|Supporting Actor||Javier Bardem (No Country For Old Men)||Javier Bardem (No Country For Old Men)||I don’t think this one is even close, although there are several good performances nominated (particularly Tom Wilkinson in Michael Clayton).|
|Supporting Actress||Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton)||Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone)||Swinton’s performance seemed to be a critical favorite, but I really thought Amy Ryan stole the show in Gone Baby Gone.|
|Cinematography||Roger Deakins (No Country For Old Men)||Robert Elswitt (There Will Be Blood)||I think this will be a tight race, and both front-runners are deserving, but it’s time for Roger Deakins to get the recognition he so deserves.|
|Original Screenplay||Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton)||Diablo Cody (Juno)||Michael Clayton seems to be a voter’s favorite, and I think the success of Juno will detract from its indie cred and hurt Cody’s chances of winning the Oscar I feel she deserves.|
|Adapted Screenplay||Christopher Hampton (Atonement)||Joel and Ethan Coen (No Country For Old Men)||I thought the Coens’ adaptation was as good as I’ve ever seen, although I think PTA deserves consideration here as well. The Academy tends to like movies like Atonement in this category more than either of them, though.|
|Editing||Roderick Jaynes (No Country For Old Men)||Roderick Jaynes (No Country For Old Men)||As a continuation of the theme of recognizing the Coen brothers–not only for their remarkable film this year but also for their lifetimes of consistently amazing work–it’s time for their editor pseudonym to win, too. Should be interesting to see how the “outing” of Roderick Jaynes is handled at the ceremony.|
Those are the only ones I really care about, so I’ll leave it with that. Should be a good and interesting ceremony this year. Here’s to hoping that 2008 can match the high quality we saw in 2007.