Ok, now that I’ve sucked you in with that headline, let me clarify. Nobody needs to be fired, just reassigned, away from the job they have now, which is supposed to be telling us who the frontrunners are for the Oscar nominations being announced tomorrow morning.
You can find my predictions here. Variety published a rundown of the films they thought to be Oscar favorites. Yes, this was back in November, but still, what were they thinking? This is shoddy. As a major news source, you can’t rely on hype, or you’ll get things wrong, but that seems to be about all that they did, just pick films with lots of hype and/or special effects, with no interest in actual film quality.
There are the films they listed as Oscar favorites:
American Sniper, Big Eyes, Black or White, Boyhood, Calvary, The Fault in Our Stars, Exodus: Gods and Kings, Foxcatcher, Fury, Gone Girl, The Homesman, The Imitation Game, Inherent Vice, Interstellar, A Most Violent Year, Into the Woods, Nightcrawler, Mr. Turner, Selma, Rosewater, Still Alice, St. Vincent, The Theory of Everything, Unbroken, Whiplash, Wild.
Now again, I’ll let it slide a bit because these predictions were made in November. But the fact remains that, even in a list of 27 films, there are some that belong nowhere near a list like this.
Black or White isn’t even eligible for an Oscar, Big Eyes, Exodus, and Unbroken were hyped for months but none of them delivered; The Fault in Our Stars is blatant sucrose for your tear ducts and films like The Homesman and Rosewater have never been on anyone’s radar. So how many of these films will garner even a single nomination? Furthermore, with Variety insisting that these are Oscar frontrunners, how many will get any above-the-line nods? Not many. Here’s a breakdown of my predictions by film nominations.
- 10 – Birdman
- 9 – The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Imitation Game
- 6 – Boyhood, The Theory of Everything
- 5 – Selma, Whiplash
- 4 – Gone Girl, Interstellar, Into the Woods
- 3 – Nightcrawler, Unbroken
- 2 – American Sniper, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Foxcatcher, Guardians of the Galaxy, Ida, The Lego Movie, Mr. Turner, Wild
- 1 – A Most Violent Year, Begin Again, Cake, Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me, Godzilla, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, The Judge, Maleficent, Noah, Inherent Vice, Still Alice, all other animated, foreign, documentary, and short films.
Of Variety’s films that I’m leaving out, Big Eyes and Fury both have outside chances at getting in. That leaves Black or White, Calvary, The Fault in Our Stars, Exodus: Gods and Kings, The Homesman, Rosewater, and St. Vincent to be placed on the “what the heck are they thinking?” list. That’s a good 30-40% of the films they picked as “favorites” that won’t get a single nomination. That percentage could get even bigger. Its possible that American Sniper, Inherent Vice, and A Most Violent Year also will fail to get nominated. Not good enough if you’re Variety. Do better.
Of course, you can follow my Oscar predictions here and make fun of me if I’m wrong as well.