Below are my prediction for the film or person I want to win ("SHOULD WIN") and the film or person I predict to actually win ("WILL WIN").
- "The Wolf of Wall Street"
- "Captain Phillips"
- "American Hustle"
- "Dallas Buyers Club"
- "12 Years A Slave"
This is the most important category and surprisingly this year is one of the toughest to predict. Last year's winner was Ben Affleck's Argo which was a surprise to some, but was really not unexpected after Affleck was not even nominated for Best Director, a snub which angered a large segment of the Academy. There is a threeway race for the top spot between American Hustle, 12 Years A Slave and Gravity. Gravity and American Hustle lead the pack with 10 nominations, with 12 Years A Slave close behind with 9. Most Oscarologists are calling for 12 Years A Slave to win Best Picture but Gravity is the one with the largest following thanks to its 200-plus million box-office haul American Hustle has its hopefuls as well, but if it were to win it would be because it was on enough people's 2nd place slot that the preferential ballot allows it to sneak out a win. Since I picked 12 Years A Slave as my favorite film of the year I understand why people want it to win, but I think the Academy will go with the crowd pleaser (Gravity), especially since more often than not Best Picture and Best Director are very often aligned and Gravity's director is a lock to win.
SHOULD WIN: 12 Years A Slave
WILL WIN: Gravity
- Steve McQueen -- "12 Years a Slave"
- David O. Russell -- "American Hustle"
- Alfonso Cuaron -- "Gravity"
- Alexander Payne -- "Nebraska"
- Martin Scorsese -- "The Wolf of Wall Street"
- Bruce Dern -- "Nebraska"
- Chiwetel Ejiofor -- "12 Years a Slave"
- Matthew McConaughey -- "Dallas Buyers Club"
- Leonardo DiCaprio -- "The Wolf of Wall Street"
- Christian Bale -- "American Hustle"
- Amy Adams -- "American Hustle"
- Cate Blanchett -- "Blue Jasmine"
- Judi Dench -- "Philomena"
- Sandra Bullock -- "Gravity"
- Meryl Streep -- "August: Osage County"
This really should be Amy Adams year. She is a 5-time nominee and the only person in this category who has not yet won an Oscar, but Blanchett has won every precursor award and is widely respected. She is going to win a second Oscar eventually, and it might as well be this year. I just hope that Adams does not become another Glenn Close, much nominated and also widely respected but never rewarded with Hollywood's highest honor.
SHOULD WIN: Amy Adams, American Hustle
WILL WIN: Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Best supporting actor
- Barkhad Abdi -- "Captain Phillips"
- Bradley Cooper -- "American Hustle"
- Jonah Hill -- "The Wolf of Wall Street"
- Jared Leto -- "Dallas Buyers Club"
- Michael Fassbender -- "12 Years a Slave"
Jared Leto appears to have a lock on this category, having won the Golden Globe and SAG award but I find it hard to believe that a little film like Dallas Buyers Club could win two acting Oscars. Then again, the Best Picture nomination for this film is an indication of the overall strength for the film amongst the Academy members. However, the Academy often likes to use the Supporting categories to make surprise wins for an up and coming stars. The question is who would they reward instead? I think the choices would be either Fassbender or Cooper. Who wins this category is very dependent on who wins the Supporting Actress category. If Nyong'o wins there, then most likely Cooper would win here. If Lawrence wins there (which I think is unlikely) then Fassbender would be the back up choice. It is still possible that Leto could win, and I think that he should, but I'm not entirely convinced that he will win.
SHOULD WIN: Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
WILL WIN: Bradley Cooper, American Hustle
Best supporting actress
- Jennifer Lawrence -- "American Hustle"
- Lupita Nyong'o -- "12 Years a Slave"
- June Squibb -- "Nebraska"
- Julia Roberts -- "August: Osage County"
- Sally Hawkins -- "Blue Jasmine"
SHOULD WIN: Lupita Nyong'o, 12 Years A Slave
WILL WIN: Lupita Nyong'o, 12 Years A Slave
- "American Hustle" -- David O. Russell and Eric Warren Singer
- "Blue Jasmine" -- Woody Allen
- "Her" -- Spike Jonze
- "Nebraska" -- Bob Nelson
- "Dallas Buyers Club" -- Craig Borten and Melissa Wallack
SHOULD WIN: David O. Russell and Eric Warren Singer, American Hustle
WILL WIN: Spike Jonze, Her
Best adapted screenplay
- "12 Years a Slave" -- John Ridley
- "Before Midnight" -- Julie Delpy, Ethan Hawke and Richard Linklater
- "The Wolf of Wall Street" -- Terence Winter
- "Captain Phillips" -- Billy Ray
- "Philomena" -- Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope
The film that ends the night with the most wins will be Gravity, probably ending with at least five, most likely Picture, Director, Sound, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects and Score.