2011 Oscar predictions

Time Out's film buffs cast an eye over the Oscar nominations

1/10

Looking bleary-eyed and slightly uncomfortable, last year’s Supporting Actress winner, Monique, announced the nominations for this year’s Academy Awards categories in LA last month. As with this month’s Golden Globe awards, it’s an unsurprising but still strong list: great British hope The King’s Speech strolled regally into most of the top categories, including Best Picture, Best Actor for Colin Firth, Best Original Screenplay for David Seidler, Supporting nods for both Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush and a perhaps undeserved Best Director nomination for Tom Hooper. That film’s big rival, The Social Network, took many of the big prizes at the Golden Globes, and looks set to repeat at least some of that success here, with nominations for Best Picture, Best Director for David Fincher, an acting nod for Jesse Eisenberg, which he’ll inevitably lose to Firth, and a handful of technical awards.

In the supporting categories, The Fighter is the film to beat: the kind of old-fashioned comeback story the Academy loves to reward, packed with powerhouse performances from Christian Bale, Amy Adams and Melissa Leo, all of whom have been nominated along with director David O Russell, and the film itself. Echoing the Golden Globes, plenty of Time Out’s personal favourites are up for big awards: last year’s indie sleeper surprise Winter’s Bone received not only richly deserved acting nominations for Jennifer Lawrence and John Hawkes, but Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Film as well. Five-star smasher The Kids Are All Right stands alongside it in the Best Picture list, along with Annette Bening’s Best Actress nomination and an Original Screenplay nod, while the wonderful Michelle Williams is also nominated for Best Actress in Blue Valentine.

More surprisingly, Black Swan is another big favourite, although it has been banned in Dubai. We saw Natalie Portman’s Best Actress nomination coming a mile off, but nominations for Best Picture and Best Director were less expected, considering the eccentricities of Darren Aronofsky’s film. We were also pleased to see the Coen brothers’ True Grit getting its due, with nods for Best Film, Best Director, Cinematography, Adapted Screenplay and Best Actor for Jeff Bridges, though a nomination for Hailee Steinfeld in the lead female role (rather than just in the supporting category) would have been welcome.

It was also nice to see Mike Leigh bagging an Original Screenplay nomination for Another Year, British street artist Banksy’s Exit Through the Gift Shop getting some love in the Documentary category and Danny Boyle’s 127 Hours nominated for Best Picture, Adapted Screenplay and Best Actor for the increasingly impressive James Franco. The Oscars are notoriously America-centric, so it’s great to see Javier Bardem’s Cannes-winning, Spanish-language turn in Biutiful rewarded with a Best Actor nomination. And it’s a strong Foreign Language category this year: of the films we’ve seen, Dogtooth was a huge hit with our critics, while both Outside the Law and Biutiful received praise on our pages. Someone has to lose out, and this year it’s Inception: Christopher Nolan’s film was a critical hit in some circles, but its flashy visuals and convoluted plot failed to see it pick up many nominations besides Best Picture, which it has no chance of winning, plus Best Cinematography and technical awards. All in all, it’s a satisfying field: the Time Out film team is all but united behind The Social Network, arguably the most complex Best Picture nominee in years, but only a monstrous cynic would begrudge The King’s Speech its time in the sun.


And here’s the list of nominations…

Best Picture

Black Swan
Producers: Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin
Not yet released in the UAE

The Fighter
David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg

Inception
Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan

The Kids Are All Right
Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray
Not yet released in the UAE

The King’s Speech
Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin
Like to win

127 Hours
Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson

The Social Network
Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin
Time Out wants to win

Toy Story 3
Darla K Anderson

True Grit
Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen

Winter’s Bone
Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin

Directing

Black Swan
Darren Aronofsky
Not yet released in the UAE

The Fighter
David O Russell

The King’s Speech
Tom Hooper

The Social Network
David Fincher
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

True Grit
Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

127 Hours
Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy

The Social Network
Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Toy Story 3
Screenplay by Michael Arndt; story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich

True Grit
Written for the screen by Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Winter’s Bone
Adapted for the screen by Debra Granik and Anne Rosellini

Writing (Original Screenplay)

Another Year
Written by Mike Leigh

The Fighter
Screenplay by Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy and Eric Johnson; story by Keith Dorrington, Paul Tamasy and Eric Johnson

Inception
Written by Christopher Nolan

The Kids Are All Right
Written by Lisa Cholodenko and Stuart Blumberg
Not yet released in the UAE

The King’s Speech
Screenplay by David Seidler
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Cinematography

Black Swan
Matthew Libatique
Not yet released in the UAE, Like to win

Inception

Wally Pfister
Time Out wants to win

The King’s Speech
Danny Cohen

The Social Network

Jeff Cronenweth

True Grit
Roger Deakins


Actor in a Leading Role

Javier Bardem in Biutiful
Not yet released in the UAE

Jeff Bridges in True Grit

Jesse Eisenberg in The Social Network

Colin Firth in The King’s Speech
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

James Franco in 127 Hours

Actor in a Supporting Role

Christian Bale in The Fighter
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

John Hawkes in Winter’s Bone

Jeremy Renner in The Town

Mark Ruffalo in The Kids Are All Right

Geoffrey Rush in The King’s Speech

Actress in a Leading Role

Annette Bening in The Kids Are All Right
Not yet released in the UAE

Nicole Kidman in Rabbit Hole

Jennifer Lawrence in Winter’s Bone

Natalie Portman in Black Swan
Like to win

Michelle Williams in Blue Valentine
Time Out wants to win

Actress in a Supporting Role

Amy Adams in The Fighter

Helena Bonham Carter in The King’s Speech

Melissa Leo in The Fighter
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Hailee Steinfeld in True Grit

Jacki Weaver in Animal Kingdom
Not yet released in the UAE

Animated Feature Film

How to Train Your Dragon
Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois

The Illusionist
Sylvain Chomet
Not yet released in the UAE

Toy Story 3
Lee Unkrich
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Costume Design

Alice in Wonderland
Colleen Atwood

I Am Love

Antonella Cannarozzi
Time Out wants to win

The King’s Speech
Jenny Beavan
Like to win

The Tempest
Sandy Powell
Not yet released in the UAE

True Grit
Mary Zophres

Documentary (Feature)

Exit Through the Gift Shop
Banksy and Jaimie D’Cruz
Time Out wants to win

Gasland

Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic
Not yet released in the UAE

Inside Job

Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
Not yet released in the UAE, Like to win

Restrepo
Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
Not yet released in the UAE

Waste Land
Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley
Not yet released in the UAE

Film Editing

Black Swan
Andrew Weisblum
Not yet released in the UAE

The Fighter
Pamela Martin

The King’s Speech

Tariq Anwar

127 Hours
Jon Harris

The Social Network
Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Foreign Language Film

Biutiful Mexico
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Dogtooth Greece
Not yet released in the UAE

In a Better World Denmark
Not yet released in the UAE

Incendies Canada
Not yet released in the UAE

Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi) Algeria
Not yet released in the UAE

Make-up

Barney’s Version
Adrien Morot
Not yet released in the UAE

The Way Back
Edouard F Henriques, Gregory Funk and Yolanda Toussieng
Time Out wants to win

The Wolfman
Rick Baker and Dave Elsey
Not yet released in the UAE, Like to win

Music (Original Score)

How to Train Your Dragon
John Powell

Inception
Hans Zimmer

The King’s Speech
Alexandre Desplat
Like to win

127 Hours
AR Rahman

The Social Network
Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross
Time Out wants to win

Music (Original Song)

Coming Home from Country Strong: music and lyrics by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
Not yet released in the UAE

I See the Light from Tangled: music by Alan Menken; lyrics by Glenn Slater

If I Rise from 127 Hours: music by AR Rahman; lyrics by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
Like to win

We Belong Together from Toy Story 3: music and lyrics by Randy Newman
Time Out wants to win

Sound Editing

Inception
Richard King
Like to win

Toy Story 3
Tom Myers and Michael Silvers

Tron: Legacy
Gwendolyn Yates Whittle and Addison Teague

True Grit
Skip Lievsay and Craig Berkey

Unstoppable
Mark P Stoeckinger
Not yet released in the UAE, Time Out wants to win

Visual Effects

Alice in Wonderland
Ken Ralston, David Schaub, Carey Villegas and Sean Phillips

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
Tim Burke, John Richardson, Christian Manz and Nicolas Aithadi

Hereafter
Michael Owens, Bryan Grill, Stephan Trojanski and Joe Farrell

Inception
Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb
Like to win, Time Out wants to win

Iron Man 2
Janek Sirrs, Ben Snow, Ged Wright and Daniel Sudick


Want to watch Oscar-worthy films at home?

Some Dubai channels are running an Oscars season, screening last year’s winners and nominees, as well as this year’s successful pictures in March. Here are the highlights.

Precious: Sunday February 20, 9pm, Showmovies

Up: Sunday February 27, 9pm, Showmovies

The Blind Side: Friday March 4, 9pm, OSN Premiere

The Hurt Locker: Friday March 11, 9pm, OSN Premiere

Crazy Heart: Thursday March 17, 9pm, OSN Cinema

See it live!
The Oscars ceremony will be screened live on Fox Movies on Monday February 28 at 3am, repeated at 9pm.

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