Oscar Nominations: The Aftermath

The most notable surprises (including omissions) from this year’s Oscar nominations:

  • What is up with the Academy only picking 9 Best Picture nominees again? Would it really kill them to go with 10?
  • Could anyone have predicted that neither Ben Affleck nor Kathryn Bigelow would get a Best Director nomination? Affleck really deserved it.
  • In general, I didn’t expect Amour to succeed as it did, scoring nominations for Picture, Director, Actress, Original Screenplay and Foreign Film.
  • I’m disappointed that John Hawkes wasn’t nominated for Best Actor. I knew that the top 6 contenders would be fighting for each spot – and I knew that Denzel Washington would be nominated – but I was so hoping for Hawkes to get the edge over Jackman. For me, Hawkes clearly gave the better performance.
  • I came so close to getting the Best Actress category completely right because right before I published my predictions post yesterday I had Watts instead of Cotillard. Sometimes I need to stop reading so many other blogs because other bloggers and critics convinced me to change my guess to Cotillard… oh well.
  • Well, at least I correctly predicted the Supporting Actor category.
  • Jacki Weaver for Supporting Actress – did anyone see that coming? Much as I love her, I don’t think she deserved a nomination. She was good but had no standout moments in Silver Linings Playbook. (I also feel bad for Ann Dowd who spent so much of her own money on an awards campaign and screeners of Compliance.)
  • No Looper for Original Screenplay; replaced by Flight. Not entirely surprising.
  • Mildly surprised that The Perks of Being a Wallflower was bypassed by Beasts of the Southern Wild for Adapted Screenplay since Perks received so much critical attention for its writing.
  • The Animated Feature Film category was more or less what I thought it would be; The Pirates! Band of Misfits replaced Rise of the Guardians, but Pirates is supposed to be the better film anyway.
  • One of the big “shocking” snubs is the omission of The Intouchables for Foreign Language Film. I correctly guessed Amour, Kon-Tiki, A Royal Affair and War Witch, but I’m not surprised by No being chosen since so many other bloggers and reviewers predicted it.
  • Cinematography: yes to Life of Pi, Lincoln and Skyfall, but instead of Les Miserables and The Master, the Academy went with Anna Karenina and Django Unchained. Not terribly surprising.
  • Editing: yes to Argo, Life of Pi and Zero Dark Thirty, but instead of Les Miserables and Skyfall, the Academy went with Lincoln and Silver Linings Playbook (evidently one of the big nomination-winners today).
  • Production Design: yes to Anna Karenina, Les Miserables and Lincoln, but instead of The Master and Moonrise Kingdom, the Academy went with The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Life of Pi.
  • Costume Design: yes to Anna Karenina, Les Miserables, Lincoln and Snow White and the Huntsman, but instead of The Hobbit, the Academy went with Mirror Mirror (honoring the late, great Eiko Ishioka). I’m not 100% surprised because I did hear good things about the costumes when the movie came out last year.
  • Makeup & Hairstyling: I correctly guessed The Hobbit and Les Miserables, but I’m surprised that Hitchcock got the edge over Lincoln. DDL’s wrinkles were done decently.
  • Original Score: yes to Anna Karenina, Argo, Life of Pi and Lincoln, but the Academy chose Skyfall and The Master. I’m not surprised since Skyfall was one of my “possibilities,” and quite frankly, it’s an excellent score (even if parts of it feel like Dark Knight redux).
  • Original Song: what a wacky category. “Skyfall” and “Suddenly” were the only obvious, predictable nominees. Life of Pi’s “Pi’s Lullaby” had been predicted by some blogs, so I’m not surprised. I AM surprised by the choice of songs from Chasing Ice and Ted, if only because songs from documentaries seem less likely to be nominated (with the kind of recent exception of Melissa Etheridge) and Ted … well, now it’s Academy Award-nominated film Ted.
  • Sound Mixing and Sound Editing: I didn’t predict, so… yeah.
  • Visual Effects: yes to The Avengers, The Hobbit, Life of Pi and Prometheus but Snow White and the Huntsman got a nomination in place of the completely shut out The Dark Knight Rises. Ouch.
  • Documentary Feature: I correctly predicted The Gatekeepers, How to Survive a Plague and Searching for Sugar Man, but the Academy went for 5 Broken Cameras and The Invisible War instead of Bully or The Imposter.
  • The other categories: Best Documentary, Short Subjects; Best Short Film, Animated; Best Short Film, Live Action. I wouldn’t have known what to predict anyway.
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