My prediction on the 87th Annual Academy Awards

birdman06 We used to complain that the Oscar season became too predictable, but now we are grouching about how the Oscar season in this year has become the most unpredictable one compared to previous seasons. In the beginning, Richard Linklater’s masterpiece “Boyhood” looked like the definite front runner, but then Alejandro González Iñárritu’s whimsical work “Birdman” became the new favorite of the town as reflected by its consecutive victories at SAG, PGA, and DGA, and then BAFTA slapped its wing while giving its Best Picture award to “Boyhood”. In such a dizzy confusion like that, you will not be surprised to see “The Grand Budapest Hotel” or “American Sniper” or “Selma” win the award in spite of their low chance at present.

While the Academy Awards made one of its biggest snubs in the history as giving no more then 2 nominations to “Selma”, we can say that the Academy Awards in this year managed to distinguish itself with its three unconventional front runners at the spotlight. Richard Linklater, Alejandro González Iñárritu, and Wes Anderson have all pursued each own artistic vision for long years, and all of them now reach to the peak of their career as incidentally spotlighted by the Oscar season of this year. In the other words, this year is as fine as other years despite several egregious mistakes and omissions in the nominations.

Meanwhile, thanks to the diligence of many award season experts on the Internet, we already have pretty good ideas on who will likely win or who may make a surprise upset win at the ceremony on February 22th, and I have my own prediction based on what I have observed during this award season – and a bit of my intuition. As I said before, I have never been entirely correct in my prediction, but that is where fun comes from, you know.


Best Motion Picture of the Year
American Sniper (2014)
Birdman (2014)
Boyhood (2014)
The Imitation Game (2014)
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Selma (2014)
The Theory of Everything (2014)
Whiplash (2014)

“American Sniper”, “The Imitation Game”, “The Theory of Everything”, “Selma”, and “Whiplash” will probably get at least one award, but all of them except “American Sniper” have never been considered as a dark house in the Best Picture Oscar race of this season. “The Grand Budapest Hotel” will surely be rewarded in several technical categories, but it is too quirky to win the voters’ approval. Considering its wins at SAG, DGA, and PGA, I predict “Birdman” will win the award, but my heart still goes to “Boyhood”, a remarkable film whose plain but immensely powerful coming-of-age drama touchingly reminds us of how fleeting the passage of time is to all of us.

Prediction: “Birdman”
Preference: “Boyhood”


Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Steve Carell for Foxcatcher (2014)
Benedict Cumberbatch for The Imitation Game (2014)
Bradley Cooper for American Sniper (2014)
Michael Keaton for Birdman (2014)
Eddie Redmayne for The Theory of Everything (2014)

It has been clear that Steve Carell, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Bradley Cooper will be rewarded only with their nominations. Michael Keaton, who gave one of his best performances in “Birdman”, was the front runner in the race for a while, but then Eddie Redmayne began to run ahead of Keaton with his serial wins at Golden Globe, SAG, and BAFTA. His committed performance as Dr. Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything” is surely more visible compared to his fellow nominees, and I believe he will win in the end, though I will be happy to see Keaton getting his overdue recognition at last.

Prediction: Eddie Redmayne
Preference: Michael Keaton


Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Marion Cotillard for Two Days, One Night (2014)
Felicity Jones for The Theory of Everything (2014)
Rosamund Pike for Gone Girl (2014)
Julianne Moore for Still Alice (2014)
Reese Witherspoon for Wild (2014)

We all know that Julianne Moore will finally win an Oscar for her heartfelt melodramatic performance in “Still Alice”, and I will be glad to see this great actress to be honored on the stage. Reese Witherspoon gets a good chance to utilize her star presence well in “Wild”, and Felicity Jones deserves her nomination for holding her place opposite to her co-star Redmayne in “The Theory of Everything”, but both of them do not have much chance against Moore. Rosamund Pike is diabolically fun in “Gone Girl”, but her performance is not something likable enough to win the award, and the same thing can be said about Marion Cotillard, who should have swept the award season with her two great different performances in “Two Days, One Night” and “The Immigrant”.

Prediction: Julianne Moore
Preference: Marion Cotillard


Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Robert Duvall for The Judge (2014)
Ethan Hawke for Boyhood (2014)
Edward Norton for Birdman (2014)
Mark Ruffalo for Foxcatcher (2014)
J.K. Simmons for Whiplash (2014)

When I heard of the enthusiastic responses upon “Whiplash” and J.K. Simmons at the Sundance Film Festival early in last year, I predicted like others that Simmons would be the front runner of the upcoming award season, and, not so surprisingly, he has really been unstoppable in this category. His electrifying and terrifying performance as a monstrously demanding music teacher in “Whiplash” is unforgettable to say the least, and he surely deserves every award he has so far received.

Prediction: J.K. Simmons
Preference: J.K. Simmons


Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Patricia Arquette for Boyhood (2014)
Laura Dern for Wild (2014)
Keira Knightley for The Imitation Game (2014)
Emma Stone for Birdman (2014)
Meryl Streep for Into the Woods (2014)

Again, we have the sure front runner who definitely deserves the award compared to other good nominees. While “Boyhood” is mainly about how its young hero grows up year by year, it is also about how his mother struggles to make the life better for herself and her children, and Arquette gives an exquisite human performance to be remembered for years like her co-stars in the film.

Prediction: Patricia Arquette
Preference: Patricia Arquette



Best Achievement in Directing
Richard Linklater for Boyhood (2014)
Alejandro González Iñárritu for Birdman (2014)
Bennett Miller for Foxcatcher (2014)
Wes Anderson for The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Morten Tyldum for The Imitation Game (2014)

Considering his win at DGA, it looks like Alejandro González Iñárritu will win the award for his terrific technical achievement “Birdman”, but Richard Linklater may win for his equally commendable achievement in “Boyhood”.

Prediction: Alejandro González Iñárritu
Preference: Richard Linklater


Best Writing, Original Screenplay
Boyhood (2014) Richard Linklater
Birdman (2014) Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Armando Bo
Foxcatcher (2014) E. Max Frye, Dan Futterman
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Wes Anderson, Hugo Guinness
Nightcrawler (2014) Dan Gilroy

I think the award will go to “The Grand Budapest Hotel”, but watch out for “Birdman” or “Boyhood”.

Prediction: The Grand Budapest Hotel
Preference: Boyhood


Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay
American Sniper (2014) Jason Hall
Inherent Vice (2014) Paul Thomas Anderson
The Imitation Game (2014) Graham Moore
The Theory of Everything (2014) Anthony McCarten
Whiplash (2014) Damien Chazelle

“The Imitation Game” has been the front runner throughout the whole season, so it will win the award in the end, though there can be a possible upset by “Whiplash”.

Prediction: The Imitation Game
Preference: Whiplash


Best Foreign Language Film of the Year
Tangerines (2013) Zaza Urushadze (Estonia)
Ida (2013) Pawel Pawlikowski (Poland)
Leviathan (2014) Andrey Zvyagintsev (Russia)
Wild Tales (2014) Damián Szifrón (Argentina)
Timbuktu (2014) Abderrahmane Sissako (Mauritania)

I have not watched any nominees except “Ida”, which will probably win the award unless there is an upset by “Leviathan” or “Wild Tales”.

Prediction: Ida


Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
Big Hero 6 (2014)
The Boxtrolls (2014)
How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014)
Song of the Sea (2014)
The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (2013)

I have watched all nominees except “Song of the Sea”, and “The Tale of the Princess Kaguya” is the best of the bunch – but “How to Train Your Dragon 2” will win the award.

Prediction: How to Train Your Dragon 2
Preference: The Tale of the Princess Kaguya


Best Achievement in Cinematography
Birdman (2014) Emmanuel Lubezki
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Robert D. Yeoman
Mr. Turner (2014) Dick Pope
Unbroken (2014) Roger Deakins
Ida (2013) Lukasz Zal, Ryszard Lenczewski

Emmanuel Lubezki did another masterful job in “Birdman” after his Oscar-winning work in “Gravity”, and I will not complain if he really wins as predicted by many experts.

Prediction: Birdman
Preference: Ida


Best Achievement in Film Editing
Boyhood (2014) Sandra Adair
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Barney Pilling
Whiplash (2014) Tom Cross
American Sniper (2014) Joel Cox, Gary Roach
The Imitation Game (2014) William Goldenberg

Due to the glaring absence of “Birdman”, “Boyhood” will win instead, but watch out for “Whiplash”.

Prediction: Boyhood
Preference: Boyhood


Best Achievement in Production Design
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Adam Stockhausen, Anna Pinnock
The Imitation Game (2014) Maria Djurkovic, Tatiana Macdonald
Interstellar (2014) Nathan Crowley, Gary Fettis
Into the Woods (2014) Dennis Gassner, Anna Pinnock
Mr. Turner (2014) Suzie Davies, Charlotte Watts

“The Grand Budapest Hotel” will be rewarded in several technical categories for its charming style and details, and this is the category where it cannot lose.

Prediction: The Grand Budapest Hotel
Preference: The Grand Budapest Hotel


Best Achievement in Costume Design
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Milena Canonero
Inherent Vice (2014) Mark Bridges
Into the Woods (2014) Colleen Atwood
Maleficent (2014) Anna B. Sheppard
Mr. Turner (2014) Jacqueline Durran

I make the same prediction for the same reason.

Prediction: The Grand Budapest Hotel
Preference: The Grand Budapest Hotel

thegrandbudafesthotel03Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling
Foxcatcher (2014) Bill Corso, Dennis Liddiard
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Frances Hannon, Mark Coulier
Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) Elizabeth Yianni-Georgiou, David White

Again, I make the same prediction for the same reason.

Prediction: The Grand Budapest Hotel
Preference: The Grand Budapest Hotel


Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score
The Imitation Game (2014) Alexandre Desplat
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014) Alexandre Desplat
Interstellar (2014) Hans Zimmer
The Theory of Everything (2014) Jóhann Jóhannsson
Mr. Turner (2014) Gary Yershon

I’d love to see Alexandre Desplat finally receiving an Oscar after many years of his diligent musical service, but, mainly due to the handicap of Desplat’s double nominations, the award will go to Jóhann Jóhannsson’s sentimental score for “The Theory of Everything”.

Prediction: The Theory of Everything
Preference: The Grand Budapest Hotel or The Imitation Game

selma02Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song
Selma (2014) Common, John Legend (“Glory”)
Begin Again (2013) Gregg Alexander, Danielle Brisebois (“Lost Stars”)
The Lego Movie (2014) Shawn Patterson (“Everything is Awesome”)
Beyond the Lights (2014) Diane Warren (“Grateful”)
Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me (2014) Glen Campbell, Julian Raymond (“I’m Not Gonna Miss Yo”)

While “Everything Is Awesome” is horribly catchy, “Glory” win the award, and its win will be a small consolation for “Selma”, which should have been nominated in other major categories besides Best Picture.

Prediction: Selma
Preference: Selma – with a nod to The Lego Movie


Best Achievement in Sound Mixing
American Sniper (2014) John T. Reitz, Gregg Rudloff, Walt Martin
Birdman (2014) Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño, Thomas Varga
Interstellar (2014) Gary Rizzo, Gregg Landaker, Mark Weingarten
Unbroken (2014) Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño, David Lee
Whiplash (2014) Craig Mann, Ben Wilkins, Thomas Curley

Considering that music has a crucial role in its drama, “Whiplash” will take the award for its vivid aural presentation of those thrilling music performances scenes.

Prediction: Whiplash
Preference: Whiplash


Best Achievement in Sound Editing
American Sniper (2014) Alan Robert Murray, Bub Asman
Birdman (2014) Aaron Glascock, Martín Hernández
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014): Brent Burge, Jason Canovas
Interstellar (2014) Richard King
Unbroken (2014) Becky Sullivan, Andrew DeCristofaro

“Birdman” may win, but I will bet on “American Sniper”

Prediction: American Sniper
Preference: Birdman

interstellar03Best Achievement in Visual Effects
Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014) Dan Deleeuw, Russell Earl, Bryan Grill, Daniel Sudick
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014) Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, Daniel Barrett, Erik Winquist
Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) Stephane Ceretti, Nicolas Aithadi, Jonathan Fawkner, Paul Corbould
Interstellar (2014) Paul J. Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Ian Hunter, Scott R. Fisher
X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014) Richard Stammers, Lou Pecora, Tim Crosbie, Cameron Waldbauer

It has been pretty obvious from the start.

Prediction: Interstellar
Preference: Interstellar

Russia Snowden

Best Documentary, Feature
Citizenfour (2014) Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky
Finding Vivian Maier (2013) John Maloof, Charlie Siskel
Last Days in Vietnam (2014) Rory Kennedy, Keven McAlester
The Salt of the Earth (2014) Wim Wenders, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, David Rosier
Virunga (2014) Orlando von Einsiedel, Joanna Natasegara

Prediction: Citizenfour


Best Documentary, Short Subject
Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1 (2013) Ellen Goosenberg Kent, Dana Perry
Joanna (2013) Aneta Kopacz
Our Curse (2013) Tomasz Sliwinski, Maciej Slesicki
The Reaper (2014) Gabriel Serra
White Earth (2014) Christian Jensen

Prediction: Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1


Best Short Film, Animated
The Bigger Picture (2014): Daisy Jacobs, Chris Hees
The Dam Keeper (2014): Robert Kondo, Daisuke ‘Dice’ Tsutsumi
Feast (2014): Patrick Osborne, Kristina Reed
Me and My Moulton (2014): Torill Kove
A Single Life (2014): Joris Oprins

Prediction: Feast


Best Short Film, Live Action
Aya (2012) Oded Binnun, Mihal Brezis
Boogaloo and Graham (2014) Michael Lennox, Ronan Blaney
Butter Lamp (2013) Wei Hu, Julien Féret
Parvaneh (2012) Talkhon Hamzavi, Stefan Eichenberger
The Phone Call (2013) Mat Kirkby, James Lucas

Prediction: The Phone Call

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3 Responses to My prediction on the 87th Annual Academy Awards

  1. Adhoc says:

    Congrats, you missed just 1 prize. Now, go buy a lottery.

    SC: Four Prizes, actually.

  2. SMRana says:

    At least I have some titles to consume….maybe Ill start with Ida….I like b/w…

    SC: Have a good time with them.

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