Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Oscar Predictions Week: Part 3

Gatsby could be a force in the tech categories.

Welcome to the third day of a special week of early Oscar predictions! I've teamed up with Fisti (of A Fistful of Films) for a series of dual posts covering our thoughts on the upcoming Oscar race. I'll include both my comments and predictions, as well as Fisti's. I had to edit his comments, so be sure to check out his full commentary on his blog.

So, today we're looking at six visual categories: Best Film Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Production Design, Best Cinematography, Best Makeup and Hairstyling, and Best Visual Effects.

Note: David O. Russell's ABSCAM project has now been titled American Hustle.

Could The Bling Ring snag an editing nod?

Best Film Editing:

My Take:

American Hustle (formerly ABSCAM)
The Counselor
Gravity
The Monuments Men
Rush

The Counselor, Gravity, and Rush seem the most likely. American Hustle, if well-liked, could slip in, as could The Monuments Men. Of course, there's also room for films like Elysium (underestimated?), Winter's Tale, Only God Forgives, and The Wolf of Wall Street.

Fisti's Take:

American Hustle (formerly ABSCAM)
The Bling Ring
The Counselor
Foxcatcher
Rush

The Film Editing category usually consists of the Oscar Best Picture frontrunners and a flashy nominee or a big action film thrown in for good measure. That would immediately mean that, for my predictions to be accurate with one another, The Counselor and Rush would be out in front. I have a feeling that Rush is going to be pretty flashy as well, so it will probably cover both those bases. Gravity will probably be an energetic cut… I’m also thinking that Foxcatcher will be a notable mention, considering that Miller’s films… really use the editing in a special and effective way. That leaves me with Inside Llewyn Davis, Fruitvale, The Monuments Men, Only God Forgives, The Bling Ring and Elysium as films I’m strongly considering for this category. That said, I’m going with O. Russell’s American Hustle, simply because I have a feeling it’s going to be a big player.

Summary:
We both have American Hustle, The Counselor, and Rush getting nominated. Fisti has opted for The Bling Ring (please let this happen) and Foxcatcher, but I've gone with Gravity and The Monuments Men, for now. Other titles we both considered were Elysium and Only God Forgives.

Will Grace of Monaco's costumes be recognized?

Best Costume Design:

My Take:

Grace of Monaco
The Great Gatsby
Lowlife
Oz the Great and Powerful
Saving Mr. Banks

The frontrunner is easily The Great Gatsby. Grace of Monaco and Oz the Great and Powerful have all the right stuff, and potential Best Picture nominations could secure Lowlife and Saving Mr. Banks a nomination apiece. The Monuments Men, Twelve Years a Slave, Serena, American Hustle, Winter's Tale, Inside Llewyn Davis, The Butler, and possibly The Wolf of Wall Street are also in the race.

Fisti's Take:

American Hustle (formerly ABSCAM)
Grace of Monaco
The Great Gatsby
Oz the Great and Powerful
The Wolf of Wall Street

Period pieces and puffy dresses galore in this category. That is usually all they make room for. I’m totally banking on The Great Gatsby winning this in a landslide… I’m not sure about how Saving Mr. Banks is going to go, but considering that it circulates the time when Disney was adapting Mary Poppins, it could have some colorful attributes. Oz looks luscious to be honest, and they like fantastical stuff like that. Stoker could factor in, and this is one place where Winter’s Tale could be a contender. Then you have the next in the long line of Hobbit films. Then there are the more rustic period pieces like Twelve Years a Slave, Serena, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints, The Counselor, Lowlife and a slew of others. And what about the suits and gowns that are sure to swirl all around The Butler and Grace of Monaco? Oscar doesn’t usually favor contemporary works, but could The Bling Ring enter the conversation? What about The Wolf of Wall Street? Could it be a Milk-like contender?

Summary:
We agree on Grace of Monaco, The Great Gatsby, and Oz the Great and Powerful. While I've predicted Lowlife and Saving Mr. Banks, Fisti has chosen American Hustle and The Wolf of Wall Street. We both had The Butler, Serena, Twelve Years a Slave, and Winter's Tale as other possibilities, though.

Can Oz impress Academy voters?

Best Production Design:

My Take:

The Great Gatsby
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Oz the Great and Powerful
Saving Mr. Banks
Winter's Tale

Again, The Great Gatsby looks like the winner. The Hobbit and Oz could split votes, but I see both in at the moment. If Saving Mr. Banks is destined for a Best Picture nod, I think it gets in here. Although Winter's Tale is a bit of a wild card, it could be a film that garners some technical nominations at the very least. Gravity, Lowlife, The Monuments Men, Serena, Inside Llewyn Davis, Rush, and Twelve Years a Slave are the other films competing for a spot.

Fisti's Take:

The Butler
The Great Gatsby
Oz the Great and Powerful
The Monuments Men
Winter’s Tale

Whether recreating the past or creating new worlds, this category can offer a bounty of contenders… Fantasy works here, so I’m thinking that the new Hobbit movie and Oz will be in the conversation… I also expect The Great Gatsby to kind of dominate here. It just looks like everything this category was made for. Stoker is a possibility, and Winter’s Tale sounds like it could be amazing in this respect. I’m still not sure what to think of Saving Mr. Banks, and I’m thinking that Star Trek Into Darkness could be a player here. If the Academy feels the same way about flying debris as they do about flying fish, you could see a nomination for Gravity here. And then you have those nostalgic recreations of times past like Grace of Monaco, The Butler, The Counselor, Serena, Lovelace, Lowlife, Inside Llewyn Davis, Romeo and Juliet and Twelve Years a Slave. And then there is The Monuments Men and Rush.

Summary:
We both have The Great Gatsby, Oz the Great and Powerful, and Winter's Tale making the cut. I see The Hobbit and Saving Mr. Banks getting in, but Fisti thinks The Butler and The Monuments Men will instead. Gravity, Lowlife, Serena, Inside Llewyn Davis, Rush, and Twelve Years a Slave are other options we both explored.

Has Terrence Malick's Best Cinematography streak ended?

Best Cinematography:

My Take:

Gravity
Inside Llewyn Davis
To the Wonder
Twelve Years a Slave
Winter's Tale

Gravity seems to be out in front. To the Wonder (above) could happen, or the honor could go to Terrence Malick's other film: Knight of Cups. Twelve Years a Slave and Inside Llewyn Davis could register, but I'm more interested to see what happens with Winter's Tale, which I have in fifth place. Also, The Bling Ring (wishful thinking), The Counselor, Lowlife, The Great Gatsby, Rush, Serena, and Ain't Them Bodies Saints have potential.

Fisti's Take:

The Bling Ring
The Counselor
Gravity
Inside Llewyn Davis
Twelve Years a Slave

This is hard to judge this early out, but I’m willing to make a good guess and say that the trend of honoring the 3D/Effects Heavy films will continue and Gravity will not only be nominated but win here. After that, I think Malick is always a safe bet, so count on Knight of Cups unless it proves too contemporary (am I the only one who feels like this doesn’t even look like a Malick film?). Then, I’m left wondering. I was impressed with the look of the Inside Llewyn Davis trailer, but many were not. Rush could be a contender here, unless it is too claustrophobic… McQueen’s films are always wonders to look at, so Twelve Years a Slave could factor in, and this could be the one area where Ain’t Them Bodies Saints factors in, since its cinematography already has good ink coming out of Sundance. The question is, if it doesn’t hit anywhere else would it really hit here? That has me circling Winter’s Tale again, and I’m wondering if that is bias since the premise and cast sound so amazing that I want it to be better than I’m sure it is, and if I go out on a limb for it technically, shouldn’t I consider it more for other categories?

Summary:
We agree that Gravity, Inside Llewyn Davis, and Twelve Years a Slave will be nominated. Fisti rounded off his picks with The Bling Ring (pretty please?) and The Counselor, while I've predicted To the Wonder and Winter's Tale. We can also see Ain't Them Bodies Saints, Knight of Cups, and Rush being in the race.

Banks could receive a makeup/hair nomination.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling:

My Take:

Foxcatcher
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Saving Mr. Banks

This category is a bit of a gamble. The Hobbit is probably the only lock. Foxcatcher has some great work, and Disney could strike with Saving Mr. Banks. Other contenders are The Great Gatsby, Star Trek Into Darkness, Winter's Tale, Elysium, American Hustle, and Oz the Great and Powerful.

Fisti's Take:

American Hustle (formerly ABSCAM)
Foxcatcher
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Monster makeup and facial distortions and then again, even when it seems obvious (Lincoln) you can get shafted for an ill-fitting fat suit (Hitchcock) so nothing is for certain and this is a huge gamble but I’m thinking we have a few key potentials. In the ‘monster makeup’ side of things we have the new Hobbit film (always a safe bet, regardless of repetition), Elysium, Star Trek Into Darkness, Oz the Great and Powerful and Winter’s Tale. Then we have the prostetic facial reconstruction in films like Foxcatcher (have you seen what they’ve done to Carell?), American Hustle, The Butler, Rush, Saving Mr. Banks, The Counselor, The Wolf of Wall Street and possibly Captain Phillips. Then there is always talk of films like The Great Gatsby that try and beautify, but they rarely make a real splash.

Summary:
We both think Foxcatcher and The Hobbit will be there. I see Saving Mr. Banks as the third nominee, but Fisti is going with American Hustle. We also considered Elysium, The Great Gatsby, Oz the Great and Powerful, Star Trek Into Darkness, and Winter's Tale.

The Hobbit has a good chance at Visual Effects recognition.

Best Visual Effects:

My Take:

Gravity
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Man of Steel
Pacific Rim
Star Trek Into Darkness

Gravity probably has this in the bag. The Hobbit and Man of Steel are the likely also-rans, but Pacific Rim and Star Trek could fall off Oscar's radar. Elysium, Oz the Great and Powerful, After Earth, Oblivion, Iron Man 3, The Wolverine, and World War Z are other options the Academy might go with.

Fisti's Take:

Elysium
Gravity
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Man of Steel
Star Trek Into Darkness

I think this will rather easily be all about Gravity, much like this year turned into ‘all about Life of Pi’. It’ll have the perfect combination of prestige and beautiful effects to carry it to undisputed victory. After that, you have a slew of sci-fi and superhero movies to choose from; a bounty. I feel pretty confident in Man of Steel, and I’m sure that Oz will factor in somewhere, but I’m not so sure it’ll be here. There is just so much. In the sci-fi corner we have Elysium, the follow up to District 9, which landed in this category in 2009. Speaking of 2009, Star Wars was a contender and this year we have the sequel, Into Darkness. After Earth looks like an Avatar rip-off, Oblivion looks interesting, Pacific Rim could be huge and World War Z has potential (and preordained buzz). Then you have the long list of superhero films like Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark Side and The Wolverine. Then you have films that will most likely rely on secondary effects like Rush, The Great Gatsby, Winter’s Tale and possibly even Saving Mr. Banks (still not sure what route they’ll take with this). And of course there is that Hobbit movie.

Summary:
We both have Gravity, The Hobbit, Man of Steel, and Star Trek being nominated, which is only the second category (out of seven total) that we've agreed on 4/5. Other than that, I've got Pacific Rim, and Fisti has Elysium, both of which may or may not take off. After Earth, Iron Man 3, Oblivion, Oz the Great and Powerful, The Wolverine, and World War Z are other potential contenders we considered.

Stay tuned for more predictions tomorrow.

8 comments:

  1. As far as the cinematography prize is concerned, it should either go to Chivo for To the Wonder/Gravity (w/ Michael Seresin) or the late Harris Savides for The Bling Ring.

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    1. I honestly think that Gravity will take this in a walk.

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    2. @thevoid99: If it were up to me, Chivo and Harris Savides would have multiple Oscars already. Hope they get recognized.

      @Fisti: I agree. Gravity looks like the clear frontrunner.

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  2. The Great Gatsby just screams Costume Design and Production Design to me. The Bling Ring is an interesting choice for editing. Great post, you both!

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    1. Thanks Brittani! I'm throwing a lot of wild card support at The Bling Ring. If it is a commercial success, I could see it striking hot with Oscar.

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    2. @Brittani: Thanks! I agree on Gatsby. I'd love to see The Bling Ring get nominated, but I just don't see the Academy going for it.

      @Fisti: I'd be thrilled if it's nominated.

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  3. Wouldn't To The Wonder be ineligible for Oscars due to its simultaneous iTunes/VOD release?

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    1. Great point. I never thought of that. The rule is that a film aired on television before its theatrical release isn't eligible, right? If it's simultaneous, it seems like a gray area. It will be interesting to see how that works out.

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