It’s going to be an interesting year at the Oscars, when Hollywood turns out in full force to celebrate a year of …well, finally owning up to a reckoning that feels several decades overdue. Yes, it’s maybe not an ideal time for the film industry to be patting itself on the back but award season rolls around every year whether we like it to or not, so here we are, taking a stab at who will go home with what this Oscar season.
Best Supporting Actress
Will Win: Allison Janney; I, Tonya
Might Win: Laurie Metcalf; Lady Bird
Should Win: Lesley Manville; Phantom Thread
It was a good year for tough moms, and no mom was tougher than Allison Janney, who was the best, most brutal thing about I, Tonya and the person who seemed to best understand what sort of movie it needed to be.
Best Supporting Actor
Will Win: Sam Rockwell; Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Might Win: Christopher Plummer; All the Money in the World
Should Win: Richard Jenkins, Shape of Water
Three Billboards faces an interesting night at the Oscars, but will probably go home with a higher quantity than quality of statues (although a Best Picture statue is not entirely out of the question.) Plummer might get a little extra love for swooping in to save All the Money in the World from Kevin Spacey’s scandal, but Rockwell’s been getting a lot of attention this award season.
Will Win: Frances McDormand; Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Might Win: Sally Hawkins; Shape of Water
Should Win: Saoirse Ronan; Lady Bird
McDormand has dominated the award season leading up to the Oscars, and while there are any number of possible outcomes in this very close race, expect the momentum to carry her over the finish line here for a performance that seems tailor-made to her sensibilities — and to those of Academy voters.
Will Win: Gary Oldman; Darkest Hour
Might Win: Daniel Day-Lewis; Phantom Thread
Should Win: Daniel Day-Lewis; Phantom Thread
Darkest Hour isn’t a great movie, but it does feature a great performance, and this will most likely be the one and only statue it takes home on Sunday.
Best Adapted Screenplay
Will Win: Call Me By Your Name
Might Win: Mudbound
Should Win: Logan
James Ivory’s Call Me By Your Name has the most attention coming into award season and Ivory is well-liked by the Academy, but don’t discount Dee Rees’ excellent Mudbound. Expect Logan‘s comic book ties to sour voters against it (who still like to think they’re too good for superheroes, even though it’s generally the other way around.)
Best Original Screenplay
Will Win: Get Out
Might Win: Lady Bird
Should Win: Get Out
This is a tight race, that will probably end up being verrrrry close between Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird, Jordan Peele’s Get Out and Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards. It could go a lot of different directions and, honestly, Lady Bird and Get Out are both worthy contenders. Toss up.
Will Win: Guillermo del Toro; Shape of Water
Might Win: Paul Thomas Anderson; Phantom Thread
Should Win: Jordan Peele; Get Out
Peele directed this year’s most memorable movie, and has the most intriguing career ahead of him, so Oscar voters will probably write him off here, assuming he’ll get another chance down the road. Phantom Thread is the most likable of Anderson’s recent fare and has a steady stream of momentum behind it, but hasn’t secured a lot of major awards leading up to the Oscars, possibly denting its drive. The Oscar is del Toro’s to lose.
Will Win: Shape of Water
Could Win: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Should Win: Get Out
It’s a closer race than usual, with plausible paths to victory for any number of nominees. Shape of Water and Three Billboards could wind up splitting the more established vote, giving Lady Bird an opening. Voters could decide to finally give Paul Thomas Anderson his due by voting for Phantom Thread. Get Out could sail to victory on the votes of a new generation of younger voters. Even a Dunkirk upset, while unlikely, isn’t totally implausible. Shape of Water is the safest bet but, really, there is no safe bet this year. Don’t go to bed early on March 4 — this one will come down to the wire.