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Whoever wins, this year is going to be very, very close.

For most people, January marks the beginning of a new year — the time of year when people try to forget about the past and focus on improving their future. In Hollywood, however, January is when the past year is taken into a review, in terms of film. January kicks off the new season for film and television awards.

Just last weekend was the Golden Globes, but there are still many more shows to be hosted and awards to be presented. All these awards show happening — the Critics’ Choice Awards, Directors Guild of America Awards, the British Academy of Film and Television Awards — end up becoming teasers for the most notable award show of them all, the Oscars.

Now, the nominations for the Oscars don’t come out until another month, but I have some predictions as to who and what films will get nominated.

Best Visual Effects

This year, there were quite a few movies that excelled in visual effects, specifically in the superhero/action genre. While three Marvel films — “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” “Avengers: Infinity War” and “Black Panther” — have been nominated, the likelihood that all three of them will be in the category is extremely low.

“Ready Player One” is another film that will most likely make the list, especially since it also received a BAFTA nomination for best special visual effects. I also think that the possibility of “Jurassic World: The Fallen Kingdom” and “Solo: A Star Wars Story” being nominated is extremely high. Films like “Christopher Robin” and “Mary Poppins Returns” have been shortlisted by the Academy, but I think “Welcome to Marwen” will edge both out, due to its unique animation style.

Best Animated Feature Film 

Typically, when it comes to best animated film, there is some unison among award shows. Most of the time, if the same film was nominated for a Golden Globe or a BAFTA, it will most likely get nominated for an Oscar.

In the past, Pixar has dominated this category across all award shows, but there is quite the competition this year. Yes, I do think that “Incredibles 2” will be nominated, but I don’t think it will win. As far as other nominations are concerned, I think it will be the same as the Golden Globes.

There were quite a few animated films that came out this past year, but very few shined in terms of animation and even plot. “Ralph Breaks the Internet” and “Isle of Dogs” will probably be nominated, but I think “Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse” will win, hands down.

Best Original Screenplay

Unlike best animated film, best original screenplay usually differs in not only their winners but nominations as well. The Golden Globe Winner, “Green Book,” will almost certainly be nominated.

As far as the others, I think “A Quiet Place” has a decent chance, especially since it received strong praise earlier in the year. Other Golden Globe and BAFTA nominees, specifically “Vice” and “Roma,” will again, most likely be on the list.

There is one film that I think has a solid chance of getting a nomination, and that’s Bo Burnham’s “Eighth Grade.” In some ways, the film is like “Lady Bird”’s younger sister; it’s a coming-of-age story that’s relatable to anyone.

Best Actress

There has been chatter that Lady Gaga in “A Star is Born” will most likely receive a nomination during the Oscars, and I don’t doubt that it could happen. Olivia Colman in “The Favourite” will also be nominated, due to her win at the Golden Globes, and also for a great performance in the historical period film. Saoirse Ronan in “Mary Queen of Scots” and Emily Blunt in “Mary Poppins Returns” will receive nominations as well, but Nicole Kidman is an actress who has outdone herself this year.

Kidman is speculated to receive a nomination for her role in “Destroyer,” but she also could win best supporting actress for “Boy Erased.” The last time an actress was nominated for two categories in the same year was Cate Blanchette in 2007.

Still, even if Kidman gets two nominations, her likelihood of winning is extremely low, especially given how competitive the field is. Another actress who could be nominated is Viola Davis for her performance in “Widows.”

Best Actor

For me, “Bohemian Rhapsody” doesn’t make the list for best picture, but I do believe that Rami Malek will be nominated for best actor. Along with Malek, Bradley Cooper in “A Star is Born”is almost guaranteed and the Golden Globe winner, Christian Bale in “Vice,” will presumably be nominated as well.

My next guess is that John David Washington will also be nominated for his role in “BlacKkKlansman.” The last person who I think will get a nomination is Lucas Hedges for his role in “Boy Erased.” The young Hollywood star received an Oscar nomination for best support actor a few years back, but this time around, he has more nominations under his belt and has grown as a performer.

Best Picture

Now comes the hardest category to predict. This category is probably the most controversial out of all of them since most of the time best picture isn’t always favored by the public. The Academy even tried to introduce a new award, best popular film, to counter the growing criticism that the award too often favors esoteric films. The award won’t be presented in the Oscars this year, but it seems that a lot of the anticipated nominees are fan favorites.

With that being said, “Black Panther” and “Bohemian Rhapsody” will most likely be nominated. “The Favourite” and “Green Book” were films that have already won awards but have also been quietly cherished by most of the public. “A Star is Born” and “A Quiet Place” also performed very well at the box office and have been praised by critics.

This year, there is also a possibility that a film could be nominated in two categories for best film. “Roma” could be nominated for best picture as well as best foreign language film. And due to their Golden Globes and BAFTA nominations, I think “Vice” and “BlacKkKlansman” will also be nominated.

Even though a lot of these films have been nominated for other awards, the Oscars are the season finale. In some ways, the film awards are kind of like March Madness. Every film has an equal chance of being nominated, and most of the nominations across award shows are repeated.

The more you are nominated, and the more you win that category, the likelihood of “playing” at the Oscars is high. But as in every game, some people and films just don’t make the cut.


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