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Awards Season/Oscar Predictions Update: Tricks, Treats, and ‘Mank’


With Halloween tomorrow, we’re just moments away from November. Normally, that would mean the awards season is heating up. Not so this year, as we’ve detailed before. However, yesterday brought a bit of Oscar buzz with the debut of David Fincher‘s Mank. Having been among the group to see the flick, I can chime in below about its Academy Award chances. More than that, this piece represents a chance to reset a bit, as most of the contenders have now been seen. Aside from really just Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and The Midnight Sky (both Netflix releases), it’s now a matter of waiting to see what voters prefer. More below.

Last night, the embargo lifted on Fincher’s Mank, so I can report that it’s quite good. For those curious, my official social media reaction was this: “Mank is another technical marvel from David Fincher, aping Old Hollywood ways in a manner that’s somewhere between critique and homage. The cast is top notch, with Amanda Seyfried my personal favorite. Plus, there’s a very modern subplot involving elections and fake news that resonates in a way the late Jack Fincher never could have anticipated. As expected, it’s an Oscar player, across the board.” Specifically, it’s certainly a frontrunner in Best Picture, Best Director (for Fincher), and Best Original Screenplay (for Jack Fincher). Moreover, it’s the odds-on favorite in most technical categories, especially Best Production Design, Best Cinematography, and Best Original Score. Gary Oldman is likely getting another Best Actor nomination, while Amanda Seyfried is poised to crack the Best Supporting Actress lineup. Double digit nominations should easily be in the cards here if all goes according to plan for Netflix. In short, it’s good, and yes, it can win.

In many categories, you’ll see new predicted winners below. Plus, there are a ton of new nominees all over the place, so the full list is well worth checking out. Just give it all a look knowing that now Mank isn’t just based on guesswork…

Sony Pictures Classics

As always, you can go here for the Oscar predictions, but in case any of you want to see the Cliff Notes, my current predicted winners in each category are as follows, along with what/who occupies the number two spot in each category:

Best Picture – The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Second Spot: Mank)

Best Director – David Fincher for Mank (Second Spot: Chloe Zhao for Nomadland)

Best Actor – Anthony Hopkins for The Father (Second Spot: Delroy Lindo for Da 5 Bloods)

Best Actress – Viola Davis for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Second Spot: Frances McDormand for Nomadland)

Best Supporting Actor – Bill Murray for On the Rocks (Second Spot: Sacha Baron Cohen for The Trial of the Chicago 7)

Best Supporting Actress – Glenn Close for Hillbilly Elegy (Second Spot: Saoirse Ronan for Ammonite)

Best Original Screenplay – Aaron Sorkin for The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Second Spot: Jack Fincher for Mank)

Best Adapted Screenplay – Kemp Powers for One Night in Miami… (Second Spot: Chloe Zhao for Nomadland)

Best Animated Feature – Soul (Second Spot: Over the Moon)

Best Production Design – Mank (Second Spot: Tenet)

Best Cinematography – Mank (Second Spot: News of the World)

Best Costume Design – Mank (Second Spot: Ammonite)

Best Film Editing – The Trial of the Chicago 7 (Second Spot: Mank)

Best Makeup & Hairstyling – Mank (Second Spot: Wonder Woman 1984)

Best Sound – Tenet (Second Spot: Soul)

Best Visual Effects – The Midnight Sky (Second Spot: Tenet)

Best Original Score – Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for Mank (Second Spot: Ludwig Göransson for Tenet)

Best Original Song – Taylor Swift (Only the Young) from Miss Americans (Second Spot: Diane Warren – lo Si (Seen) from The Life Ahead)

Best Documentary Feature – The Way I See It (Second Spot: John Lewis: Good Trouble)

Best International Feature – The Life Ahead (Second Spot: Another Round)


Stay tuned for updated predictions early on next month!


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Written by Joey Magidson

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