Thursday, February 4, 2016

The FAC for Eight More Oscar Categories / The SAG and Best Picture / Gold Derby Experts on Oscar and DGA

Good Thursday to All...

We're a little more than three weeks away from Oscar night (Feb. 28th).  Ballots for the final voting go out to the AMPAS membership on Feb. 12 and the voting closes on Feb. 23.

Coming up this weekend is the announcement from The Directors Guild.


Last week, I posted the first FAC for what are regarded as the eight major Oscar categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actress and Actor, and Screenplays).  Today I'm posting the numbers that I ran this week on eight more categories.

For the purpose of The FAC I gather data from the publicly posted predictions of the following:

Erik Anderson/Awards Watch
Clayton Davis/Awards Circuit
Scott Feinberg/The Hollywood Reporter
Joey Magidson/Hollywood News
Nathaniel Rogers/Film Experience
Sasha Stone/Awards Daily
Kristopher Tapley/Variety-InContention
Anne Thompson/Thompson on Hollywood/Indiewire

Some of these experts have not yet updated their predictions.  That data has been discounted.

TFF #42 films are in Bold.


1) Inside Out
2) Anomalisa
3) Shaun the Sheep
4) When Marnie Was Here
5) Boy and the World


1) Amy
2) Cartel Land
3) What Happened Miss Simone
4) The Look of Silence
5) Winter on Fire


1) Son of Saul
2) Mustang
3) Theeb
4) Embrace of the Serpent
5) A War


1) The Revenant
2) Mad Max:Fury Road
3) Carol
4) Sicario
5) The Hateful Eight


1) The Big Short
2) Mad Max: Fury Road
3) The Revenant
4) Star Wars: The Force Awakens
5) Spotlight


1) The Hateful Eight
2) Star Wars: The Force Awakens
3) Carol
4) Bridge of Spies
5) Sicario


1) Til It Happens To You/The Hunting Ground
2) Writings on the Wall/Spectre
3) Earned It/50 Shades of Gray
4) Simple Song #3/Youth
5) Manta Ray/Racing Extinction


1) Mad Max:Fury Road
2) The Revenant
3) The Martian
4) Bridge of Spies
5) The Danish Girl

 Of the 40 nominations in these eight categories, seven are from Telluride.  Only one seems likely to be a winner and that's Son of Saul in Foreign Language.

Other comments: Prohibitive favorites...Inside Out for Animated Feature, Amy for Documentary, Son of Saul for Foreign Language , The Revenant Cinematography, The Hateful Eight for Original Score, Til It Happens To You for Original Song.  The Big Short is a substantial, though not prohibitive favorite, for Film Editing.  

The most seriously contested category of these eight seems to be Production Design.  Mad Max: Fury Road is on top but that lead appears to be vulnerable.


A lot has been written the last few days as to what conclusions may or may not be drawn by the Spotlight win for The Screen Actors Guild Best Ensemble Award.  Some commenters suggested that it has buoyed Spotlight's Best Picture Oscar prospects after the loss of the PGA honor went to The Big Short.  Other experts have pointed out that The SAG award hasn't been particularly predictive or influential as it has only matched 10 times in the 20 years that SAG has been giving its Best Ensemble prize.

I have been thinking that it might be that the SAG award might be more indicative in years when the BP race was perceived to have been close.  That's mostly because the Actors branch of AMPAS is the largest branch.  Actors, consequently, have the largest influence in Oscar voting.  

Also, it should be noted that, although the SAG has matched only 50% of the time, if we begin counting from the first match of Ensemble and Best Picture, the match has been times in the last 17 years for a bit more respectable rate of 59%.

So, here are the matches:

1998: Shakespeare in Love
1999: American Beauty
2002: Chicago
2003: Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
2005: Crash
2007: No Country for Old Men
2008: Slumdog Millionaire
2010: The King's Speech
2012: Argo
2014: Birdman

So SAG's Ensemble was on top of two big "surprise" years: 1998 (Shakespeare over Saving Private Ryan) and 2005 (Crash over Brokeback Mountain).  It also seemed ahead of the game in what were perceived as close years 2002 (Chicago), 2007 (No Country), 2010 (King's Speech) and 2014 (Birdman).  There are four years of matches that SAG seemed to be going with the overwhelming current: 1999, 2003, 2008 and 2012.

My perception is that this year is close between Spotlight, Big Short, Revenant and Mad Max.  So, maybe SAG tells us that Spotlight, despite the loss at the PGA, is still a serious possibility to win the big prize.

Will the Directors Guild announcement clear things up this weekend?  It might.  Should McKay (Big Short) or McCarthy (Spotlight) win, it would move one film or the other back to front runner status.  

However, I am really expecting the trophy to go to George Miller (Mad Max: Fury Road) or Alejandro Inarritu (The Revenant) this weekend and actually muddy up the race even more.

The DGA announces their winners on Saturday.


Pete Hammond of Deadline and Tom O'Neill of Gold Derby went on the record both visually and in podcast form this week to opine about major Oscar races and their thoughts concerning the Directors Guild announcement this week.

Take a look or listen here:

That's a wrap for Thursday....Come back for more on Monday...

Come back for more on Thursday!

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