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race to the Oscars
January 28, 2019

After the 2019 SAG Awards, the Oscars' acting categories look to be virtually locked up, but the Best Picture race remains highly unpredictable.

Here are some of the key takeaways from Sunday's show:

1. Christian Bale is no longer set to take the Best Actor Oscar, as Rami Malek defeated him at the SAGs. In 24 years, the actor who won the SAG Award has gone on to win the Oscar 19 times. Couple that with Malek's Golden Globe victory and he's certainly in great shape for the Academy Awards.

2. Glenn Close is quite likely to take the Best Actress Oscar, having now won both the SAG and the Golden Globe, and tied at the Critics Choice Awards. The winner for Best Actress at the SAG Awards has ultimately won the Oscar 18 out of 24 times.

3. When it comes to Best Supporting Actor, there's very little chance that Oscar will go to anyone but Mahershala Ali, who took the SAG Award after already being crowned with the Golden Globe and the Critics Choice Award.

4. Regina King remains ahead in the Oscar race for Best Supporting Actress despite not actually being nominated at the SAGs. Emily Blunt won for A Quiet Place over the favorite, Amy Adams for Vice. An Adams SAG win could have suggested she'd throw a wrench in King's Oscars hopes, but if Adams can't even win when King, who won at the Globes and the Critics Choice Awards, isn't nominated, she probably won't be able to win while directly competing against her.

5. Black Panther took Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, but that only matches up with Best Picture at the Oscars about 48 percent of the time. The Marvel film's Oscars odds have received a slight boost, but the bigger story is that both BlacKkKlansman and A Star Is Born came up short, which could suggest both will be unable to defeat Roma at the Oscars. Brendan Morrow

January 22, 2019

A Star Is Born is looking less and less like a Best Picture Oscar winner.

The film, which was once thought to be the frontrunner for Best Picture at the Academy Awards but came up short at previous awards shows in recent weeks, picked up eight nominations on Tuesday. It came in behind The Favourite and Roma, which each received 10 nominations. Eight isn't a bad haul to be sure, but the film was snubbed in two key categories that bring its Best Picture chances into even greater doubt.

The first is Best Film Editing, a category in which the eventual Best Picture winner is virtually always nominated. That's been the case at every single Oscars in the past 20 years except in 2015 when Birdman was left out, although this made some sense considering the film was presented as taking place in one long shot without any edits. Weirdly, though, Roma was also snubbed for Best Film Editing this year, despite being the clear Best Picture favorite.

More importantly, Bradley Cooper was left out of the Best Director category for his work on A Star Is Born. It's extremely rare that a film wins Best Picture without its director being nominated. Only once in the past 20 years has that happened: with Argo's Ben Affleck in 2013, which was a big deal at the time because of how uncommon an occurrence it was.

Neither of these snubs rule out a win for A Star Is Born. But this, coupled with the movie's disappointing performance at the Golden Globe Awards, the Critics Choice Awards, and the Producers Guild of America Awards, does not paint a pretty picture.

If A Star Is Born is to have any chance of winning Best Picture, it must turn things around at the upcoming Screen Actors Guild Awards and Directors Guild Awards. If it's unable to, this could very well be Roma's year. Brendan Morrow

January 22, 2019

The 2019 Academy Award nominations have arrived.

In the top category of Best Picture, the nominees are BlacKkKlansman, Black Panther, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Favourite, Green Book, Roma, A Star Is Born, and Vice.

Roma and The Favourite led the pack with 10 nominations each. It was a great morning for Roma in particular, scoring unexpected nominations for Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress. The Netflix film is looking set to be the Best Picture frontrunner and could become the first foreign language film to ever win the top prize.

A Star Is Born earned eight nominations, but in one of the morning's biggest surprises, Bradley Cooper was not nominated for Best Director. He did, however, receive a Best Actor nod. Strangely, A Star Is Born and Roma were both left out of Best Film Editing, a category in which the Best Picture winner is almost always nominated.

The nominees for Best Actor are Christian Bale (Vice), Willem Dafoe (At Eternity's Gate), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), and Viggo Mortensen (Green Book), while Best Actress consists of Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Glenn Close (The Wife), Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born), Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), and Yalitza Aparicio (Roma).

In Best Supporting Actor, the nominees are Mahershala Ali (Green Book), Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman), Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born), Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), and Sam Rockwell (Vice), while the nominees for Best Supporting Actress are Amy Adams (Vice), Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk), Emma Stone (The Favourite), Marina De Tavira (Roma), and Rachel Weisz (The Favourite).

The Oscars, which are not expected to have a host, will take place on Feb. 24. Read the full list of nominees at The Hollywood Reporter. Brendan Morrow

January 14, 2019

With just a few weeks left to go until the Academy Awards, Roma is looking like the Best Picture contender to beat.

The film took home the top prize at the Critics Choice Awards on Sunday, also winning Best Director, Best Cinematography, and Best Foreign Language Film. Since the inception of this awards show, which is voted on by the Broadcast Film Critics Association, the Best Picture pick has lined up with the Oscars' choice 14 out of 23 years, or roughly 60 percent of the time. The other awards also often match, and in 2018, Best Picture, Best Director, and all of the acting awards were the same at both shows.

Roma also had a great night at the Golden Globes, winning two out of the three awards it was up for. Meanwhile, A Star Is Born, which for a while was considered to have the best shot at the Best Picture Oscar, was shut out of four of its five Golden Globe categories, only winning the award it had virtually no chance of losing: Best Original Song.

While again not taking the top prize, A Star Is Born fared slightly better at the Critics Choice Awards. It again won Best Song, and Lady Gaga tied with Glenn Close for Best Actress after Close defeated her at the Golden Globes. Meanwhile, Christian Bale, Mahershala Ali, and Regina King all upped their odds of an Oscar win by taking home acting prizes after previously winning at the Globes. But Bohemian Rhapsody, winner of the Globe for Best Picture - Drama, was shut out.

A Star Is Born will be looking for a win at the Producers Guild Awards to regain some of its awards-season momentum now that the narrative has shifted in Roma's favor. The PGAs will be given out on Jan. 19, and the Academy Award nominations will be announced on Jan. 22. Brendan Morrow

January 9, 2019

After a bizarre Golden Globe Awards left viewers in a state of confusion about the Oscar race, the BAFTA nominations are here to provide some clarity.

The British Academy Film Awards each year are handed out before the Oscars, and there are often parallels. After all, as Deadline points out, plenty of people are members of both voting organizations.

The BAFTA's Best Film nominees this year are BlacKkKlansman, The Favourite, Green Book, Roma, and A Star Is Born, helping cement that narrative that the Best Picture Oscar race is down to Roma and A Star Is Born, both of which picked up seven nominations. The Favourite received the most nominations of any movie, 12, including an award that A Star Is Born and Roma were not eligible for: Outstanding British Film.

The Hollywood Foreign Press Association awarded Bohemian Rhapsody Best Picture — Drama at the Golden Globes, leaving many wondering if it had become an unexpected Best Picture contender at the Oscars. But at the BAFTAs, the film was left out of the top category entirely. Although the BAFTAs and the Oscars don't always select the same top film, it's rare for a movie to win the Oscar without being nominated for the equivalent BAFTA; the last time that happened was with Million Dollar Baby in 2005. Bohemian Rhapsody did, however, receive seven BAFTA nominations.

Black Panther's Best Picture momentum has also stalled a bit as it, too, was shut out of the top BAFTA category; it received just one nomination, for Best Special Visual Effects. Vice and If Beale Street Could Talk weren't nominated in the BAFTA's Best Film category, either. Other BAFTA surprises include Regina King not being nominated for If Beale Street Could Talk and Viola Davis being nominated for Widows.

Read the full list of nominations at Deadline. Brendan Morrow

January 7, 2019

A series of highly surprising choices at the 2019 Golden Globes has placed some Oscars expectations into serious doubt.

Golden Globes picks don't always line up with the Oscars, but the show certainly has an effect on buzz surrounding certain films and actors heading into the Academy Awards.

The most baffling result was Bohemian Rhapsody winning the top prize over the heavy favorite, A Star is Born, which for months has been considered a frontrunner for Best Picture at the Oscars, along with Roma.

That's still the case, but since 2000, no film has ever won the top prize at the Globes without being nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars, meaning Bohemian Rhapsody has probably earned itself an Oscar nomination it may not have otherwise received.

Roma is in a particularly great position after winning two out of the three awards it was nominated for: Best Foreign Language Film and Best Director. But A Star Is Born has stalled a bit, losing four out of its five races. This included Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama, which unexpectedly went to Glenn Close rather than Lady Gaga. After Close won and delivered the evening's best speech, an Oscar category previously thought to be all locked up for Gaga is now a real competition.

If Beale Street Could Talk's Regina King has likely guaranteed herself an Oscar nomination and possibly a win after taking Best Supporting Actress; this had been called into question after she was completely shut out of the SAG Awards. Finally, a few expected Oscars frontrunners were pushed closer to the front of the pack with Globes wins, including Christian Bale for Vice and Olivia Colman for The Favourite.

The Oscar nominations will be announced on Jan. 22. Brendan Morrow

December 12, 2018

A Star Is Born and Black Panther seem poised to clean up in awards season.

The Screen Actors Guild awards nominations were released Wednesday, and in the top category of Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, the nominees are A Star Is Born, Black Panther, BlacKkKlansman, Bohemian Rhapsody, and Crazy Rich Asians. History suggests that one of these films will win Best Picture at the Oscars, as it's rare for a movie to do so without first being nominated in this category. (Last year, however, The Shape of Water broke from that tradition by taking Best Picture after a SAG snub.) Roma, a Best Picture frontrunner, was not nominated, nor were other Best Picture hopefuls like Green Book, Vice, and If Beale Street Could Talk.

A Star Is Born earned four nominations, the most of any film, while Black Panther picked up a key nod after previously being recognized at the Golden Globe Awards and the Critics Choice Awards.

Meanwhile, the lead actor nominees are Christian Bale (Vice), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), Viggo Mortensen (Green Book), and John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman), while the lead actress nominees are Emily Blunt (Mary Poppins Returns), Glenn Close (The Wife), Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born), and Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?).

Emily Blunt got a second nomination in the best supporting actress category for A Quiet Place, with her fellow nominees being Amy Adams (Vice), Margot Robbie (Mary Queen of Scots), Emma Stone (The Favourite), and Rachel Weisz (The Favourite).

In the television field, The Americans, Better Call Saul, The Handmaid's Tale, Ozark, and This Is Us were nominated in the top drama series category, while Atlanta, Barry, GLOW, The Kominsky Method, and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel were nominated in the top comedy series category.

The 25th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards will take place on Jan. 27. Read the full list of nominees at Variety. Brendan Morrow

December 10, 2018

Yet another batch of awards nominees brings the Oscars' likely Best Picture list into even greater focus.

The 2019 Critics Choice Awards nominees, which are selected by the Broadcast Film Critics Association, were announced Monday morning. The group's Best Picture picks are Black Panther, BlacKkKlansman, The Favourite, First Man, Green Book, If Beale Street Could Talk, Mary Poppins Returns, Roma, A Star Is Born, and Vice, per The Hollywood Reporter.

Based on how the awards season has been shaking out, don't be surprised if the Oscars' nominees for Best Picture are essentially this exact list; every one of the films here was nominated at the Golden Globes last week except for First Man. Since 2000, the Oscars' eventual Best Picture winner has been nominated at the Critics Choice Awards every single year, and the two groups often pick the same film.

The category of Best Actor consists of Christian Bale (Vice), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Willem Dafoe (At Eternity’s Gate), Ryan Gosling (First Man), Ethan Hawke (First Reformed), Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), and Viggo Mortensen (Green Book), while the Best Actress nominees are Yalitza Aparicio (Roma), Emily Blunt (Mary Poppins Returns), Glenn Close (The Wife), Toni Collette (Hereditary), Olivia Colman (The Favourite), Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born), and Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?).

The Favourite received the most nominations: 14, while the second most nominated film was Black Panther with 12. First Man also received 10 nominations after being mostly shut out at the Golden Globes. Read the full list of nominees at The Hollywood Reporter. Brendan Morrow

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