2020 Oscar nominations, predictions, and snubs

Oscars

Jacob Rengstorf

It’s that time of the year again. The Oscars are right around the corner and every cinephile is talking about them. For the past few years The Oscars have felt very out of touch to me. The Academy’s opinions just don’t match with mine most of the time but I still get excited every year. Joker leads the pack with a total of 11 nominations. Here are the biggest nominees plus my own predictions and thoughts on them.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Knives Out – Rian Johnson
Marriage Story – Noah Baumbach
1917 – Sam Mendes & Krysty Wilson-Cairns
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood – Quentin Tarantino
Parasite – Bong Joon Ho and Han Jin Won

My prediction for this category would have to be Once upon a Time… in Hollywood. Although I would much prefer Parasite. Parasite’s screenplay goes places you never expect. It’s funny, dramatic, intense, and just an overall amazing screenplay. 1917 is the only film on the list that didn’t have a good screenplay in my opinion . I would have much rather seen Uncut Gems get a nomination instead of 1917.

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

The Irishman – Steven Zaillian
Jojo Rabbit – Taika Waititi
Joker – Todd Phillips & Scott Silver
Little Women – Greta Gerwig
The Two Popes – Anthony McCarten

My prediction for best adapted screenplay is Joker. Not that I think Joker deserves it because the screenplay is the worst part of that film. I would like to see Little Women or The Irishman win. The Two Popes is the only film on the list I haven’t seen so I can’t say if I agree or disagree with it being on the list.

BEST SOUND MIXING AND EDITING

Ford v Ferrari – Donald Sylvester
Joker – Tom Ozanich, Dean Zupancic and Tod Maitland
1917 – Mark Taylor and Stuart Wilson
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood – Michael Minkler, Christian P. Minkler and Mark Ulano

JUST SOUND MIXING

Ad Astra – Gary Rydstrom, Tom Johnson and Mark Ulano

JUST SOUND EDITING

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – Matthew Wood and David Acord

The Academy usually ends up giving these two awards to the same movie so I decided to put them together. I think that sound mixing is very different from sound editing but The Academy doesn’t feel the same way, they usually just pick the loudest movie. My prediction for these two categories is either 1917 or Ford v Ferrari. I would like to see Ford v Ferrari win Sound mixing and Once upon a Time…in Hollywood win sound editing. The only nominee here that I’m confused about is Joker. I don’t remember Joker having memorable sound at all.

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

The Irishman – Bob Shaw
Jojo Rabbit – Ra Vincent
1917 – Dennis Gassner
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood – Barbara Ling
Parasite – Lee Ha Jun

All the choices here are great. My prediction here is either 1917 or Once upon a Time…in Hollywood. My personal choice would be either The Irishman or Once upon a Time…in Hollywood. The Irsihman spans over decades and the production design reflects that. Each decade feels real. Once upon a Time…in Hollywood’s production design was just so detailed. Every set felt so real. It was like going through a time machine. The only snub here is The Lighthouse which is my favorite film of the year. The production design in that film is fantastic and it’s sad it didn’t make the cut.

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

Joker – Hildur Guðnadóttir
Little Women – Alexandre Desplat
Marriage Story – Randy Newman
1917 – Thomas Newman
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker – John Williams

There were a lot of great scores this year. My prediction would have to be Joker. Joker’s score was one of the few great aspects of it. Out of these choices I would want Joker to win but Uncut Gems was snubbed once again. Uncut Gems had my favorite score of the year and it saddens me The Academy completely ignored it but nominated Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. The music in Star Wars was great don’t get me wrong but it’s the same music from all the other Star Wars films with just a few “new” tracks.

BEST INTERNATIONAL FEATURE FILM

Corpus Christi – Poland
Honeyland – North Macedonia
Les Misrables – France
Pain and Glory – Spain
Parasite – South Korea

This category is a no brainer. Parasite is one of the best films from the past decade. The writing is fantastic, the cinematography is beautiful, the directing is masterful, etc. Everything about the film is fantastic and it deserves all the praise it’s getting. My prediction is Parasite. The film I want to win in this category is Parasite. Parasite is a masterpiece that will be remembered for decades to come.

BEST EDITING

Ford v Ferrari – Michael McCusker and Andrew Buckland
The Irishman – Thelma Schoonmaker
Jojo Rabbit – Tom Eagles
Joker – Jeff Groth
Parasite – Yang Jinmo

The Parasite train keeps on going. This is another category I feel Parasite deserves. The film’s pace is amazing the editing makes each scene work, especially the scenes that are filled with tension. I do feel like The Academy will give this to Joker because they will probably give all the technical awards to Joker even though I don’t think the editing in that movie was really that great.

BEST DIRECTOR

The Irishman – Martin Scorsese
Joker – Todd Phillips
1917 – Sam Mendes
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood – Quentin Tarantino
Parasite – Bong Joon Ho

This year was packed full of amazing films that had amazing directors. My prediction for this category would have to be either Martin Scorsese for The Irishman or Quentin Tarantino for Once upon a Time…in Hollywood. I would love to see Bong Joon Ho but that’s very unlikely. There are a lot of snubs in this category. The Safdie Brothers created an amazing film with Uncut Gems and I am very disappointed they were not nominated. Robert Eggers created a masterpiece with The Lighthouse but again no nomination. The biggest snub would have to be Greta Gerwig. Her film Little Women has 6 nominations including best picture yet she isn’t nominated for best director? This is an insult and shows just how much The Academy needs to diversify their choices. No women being nominated for best director is a goddamn shame especially when out of all people Todd Philips is nominated.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

The Irishman – Sandy Powell and Christopher Peterson
Jojo Rabbit – Mayes C. Rubeo
Joker – Mark Bridges
Little Women – Jacqueline Durran
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood – Arianne Phillips

Costume Design is one of the most important aspects in a film. Thankfully this year lots of films had great costume design. My prediction is either Jojo Rabbit or Little women. Mostly because they are period pieces. My personal choice would have to be The Irishman because the film spans over decades and everyone’s costumes reflect this. Although I wouldn’t be mad with any of these nominees winning except Joker.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

The Irishman – Rodrigo Prieto
Joker – Lawrence Sher
The Lighthouse – Jarin Blaschke
1917 – Roger Deakins
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood – Robert Richardson

One of the most important aspects of filmmaking for me is cinematography. If a movie looks like a 10 year old shot it on his iPod it won’t work. My prediction for this category would have to be Joker. Again I predict The Academy will give all the technical awards to Joker even if it doesn’t deserve it. I’m not saying Joker had bad cinematography but the cinematography didn’t amaze me like some of the other films on this list. My personal choice without a doubt would have to be The Lighthouse. The lighthouse is my favorite film of the year and the cinematography is one of the best parts of it.

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Kathy Bates – Richard Jewell
Laura Dern – Marriage Story
Scarlett Johansson – Jojo Rabbit
Florence Pugh – Little Women
Margot Robbie – Bombshell

Many great performances from women this year and these nominees are great. My prediction would have to be Laura Dern which I wouldn’t be mad about at all. My personal choice would be either Florence Pugh or Laura Dern. Both of these women did great in their roles. The only performance on here I would be mad with winning would be Scarlett Johansson, she’s good in the movie but just not Oscar worthy.

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Tom Hanks – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Anthony Hopkins – The Two Popes
Al Pacino – The Irishman
Joe Pesci – The Irishman
Brad Pitt – Once upon a Time…in Hollywood

All of these performances are at least good. My prediction is Brad Pitt. He’s great in Once upon a Time…in Hollywood and the writing for his character helps a lot. My personal choices would have to be either Joe Pesci or Brad Pitt. I didn’t see The Two Popes or A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood so I can’t comment on those performances. This category contains one of the biggest snubs and that’s Willem Dafoe in The Lighthouse. This was my personal favorite performance of the year and I was very disappointed thst he wasn’t nominated.

BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

Cynthia Erivo – Harriet
Scarlett Johansson – Marriage Story
Saoirse Ronan – Little Women
Charlize Theron – Bombshell
Renée Zellweger – Judy

My prediction for the best actress in a leading role would have to be the same as my personal choice and that is Scarlett Johansson in Marriage Story. The rest of the nominees are okay but Scarlett Johansson gave an amazing performance. There aren’t any real snubs except for Lupita Nyong’o. She gave a captivating performance in Us. I don’t like Us but Lupita Nyong’o gave an amazing performance and I would have loved to have seen her nominated.

BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

Antonio Banderas – Pain and Glory
Leonardo DiCaprio – Once upon a Time…in Hollywood
Adam Driver – Marriage Story
Joaquin Phoenix – Joker
Jonathan Pryce – The Two Popes
This year was packed full of amazing performances and it’s going to be hard picking a winner. My prediction would have to be Joaquin Phoenix. If he doesn’t win then the internet will lose their minds so they basically have no choice but to give the award to him. My personal choice would have to be Adam Driver. His performance in Marriage Story was amazing. He gave so much raw emotion, he felt like a real person. There is a huge snub here however. Adam Sandler gave the best performance of his career in Uncut Gems and him not being nominated is very disappointing. All of these actors did a great job though.

BEST PICTURE

Ford v Ferrari
The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit
Joker
Little Women
Marriage Story
1917
Once upon a Time…in Hollywood
Parasite

2019 has been an amazing year for film. Best picture of course will be the most talked about category and these nominations are a mixed bag. My prediction is Joker, The Academy obviously loves this movie but I also think it might go to any of these except the movies I actually think deserves the win. My personal choice would have to be Parasite but I wouldn’t be mad if The Irishman or Marriage Story won. There are snubs unfortunately. Uncut Gems and The Lighthouse are two amazing films that I would have loved to have seen be nominated. Parasite is my pick but it’s foreign so I don’t know if The Academy will give it the win.

Well that’s it for The 2020 Academy Awards. Overall these nominations were good but not great. The Lighthouse and Uncut Gems are two films that deserved so much more love. I am very happy with how much love Parasite, The Irishman, and Marriage story got. Joker had the most nominations even though I don’t personally feel it should have got that many. I’ll give it best actor and score but I don’t agree with the other nominations it got. The 2020 Academy Awards will be held on Sunday, February 9, 2020 and will be televised live on the ABC Television Network at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.