Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Oscar Predictions Post-Mortem

Well, the statuettes have all been handed out, the parties are all over, and the winners (and non-winners) are just recovering from their Oscar-night hangovers. That means it's time to see how everything shook out prediction-wise. Traditionally, I've compared my predictions to Entertainment Weekly to see who did better (this started because I had a subscription in high school, and continued after that lapsed because it was already a habit). 

This year, Entertainment Weekly's Dave Karger and I actually tied (if memory serves, I beat him 5 of the last 7 years), each correctly predicting 16 of the 24 awards categories, so I decided to also see how I fared against some other prognosticators.

But first thing's first; here's the breakdown:

What I Got Right:
Best Picture - The King's Speech 
Best Actor - Colin Firth 
Best Actress - Natalie Portman 
Best Supporting Actor - Christian Bale 
Best Adapted Screenplay - The Social Network 
Best Original Screenplay - The King's Speech 
Best Foreign Language Film - In a Better World 
Best Animated Feature Film - Toy Story 3 
Best Documentary Feature - Inside Job 
Best Documentary Short Subject - "Strangers No More" 
Best Film Editing - The Social Network
Best Original Score - The Social Network 
Best Original Song - "We Belong Together" from Toy Story 3 
Best Sound Editing - Inception 
Best Sound Mixing - Inception 
Best Visual Effects - Inception  

What I Got Wrong (My predictions are in parentheses):
Best Director - Tom Hooper (David Fincher) 
Here I overestimated The Social Network's support and assumed voters were having a tough time choosing, thus throwing a consolation prize to the film. Obviously they had no regret, giving 4 of the top awards to The King's Speech.

Best Supporting Actress - Melissa Leo (Hailee Steinfeld) 
Watching Melissa Leo's awful speech at the Oscars makes you all wish I'd been right here, doesn't it?

Best Animated Short Film - "The Lost Thing" ("The Gruffalo") 
Almost no one predicted "The Lost Thing" could beat "The Gruffalo" and "Day & Night."

Best Live-Action Short Film - "God of Love" ("Wish 143") 
Such a good film, and such a wonderful acceptance speech.

Best Art Direction - Alice in Wonderland (The King's Speech

Best Cinematography - Inception (True Grit

Best Costume Design - Alice in Wonderland (The King's Speech
It's nice to see a fantasy film take this prize for the first time since the third Lord of the Rings film. Even more impressive that it beat a film about royals.

Best Makeup - The Wolfman (Barney's Version)  
I said this could happen...it's a shame too, because the film was really awful. The clips they showed during the awards looked more like CGI than makeup anyways, but the voters clearly chose the film with "Most Makeup" rather than "Best Makeup."

As I mentioned, Dave Karger and I tied this year, with him beating me in Costume Design, Makeup, and Art Direction while I beat him by correctly predicting Original Score, Original Song, and Documentary Short. I also tied with Rolling Stone Magazine's Peter Travers and USA Today's Susan Wloszcyna, who each had 16 correct predictions, and beat Roger Ebert and CNN's Thelma Adams, who each got 14 correct predictions. Among major prognosticators, GoldDerby.com editor Andrew Pickett did the best, with 20 out of 24 correct predictions, and AwardsDaily.com editor Sasha Stone did the worst, with 12 out of 24.

Stay tuned this week for a wrapup of the 83rd Academy Awards: What worked, what didn't, and who should be on fashion probation.

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