Oscar Predictions

2013 Oscars: Post Nominations Predictions and Floating Five Possible Scenarios

How will this race eventually play out?

2013 Oscar predictions
Photo: AMPAS

The coming weeks will tell us a lot about what to expect when it comes to the 2013 Oscar Awards as there are certainly several possibilities one could float, but in order to get to the end we must start somewhere so after this morning's announcement of the 2013 Oscar nominations, I have updated my entire batch of Oscar predictions.

I am currently considering possible scenarios as to how this all could play out. The word "surprised" never really seems to fit with the Oscar nominations because, really, nothing should surprise us about the Academy when it comes to their selections. Yet, this morning did offer some seriously interesting choices that open up the race for a few, very likely scenarios.

The first two scenarios have Lincoln winning, but winning in different ways, the second two offer up a couple of scenarios recent history have told us are not so far fetched.

Five Possible Scenarios

1.) One Film Rules Them All: This year the likeliest film to dominate at this early stage is Lincoln, but even at this early stage I have on the topline in only five categories.

2.) A Mixed Bag of Winners: Over the course of the last few years the films to win the most Oscars won somewhere around four or five. Slumbdog Millionaire won 8 and The Hurt Locker won 6, but for the most part things seem to be spread out pretty evenly.

3.) The 1999 Scenario: In 1999 the presumptive favorite was Saving Private Ryan then the Weinstein Machine went to work and Shakespeare in Love took home seven Oscars including Picture, Actress, Supporting Actress and Original Screenplay. The rom-com beat the serious drama directed by Steven Spielberg. This year, Silver Linings Playbook is in the same position along with becoming the 14th film ever to be nominated in all four acting categories, the first time it's happened since Reds in 1981.

4.) The 2006 Scenario: This is the idea I floated this morning in thinking perhaps the Academy believes it's time to make up for awarding Crash the Best Picture trophy over Ang Lee's Brokeback Mountain. That year Lee's film was the presumptive favorite only to lose at the final bell. Lee won Best Director, but maybe Life of Pi will get him that Picture statue.

5.) None of the Above: I only added this because people like lists divisible by five.

Which scenario do you see as most likely? My money, at this point, is on Scenario #2. I've got Lincoln taking Best Picture, Actor, Supporting Actor, Director and Screenplay while Life of Pi wins four technical awards including Score and the rest of the categories are scattered among the other nominees.

Of course, several of these categories could change over the coming weeks as the Awards Schedule boasts plenty of events taking place, such as the Critic's Choice Awards tonight, the 2013 Golden Globes this Sunday, the Producers Guild Awards next Saturday and the 2013 Screen Actors Guild Awards next Sunday.

The race is far from over, but like I said, we have to start somewhere. Below is my first stab at the predictions following today's nominations... Who do you got?

Best Picture

I can't go against Lincoln unless the precursor awards suggest there is a shift in the winds.

  1. Lincoln
  2. Life of Pi
  3. Silver Linings Playbook
  4. Argo
  5. Les Misérables
  6. Zero Dark Thirty
  7. Amour
  8. Django Unchained
  9. Beasts of the Southern Wild

Best Actor

I think it's worth pointing out that if Daniel Day-Lewis wins it will be the first time an actor directed by Steven Spielberg has won an Oscar. In fact, I have Tommy Lee Jones on the topline for Supporting Actor as well. It's a crazy stat to think of considering Spielberg's past work, but that stat is likely to be put to bed this year.

  1. Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln)
  2. Hugh Jackman (Les Misérables)
  3. Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook)
  4. Denzel Washington (Flight)
  5. Joaquin Phoenix (The Master)

Best Actress

I had Lawrence on the topline pre-nominations and she's staying there now.

  1. Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook)
  2. Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty)
  3. Emmanuelle Riva (Amour)
  4. Naomi Watts (The Impossible)
  5. Quvenzhane Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild)

Best Supporting Actor

This is a tough one, the love for Silver Linings suggests De Niro may need to prepare for his third Oscar speech.

  1. Tommy Lee Jones (Lincoln)
  2. Robert De Niro (Silver Linings Playbook)
  3. Philip Seymour Hoffman (The Master)
  4. Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained)
  5. Alan Arkin (Argo)

Best Supporting Actress

Hathaway and Day-Lewis are both locked.

  1. Anne Hathaway (Les Misérables)
  2. Sally Field (Lincoln)
  3. Helen Hunt (The Sessions)
  4. Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook)
  5. Amy Adams (The Master)

Best Director

Again, pay close attention to the awards race winds.

  1. Steven Spielberg (Lincoln)
  2. Ang Lee (Life of Pi)
  3. David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook)
  4. Michael Haneke (Amour)
  5. Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild)

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

I feel confident in a win for Kushner here. It's still early and there is always time for change, but I don't imagine changing this one.

  1. Tony Kushner (Lincoln)
  2. David Magee (Life of Pi)
  3. David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook)
  4. Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild)
  5. Chris Terrio (Argo)

Writing (Original Screenplay)

Tough call, both Tarantino and Boal have won screenplay Oscars and recently on Howard Stern, Tarantino commented on losing to Boal in 2010. Instead of being upset about losing Best Director to Kathryn Bigelow he said (while laughing), "I was pissed I didn't win Best Screenplay... It was Kathryn's year, it wasn't fucking Mark's year." The two do battle again!

  1. Mark Boal (Zero Dark Thirty)
  2. Quentin Tarantino (Django Unchained)
  3. Michael Haneke (Amour)
  4. Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola (Moonrise Kingdom)
  5. John Gatins (Flight)

Click to the next page for the rest of my predictions, or click here and visit my Oscar predictions homepage to check out all categories on one page.

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  • http://timeforafilm.com Alex Thomas

    I think Lincoln will largely clean up, surely Life of Pi won't be a real contender in the main categories (Director, BP) however if SLP gains some momentum then Option #3 could happen!

    Ang Lee is $7-1 for Best Director, could be some sneaky value. I took SLP at $26-1 because it's ridiculous to have odds that high when it has all 4 acting categories.

  • Chris

    Now has the Academy already voted? Or just noms? If they haven't voted yet I'm pulling for Silver Linings Playbook with Weinstein backing. If they already did vote Lincoln has this all wrapped up.

  • John Debono

    Possible podcast question:
    Could Jennifer Lawrence be considered a lock to win now as well? Silver Linings Playbook is clearly popular with the academy but Day-Lewis and Hathaway are the overwhelming favourites to win against Cooper and Weaver. Yes there is the chance that De Niro upsets over Jones, but I think the consistency with Jones as an actor and Lincoln's momentum gives him the very likely edge that De Niro might not have. With nominations in all categories, will the Academy feel obliged to give the film at least one win? If that is the case, I think Lawrence will have a huge advantage over Jessica Chastain.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Aleonardis/ Aleonardis

    Scenario 1: I really hope not.
    OVERALL MOOD AT THE END OF THE NIGHT: Stomach turning...

    Scenario 2: I won't be satisfied but when are we ever with the Oscars?

    Scenario 3: What I personally want to happen and it certainly could. Freaking Weinsteins kill at this game. OVERALL MOOD AT THE END: Elated.

    Scenario 4: This would be quite awesome as well. Probably tied with 3 for my favorite scenario. OVERALL MOOD AT THE END: Almost close to elated.

    Scenario: I'm not really sure how this one works with my taste...

  • http://cinemmaconfessions.blogspot.com Gautam

    Yup, I agree with the 2nd scenario too but I don't necessarily agree with the choices. I think Silver Linings might win Best Adapted Screenplay as a consolation prize.

    Secondly, it's obvious that with such a strong showing of Silver Linings, Lawrence seems like a frontrunner but I have a difficult time believing Academy is going to award her at such a young and when her whole career lies in front of her. They will get another chance to reward her.

    So, who will win Best Actress then ? I think it's going to boil down between Watts vs. Riva. Now that Riva has been nominated, members might jump at the opportunity of rewarding a real tour-de-performance.

    Watts theory is based on the amount of support she has been receiving from her peers and she is overdue too. Just yesterday, Robert Downey Jr. vouched for her at the People Choice Awards calling her performance the best of the year. I won't be surprised if she wins SAG and that will place her in a very good position to actually win Oscar too. So, ignore her at your own risk.

  • Mary

    I have seen that support from Robert Downey Jr, I do not know if he will dance for her on Sunset Boulevard but for sure he is able to do more things for her, the way that he saw her and he kept kissing her for so long, that is a MACHO

  • http://www.criterion.com/my_criterion/27913-criterion10 Criterion10

    Few things I will throw out there:

    Maybe this is just my hopes getting the best of me, but with all the surprise love for Amour, any chance we may see this film go home with some more Oscars than just Best Foreign Language film? Haneke could benefit from a Boal/Tarantino split in Original Screenplay, and the veteran card could help Emmanuelle Riva win in a similar situation over Lawrence and Chastain.

    Also, I still feel like Tommy Lee-Jones doesn't have it in the bag, unless the Academy does in fact allow for a Lincoln sweep.

    And I also think that Zero Dark Thirty is really out of the running at this point (sadly). Not getting the Best Director nomination hurts, but also it didn't get nearly as many technical noms as was expected.

    Here's a question I'll throw out there (and I think this would be a good one for the podcast tomorrow as well): If the Academy was to return to their old system of only nominating five films, which films would those be?

    Side note: I don't have a Twitter, but for anyone interested, there is a fake Michael Haneke account that frequently brags about all the awards he is winning for Amour, and how he has two "Parms Dorz" while "Teruns Malick" only has one. It's absolutely hysterical, and I highly recommend checking it out.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Aleonardis/ Aleonardis

      I'm thinking, if you have the chance to vote for an 86 year old veteran actress who most likely will never show up again then why wouldn't you? J-Law and Chastain's supporters could cancel each other out making way for Riva. Boal, I think has it in the bag.

      If the Weinsten's hit the gas, DeNiro could get it. Right now, I think Jones has it in the bag.

      Zero Dark isn't winning anything big at this point except for that screenplay.

      I think at this point with all these shakeups and the sense that front runners really aren't the real frontrunners, 5 is near impossible to chose. Each of the nine nominations seem to be SO well loved by the academy.

      • Patrick

        Emmanuelle Riva's birthday also happens to land exactly on Oscar night.

      • http://www.criterion.com/my_criterion/27913-criterion10 Criterion10

        In short, I basically agree with everything you said, especially your last paragraph. This certainly makes it one of the more interesting Oscars in recent years. I just hope that the Awards are diverse and unexpected, and Lincoln does not sweep.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Fox/ Fox

      Thank you for that Twitter account. Pure gold.

      • http://www.criterion.com/my_criterion/27913-criterion10 Criterion10

        Glad you liked it. Whoever is behind it is a pure genius. It brings "trolling" to a whole new level.

  • Jesse3232

    Listener Question:
    Given that Bigelow didn't get a Best Director nomination do you think all of the controversy surrounding Zero Dark Thirty has "worked"? If so, do you think this will hurt Jessica and Marc's chances at the Oscars?
    Considering the momentum it's lost as people are questioning the film, I think Tarantino has the original screenplay!

    • Jesse3232

      Sorry Laremy!

  • Movie Fan

    There is still the scenario that Silver Linings Playbook can win the big five

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Aleonardis/ Aleonardis

      This is VERY possible. Like the possibility is like 70% right now and 50% of that has to do with the Weinsteins.

    • http://hypethemovies.wordpress.com Jordan B.

      I don't see it happening, but I would be over-the-moon if Silver Linings won the Big Five. I think the chances are pretty much slim-to-none though, especially considering Cooper would have to beat out Day-Lewis for it to happen -- and not to mention the stiff competition for Director and Adapted Screenplay. Plus, there is a lot of Lincoln love floating throughout the masses that Silver Linings would need to overcome.

      Either way, I will probably read the screenplay soon, but having read Matthew Quick's novel and seen the film twice, I am simply in love with the material that Silver Linings has to offer.

    • Movie Fan

      No one ever sees it coming and this year it the only film that it can and I truly enjoyed the film but critics really like Lincoln which is a major threat

  • simon

    Commiserations Ben Lewin for Best Director and Adapted Screenplay - is he the unluckiest honcho in the roll out??

    • simon

      Space for 10 screenplays.
      Space for ten films.
      Space for ten directors???????

  • m1

    Bigelow missed out on a directing nomination. So what? That doesn't hurt Chastain's chances at all. To me, she is still the frontrunner for Best Actress.

    The directing nomination for Silver Linings Playbook should have been obvious. The Academy loves going for ensemble pieces in this category (The King's Speech, Chicago, Up in the Air, Crash, Brokeback Mountain, etc.). Plus, it's Weinstein.

    I don't think any movie will sweep this year because there are too many great movies out there. SLP could actually win screenplay or director.

    Supporting Actor is interesting because everyone has won before. I haven't seen The Master but it seems like Hoffman has the edge for having the showiest role. Hathaway should have Supporting Actress in the bag, and hopefully she'll win.

    At this point, Actor is between Day-Lewis and Cooper. No one else has a shot.

    Brad, out of your scenarios (not counting number 5 as one), I think 2 is the most likely. 3 would not bother me as much because I think Lincoln and SLP are both fantastic in their own ways (as I did Shakespeare in Love and Saving Private Ryan). I have not seen Life of Pi, so I can't comment on 4. I still think Argo and Zero Dark Thirty could win, though. Honestly, any of those nine could.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Ian/ Ian

    I expect things will once again be spread around, similar to last year. Life of Pi wins a boatload of technicals, but Lincoln or Silver Linings win the big prizes. This is going to be a really bizarre year...the two films everyone thought were the closest challengers to Lincoln (Zero Dark Thirty and Argo) clearly aren't anymore, so for instance Argo's big wins at the CCs tonight mean nothing. Even the DGAs, lately the strongest predictor of not just Best Director but also Best Picture won't mean anything, because Russell isn't nominated. Honestly the more I think about it, the more I expect a 1998 or 2005 scenario...a prohibitive favorite cruises through the season only to be "shockingly" upset on Oscar night. Mark my words...if Silver Linings isn't a co-frontrunner with Lincoln, it's just barely behind.

    Best Picture
    Lincoln over Silver Linings (barely)

    Best Director
    Spielberg over Russell (barely)

    Daniel Day-Lewis (no drama whatsoever here)

    Jessica Chastain (Brad I think you're letting your love for SLP cloud your judgement. Lawrence is barely old enough to drink. I just don't see any way she wins Best Actress. I don't buy the Riva notion either).

    Supporting Actor
    Tommy Lee Jones (DiCaprio's absence takes most of the drama out of this category. I could see the Ws cutting some checks for DeNiro though)

    Supporting Actress
    Sally Field over Anne Hathaway (Yes that's right. Thinking Hathaway is a lock is a bad, bad call right now. Of course the Globes and SAGs may change my mind, but for now, I see the age factor coming into play again--even though Field has already won twice--and I see her riding Lincoln's coattails).

  • Winchester

    At the moment I think scenario two or three. I'd prefer scenario two however.

  • http://www.gamingsymmetry.com Stinger

    Why "Beasts of the Southern Wild" is the least possibility although it has a Best Director nod? I thought when Affleck and Bigelow didn't get a nod that meant "Argo" and "Zero Dark Thirty" are out of the race.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/maja/ maja

    Completely agree with scenario 2. I think it will get 6-7 wins. It is quite interesting about no actor having previously won an Oscar for a role in a Speilberg movie. I assume that this is probably because his movies are usually based on story rather than characters.

  • Edd

    It will be Argo-Lewis-Watts-Arkin-Hathaway! That's all

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Satu/ Satu

    I tend to pick my winners also before the nominations are announced. I did this year too but surprisingly those didn't go that well, I had Argo and Affleck winning the best picture and director. Though Argo is one of the few I've seen (I live in Finland, no way to see most of the films except illegally and I'm not doing that because all of the films will be in theatres before the gala), so I might be biased... So Lincoln and Spielberg then, eh? Hope not. I just don't feel like it.

    Anyway, I had Day-Lewis, Lawrence, Jones and Hathaway for acting and I'll go with them for now.

    Screenplays for ZD30 and Argo, guess I'll have to change the latter. Lincoln, I'll suppose? I haven't seen it and I'm not really looking forward to see it either. I like Spielberg but there just something wrong these days with his films.

    Animated to ParaNorman and documentary Searching for Sugar Man and foreign language to Amour, of course.

    Cinematography to Skyfall, editing to ZD30, production design to Les Miz but I'm planning to change that to Anna Karenina.

    Costume to Anna (I'm still angry to myself because I changed Snow White off my list in my very final predictions because so few others believed in it...) and hair and make up I had going to Lincoln, so I'll choose Hitchcock instead now.

    Score to Lincoln, song to Skyfall.

    Sound editing I had going to ZD30 and mixing to Les Miz and I'll stick with them (for now, again).

    Visual to Pi.

    My original predictions were 75 % correct and I mostly went with my gut. Only directors surprised my big way, but guess I wasn't the only one. Let's see how many of these picks are still there on 24th of Feb.

  • Manny

    I have seen most of the films nominated and was only impressed with Silver Linings Playbook and Lincoln to a certain extent. I feel that Cooper has a viable shot at winning best actor because his performance is the catalyst of a great film; besides Lewis is the owner of two Oscars already. As for best actress, I was not in the least impressed with Chastain's performance; there was nothing memorable in the character. Lawrence, on the other hand was electric. If the voters get it right, it is Lawrence.

  • Jason Zamora

    I'd go with the 1999 scenario.

    Lincoln is this year's Saving Private Ryan, the superior film in the academy voters' minds. Life of Pi and Amour are their love movies just like Life is Beautiful. The rests are just critics' choices the academy needed to include to strengthen its status as an award giving bodies.

    But Silver Linings Playbook has the monster backing of Weinstein. Period.

  • vint

    Guess after the Globes, Producers Awards AND the SAG Awards, you'll have some MAJOR reorganizing to do in your predictions! Didn't look at all of them -- in a hurry -- but I'm betting ARGO gets best picture, and Spielberg gets best director (sort like the year he got that Academy Award but "Private Ryan" didn't) -- and Daniel Day Lewis will get the best actor award, of course.

  • ben

    Daniel Day-Lewis, Tommy Lee Jones, Sally Field , Emmanuelle Riva, Steven Spielberg and best picture Lincoln. these are best choice .