James D. Irwin, Ken Rogers, and Alex Ivanovich assess the accuracy of their Oscar predictions.
Well over a month ago the three of us got drunk together and wildly guessed at who might win at the Oscars. We did this despite having only seen three nominated films. Some of the films nominated hadn’t been released, and this was long before the BAFTAs an various other awards— basically, before Argo became the favourite for Best Picture.
We got together this morning for a boozy breakfast in the Splendid Fred canteen to see how well our predictions fared. We’re starting with the minor awards, to build suspense and excitement… We’re professionals like that…
Without further ado…
Best Director- Ang Lee, Life of Pi
This made us angry. It seems somehow offensive that a man who directed Hulk— one of the worst films any of us have ever paid to see— could then go on to win an Oscar. We very much doubt he would have won had the CGI tiger been as bad as the CGI Hulk in Hulk.
As you can probably guess, our prediction was wrong. We went with Spielberg.
Best Supporting Actress- Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
At the time this was our most confident prediction after Daniel Day-Lewis for Best Actor. Everyone loves Anne Hathaway. Even Batman.
Best Supporting Actor- Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
We were delighted to see Waltz win, even though we predicted Phillip Seymour Hoffman would win for stupid pseudo-logical reasons. Waltz is one of our favourite actors based on his performance in Inglorious Basterds alone, and our favourite non-American Best Supporting Actor since Javier Bardem. We wouldn’t bet again Waltz following Bardem as a Bond villain either…
Best Actress- Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Just as we predicted.
Best Actor- Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
So predictable even we got it right.
Best Original Score- Life of Pi
We went with Skyfall out of rabid patriotism. We were wrong.
Visual Effects- Life of Pi
In our predictions we went with Life of Pi ‘because it has a lion in it.’ Our reasoning may have been flawed, but we still got it right. Lions and tigers are pretty much the same thing anyway…
Sound Mixing- Les Miserables
Incredibly, another correct prediction. Our reason for choosing Lay Mizzerarb was that it had a lot of singing in it.
Sound Editing- Skyfall and Zero Dark Thirty
We blindly guessed at Skyfall, on the basis we had a 1 in 5 chance of guessing right. We were sort of right, as there was a tie and two films won. We still count this as a correct prediction for us though, on the grounds that a bookie would still have to pay out.
Film Short- Curfew
We went with Death of a Shadow.
Animated Short- Paperman
We went with the Maggie Simpson short because we’d seen it and enjoyed it. Paperman wasn’t released until about a month after we made our predictions.
Editing- William Goldenberg, Argo
We guessed Lincoln because we didn’t really care/have a clue.
Documentary Short- Inocente
We went with Mondays at Racine simply because we liked the title— a tactic similar to the one we use for the Grand National. That never goes well for us either.
Documentary Feature- Searching for Sugarman
We went with 5 Broken Cameras for the same reason we went with Mondays at Racine.
Costume Design- Anna Karenina
Our prediction was Les Miserables, and we were feeling quite confident about it…
Cinematography- Claudio Miranda, Life of Pi
Another snub for Roger Deakins, and another incorrect prediction for us.
Production Design- Lincoln
We went with Les Miserables again. Now we are miserable.
Best Adapted Screenplay- Chris Terrio, Argo
We each went with a different film and there were five nominated. Argo was one of the two we didn’t pick.
Best Original Screenplay- Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained
Finally, we get something right.
Best Original Song- Skyfall
None of us are particularly fond of the song, and if anything Dame Shirley Bassey belting out Goldfinger only went to demonstrate how short it falls of the ‘great’ Bond themes, but we were fairly confident. And as downbeat as the song may be, listening to Adele sing is far more pleasant that listening to her talk.
Foreign Language Film- Amour
Another correct guess from us, and nice to see it win something.
Animated Feature- Brave
This took everyone by surprise, apparently. We were wrong at any rate…
Best Picture- Argo
We can make excuses about how Argo was considered a long-shot when we made our predictions, but ultimately we got it wrong.
It does seem very odd to us though that a film can win Best Picture, but not win a single acting award (and the only acting nomination it received was Alan Arkin as Supporting Actor), nor was Affleck even nominated for Best Director.
We should have followed our hearts and picked Christoph Waltz for Best Actor, and managed to correctly predict all the acting awards. If we’d waited a few weeks we probably would have gone with Argo for Best Picture, but never would have guessed Ang Lee would take Best Director.
In the end we managed to correctly predict 9 out of 23 awards, which isn’t bad considering we haven’t actually seen any of the films that won, aside from Skyfall.