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2013 Oscar Predictions: “Just when I thought I was out…”

“…they pull me back in.”  That’s right folks. It has now been nearly nine months since my last official post on The Edge of the Frame and I am severely out of practice. The close of last year’s Oscar season ironically coincided with my being hired into full time employment. Spending nine hours a day composing upwards of seventy-five emails and compiling online data have made coming home and getting behind a computer screen a not-so-welcoming scenario. A couple of hours of  “The X-Files” on Netflix or “The Sopranos” on DVD have become a much more viable way to close out an evening. All of this partnered with a summer of fantasy baseball and my engagement to the woman I love have left comparably little time for my beloved little website.

However, as it turns out, old habits die hard. I’ve been watching the Oscars religiously for fifteen years and been dipping my toe into prognostication for the last seven. There’s no way I can sit this one out. There’s a lot of work to be done. Working full time has more or less hindered my rate of viewing new releases. I’ve got a schedule of about 36 films to see, both on Netflix and in theaters, over the next three months. However, with the first of the critics’ awards just around the corner, things are about to get very busy. Even before everything is seen and done, it’s about time that I offer a bit of perspective on how this year’s race is going to play out.

Some of the year’s biggest contenders have retained their position at the head of the race (“Les Miserables,” “Lincoln,”), practically since they were originally announced. Others have taken a hefty fall from grace (“The Master,” “The Dark Knight Rises”). A few projects have sprung up from out of the blue to become bonafide Best Picture threats (“The Silver Linings Playbook,” “Beasts of the Southern Wild,”), while a couple that have barely been seen at all remain a mystery to many (“Zero Dark Thirty,” “Django Unchained”).

However, it’s never too early (or too late, in my case) to start putting the pieces together and assembling a picture of how the board will look almost exactly three months to the date. Listed below are my predictions for the 85th Annual Academy Award nominations. They’re ranked by the chances of each film (or individual) getting nominated. Winning does not come into play here. As complicated as it is, sometimes a person could have a lot easier a path getting nominated for an Oscar, then they ever would of winning. Ask Peter O’Toole if you need more info…

Enjoy, and remember that this whole chalkboard might be completely erased and scribbled down again, a month from now:

BEST PICTURE

1. “Argo”
2. “Lincoln”
3. “Les Miserables”
4. “Silver Linings Playbook”
5. “Zero Dark Thirty”
6. “The Master”
7. “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
8. “Moonrise Kingdom”
9. “Life of Pi”
10. “The Sessions”

Alt 1: “Django Unchained”
Alt 2: “Amour”
Alt 3: “Flight”

BEST DIRECTOR

1. Ben Affleck – “Argo”
2. Steven Spielberg – “Lincoln”
3. Kathryn Bigelow – “Zero Dark Thirty”
4. Tom Hooper – “Les Miserables”
5. David O’Russell – “Silver Linings Playbook”

Alt 1: Paul Thomas Anderson – “The Master”
Alt 2: Ang Lee – “Life of Pi”
Alt 3: Quentin Tarantino – “Django Unchained”

BEST ACTOR

1. Daniel Day Lewis – “Lincoln”
2. Joaquin Phoenix – “The Master”
3. John Hawkes – “The Sessions”
4. Denzel Washington – “Flight”
5. Bradley Cooper – “Silver Linings Playbook”

Alt 1: Hugh Jackman – “Les Miserables”
Alt 2: Anthony Hopkins – “Hitchcock”
Alt 3: Richard Gere – “Arbitrage”

BEST ACTRESS

1. Jennifer Lawrence – “Silver Linings Playbook”
2. Quvenzhane Wallis – “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
3. Jessica Chastain – “Zero Dark Thirty”
4. Marion Cotillard – “Rust and Bone”
5. Naomi Watts – “The Impossible”

Alt 1: Helen Mirren – “Hitchcock”
Alt 2: Emmanuelle Riva – “Amour”
Alt 3: Keira Knightley – “Anna Karenina”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

1. Tommy Lee Jones – “Lincoln”
2. Philip Seymour Hoffman – “The Master”
3. Leonardo DiCaprio – “Django Unchained”
4. Alan Arkin – “Argo”
5. Robert De Niro – “Silver Linings Playbook”

Alt 1: Matthew McConaughey – “Magic Mike”
Alt 2: William H. Macy – “The Sessions”
Alt 3: Eddie Redmayne – “Les Miserables”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

1. Anne Hathaway – “Les Miserables”
2. Sally Field – “Lincoln”
3. Helen Hunt – “The Sessions”
4. Amy Adams – “The Master”
5. Maggie Smith – “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”

Alt 1: Kelly Reilly – “Flight”
Alt 2: Samantha Barks – “Les Miserables”
Alt 3: Scarlett Johansson – “Hitchcock”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

1. “Argo”
2. “Lincoln”
3. “Silver Linings Playbook”
4. “The Sessions”
5. “Beasts of the Southern Wild”

Alt 1: “Life of Pi”
Alt 2: “Les Miserables”
Alt 3: “Hitchcock”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

1. “The Master”
2. “Moonrise Kingdom”
3. “Django Unchained”
4. “Zero Dark Thirty”
5. “The Intouchables”

Alt 1: “Looper”
Alt 2: “Magic Mike”
Alt 3: “Amour”

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

1. “Central Park Five”
2. “Searching for Sugarman”
3. “The Imposter”
4. “The Invisible War”
5. “Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God”

Alt 1: “West of Memphis”
Alt 2: “How to Survive a Plague”
Alt 3: “The Queen of Versailles”

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

1. “Brave”
2. “Wreck It Ralph”
3. “Paranorman”
4. “The Rabbi’s Cat”
5. “Rise of the Guardians”

Alt 1: “Frankenweenie”
Alt 2: “The Pirates: A Band of Misfits”
Alt 3: “The Lorax”

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

1. “Amour” – Austria
2. “The Intouchables” – France
3. “A Royal Affair” – Denmark
4. “Sister” – Switzerland
5. “The Hypnotist” – Sweden

Alt 1: “War Witch” – Canada
Alt 2: “No” – Chile
Alt 3: “Beyond the Hills” – Romania

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

1. “The Master”
2. “Life of Pi”
3. “Zero Dark Thirty”
4. “Skyfall”
5. “Les Miserables”

Alt 1: “Django Unchained”
Alt 2: “Lincoln”
Alt 3: “The Dark Knight Rises”

BEST EDITING

1. “Argo”
2. “Zero Dark Thirty”
3. “The Master”
4. “Lincoln”
5. “Les Miserables”

Alt 1: “Silver Linings Playbook”
Alt 2: “Django Unchained”
Alt 3: “Life of Pi”

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

1. “Les Miserables”
2. “Lincoln”
3. “Anna Karenina”
4. “Cloud Atlas”
5. “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”

Alt 1: “The Master”
Alt 2: “Django Unchained”
Alt 3: “Prometheus”

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

1. “Anna Karenina”
2. “Les Miserables”
3. “Mirror Mirror”
4. “Django Unchained”
5. “Lincoln”

Alt 1: “The Master”
Alt 2: “Snow White and the Huntsman”
Alt 3: “Argo”

BEST SOUND EFFECTS MIXING

1. “Les Miserables”
2. “The Dark Knight Rises”
3. “Skyfall”
4. “The Avengers”
5. “Django Unchained”

Alt 1: “Life of Pi”
Alt 2: “Zero Dark Thirty”
Alt 3: “Argo”

BEST SOUND EFFECTS EDITING

1. “Skyfall”
2. “The Dark Knight Rises”
3. “The Avengers”
4. “Les Miserables”
5. “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”

Alt 1: “Flight”
Alt 2: “Prometheus”
Alt 3: “Wreck It Ralph”

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

1. “Life of Pi”
2. “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”
3. “The Avengers”
4. “Prometheus”
5. “The Dark Knight Rises”

Alt 1: “Cloud Atlas”
Alt 2: “Snow White and the Hunstman”
Alt 3: “John Carter”

BEST MAKE-UP

1. “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”
2. “Lincoln”
3. “Hitchcock”

Alt 1: “Looper”
Alt 2: “Cloud Atlas”

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

1. “Life of Pi”
2. “Lincoln”
3. “Anna Karenina”
4. “Argo”
5. “The Master”

Alt 1: “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”
Alt 2: “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Alt 3: “Rise of the Guardians”

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

1. “Suddenly” from “Les Miserables”
2. “Learn Me Right” from “Brave”
3. “Skyfall” from “Skyfall”
4. “Midnight Run” from “Lawless”
5. “Song of the Lonely Mountain” – “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey”

Alt 1: “Still Dreaming” from “Rise of the Guardians”
Alt 2: “Breath of Life” from “Snow White and the Huntsman”
Alt 3: “Everybody Needs a Friend” from “Ted”

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