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Thursday, February 16, 2017

Win Your Oscars® Pool - stats for every category

who's is going to win the Oscar this year Academy Award

With a third of this year’s Academy Award winners poised to bring on a la-la-landslide, the status of your Oscars office pool winnings is likely to be decided by the below-the-line categories. That’s why we’re here with our stat-tastic predictions.

1. Win the Best Director category
Go with whoever won the Director’s Guild of America award. Those winners have matched 62 times in the past 69 years. And the Oscar goes to: Damien Chazelle for La La Land.

2. Win the Best Cinematography category
This top award has gone to one man, Emmanuel Lubezki, for the past three years — but he’s not nominated this year. This we know: for the last four years, this honor has gone to the same film that won Best Director. And the Oscar goes to: Linus Sandgren for La La Land.

3. Win the Best Visual Effects category
Historically, a nominee that also has a Best Picture nomination will always win in this category, but that’s not an option this year so we must look to the VES Awards. For eight of the past 13 years, the winner for Outstanding VFX has gone on to win the Oscar. And the Oscar goes to their winner: Jungle Book.

4. Win the Best Foreign Language Film category
For months, this category has been a two-horse race between Toni Erdmann (Germany) and The Salesman (Iran). But then Trump’s executive order on immigration threatened to bar Iranian director Asghar Farhadi from attending. And the statement Oscar goes to: The Salesman.

5. Win the Best Music (Original Score) category

This award most often aligns with the BAFTA Award for Best Film Music, which honored Justin Hurwitz this year. And the Oscar goes to Hurwitz for La La Land.

6. Win the Best Music (Original Song) category

Unless the two La La Land songs cancel each other out, “How Far I’ll Go” writer Lin-Manuel Miranda probably won’t get his EGOT just yet. But he can be happy with his E,G,T and Pulitzer. And the Oscar goes to: “City of Stars” from La La Land.

7. Win the Best Production Design category
This award, renamed from “Best Art Direction” in 2012, has only aligned with Best Picture three times since 2000. One of those was Chicago, a musical.

The winner of this category often aligns with either the Critic’s Choice award which awarded the fantastical La La Land, or with the BAFTA Awards which chose Fantastic Beasts. But I think the latter group were just being British loyalists. And the Oscar goes to: La La Land.

8. Win the Best Animated Short Film category
Beginning just three years ago, ALL members of the Academy (not just category peers) can pick the winners of: Best Documentary Feature, Best Animated Short Subject and Best Live Action Short Subject.That means everyone from actors to musicians will have a say instead of just documentarians, so dumb it down a bit when making your pick — or just choose one with a cute animal. And the Oscar goes to a film about a little bird: Piper.

9. Win the Best Animated Feature Film category
Zootopia is the front runner, but with another Disney film in the mix (Moana), will Kubo stage an upset? Seven out of 11 PGA-winning animated films also won this award and they chose Zootopia, your safest bet. And the Oscar goes to: Zootopia.

10. Win the Best Makeup and Hairstyling category
The Swedish couple behind last year’s surprise nominee 100 Year-Old Man and this year’s A Man Called Ove is up against two large studio films once again. They are clearly respected by their peers, but all Academy members vote at this stage, and more of them saw Star Trek. And the Oscar goes to: Star Trek.

11. Win the Best Costume Design category
This is one of the hardest categories to predict this year. True to life period movies (versus creative or modern ones) have won Best Costume for 20 of the past 25 years. Exceptions were fantasy ones such as Priscilla Queen of the Desert and last year’s Mad Max: Fury Road. That period piece stat boasts well for Jackie, but the exception points to Colleen Atwood and her 11th Oscar bid for Fantastic Beasts. She has won for fantasy before (Alice in Wonderland).

My bet is that the modern La La Land feels more like a period piece because, oh, that yellow dress. And the Oscar goes to second time nominee Mary Zophress (True Grit) for La La Land.

12. Win the Best Documentary category (Feature)
Four black directors are nominated for Best Documentary and three of those four films deal with race and race relations in America. 13th has recent buzz but no film has more acclaim that OJ: Made In America — unless voters see it as just a TV series. And the Oscar goes to: OJ.

13. Win the Best Documentary Short category 
Jon Stewart recently screened Joe’s Violin, a film about a Holocaust survivor and artist. Those are two of Oscars’ sweet spots and it could win.

The White Helmets and Watani are both films about Syrians trying to stay alive. The travel ban would have prevented the Nobel Peace Prize subjects of The White Helmets from attending. In a category where voters aren’t clear how to vote, sending a message should take this one over the top. And the Oscar goes to: The White Helmets.

14. Win the Best Live Action Short Film category
Sing is a pic about competition with a fine story arc and a good chance of being seen. Silent Nights is a love story about a volunteer at a homeless shelter. Timecode is a well-reviewed friendship dramedy and the shortest and slightest in the category. La Femme et la TGV is a feel good film that follows the exchange of a baker and train conductor. And Ennemis Interiur is about a hot topic — immigration. And the Oscar goes to: Ennemis Ineriur.

15. Win the Best Film Editing category
Film Editing winners don’t always align with Best Picture. (Mad Max, Whiplash and Gravity are the past three winners), but in 2002, the year of Chicago, it did. And the Oscar goes to: La La Land.

16. Win the Best Sound Editing category
The loudest movie takes Best Sound Editing, period. Speed, Pearl Harbor, Mad Max, Zero Dark Thirty, The Dark Knight, King Kong, T2 and Bourne Ultimatum have all won Oscars in this category. Seriously.

This category rewards “most aesthetic” sound design and the creating of sound effects and not musicals. Chicago and Les Miserables weren’t even nominated in their years. La La Land is the frontrunner in Vegas, but I predict the Oscar goes to: Hacksaw Ridge.

17. Win the Best Sound Mixing category
While last year’s Sound Editing and Sound Mixing winners aligned to the same film (Mad Max: Fury Road), the winners in this category, rewarding most euphonic sound mixing, often vary from the Sound Editing award. Whiplash, Les Miserables, Dreamgirls, Ray and Chicago are among the past winners. In six of the last ten year the CAS Award-winner has also won this award so watch those results on Saturday) And the Oscar goes to: La La Land.

18. Win the Best Adapted Screenplay category

The USC Scripter Awards have accurately predicted this category for the last six years and it rarely goes to the same film that wins Best Picture. And the Oscar goes to someone deserving who many want to see on stage that night: Writer-director Barry Jenkins for Moonlight.

19. Win the Best Original Screenplay category

Through the years, the winner in this category most closely resembles the winners of Writers Guild of America, but this year La La Land, Moonlight and Manchester are all in the WGA Original Screenplay category — yikes — but I think this is the place Oscar can spread the love. And the Oscar goes to: Kenneth Lonergan’s brilliantly written Manchester by the Sea.

20. Win the Best Actor/Actress/Supporting Actor/Supporting Actress categories

The SAG voters are all actors and are the largest block of voters for the Academy Award. Choose the SAG winners and you’re likely to win your pool.

In the past ten years:
100% of the SAG winners also took home the Oscar for Best Actor
80% of the SAG winners also took home the Oscar for Best Actress
90% of the SAG winners also took home the Oscar for Best Suppporting Actor
80% of the SAG winners also took home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress

Only six times in the 23 years of SAG awards did all four winners go on to win the Oscars. Good news for Casey Affleck. But for your safest bet, the Oscars go to: Emma Stone, Denzel Washington, Viola Davis and Mahershala Ali.

21. Win the Best Picture category

Films without an editing nomination don’t often win the best prize. Eliminating Manchester By The Sea, Hidden Figures, Lion and Fences. That leaves Moonlight and La La Land.

For eight of the last nine years, the Producers Guild’s choice for Best Picture went on to claim the top prize at the Oscars. 19 of the past 27 have done the same. Good news for PGA winner La La Land. And the Oscar goes to: La La Land.

22. Win the show’s-running-time tiebreaker.
In 2002, the show ran four hours and 23 minutes. Whew! But more recently, the show has trended consistently shorter. Here are the timings for the past eight years:

2009: 3 hours, 30 minutes
2010: 3 hours, 37 minutes
2011: 3 hours, 15 minutes
2012: 3 hours, 14 minutes
2013: 3 hours, 35 minutes
2014: 3 hours, 30 minutes
2015: 3 hours, 43 minutes
2016: 3 hours, 37 minutes

23. Win the tiebreaker: How many awards will La La Land win?
When everything above happens, La La Land will have won Best Picture, Director, Cinematography, Actress, Score, Song, Production Design, Film Editing, Sound Mixing and hopefully Costume, which totals to ten Academy Awards.

That’s one shy of being one of the top winning films with 11 (Titanic, Ben Hur and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King ) and on–par to tie another musical for the second tier, West Side Story with ten. That sounds about right. 

And ten Oscars go to: La La Land.

Good luck with your Oscars pool, everyone!

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