If We Picked The Oscars:2011 Edition!

It’s that time of the year again, Oscar time! The question everyone is asking (at least in my household) is this: in a year with so many perceived dead solid locks, could their be any surprising upsets? Well, of course there could! That’s what makes the Oscars the Oscars!

In this post, we go through the major categories, pick who we think will will, and who has the best chance for an upset. This way, all of our bases are covered (unless, of course, we are wrong). We’ll even give you our odds for an upset. So, here we go!

Best animated feature film of the year

  • How to Train Your Dragon (Paramount) Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois
  • The Illusionist (Sony Pictures Classics) Sylvain Chomet
  • Toy Story 3 (Walt Disney) Lee Unkrich

And the Oscar Goes to: Toy Story 3.

Unless it goes to: The Illusionist.

Chance of Upset: 75%

It’s a strong year for animated fare. All the nominees are crafted with heart and are strong candidates. Toy Story 3 should carry on Pixar’s domination of the category, but The Illusionist has a better than outside chance.

Adapted screenplay

  • 127 Hours (Fox Searchlight), Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
  • The Social Network (Sony Pictures Releasing), Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
  • Toy Story 3 (Walt Disney), Screenplay by Michael Arndt. Story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich
  • True Grit (Paramount), Written for the screen by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
  • Winter’s Bone (Roadside Attractions), Adapted for the screen by Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini

And the Oscar Goes to: The Social Network.

Unless it goes to: Toy Story 3.

Chance of Upset: 56%

I think Sorkin will take this award, but out of the rest of the contenders, Toy Story 3’s team brought a lot of heart and feeling to a third installment of a franchise. That’s an accomplishment.

Original screenplay

  • Another Year (Sony Pictures Classics), Written by Mike Leigh
  • The Fighter (Paramount), Screenplay by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson. Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson
  • Inception (Warner Bros.), Written by Christopher Nolan
  • The Kids Are All Right (Focus Features), Written by Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg
  • The King’s Speech (The Weinstein Company), Screenplay by David Seidler

And the Oscar Goes to: The King’s Speech.

Unless it goes to: Inception.

Chance of Upset: 89%

Odds are that The King’s Speech will win in what could be a runaway blowout for the movie. But the Academy likes to give consolation prizes to directors who were snubbed in other categories. That, and Inception‘s inventiveness make it a strong upset prospect.

Performance by an actress in a supporting role

  • Amy Adams in “The Fighter” (Paramount)
  • Helena Bonham Carter in “The King’s Speech” (The Weinstein Company)
  • Melissa Leo in “The Fighter” (Paramount)
  • Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit” (Paramount)
  • Jacki Weaver in “Animal Kingdom” (Sony Pictures Classics)

And the Oscar Goes to: Melissa Leo

Unless it goes to:Hailee Steinfeld

Chance of Upset: 97%

I am going to go on a limb here and say if there is an upset in any category, there will be one here. Although, a lot of people are saying the same thing. Leo is truly deserving–her performance was awe-inspiring, but the Academy likes give awards to youth actors in this category. A lot.

Performance by an actor in a supporting role

  • Christian Bale in “The Fighter” (Paramount)
  • John Hawkes in “Winter’s Bone” (Roadside Attractions)
  • Jeremy Renner in “The Town” (Warner Bros.)
  • Mark Ruffalo in “The Kids Are All Right” (Focus Features)
  • Geoffrey Rush in “The King’s Speech” (The Weinstein Company)

And the Oscar Goes to: Christian Bale

Unless it goes to: Jeremy Renner

Chance of Upset: 1%

Yeah, if there is a mortal lock here, it’s Bale. If he doesn’t get the award, there is something seriously wrong. But if I had to pick any underdog, and I have to, my gut tells me Renner has the best chance, which is slim to none.

Performance by an actress in a leading role

  • Annette Bening in “The Kids Are All Right” (Focus Features)
  • Nicole Kidman in “Rabbit Hole” (Lionsgate)
  • Jennifer Lawrence in “Winter’s Bone” (Roadside Attractions)
  • Natalie Portman in “Black Swan” (Fox Searchlight)
  • Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine” (The Weinstein Company)

And the Oscar Goes to: Natalie Portman

Unless it goes to: Michelle Williams

Chance of Upset: 27%

Portman left it all on the screen in Black Swan, and the Academy loooooves that. But there have been rumblings she is vulnerable. Most of these rumblings involve Bening, but I think if there is an upset, Williams will be the one to do the upsetting. She left it all on screen too, in a less esoteric film.

Performance by an actor in a leading role

  • Javier Bardem in “Biutiful” (Roadside Attractions)
  • Jeff Bridges in “True Grit” (Paramount)
  • Jesse Eisenberg in “The Social Network” (Sony Pictures Releasing)
  • Colin Firth in “The King’s Speech”  (The Weinstein Company)
  • James Franco in “127 Hours” (Fox Searchlight)

And the Oscar Goes to: Colin Firth

Unless it goes to: James Franco

Chance of Upset: 13%

Yeah, it’s pretty much Firth’s award to lose. He played a real person, a monarch no less, who overcomes a medical malady in a time of need. That’s catnip to the Academy. But Franco has three things going for him:1) He was pretty much the movie, being on screen almost the whole time 2) He also struggled with adversity. I mean, he had to act like he cut his own hand off, for goodness sake! And…3) He’s co-hosting the awards. Which would be a trip if he won. A long shot, but an intriguing one.

Achievement in directing

  • Black Swan (Fox Searchlight), Darren Aronofsky
  • The Fighter (Paramount), David O. Russell
  • The King’s Speech (The Weinstein Company), Tom Hooper
  • The Social Network (Sony Pictures Releasing), David Fincher
  • True Grit (Paramount), Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

And the Oscar Goes to: Tom Hooper

Unless it goes to: David Fincher

Chance of Upset: 99.9%

Almost a 100% chance of upset? Hey, what gives!?! I don’t get to do this, do I?  Well, here is why I did this. I think there will be a split between Director and Picture this year. The Social Network will win one, The King’s Speech the other. However, I don’t know exactly which category each film will carry. I slightly favor Hooper here, but not enough to make Fincher that much of an underdog.  So, there you go.

Best Picture

  • Black Swan (Fox Searchlight) A Protozoa and Phoenix Pictures Production, Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
  • The Fighter (Paramount) A Relativity Media Production, David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
  • Inception (Warner Bros.) A Warner Bros. UK Services Production, Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers)
  • The Kids Are All Right (Focus Features) An Antidote Films, Mandalay Vision and Gilbert Films Production, Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
  • The King’s Speech (The Weinstein Company) A See-Saw Films and Bedlam Production, Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
  • 127 Hours (Fox Searchlight) An Hours Production, Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
  • The Social Network (Sony Pictures Releasing) A Columbia Pictures Production, Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin, Producers
  • Toy Story 3 (Walt Disney) A Pixar Production, Darla K. Anderson, Producer
  • True Grit (Paramount) A Paramount Pictures Production, Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
  • Winter’s Bone (Roadside Attractions) A Winter’s Bone Production, Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

And the Oscar Goes to: The Social Network

Unless it goes to: The King’s Speech

Chance of Upset: 99.9%

See above for my logic on the percentage. And while The King’s Speech has everything the Academy likes in a movie, I’m giving the ever-so-slight advantage to The Social Network, which is more relevant.

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About William Gatevackes 1934 Articles
William is cursed with the shared love of comic books and of films. Luckily, this is a great time for him to be alive. His writing has been featured on Broken Frontier.com, PopMatters.com and in Comics Foundry magazine.

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