2. Les Misérables (dir. Hooper)
3. Lincoln (dir. Spielberg)
4. Silver Linings Playbook (dir. Russell)
5. Life of Pi (dir. Lee)
6. The Master (dir. P.T. Anderson)
7. Zero Dark Thirty (dir. Bigelow)
8. Amour (dir. Haneke)
If there are more than eight nominees...
9. Beasts of the Southern Wild (dir. Zeitlin)
10. Hitchcock (dir. Gervasi)
For those of us who like to obsess about the Oscars year around – if you’re reading this, consider yourself obsessed! - 2012 is a treasure. It is years like this, where nothing is yet solidified until late October, that make predicting the race fun. This could all change if one film starts to steamroll through the season, but at this moment at least, on the cusp of the year’s penultimate month, everything’s still up in the air.
Part of that is because of the Academy’s decision to change the number of nominees from ten to anywhere between five and ten. Much as I miss the 5-nominee days, this definitely adds an element of suspense to it. To put things in perspective, when I did my first ever set of predictions back in October of 2010, I guessed 8 of the 10 nominees correctly. If there were ten nominees this year, chances are I could repeat that feat, but as it stands, I can’t even guess how many films there are gonna be, let alone which ones exactly.
Last year at this point, the silent Gallic thespians were a clear favourite and the question was only whether any film could stop them from taking the gold. The year before, it was clear at the end of October that we would have a two-horse race between zeitgeist (The Social Network) and bait (The King’s Speech). The year before, we had a David vs. Goliath narrative between The Hurt Locker and Avatar. The point is that, around this time of year, we know roughly what the outcome is going to be. This year we don’t know anything and there’s no narrative set. And it’s a lot more fun.