Which Films Are Trending to Receive the Most Oscar Nominations?

Clayton Davis
·5 min read

Who’s leading in the Oscars and where is it all trending? The question that’s examined ad nauseam in this extended and unusual year of cinema. Depending on your reading on the awards season temperature, you can find the reading on which films could lead in the final nomination tally. One of the main strategies from awards publicists and studios is gain as much support from each branch, most notably the technical artisans.

In the 92 years of the Academy Awards, the film that has led the nominations has won best picture 58 times. In that history, there have only been seven films that went home empty-handed, most recently with 2013’s “American Hustle” from David O. Russell, going zero for 10. Before that, you have to go back to 1983’s “The Color Purple” from Steven Spielberg, who, along with 1977’s “The Turning Point,” is among the biggest “losers” netting nil of their 11 nominations.

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The most nominated films of all time with 14 are 1950’s “All About Eve,” 1997’s “Titanic” and the only non-best picture winner, 2016’s “La La Land.” This year, we don’t have any candidates that look to join that elite group of films. Still, we have a few candidates that could join the 13 nomination club, currently occupied by 10 films, with six winning the top prize in their respective years, most recently with Guillermo del Toro’s “The Shape of Water.”

Looking through the current best picture predictions for the Oscars, George C. Wolfe’s “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” Paul Greengrass’ “News of the World” and Aaron Sorkin’s “The Trial of the Chicago 7” could, with having the perfect storm of support, garner 13 nominations, which would include categories where they are considered dark horses.

Chloe Zhao’s “Nomadland,” which many accords is the current frontrunner, looks to only top at nine nominations, which would require the film to pick up long-shot spots Linda May or Swankie in supporting actress.

What’s interesting is we could be in for the first year since 2014 when none of the films cracked double-digits in their nomination tally. Best Picture winner “Birdman” and “The Grand Budapest Hotel” co-lead the field with nine nominations and co-led the wins with four each. In the last decade, the eventual best picture winner has led Oscar night’s win tally five times, most recently with last year’s “Parasite.”

Down below are the current predicted best picture nominees, along with their polling numbers for their “best day,” current trending, and “worst day” scenarios. Lots can change before March 15, Oscar nomination day.

“Da 5 Bloods” (Netflix)

BEST (11): Picture, director (Spike Lee), actor (Delroy Lindo), supporting actor (Chadwick Boseman), original screenplay, production design, cinematography, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound, visual effects, original score

TRENDING (4): Picture, actor, supporting actor, original score

WORST (1): Actor

“The Father” (Sony Pictures Classics)

BEST (8): Picture, director (Florian Zeller), actor (Anthony Hopkins), supporting actress (Olivia Colman), adapted screenplay, production design, cinematography, film editing

TRENDING (4): Picture, actor, supporting actress, adapted screenplay

WORST (2): Actor, supporting actress

“Judas and the Black Messiah” (HBO Max/Warner Bros)

BEST (12): Picture, director (Shaka King), actor (Lakeith Stanfield), supporting actor (Daniel Kaluuya), supporting actress (Dominique Fishback), original screenplay, production design, cinematography, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound

TRENDING (5): Picture, supporting actor, original screenplay, cinematography, original song

WORST (1): Supporting actor

“Minari” (A24)

BEST (10): Picture, director (Lee Isaac Chung), actor (Steven Yeun), actress (Yeri Han), supporting actor (Alan S. Kim), supporting actress (Yuh-Jung Youn), original screenplay, cinematography, film editing, original score

TRENDING (6): Picture, director, actor, supporting actress, original screenplay, original score

WORST (0): Complete shutout

“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” (Netflix)

BEST (13): Picture, director (George C. Wolfe), actor (Chadwick Boseman), actress (Viola Davis), supporting actor (Glynn Turman), adapted screenplay, production design, cinematography, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound, original score

TRENDING (8): Picture, actor, actress, adapted screenplay, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound

WORST (3): Actor, costume design

“News of the World” (Universal Pictures)

BEST (13): Picture, director (Paul Greengrass), actor (Tom Hanks), supporting actress (Helena Zengel), adapted screenplay, production design, cinematography, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound, visual effects, original score

TRENDING (8): Picture, production design, cinematography, film editing, sound, original score

WORST (3): Cinematography, sound, visual effects

“Nomadland” (Searchlight Pictures)

BEST (9): Picture, director (Chloe Zhao), actress (Frances McDormand), supporting actor (David Strathairn), supporting actress (Swankie), adapted screenplay, cinematography, film editing, sound

TRENDING (6): Picture, director, actress, adapted screenplay, cinematography, film editing

WORST (4): Picture, director, actress, adapted screenplay

“One Night in Miami” (Amazon Studios)

BEST (12): Picture, director (Regina King), actor (Kingsley Ben-Adir), supporting actor (Leslie Odom Jr.), adapted screenplay, production design, cinematography, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound, original song

TRENDING (6): Picture, director, supporting actor, production design, costume design, original song

WORST (2): Supporting actor, original song

“Promising Young Woman” (Focus Features)

BEST (12): Picture, director (Emerald Fennell), actress (Carey Mulligan), supporting actor (Bo Burnham), original screenplay, cinematography, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound, original score, original song

TRENDING (5): Picture, actress, original screenplay, makeup and hairstyling

WORST (1): Original screenplay

“The Trial of the Chicago 7” (Netflix)

BEST (13): Picture, director (Aaron Sorkin), supporting actor (Sacha Baron Cohen and either Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Frank Langella or Mark Rylance), original screenplay, production design, cinematography, costume design, film editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound, original score, original song

TRENDING (6): Picture, director, supporting actor (Cohen), original screenplay, film editing, sound

WORST (3): Picture, original screenplay, film editing

2021 SAG Awards Predictions (Film)

2021 Academy Awards Predictions

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