OSCARS: How Reliable Are Precursor Awards In Predicting Oscar Noms?
OSCARS: Hammond’s Down-To-The-Wire Predictions For 2013 Winners & Losers
When Oscar voting came to a close Jan. 4 , 9 days earlier than last year, the dynamic of phase one of the awards race was thrown into uncharted territory. Because of the new timing crunch, previous harbingers of Oscar gold like the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s Golden Globe Awards, the Broadcast Critics Association’s Critics Choice Movie Awards, the American Film Institute’s annual list of 10 Movies of the Year, and the Screen Actors Guild’s Awards could have more influence than ever—or perhaps less, depending how you look at it.
In conversations with many potential Academy voters, one thing is clear: The late-breaking contenders of November and December turn out to be the most likely recipients of Oscar attention and therefore the “must sees” for any serious member that planned to cast their ballot over the already über-busy holiday period. November’s Flight, Lincoln, Life Of Pi, Hitchcock, Silver Linings Playbook, and Skyfall together with December’s late-breaking Zero Dark Thirty, Les Misérables, Django Unchained, The Impossible, The Hobbit, and Amour all struggled to get Academy eyeballs before the nomination deadline. With so many year-enders, it positively makes an October contender like Warner Bros.’ Argo seem like a film for which voters will need a long memory. Nearly everything that is being talked about or anticipated is being packed into a two-month corridor. And it doesn’t help matters that many of those titles have running times well over two and a half hours.
OSCARS: Best Picture Contenders Part 1
With so much to see and so little time, Academy members probably could use more help than ever before, or at least a few helpful hints about what movies should be priorities in their DVD screener pile. The nominations that come in mid-December from the aforementioned traditionally reliable “influencers” are more important this year only because the typical Oscar voter just doesn’t have time to see everything, and these nominations and lists hit just before Oscar ballots are sent. Such top titles as Les Misérables and Django Unchained didn’t even open until Christmas Day. Although they were heavily screened for some Academy and guild members well before then, the films’ reviews and news coverage surrounding their release didn’t hit voters hard, with Oscar polls having been open at that point for over a week with just one more to go.