Oscar Predictions 2020

It’s Oscar time! I am so excited to be live tweeting the Oscar awards on Sunday, February 9th @Real2ReelSci on Twitter starting at 8pm EST. My tweets are public; so you don’t need a twitter account to follow along!

Who wants to submit their guesses for some of this year’s winners? I’ll go first.

Here is the full list of the 2020 Oscar nominations and my predictions:

Visual Effects:

“Avengers Endgame”
“The Irishman”
“The Lion King”
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker”

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” – Visual effects is one of my favorite categories because the amount of science, art and time that goes into these effects are mind-blowing!

More info: How VFX brought Leia back, gave us Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker’s best battle

Costume Design:

”The Irishman,” Sandy Powell, Christopher Peterson
“Jojo Rabbit,” Mayes C. Rubeo
“Joker,” Mark Bridges
“Little Women,” Jacqueline Durran
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” Arianne Phillips

“Little Women,” Jacqueline Durran – I love how the costumes really tell you a lot about each character even before the actress says a word.

More info: Dressing Little Women: Costume Designer Jacqueline Durran on Color, Character, and Breaking the Rules

Makeup and Hair:

“Maleficent: Mistress of Evil”

“Bombshell” – This year, the award will go to the artist who created the best cheek bones. “Maleficent” and “Judy” are strong contenders too!

More info: People Are Freaking Out at How Unrecognizable Charlize Theron Looks in the Bombshell Trailer


Original Song:

“I Can’t Let You Throw Yourself Away,” “Toy Story 4”
“I’m Gonna Love Me Again,” “Rocketman”
“I’m Standing With You,” “Breakthrough”
“Into the Unknown,” “Frozen 2”
“Stand Up,” “Harriet”

“Into the Unknown,” “Frozen 2” – Brendon Urie‘s version of this song always gives me chills.

More info: Panic! At The Disco – Into the Unknown (From “Frozen 2”)

Original Score:

“Joker,” Hildur Guðnadóttir
“Little Women,” Alexandre Desplat
“Marriage Story,” Randy Newman
“1917,” Thomas Newman
“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” John Williams

“Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” John Williams – John Williams is a legend when it comes to movie scores and a career 53 total Oscar nominations — wow!

More info: With ‘Rise of Skywalker,’ Composer John Williams Puts His Coda on ‘Star Wars’

Production Design:

“The Irishman,” Bob Shaw and Regina Graves
“Jojo Rabbit,” Ra Vincent and Nora Sopkova
“1917,” Dennis Gassner and Lee Sandales
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” Barbara Ling and Nancy Haigh
“Parasite,” Lee Ha-Jun and Cho Won Woo, Han Ga Ram, and Cho Hee

“1917,” Dennis Gassner and Lee Sandales – I am fascinated by how the production designers became experts in mud, archaeology and architecture to bring this “dream-like” vision to life.

More info: ‘1917’: How Production Design Captured the Trenches in What Looks Like a Single Shot

Sound Mixing:

“Ad Astra”
“Ford v Ferrari”
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”

“Ad Astra”- Foley artists deserve so much credit for creating sounds for things we have no reference point for and at the same time, making these sounds believable.

More info: How As Astra’s Stellar Foley Sound Was Made – With Heikki Kossi

Sound Editing:

“Ford v Ferrari,” Don Sylvester
“Joker,” Alan Robert Murray
“1917,” Oliver Tarney, Rachel Tate
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” Wylie Stateman
“Star Wars: The Rise of SkyWalker,” Matthew Wood, David Acord

“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” Wylie Stateman – Sound editors are another unsung hero of film post-production that have to put everything together to make it work.

More info: Sound Editor Wylie Stateman on Creating the Sonic World of ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

Film Editing:

“Ford v Ferrari,” Michael McCusker, Andrew Buckland
“The Irishman,” Thelma Schoonmaker
“Jojo Rabbit,” Tom Eagles
“Joker,” Jeff Groth
“Parasite,” Jinmo Yang

“The Irishman,” Thelma Schoonmaker – “I read the script and then I put it away.” Schoonmaker adds, “What Marty puts into a movie is often not in the script.”

More info: Thelma Schoonmaker on Editing ‘The Irishman’ With Martin Scorsese (Exclusive Short)



“The Irishman,” Rodrigo Prieto
“Joker,” Lawrence Sher
“The Lighthouse,” Jarin Blaschke
“1917,” Roger Deakins
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” Robert Richardson

“1917,” Roger Deakins – The foresight to be able to plan, film and predict what these long shots will look like before they are digitally stitched together is amazing to me.

More info: ‘1917’ Movie: How Director Sam Mendes Made His ‘One-Shot’ War Film

Original Screenplay:

“Knives Out,” Rian Johnson
“Marriage Story,” Noah Baumbach
“1917,” Sam Mendes and Krysty Wilson-Cairns
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” Quentin Tarantino
“Parasite,” Bong Joon-ho, Jin Won Han

“Knives Out,” Rian Johnson – I think telling a story is hard enough and trying to weave a entertaining and compelling mystery is even more challenging.

More info: Rian Johnson Talks Knives Out 2 Possibilities and His Oscars Nomination

Adapted Screenplay:

“The Irishman,” Steven Zaillian
“Jojo Rabbit,” Taika Waititi
“Joker,” Todd Phillips, Scott Silver
“Little Women,” Greta Gerwig
“The Two Popes,” Anthony McCarten

“The Two Popes,” Anthony McCarten – I would think writing about closed door conversations between two public figures would be extremely intimidating.

More info: Author wrote ‘The Two Popes’ nonfiction book, then fictional screenplay

Animated Short:

“Dcera,” Daria Kashcheeva
“Hair Love,” Matthew A. Cherry
“Kitbull,” Rosana Sullivan
“Memorable,” Bruno Collet
“Sister,” Siqi Song

“Hair Love,” Matthew A. Cherry – This story made me laugh and cry!

More info: Oscar-Nominated Short ‘Hair Love’ To Play Before ‘Jumanji: The Next Level’

Animated Feature:

“How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World,” Dean DeBlois
“I Lost My Body,” Jeremy Clapin
“Klaus,” Sergio Pablos
“Missing Link,” Chris Butler
“Toy Story 4,”  Josh Cooley

“Klaus,” Sergio Pablos – I was so impressed that this movie was made using hand-drawings and not CGI.

More info: How ‘Klaus’ Pushes Animation Forward While Reinventing the Christmas Movie


Martin Scorsese, “The Irishman”
Todd Phillips, “Joker”
Sam Mendes, “1917”
Quentin Tarantino, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”
Bong Joon Ho, “Parasite”

Bong Joon Ho, “Parasite”-  “Only Netflix guaranteed 100 percent approval of everything to me: the final cut and the rating,” Bong says.

More info: Bong Joon-ho’s Dystopia Is Already Here

Supporting Actress:

Kathy Bates, “Richard Jewell”
Laura Dern, “Marriage Story”
Scarlett Johansson, “Jojo Rabbit”
Florence Pugh, “Little Women”
Margot Robbie, “Bombshell”

Laura Dern, “Marriage Story” – Dern met with Laura Wasser while researching the role. “Despite empathy and heartfelt intent—and I think Wasser is an example of this—the business of divorce is the business of winning for your team,” Dern says.

More info: Laura Dern’s Marriage Story Character May Be Inspired By A Real Celebrity Divorce Attorney

Supporting Actor:

Tom Hanks, “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”
Anthony Hopkins, “The Two Popes”
Al Pacino, “The Irishman”
Joe Pesci, “The Irishman”
Brad Pitt, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”

Tom Hanks, “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” – Have you seen the “minute of silence” scene? It’s brilliant!

More info: Tom Hanks Plays Mister Rogers: Sharing Joy Is ‘The Natural State Of Things’

Lead Actress:

Cynthia Erivo, “Harriet”
Scarlett Johansson, “Marriage Story”
Saoirse Ronan, “Little Women”
Charlize Theron, “Bombshell”
Renee Zellweger, “Judy”

Renee Zellweger, “Judy” – Renee had to sing, dance, wear prosthetics and contort her body to become Garland. The transformation is incredible!

More info: Renee Zellweger -How Renée Zellweger transformed into Judy Garland

Lead Actor:

Antonio Banderas, “Pain and Glory”
Leonardo DiCaprio, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”
Adam Driver, “Marriage Story”
Joaquin Phoenix, “Joker”
Jonathan Pryce, “The Two Popes”

Joaquin Phoenix, “Joker”- I really like getting insight into how and why the villain became one. It helps you see their character in three dimensions. I also liked how the real neurological disorder of pathological laughing was included in the story.

More info: Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker Laugh Was Inspired By a Real-Life Neurological Disorder

Best Picture:

“Ford v Ferrari”
“The Irishman”
“Jojo Rabbit”
“Little Women”
“Marriage Story”
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”

“Parasite” – It’s new, different, thought-provoking and genre-bending at the same time.

Thank you for joining me!  See you next year!

[Credit: Emilie Lorditch]
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