Monday, January 17, 2011

Oscar Predictions: Best Cinematography

Because of the busy nature of the next few weeks awards-wise, here are my current Oscar predictions, subject to minor revisions before nominations are announced on January 25th.

Last year’s nominees: Avatar, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Basterds, The White Ribbon

This year’s locks: Black Swan, Inception, True Grit

Very likely: The Social Network

Possible: 127 Hours, The King’s Speech, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1

Unlikely: Shutter Island, I Am Love, Somewhere, The Way Back

The rundown: Before the American Society of Cinematographers announced their picks, it seemed that, like last year, the five nominees were probably all sewn up. Yet last year “Nine” was surprisingly snubbed in favor of the sixth Harry Potter film come Oscar nomination time, and this year, “127 Hours” lost out in favor of “The King’s Speech” at the ASC nods. Going back to Harry Potter, while the seventh HP has a different director of photography, Eduardo Serra, like Bruno Delbonnel, is a two-time Oscar nominee (for “The Wings of the Dove” and “The Girl with the Pearl Earring”), so he could very possibly factor in, though the Oscars often like to reward the last in a series (see “The Return of the King” and “The Bourne Ultimatum”). Ultimately, the inventive camerawork of never-nominated DP Danny Cohen for “The King’s Speech” may prove irresistible for voters, and “127 Hours” cinematographer and “Slumdog Millionaire” Oscar winner Anthony Dod Mantle could be snubbed. In the past ten years, the ASC lineup and the Oscar list have only matched up perfectly twice, in 2007 and 2001.

Forecasted winner: It might be “Black Swan” or “True Grit,” but I’d say Inception takes this.

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