Sunday, January 23, 2011

Oscar Predictions: Best Film Editing

Last year’s nominees: Avatar, District 9, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Basterds, Precious

American Cinema Editors nominees: Drama (Black Swan, The Fighter, Inception, The King’s Speech, The Social Network), Comedy or Musical (Alice in Wonderland, Easy A, The Kids Are All Right, Made in Dagenham, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World), Animated (Despicable Me, How to Train Your Dragon, Toy Story 3), Documentary (Exit through the Gift Shop, Inside Job, Waiting for Superman)

This year’s locks: Inception, The Social Network

Very likely: Black Swan, The King’s Speech

Possible: True Grit, The Fighter, 127 Hours, The Town, Shutter Island

Unlikely: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the rest of the ACE nominees

The rundown: This category is highly unpredictable because it often snubs Best Picture contenders that you would assume would be secure – like “Brokeback Mountain,” “Capote,” and “Good Night, and Good Luck” in 2005. Last year, “Up in the Air” was left off to make room for “District 9.” It’s worth noting that only twice (1993 & 2002) when both Best Picture and Best Film Editing both had five nominees did the two categories match exactly, and only once besides last year when there were ten Best Picture nominees and five Best Film Editing nominees did all of the latter category’s nominees also get mentioned in the former (way back in 1937). What does this all mean? Not much. The frontrunners are still the frontrunners; just don’t count on a Best Film Editing nod if you’re a strong Best Picture contender, and watch out for some of the films that don’t seem like they’re in that race anymore to pop up here (those three 2005 films were replaced by “Cinderella Man,” “The Constant Gardener,” and “Walk the Line”). It begs the question of whether “The King’s Speech” and “The Fighter” might be ousted by some more high-tech choices, and this is one place that “The Town” and “Shutter Island” could definitely pop up. The ACE drama list could easily be the final list – we’ll have to see.

Forecasted winner: So technically it should be “Inception,” but it will probably The Social Network, which honestly is fine too.

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