This year, Oscar nominations will be announced on Tuesday, January 24th. I’ll be offering detailed predictions in most of the major categories, saving some of the biggest categories for last.
Last year’s nominees: Ex Machina, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Martian, The Revenant, Star Wars: The Force Awakens
This year’s locks: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Arrival
Very likely: The Jungle Book
Possible: Kubo and the Two Strings, Captain America: Civil War, Doctor Strange, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Unlikely: Passengers, The BFG, Deepwater Horizon
The rundown: We have a better idea here that in most races because the list has already been winnowed down to ten finalists. Last year, with franchise films as half the finalist list, only two made the cut. We also got a great surprise in the least technical film as the winner. This is one place where Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is sure to show up, and it will definitely be joined by Arrival. Beyond that, I’d give the edge to The Jungle Book, Kubo and the Two Strings (it would be the first animated film here since 1993), and Captain America: Civil War. It might also be Doctor Strange or Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. I can’t imagine that The BFG or Deepwater Horizon will muster enough support against these other contenders, and I think that Passengers will also find itself left out.
Forecasted winner: After last year, who knows? I’ll go with The Jungle Book but it depends on what else is nominated.