Anybody who’s read The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Brutally Honest Oscar Ballots series will know that Academy Awards aren’t always handed out based on merit. In fact, it’s rare to find one of THR’s secret Oscar voters voting based on quality; more often than not, a vote will be cast based on what the voter’s peers are doing or whether or not they feel a candidate ‘deserves’ it. Sometimes voters make their decisions without even having watched the movies.
This explains why during each Oscar ceremony, there are so many odd and oftentimes maddening results. The least-deserving triumph while the most-deserving are left in the lurch, sometimes for the the fourth or fifth time (pity cinematographer Roger Deakins, who’s so far been nominated 12 times without winning).
This year, favorites are already emerging in the various categories, not all of which/whom necessarily deserve to come out on top on February 28th. On that note, here are eight nominees that deserve to win but unfortunately, already look likely to be beaten.