Predicting The 87th Annual Academy Awards


Felicity Jones and Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything

Best Original Song

“Everything Is Awesome” from “The Lego Movie”
Music and Lyric by Shawn Patterson
“Glory” from “Selma”
Music and Lyric by John Stephens and Lonnie Lynn

“Grateful” from “Beyond the Lights”
Music and Lyric by Diane Warren
“I’m Not Gonna Miss You” from “Glen Campbell…I’ll Be Me”
Music and Lyric by Glen Campbell and Julian Raymond
“Lost Stars” from “Begin Again”
Music and Lyric by Gregg Alexander and Danielle Brisebois

After two big wins at the Golden Globes and Critics Choice awards, “Glory” from Selma has a very big lead in this category. Couple that with the fact that the film was snubbed in multiple places, and you can be sure that the Academy will see its way to giving it this award as a consolation prize.

Best Original Score

“The Grand Budapest Hotel” Alexandre Desplat
“The Imitation Game” Alexandre Desplat
“Interstellar” Hans Zimmer
“Mr. Turner” Gary Yershon
“The Theory of Everything” Jóhann Jóhannsson

This is a somewhat tough category to call as we don’t have much to base a prediction on. The Golden Globe went to The Theory of Everything, the BAFTA went to The Grand Budapest Hotel, and the Critics Choice went to Birdman.

Birdman we can eliminate right away as it was deemed ineligible, but that still leaves us with two big contenders. This one comes right down to the group with the better record, which goes to the HFPA (the folks behind the Golden Globes). Ignoring last year where they randomly went with All is Lost for some reason, they matched the Academy’s choice for the previous six years in a row, whereas BAFTA has only matched about half the time in the same time period. Therefore, it looks as though The Theory of Everything has the better chance here.

Best Foreign Language Film

“Ida” Poland
“Leviathan” Russia
“Tangerines” Estonia
“Timbuktu” Mauritania
“Wild Tales” Argentina

I’d love to see the outstanding Wild Tales win here, but alas, it doesn’t have a chance. This is another one that’s down to a two-horse race. BAFTA went with Ida and the Golden Globe went to Leviathan (the Critics Choice went to Force Majeure, which wasn’t nominated). Looking at the records of both groups, we find that BAFTA has gotten the last two right before a long streak of misses and the HFPA has gotten the last four right before a long string of misses. In this case, however, we also have the support of several critics groups to throw behind Ida as the film won a multitude of Best Foreign Language Film awards from them as well. Given that the records of BAFTA and the HFPA are so close, I think it’s safe to tip the scales towards Ida with the extra support it’s gotten throughout the season.

Best Documentary Feature

“CitizenFour” Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy and Dirk Wilutzky
“Finding Vivian Maier” John Maloof and Charlie Siskel
“Last Days in Vietnam” Rory Kennedy and Keven McAlester
“The Salt of the Earth” Wim Wenders, Juliano Ribeiro Salgado and David Rosier
“Virunga” Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara

This is a pretty easy category to call, especially with the shocking snub of the Roger Ebert documentary Life Itself. This basically leaves the outstanding Edward Snowden documentary Citizenfour with no competition, especially after its multitude of wins throughout awards season, which includes honors from BAFTA, the DGA and various critics groups.

Best Animated Film

“Big Hero 6” Don Hall, Chris Williams and Roy Conli
“The Boxtrolls” Anthony Stacchi, Graham Annable and Travis Knight
“How to Train Your Dragon 2” Dean DeBlois and Bonnie Arnold
“Song of the Sea” Tomm Moore and Paul Young
“The Tale of the Princess Kaguya” Isao Takahata and Yoshiaki Nishimura

Another one of the year’s biggest snubs came in this category, with The LEGO Movie being left out in the cold after having won the vast majority of awards throughout the season. However, with big wins from the Golden Globes and Annie awards (including Best Animated Feature), it’s safe to say that How to Train Your Dragon 2 is in a very strong second place, making it a pretty clear winner for the category.

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