Category: 90th Oscars (2017)

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – Neon

A distributor that’s arrived out of nowhere has a viable Oscar contender on hand. They probably don’t have a large campaign budget, but who knows.

I, Tonya

Oscar Chances: Good: The film has earned strong reviews and stars Margot Robbie and Allison Janney are solidly in the race for nominations. They even picked up Spirit Award citations.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Brian Unkeless, Steven Rogers, Margot Robbie, Tom Ackerley)
  • Director (Craig Gillespie)
  • Original Screenplay (Steven Rogers)
  • Actress (Margot Robbie)
  • Supporting Actress (Allison Janney)
  • Supporting Actor (Sebastian Stan, Paul Walter Hauser)
  • Film Editing (Tatiana Riegel)
  • Production Design (Jade Healy, Adam Willis)
  • Costume Design (Jennifer Johnson)
  • Original Score (Peter Nashel)
  • Sound Mixing (Todd Weaver, Dave Paterson)
  • Sound Editing (Dave Paterson)
  • Cinematography (Nicolas Karakatsanis)
  • Visual Effects (Jean-Marc Demmer)
  • Makeup and Hairstyling (Deborah Lamia Denaver, Adruitha Lee)

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – A24 2

A24 has one more film for us to consider. Why they sent it separately, I don’t know.

The Florida Project

Oscar Chances: Uncertain: It was thought that Willem Dafoe was going to be a solid Best Supporting Actor contender and possible winner, but then he was left off the slate at the Spirit Awards, even though the film did receive other nominations. That might be an ill sign. He is still a soft competitor and the screenplay is also likely in play, but nothing else seems likely.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Sean Baker, Chris Bergoch, Kevin Chinoy, Andrew Duncan, Alex Saks, Francesca Silvestri, Shih-Ching Tsou)
  • Director (Sean Baker)
  • Original Screenplay (Sean Baker, Chris Bergoch)
  • Actress (Brooklynn Prince)
  • Supporting Actor (Willem Dafoe)
  • Supporting Actress (Bria Vinaite)
  • Cinematography (Alexis Zabé)
  • Production Design (Stephonik Youth, Kurt Thoresen)
  • Film Editing (Sean Baker)
  • Costume Design (Fernando A. Rodriguez)
  • Sound Mixing (Coll Anderson)
  • Sound Editing (Coll Anderson)
  • Makeup and Hairstyling (Diana Thomas-Madison, Carol Raskin)
  • Visual Effects (Philippe Désiront)

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – Universal

Universal has delivered early-year critical success Get Out.

Get Out

Oscar Chances: Good: The film has already done well at the Spirit Awards and with the critical acclaim, it should be able to sneak into at least the Original Screenplay category at the Oscars with a Best Picture nomination also distinctly possible. Other nominations might be tougher to come by, including Best Director.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Sean McKittrick, Jason Blum, Edward H. Ham Jr., Jordan Peele)
  • Director (Jordan Peele)
  • Original Screenplay (Jordan Peele)
  • Actor (Daniel Kaluuya)
  • Actress (Allison Williams)
  • Supporting Actor (Bradley Whitford, Lakeith Stanfield, Lil Rel Howery)
  • Supporting Actress (Catherine Keener, Betty Gabriel)
  • Cinematography (Toby Oliver)
  • Film Editing (Gregory Plotkin)
  • Production Design (Rusty Smith Leonard Spears)
  • Costume Design (Nadine Haders)
  • Makeup and Hairstyling (Remi Savva, Melanie Deforrest, Voni Hinkle, Haley Hinkle)
  • Sound Mixing (Jeffree Bloomer, Jonathan Wales)
  • Sound Editing (Trevor Gates)
  • Visual Effects (David Lebensfeld, Grant Miller, Matthew Poliquin, Kieley Culbertson)
  • Original Score (Michael Abels)

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – Film Rise

Film Rise provided us with a copy of Marjorie Prime, which was just nominated for a Spirit Award.

Marjorie Prime

Oscar Chances: Unknown: The big question here is if Lois Smith has a shot at an Oscar nomination as the film otherwise doesn’t have a shot. The Spirit Award nomination is a good start, but there’s a lot of competition, even from the slate of fellow Spirit Award nominees.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Supporting Actor (Jon Hamm, Tim Robbins)
  • Supporting Actress (Geena Davis, Lois Smith)

Precursor: 33rd Spirit Awards Nominations (2017)

As expected, the top nominee for this year’s Spirit Awards was Call Me By Your Name, which picked up six nominations. The most notable misses for the film were Michael Stuhlbarg in Supporting Actor and the screenplay itself. It is still the likely winner, but don’t yet count out second place on the nominations board, Get Out. That film didn’t land as many acting nominations as Call Me did, but it did get the crucial screenwriting nomination.

Other items of note: The Florida Project did decently, but expected Oscar nominee Willem Dafoe was a no-show. Mudbound nabbed the ensemble award, but was shut out everywhere else. The Disaster Artist only managed one nomination for James Franco’s performance. Most of the other major Oscar contenders were nominated today.

Award Tallies

(6) Call Me By Your Name
(5) Get Out, Good Time
(4) Lady Bird, The Rider
(3) Columbus, I, Tonya, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

The Awards


Precursor: 29th PGA Documentary Nominations (2017)

The Producers Guild of America has revealed their nominees for Best Documentary. This year, they’ve announced seven nominees, two more than is usual. Whether that’s because past years have seen roughly 2, sometimes 3 of their nominees go on to Oscar nominations, they are hoping to increase their odds. With this list, though, I doubt that’s going to happen. Right now, Jane is the only film to earn a lot of early Oscar buzz. Cries from Syria sounds like something the Academy would recognize and a documentary about Ben Bradlee could also be catnip considering The Post is sure to be a major Oscar contender and Tom Hanks is taking on the role of Bradlee, who also featured prominently Best Picture winner Spotlight and Best Picture nominee All the President’s Men, in which Jason Robards won his first Oscar as Bradlee.

The Nominations

Best Documentary

Chasing Coral
City of Ghosts
Cries from Syria
Earth: One Amazing Day
Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower
The Newspaperman: The Life and Times of Ben Bradlee

Producers Guild Data

Year Founded: 1950 (Film)/1957 (TV)/1962 (Unified)
First Awards: 1989 (29)

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – A24

A24 has submitted for our consideration two films, Good Time and The Killing of a Sacred Deer.

Good Time

Oscar Chances: Unlikely: While the film got good reviews, it has never appeared to be much of an Oscar contender. Some might have suggested Robert Pattinson for consideration, but I doubt even that’s a possibility at this juncture.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Paris Kassidokostas-Latsis, Terry Dougas, Oscar Boyson, Sebastian Bear-McClard)
  • Director (Josh & Benny Safdie)
  • Original Screenplay (Ronald Bronstein, Josh Safdie)
  • Actor (Robert Pattinson)
  • Supporting Actor (Benny Safdie, Buddy Duress)
  • Supporting Actress (Jennifer Jason Leigh, Taliah Webster)
  • Cinematography (Sean Price Williams)
  • Production Design (Sam Lisenco, Audrey Turner)
  • Film Editing (Benny Safdie, Ronald Bronstein)
  • Costume Design (Miyako Bellizzi, Mordechai Rubinstein)
  • Original Score (Oneohtrix Point Never)
  • Original Song (“The Pure and the Damned” – Oneohtrix Point Never)
  • Sound Mixing (Evan Mangiamele)
  • Sound Editing (Patrick Southern, Benny Safdie, Evan Mangiamele)
  • Makeup and Hairstlying (Anouck Sullivan, Vickie Vidov)
  • Visual Effects (Adam Teninbaum)


90th Oscars: The Precursors Are Coming

Oscar Season is just around the corner (Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017 to be specific), with the first nominations of the year. Throughout the next four months, we’ll be posting almost daily updates with precursor winners and nominees from across all organizations, critics groups, and guilds. Below is a calendar of events that should help you identify when your favorite precursor announces. Please note that several dates are marked as “Unconfirmed.” These estimates are conjecture based on the announcement window from last year. It’s reasonable to believe that the vast majority of the estimated dates will be accurate; however, as each year proves, date ranges are always subject to change.

Before we get to the calendar, let’s look at the various organizations celebrating milestone anniversaries this year. Note that some of these organizations existed prior to giving out awards. We are highlighting their anniversaries based on the first year awards were given out.

75 Years

Golden Globe Awards

70 Years

Directors Guild of America
Writers Guild of America

65 Years

Motion Picture Sound Editors

60 Years

Grammy Awards

30 Years

Chicago Film Critics

25 Years

Cinema Audio Society
Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics

20 Years

Costume Designers Guild


90th Oscars: Screener Watch – GKids

The films GKids is pushing for Animated Feature this year include a broad array of titles.

The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I don’t have enough information about this film to know if it should be competing or not. So far, it doesn’t sound like the kind of film that does.

Bird Boy

Oscar Chances: Unknown: There isn’t enough info about this film to know its chances, but it’s not likely to be a contender.

The Breadwinner

Oscar Chances: Likely: This is a title that has been on everyone’s (or almost everyone’s) lists for months. It’s got the critical acclaim to be a major contender for a nomination. The only problem is that the Animated Feature category has been opened up to general membership voting, which means smaller films will struggle to find their audience.

The Girl Without Hands

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I’ve heard a little about this film and if anyone can sell it to Oscar voters, it’s GKids, but there isn’t a lot of wiggle room for this to make it in alongside The Breadwinner.

Mary and the Witch’s Flower

Oscar Chances: Unknown: This is another title that hasn’t quite come up in a lot of conversations and as such probably isn’t much of a contender.

My Entire High School Is Sinking Into the Sea

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I saw the trailer for this months ago and it didn’t really impress then and while the title is clever and the animation solid, it doesn’t seem like the kind of film Academy voters typically recognize.

Napping Princess

Oscar Chances: Unknown: A major Japanese export that has received a solid response and could be in play for a nomination…if there were much room for it.

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – Netflix 2

In the second care package from Netflix, another of their attempts to weed their way into Oscar’s good graces.


Oscar Chances: Uncertain: Fist, let’s just say that Netflix’s inability to read the room is palpable. Not only have they received consistent criticism for their terrible release strategies (namely, they aren’t going to play the traditional release window game), but their screener bears all the marks of a marketing team that doesn’t quite know their audience. The minutia may not be noticeable to others, but members of individual branches might bristle at small things. Take their listing of seven individuals for Best Picture. The Academy only permits four and most studios realize that. They may try to get more nominated, but seven is well beyond what they will typically accept. Second is the title of Hair & Makeup. Most Oscar campaigners try to go with the actual title of the category, Makeup & Hairstyling. These two details are small and won’t sink the film’s chances, but they are noticeable. Further, the lack of traditional release patterns is one of the reason they failed to get Idris Elba nominated for Beasts of No Nation.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Sally Joe Effenson, Cassian Elwes, Carl Effenson, Charles D. King, Kim Roth, Christopher Lemole, Tim Zajaros)
  • Director (Dee Rees)
  • Supporting Actor (Jonathan Banks, Jason Clarke, Garrette Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Rob Morgan)
  • Supporting Actress (Mary J. Blige, Carey Mulligan)
  • Acting Ensemble (Jonathan Banks, Mary J. Blige, Jason Clarke, Garrett Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Rob Morgan, Carey Mulligan)
  • Cinematography (Rachel Morrison)
  • Score (Tamar-kali)
  • Adapted Screenplay (Virgil Williams, Dee Rees)
  • Production Design (David J. Bomba)
  • Editing (Mako Kamitsuna)
  • Costume Design (Michael T. Boyd)
  • Hair & Makeup (Angela S. Wells)
  • Song (“Mighty River” – Mary J. Blige, Raphael Saadiq, Taura Stinson)

90th Oscars: Screener Watch – Bleecker Street

Bleecker Street isn’t a major Oscar player so far, though they certainly keep trying.


Oscar Chances: Unlikely: Mediocre reviews have pushed this film into the back of the Oscar pack. While Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy could still compete, their hills are incredibly steep.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Jonathan Cavendish)
  • Director (Andy Serkis)
  • Original Screenplay (William Nicholson)
  • Actor (Andrew Garfield)
  • Supporting Actress (Claire Foy)
  • Supporting Actor (Hugh Bonneville, Tom Hollander)
  • Cinematography (Robert Richardson)
  • Film Editing (Masahiro Hirakubo)
  • Production Design (James Merifield, Sara Wan)
  • Original Score (Nitin Sawhney)
  • Sound Mixing (Danny Hambrook, Nigel Squibbs)
  • Costume Design (Charlotte Walter)
  • Sound Editing (Becki Ponting, Ian Wilson)
  • Makeup & Hairstyling (Jan Sewell)
  • Visual Effects (Ron Ames)


90th Oscars: Screener Watch – National Geographic

This is the first time I’ve seen anything from National Geographic, so who knows how they’ll do.


Oscar Chances: Unknown: The reviews have been fairly strong for this and if it comes out of precursor season as a major winner, it could be a strong candidate for an Oscar nomination.
Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Documentary Feature

90th Oscars: Screener Watch

And finally, the annual Magnolia/Magnet bundle. It’s a bit thinner this year, but still quite bountiful. There are nine titles, though their insert says Lucky should be among them, it wasn’t. We might receive it later. Magnolia/Magnet seldom includes recommended categories, though they’ve done so on three films, one of which is the aforementioned Lucky.

Alive and Kicking

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I don’t really have a grasp on the Documentary Feature category, so I have no comments here.

Blade of the Immortal

Oscar Chances: None: It’s the kind of martial arts film that never makes it near the Oscars.

The Final Year

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I don’t really have a grasp on the Documentary Feature category, so I have no comments here.

In the Fade

Oscar Chances: Possible: The film really hasn’t been on Oscar’s radar. They have specified that the film is a Best Foreign Language Film submission for Germany, which ostensibly makes it a contender. They’ve also recommended Diane Kruger for Best Actress, an unlikely proposition.


Oscar Chances: Unlikely: They have no recommended categories and I can’t recall this film being in any conversations for anything this year.

My Scientology Movie

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I don’t really have a grasp on the Documentary Feature category, so I have no comments here.

School Life

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I don’t really have a grasp on the Documentary Feature category, so I have no comments here.

The Square

Oscar Chances: Possible: They have specified Best Screenplay only and have indicated it’s Sweden’s entry for Best Foreign Language Film. Both are possibilities, though Foreign Language Film is its best shot.

Whose Streets?

Oscar Chances: Unknown: I don’t really have a grasp on the Documentary Feature category, so I have no comments here.

90th Oscars: Screener Watch

Next up, we have the package from The Orchard, which includes two contenders, two non-contenders, and a likely pariah.

BPM (Beats Per Minute)

Oscar Chances: Excellent: It is not only an almost assured Best Foreign Language Film nominee, it could end up winning the whole thing, making it France’s first win in the category since Indochine in 1992, 25 long years ago.

Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Foreign Language Film


90th Oscars: Screener Watch

Fox Searchlight is first up. They have submitted a non-contender and a film that was once thought to be a pretty major contender, but has been mostly forgotten in recent weeks.

Battle of the Sexes

Oscar Chances: Decent: Emma Stone is the primary contender for this film. While Costume Design and Production Design are possibilities, as is Original Song, the only other place it really has a shot is in Supporting Actor for Steve Carell. When he was running for Best Actor, he felt like an also-ran. Placing him in support might boost his chances.

Campaign-Proposed Categories

  • Picture (Christian Colson, Danny Boyle, Robert Graf)
  • Director (Valerie Faris, Jonathan Dayton)
  • Original Screenplay (Simon Beaufoy)
  • Actress (Emma Stone)
  • Supporting Actor (Steve Carell, Bill Pullman, Alan Cumming, Austin Stowell)
  • Supporting Actress (Andrea Riseborough, Sarah Silverman, Elisabeth Shue, Natalie Morales)
  • Film Editing (Pamela Martin)
  • Cinematography (Linus Sandgren)
  • Production Design (Judy Becker, Matthew Flood Ferguson)
  • Costume Design (Mary Zophres)
  • Sound Mixing (Ron Bartlett, D.M. Hemphill, Ai-Ling Lee, Lisa Pinero)
  • Sound Editing (Ai-Ling Lee, Mildred Iatrou Morgan)
  • Makeup and Hairstyling (Frida S. Aradottir, Torsten Witte)
  • Original Score (Nicholas Britell)
  • Original Song (“If I Dare” – Sara Bareilles, Nicholas Britell)


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