Category: Precursors

Precursor: 20th Satellite Awards (2015)

Having announced fairly early in the process, this group’s nominations hardly reflected the Academy’s even with more than five nominees in each category. Still, there were some very interesting choices here that are outside of the mainstream such as Christian Bale for Best Supporting Actor and Saoirse Ronan for Actress. Neither of these have been players in the big events. Below the line, a similar result occurs when you look at it. What’s even more strange is that although Spotlight was the big winner, picking up a total of four awards (3 if you don’t count the Ensemble non-competitive award), no other film scored more than one award. Was this truly the case or was there a concerted effort to reward everything?

Award Tallies

(4) Spotlight

The Awards


Precursor: 29th USC Scripter Awards (2015)

With seven of eight past winners matching the Oscars, USC’s award to The Big Short, paired with its WGA win, pretty much secures the film its Oscar. Things could still change as that one instance of failed selection was Up in the Air, Jason Reitman’s Best Picture contender, that ended up losing to Precious under the exact same circumstances in 2009. This could favor Brooklyn or Room at the Oscars.

The Awards

Best Adapted Screenplay

The Big Short (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)

USC Scripter Data

Year Founded: 1988
First Awards: 1987 (29)

Precursor: 7th Make-Up Artists Guild Awards (2015)

With little competition, Mad Max: Fury Road proved the dominant winner at this year’s Make-Up Artists and Hair Stylists Guild awards, taking two of its three awards, losing the third to Cinderella. None of these competitions was against The Revenant, so it’s possible that this doesn’t signify much, but the Oscar is certainly closer to Mad Max‘s position than any other films’.

Award Tallies

(2) Mad Max: Fury Road

The Awards

Best Period and/or Character Make-up

Mad Max: Fury Road (Wesley, Tripp, Thomas)

Best Period and/or Character Hair Styling

Cinderella (Tripp, RU:Thomas)

Best Special Make-up Effects

Mad Max: Fury Road (Wesley, Thomas, RU:Tripp)

Best Contemporary Make-up

Furious 7 (RU:Thomas)

Best Contemporary Hair Styling

Pitch Perfect 2

Make-Up and Hair Stylists Guild Data

Year Founded: 1937
First Awards: 1999 (7)

Precursor: 23rd Cinema Audio Society Awards (2015)

After BAFTA, The Revenant winning this award comes as no real surprise. It does hurt Mad Max: Fury Road‘s chances at the Oscars and positions The Revenant as a primary contender for Best Picture.

The Awards

Best Sound Mixing – Live Action

The Revenant (Peter, RU:Wesley, RU:Thomas)

Best Sound Mixing – Animated

Inside Out (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)

Cinema Audio Society Data

Year Founded: 1964
First Awards: 1993 (23)

Oscar Preview: Precursor Winners & Losers, Week 12

As the precursor awards continue unabated until Oscar night, I’m going to be providing a weekly update highlighting the films that have won and lost momentum through the precursor awards (and in some cases other outside influences).

With the British Academy of Film & Television Arts giving us a glimpse at the potential Oscar outcomes as well as influential guild awards point towards other winners, this was an impactful week on the Oscar race.

But, before we get into this week’s winners and losers, let’s take a look at what’s coming up this week:

Week 13

Sat. 20 – Audio Society (Awards) (Official)
Sat. 20 – Make-Up Artists Guild (Awards) (Official)
Sat. 20 – USC Scripter (Awards) (Official)

Big Winners


Precursor: 58th Grammy Awards Awards(2015)

My Grammy Awards post seems to have disappeared, so here it is, partially-reconstructed. Essentially, these awards tell us nothing as other than Amy for Best Music Film, all the other winners are 2014 releases.

The Nominations

Best Music Film

Amy (Wesley, Peter, Thomas)

Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media

Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me (Thomas)

Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media

Birdman (RU:Wesley, RU:Peter)

Best Song Written for Visual Media

Glory – Selma (Wesley, Tripp, Thomas, RU:Peter)

Grammy Awards Data

Year Founded: 1957
First Awards: 1958 (58)

Precursor: 30th American Society of Cinematographers Awards (2015)

Will Emmanuel Lubezki become the default choice every year from now until the end of time? It’s sure beginning to look that way.

The Awards

Best Cinematography

The Revenant (Wesley, Tripp, Thomas)

American Society of Cinematographers Data

Year Founded: 1919
First Awards: 1986 (29)

Precursor: 57th British Academy Awards (2015)

The two films with the most Oscar nominations came out on top at this year’s BAFTA Awards with no other film pulling in more than one award. Many of the frontrunners continued while a few other pieces fell into place. It’s looking increasingly likely that The Revenant will be taking the Oscar for Best Picture with Alejandro G. Inarritu becoming the first director in Oscar history to net two consecutive Best Picture winners for his films.

While it’s possible that the more distinctly American Spotlight could still triumph, it needed not to lose here. DiCaprio and Larson remain solid bets with the Oscars while Mark Rylance picked up his first major endorsement of the season, which could help bolster his flagging chances against Sylvester Stallone. The category that needs the most examination is Best Supporting Actress. With the Golden Globe and now the BAFTA under her belt, Kate Winslet has suddenly become a bigger competitor for an Oscar victory. While it would be her second, it was unlike anything she’s done before, which might impress Oscar voters a lot.

Also of note is that many below-the-line categories went as expected with Mad Max: Fury Road dominating the craft awards, even picking up a surprise Best Costume Design citation while The Revenant picked up the expected Best Cinematography win along with a less-expected Best Sound win. I wouldn’t be too shocked if this grouping of winners largely showed up at the Oscars barring several strong exceptions.

Award Tallies

(5) The Revenant
(4) Mad Max: Fury Road

The Awards


Precursor: 20th Online Film & Television Awards (2015)

The Online Film & Television Association celebrated its twenty years with its awards for 2015. Introducing the ranked Best Picture list and runners-up, the organization continues to show it isn’t interested in just predicting the Oscars. Mad Max: Fury Road, which isn’t on anyone’s radar as being a Best Picture frontrunner dominated these awards with 9 wins including Best Picture and Best Director. The acting categories were split between currently-projected Oscar winners and those who aren’t being predicted: Leonardo DiCaprio and Brie Larson versus Tom Hardy and Jennifer Jason Leigh. That isn’t to say their awards couldn’t become prophetic, but it seems unlikely.

Award Tallies

(9) Mad Max: Fury Road
(4) Room
(3) The Revenant

The Awards


Precursor: 68th Writers Guild of America (2015)

Is this the beginning of a big weekend for Spotlight or this its final victory. We’ll know at BAFTA tomorrow. Until then, the expected winners triumphed in all three categories.

The Awards

Best Original Screenplay

Spotlight (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)

Best Adapted Screenplay

The Big Short (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)

Documentary Screenplay

Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief (Wesley, Peter, Tripp, Thomas)

Writers Guild of America Data

Year Founded: 1933
First Awards: 1948 (68)

Oscar Preview: Precursor Winners & Losers, Week 11

As the precursor awards continue unabated until Oscar night, I’m going to be providing a weekly update highlighting the films that have won and lost momentum through the precursor awards (and in some cases other outside influences).

There’s only one major group left to give out prizes and I’m not talking about the uncharacteristic Writers Guild of America. The British Academy of Film & Television Arts (BAFTA) will be announcing its winners next weekend, which means we might have a few prominent Oscar races settled. The Writers Guild also hands out prizes next weekend as do the Satellite Awards and the Online Film & Television Association.

But, before we get into this week’s winners and losers, let’s take a look at what’s coming up this week:

Week 12

Fri. 12 – Academy Awards Voting Begins (Oscars) (Official)
Sat. 13 – Sci-Tech Awards (Oscars) (Official)
Sat. 13 – Writers Guild (Awards) (Official)
Sun. 14 – British Academy (Awards) (Official)
Sun. 14 – Cinematographers (Awards) (Official)
Sun. 14 – Online Film & TV Association (Awards) (Official)
Sun. 14 – Satellites (Awards) (Unconfirmed)
Mon. 15 – Grammy Awards (Awards) (Official)

Big Winners


Precursor: 68th Directors Guild Awards (2015)

It looks like Mad Max: Fury Road‘s road to the Oscars is terminated. Without DGA, it would be impossible for him to win Best Director or even Best Picture. That also means that The Big Short‘s shot at Best Picture is gone as well. Only Spotlight, a film that might typically win without a Best Director Oscar, can still take the Best Picture Oscar. However, this could also be a sign that The Revenant, which had been laying dormant for awhile, will be emerging as a real threat for Best Picture. It needs many more tech precursors to make that claim, though. This is the also the first time in DGA history where a director has won the award consecutively, which could mean support for Inarritu is incredibly high.

The Awards

Best Director

Alejandro G. Inarritu – The Revenant (RU:Wesley)

Best First Feature

Alex Garland – Ex Machina (Wesley, RU:Peter, RU:Thomas)

Best Documentary Director

Matthew Heineman – Cartel Land

Directors Guild of America Data

Year Founded: 1936
First Awards: 1948 (68)

Precursor: 24th Annie Awards (2015)

Losing only one category in which it was nominated, Inside Out ties five films for most honored film at the Annie Awards with ten awards (the others who share this honor are Mulan, The Incredibles, Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, How to Train Your Dragon and Kung Fu Panda). It’s clear the film is beloved and if you need further proof that it was the frontrunner for the Oscar, this was your proof.

Award Tallies

(10) Inside Out
(1) Boy and the World, The Good Dinosaur, He Named Me Malala, Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, The Revenant, World of Tomorrow

The Awards


Precursor: 14th Visual Effects Society Awards (2015)

As expected, Star Wars: The Force Awakens had a huge night. After a longstanding history in the visual effects community of being the industry leader in visual effects, the Star Wars franchise seemed like the perfect honoree here. This also bolsters its chances of winning the Oscar, something that some had thought might be shifting towards Mad Max: Fury Road. In spite of its precursor wins, Mad Max isn’t the kind of film that typically wins the Oscar and its single victory here, for its least remarkable and least important scene shows that the level of industry support isn’t high and a highly visible loss makes it look like an also-ran to voters.

Award Tallies

(4) Star Wars: The Force Awakens
(3) The Good Dinosaur, The Revenant

The Awards


Oscar Preview: Precursor Winners & Losers, Week 10

As the precursor awards continue unabated until Oscar night, I’m going to be providing a weekly update highlighting the films that have won and lost momentum through the precursor awards (and in some cases other outside influences).

While this past week was the calm before the storm, the first showers are about to fall before the deluge of precursors in the subsequent three weeks. However, this week features one of the most important prizes anyone is looking forward to this season. The DGA will either push forward The Big Short juggernaut, give the slow and steady climb of Spotlight a boost, or anoint another film the victor and possibly set up the most suspenseful Best Picture race in some years.

But, before we get into this week’s winners and losers, let’s take a look at what’s coming up this week:

Week 11

Tue. 02 – Visual Effects Society (Awards) (Official)
Sat. 06 – Annie Awards (Awards) (Official)
Sat. 06 – Directors Guild (Awards) (Official)
Mon. 08 – Nominees Lunch (Oscars) (Official)

Big Winners


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