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Oscars 2020 Predictions

As the awards season comes to a close, the time has come to predict the year’s biggest night in Hollywood. Here’s a look at my picks and predictions for the 92nd Academy Awards.

BEST PICTURE

Will Win: 1917

Could Win: Parasite

Should Win: Parasite

Easily the hardest category to predict thanks to the complicated preferential ballot, 1917 has seemingly emerged as a traditional frontrunner at almost every ceremony it shows up. Still, the cinephile in me can’t stop thinking about how it doesn’t feel right. Keep an eye on Parasite, which could steal it from the Mendes film, or even a bigger surprise with Jojo Rabbit or Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. I’m rooting for Parasite.

BEST DIRECTOR

Will Win: Sam Mendes (1917)

Could Win: Bong Joon Ho (Parasite)

Should Win: Bong Joon Ho

What at first looked like the hardest category to predict has quickly become the easiest, with Sam Mendes sweeping at every show with barely any losses. It’s in part why we could see a split with director and picture like it usually happens in modern Oscar history. If anyone is going to take it from him, it could be Bong Joon Ho for his impeccable work with Parasite.

BEST ACTOR

Will Win: Joaquin Phoenix (Joker)

Could Win: Adam Driver (Marriage Story)

Should Win: Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin has this one in the bag. His performance is undeniably incredible, and starring in the highest-grossing film nominated this year (by far) doesn’t hurt. It just feels like his time. If any shocking win happens in this category, it will be Driver taking it for his jaw-dropping turn in Marriage Story.

BEST ACTRESS

Will Win: Renée Zellweger (Judy)

Could Win: Scarlett Johansson (Marriage Story)

Should Win: Saoirse Ronan (Little Women)

As Phoenix, Zellweger has earned any possible win heading into the ceremony, all but securing her award. It’s pretty hard to see anyone else take it. Still, personally, I would be delighted by a Johansson or Ronan win. I’m not holding my breath, though.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Will Win: Laura Dern (Marriage Story)

Could Win: Florence Pugh (Little Women)

Should Win: Margot Robbie (Bombshell)

As it has become clear this year, the acting categories have never been safer to predict than this year. This category is no different. With no Jennifer Lopez to challenge her, look for Dern to take her first Oscar this year.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Will Win: Brad Pitt (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood)

Could Win: Joe Pesci (The Irishman)

Should Win: Tom Hanks (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

It seemed for a fleeting moment that Pesci could take it. Still, it has become clear at this point that it will be a nearly impossible task to take down Pitt here, and will probably be the most significant award the Tarantino epic takes. I would just have hoped to see Hanks get some more attention for his incredible performance as Mr. Rogers.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Will Win: Bong Joon Ho (Parasite)

Could Win: Quentin Tarantino (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood)

Should Win: Noah Baumbach (Marriage Story)

Academy members might feel inclined to award Tarantino yet another Oscar this year for writing. Still, Parasite has quickly emerged as a powerful contender against the former. I would be okay with either Parasite or Marriage Story winning. Still, I feel Baumbach is more deserving just for that gut-wrenching fight scene with Nicole and Charlie. 

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Will Win: Taika Waititi (Jojo Rabbit)

Could Win: Greta Gerwig (Little Women)

Should Win: Greta Gerwig (Little Women)

Waititi did indeed craft an impeccably beautiful script with seamless tonal changes. Still, I can’t deny that any win other than Gerwig for her fantastic work with Little Women is a tragedy. She’s still in contention, although it’s harder to see a victory for her after both a WGA and BAFTA win for Waititi. 

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Will Win: 1917

Could Win: Joker

Should Win: 1917

There’s no question about it: Roger Deakins’ work in 1917, with its long takes and epic shots, has all but guaranteed this win.

BEST INTERNATIONAL FILM

Will Win: Parasite

Could Win: Pain and Glory

Should Win: Parasite 

Another category too easy to predict. There’s just no way Parasite doesn’t take this one. 

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

Will Win: Toy Story 4

Could Win: Klaus

Should Win: Klaus

Could this be the second year in a row where Disney goes empty-handed in this category? It could be possible, and to the horror of many, it could be none other than Netflix who takes it from them with two (!) films in contention in the category.

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

Will Win: American Factory

Could Win: The Cave

Should Win: The Edge of Democracy

BEST SCORE

Will Win: Joker

Could Win: 1917

Should Win: Little Women

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

Will Win: “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” (Rocketman)

Could Win: Into the Unknown (Frozen 2)

Should Win: “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” (Rocketman)

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

Will Win: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Could Win: 1917

Should Win: Parasite

BEST EDITING

Will Win: Parasite

Could Win: Ford v Ferrari

Should Win: Parasite

BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

Will Win: Bombshell

Could Win: Joker

Should Win: Bombshell

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Will Win: Little Women

Could Win: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Should Win: Little Women

BEST SOUND EDITING

Will Win: 1917

Could Win: Ford v Ferrari

BEST SOUND MIXING

Will Win: Ford v Ferrari

Could Win: 1917

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Will Win: 1917

Could Win: Avengers: Endgame

Should Win: 1917

BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM

Will Win: Hair Love

Could Win: Kitbull

BEST LIVE-ACTION SHORT FILM

Will Win: Brotherhood

Could Win: The Neighbors’ Window

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT

Will Win: Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone

Could Win: St. Louis Superman

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