• The Hollywood Reporter on LinkedIn
  • Follow THR on Pinterest
JAN
9
2 YEARS

FEINBERG FORECAST: Scott's Final Picks for Thursday's 85th Academy Awards Nominations

THR's awards analyst believes the leaderboard will be topped by "Lincoln" (14), "Les Mis" (10), "Life of Pi" and "Skyfall" (8) and "Argo" and "Silver Linings" (6).

Daniel Day Lewis Lincoln Portrait - H 2012
Daniel Day-Lewis in "Lincoln"

On Thursday morning, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will put an end to months of speculation -- including plenty by me, as reflected in charts posted on this blog every weekend since September -- by announcing its nominees for the 85th Annual Academy Awards. That means that it is now time, for better or worse, for me to man up and lock in my final predictions of what/who those nominees will be.

I urge you to keep in mind that what follows is not necessarily what I feel should happen -- that can be better gleaned from my forthcoming top 10 list -- but rather what I think will happen, based on a full year of screenings (I’ve seen all of the likely nominees, many multiple times), observations (of critics, guilds and other awards-bestowers), and conversations (with pundits and voters).

PHOTOS: The 8 Studio Picks for Best Picture Oscar

Historically, I have done quite well when it comes to forecasting Oscar nominations -- for instance, I projected best picture noms for The Reader (2008), The Blind Side (2009) and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011) when virtually no one else did -- but you have to prove yourself anew each year, and I hope to do just that.

Regardless of how things pan out, thank you for taking the time to read what I have to say, and please consider sharing your own forecasts in the comments section below.

BEST PICTURE
Projected Nominees
1. Lincoln (DreamWorks, 11/9, PG-13, trailer)
AFI, IPA, PGA, DGA, SAG, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, ADG, ASC, CAS
2. Argo (Warner Bros., 10/12, R, trailer)
AFI, IPA, PGA, DGA, SAG, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, ADG
3. Zero Dark Thirty (Sony, 12/19, R, trailer)
NBR, NYFCC, BSFC, NYFCO, DCAC, AFI, IPA, PGA, DGA, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, ADG, CAS
4. Les Miserables (Universal, 12/25, PG-13, trailer)
AFI, IPA, PGA, DGA, SAG, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, ADG, ASC, CAS
5. Life of Pi (20th Century Fox, 11/21, PG, trailer)
AFI, IPA, PGA, DGA, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, ADG, ASC, VES
6. Silver Linings Playbook (The Weinstein Co., 11/21, R, trailer)
AFI, IPA, PGA, SAG, WGA, HFPA, BFCA, FI
7. Django Unchained (The Weinstein Co., 12/25, R, trailer)

AFI, PGA, HFPA, BFCA, ADG
8. Amour (Sony Pictures Classics, 12/19, PG-13, trailer)
LAFCA
9. Beasts of the Southern Wild (Fox Searchlight, 6/27, PG-13, trailer)
AFI, PGA, IPA, BFCA, FI
10. Moonrise Kingdom (Focus Features, 5/25, PG-13, trailer)
AFI, IFP, PGA, WGA, IPA, HFPA, BFCA, FI
Alternate Skyfall (Sony, 11/9, PG-13, trailer) IPA, PGA, ADG, ASC, CAS
Potential Surprise The Impossible (Summit, 12/21, PG-13, trailer) ADG
Shoulda Been a Contender Bernie (Millennium, 4/27, PG-13, trailer) IFP

BEST DIRECTOR
Projected Nominees
1. Steven Spielberg (Lincoln)
IPA, DGA, HFPA, BFCA
2. Ben Affleck (Argo)
IPA, DGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
3. Kathryn Bigelow (Zero Dark Thirty)
NBR, NYFCC, BSFC, NYFCO, DCAC, IPA, DGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
4. Ang Lee (Life of Pi)
DGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
5. Quentin Tarantino (Django Unchained)
BAFTA, HFPA
Alternate Tom Hooper (Les Miserables) DGA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Michael Haneke (Amour) BAFTA
Shoulda Been a Contender Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild) FI, IFP

BEST ACTOR
Projected Nominees
1. Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln)
NYFCC, BSFC, NYFCO, DCAC, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
2. Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook)
NBR, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA, FI
3. Hugh Jackman (Les Miserables)
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
4. John Hawkes (The Sessions)
HFPA, SAG, BFCA, FI
5. Denzel Washington (Flight)
IPA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
Alternate   Joaquin Phoenix (The Master)  LAFCA, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Jack Black (Bernie) HFPA, FI
Shoulda Been a Contender Richard Gere (Arbitrage) HFPA

BEST ACTRESS
Projected Nominees
1. Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook)
LAFCA, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA, FI
2. Marion Cotillard (Rust and Bone)
BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
3. Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty)
NBR, DCAC, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
4. Emmanuelle Riva (Amour)
LAFCA, BSFC, NYFCO, IPA, BAFTA, BFCA
5. Naomi Watts (The Impossible)
HFPA, SAG, BFCA
Alternate Helen Mirren (Hitchcock) BAFTA, HFPA, SAG
Potential Surprise Quvenzhane Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild) BFCA, IFP
Shoulda Been a Contender Emayatzy Corinealdi (Middle of Nowhere) IFP, FI

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Projected Nominees
1. Tommy Lee Jones (Lincoln)
NYFCO, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
2. Alan Arkin (Argo)
BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
3. Philip Seymour Hoffman (The Master)
DCAC, IPA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
4. Robert De Niro (Silver Linings Playbook)
IPA, SAG, BFCA
5. Javier Bardem (Skyfall)
IPA, BAFTA, SAG, BFCA
Alternate Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained) BAFTA, HFPA
Potential Surprise Matthew McConaughey (Magic Mike) NYFCC, BFCA, FI
Shoulda Been a Contender Dwight Henry (Beasts of the Southern Wild) LAFCA

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Projected Nominees
1. Anne Hathaway (Les Miserables)
NYFCO, IPA, DCAC, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
2. Sally Field (Lincoln)
NYFCC, BSFC, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA
3. Helen Hunt (The Sessions)
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, SAG, BFCA, FI
4. Amy Adams (The Master)
LAFCA, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
5. Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook)
Alternate Maggie Smith (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel) SAG
Potential Surprise Ann Dowd (Compliance) NBR, BFCA, FI
Shoulda Been a Contender Lea Seydoux (Sister)

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Projected Nominees
1. Lincoln (Tony Kushner)
NYFCC, BSFC, IPA, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
2. Argo (Chris Terrio)
LAFCA, IPA, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
3. Silver Linings Playbook (David O. Russell)
NBR, DCAC, IPA, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, FI
4. Life of Pi (David Magee)
IPA
, WGA, BAFTA, BFCA
5. Beasts of the Southern Wild (Lucy Alibar, Benh Zeitlin)
BAFTA
Alternate Perks of Being a Wallflower (Stephen Chbosky) WGA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Les Miserables (William Nicholson)
Shoulda Been a Contender The Dark Knight Rises (Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan)

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Projected Nominees
1. Django Unchained (Quentin Tarantino)
BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
2. Zero Dark Thirty (Mark Boal)
NYFCO, IPA, WGA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
3. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson)
IPA, WGA, BAFTA, BFCA
4. Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson)
IPA, WGA, BAFTA, BFCA, FI
5. Amour (Michael Haneke)
BAFTA
Alternate Flight (John Gatins) IPA, WGA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Looper (Rian Johnson) NBR, DCAC, WGA, BFCA
Shoulda Been a Contender Arbitrage (Nicholas Jarecki)

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
Projected Nominees
1. Brave (Pixar, 6/22, PG, trailer)
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, CAS
2. Frankenweenie (Disney, 10/5, PG, trailer)
NYFCC, LAFCA, BSFC, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, CAS
3. ParaNorman (Focus Features, 8/17, PG, trailer)
DCAC, BAFTA, BFCA
4. Wreck-It Ralph (Disney, 11/2, PG, trailer)
NBR, IPA, HFPA, BFCA, CAS
5. The Painting (GKIDS, TBA, TBA, trailer)
Alternate Rise of the Guardians (DreamWorks Animation, 11/21, PG, trailer) IPA, HFPA, BFCA, CAS
Potential Surprise Zarafa (GKIDS, TBA, TBA, trailer)
Shoulda Been a Contender Hotel Transylvania (Sony Animation, 9/28, PG, trailer) HFPA

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Projected Nominees
1. Searching for Sugar Man (Sony Pictures Classics, 7/27, PG-13, trailer)
NBR, IPA, WGA, BAFTA, BFCA, CEH
2. The Gatekeepers (Sony Pictures Classics, 12/13, PG-13, clip)
LAFCA, IPA
3. How to Survive a Plague (Sundance Selects, 9/21, TBA, trailer)
BSFC, IFP, FI
4. Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God (HBO Documentaries, TBA, TBA, trailer)
WGA
5. The Imposter (Indomina, 7/13, R, trailer)
BAFTA, BFCA, CEH
Alternate Detropia (Loki Films, 9/7, TBA, trailer) CEH, IFP
Potential Surprise Bully (The Weinstein Co., 3/30, PG-13, trailer) DCAC, BFCA
Shoulda Been a Contender Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (Sundance Selects, 7/27, R, trailer) IPA

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Projected Nominees
1. Austria, Amour
NBR, NYFCC, NYFCO, DCAC, IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA, FI
2. France, The Intouchables
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
3. Denmark, A Royal Affair
IPA, HFPA, BFCA
4. Switzerland, Sister
FI
5. Canada, War Witch
IPA, FI

Alternate Chile, No
Potential Surprise Norway, Kon-Tiki IPA, HFPA
Shoulda Been a Contender Romania, Beyond the Hills IPA

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Projected Nominees
1. Life of Pi
NYFCO, DCAC, IPA, ASC, BAFTA, BFCA
2. Lincoln
IPA, ASC, BAFTA, BFCA
3. Anna Karenina
IPA, ASC, BAFTA
4. Skyfall
LAFCA, IPA, ASC, BAFTA, BFCA
5. Les Miserables
BAFTA,
ASC, BFCA
Alternate The Master BSFC, IPA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Django Unchained
Shoulda Been a Contender
Beasts of the Southern Wild IPA, FI

BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Projected Nominees
1. Anna Karenina
IPA, BAFTA, BFCA
2. Les Miserables
IPA, BAFTA, BFCA
3. Lincoln BAFTA, BFCA
4. Snow White and the Huntsman
IPA, BAFTA
5. Mirror Mirror
Alternate The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey BFCA
Potential Surprise A Royal Affair IPA
Shoulda Been a Contender Django Unchained

BEST FILM EDITING
Projected Nominees
1. Zero Dark Thirty
LAFCA, IPA, BAFTA, BFCA
2. Argo
BAFTA, BFCA
3. Lincoln
BFCA
4. Life of Pi
BAFTA,
BFCA
5. Skyfall
BAFTA

Alternate Les Miserables IPA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Silver Linings Playbook IPA
Shoulda Been a Contender The Impossible

BEST MAKEUP & HAIRSTYLING
Projected Nominees
1. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
BAFTA, BFCA
2. Lincoln
BAFTA, BFCA
3. Les Miserables
BAFTA,
BFCA
Alternate Hitchcock BAFTA
Potential Surprise Men in Black 3
Shoulda Been a Contender Cloud Atlas

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
Projected Nominees
1. Lincoln (John Williams)
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
2. Life of Pi (Mychael Danna)
BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
3. The Master (Johnny Greenwood)
DCAC, IPA, BFCA
4. Anna Karenina (Dario Marianelli)
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA
5. Argo (Alexandre Desplat)
IPA, BAFTA, HFPA, BFCA
Alternate Skyfall (Thomas Newman) IPA, BAFTA
Potential Surprise Beasts of the Southern Wild (Dan Romer, Benh Zeitlin) LAFCA, DCAC, IPA
Shoulda Been a Contender Rise of the Guardians (Alexandre Desplat)

BEST ORIGINAL SONG
Projected Nominees
1. Skyfall ("Skyfall," performed by Adele) HFPA
2. Les Miserables ("Suddenly," performed by Hugh Jackman) HFPA
3. Stand Up Guys ("Not Running Anymore," performed by Jon Bon Jovi) HFPA
4. Snow White and the Huntsman ("Breath of Life," performed by Florence and the Machine)
5. Paul Williams: Still Alive ("Still Alive," performed by Paul Williams)
Alternate Rise of the Guardians ("Still Dream," performed by Renee Fleming)
Potential Surprise Django Unchained ("100 Black Coffins," performed by Jamie Foxx)
Shoulda Been a Contender Brave ("Learn Me Right," performed by Birdy with Mumford & Sons)

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
Projected Nominees
1. Anna Karenina
IPA, BAFTA, BFCA, ADG
2. Lincoln
IPA, BAFTA, BFCA, ADG
3. Les Miserables
IPA, BAFTA, BFCA, ADG
4. Life of Pi
BAFTA, BFCA, ADG
5. Skyfall
BAFTA, ADG

Alternate The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey BFCA, ADG
Potential Surprise Zero Dark Thirty ADG
Shoulda Been a Cotender Moonrise Kingdom

BEST SOUND EDITING
Projected Nominees
1. Skyfall
BAFTA
2. Les Miserables
IPA, BAFTA
3. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
BAFTA
4. Django Unchained
BAFTA
5. Lincoln
CAS
Alternate Zero Dark Thirty
Potential Surprise Life of Pi IPA, BAFTA

Shoulda Been a Cotender The Impossible

BEST SOUND MIXING
Projected Nominees
1. Skyfall
CAS, BAFTA
2. Les Miserables
IPA, CAS, BAFTA
3. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
CAS, BAFTA
4. Django Unchained
BAFTA
5. Lincoln
CAS
Alternate Zero Dark Thirty CAS
Potential Surprise Life of Pi IPA, BAFTA

Shoulda Been a Cotender Flight

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Projected Nominees
1. Life of Pi
IPA, VES, BAFTA, BFCA
2. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
VES, BAFTA, BFCA
3. The Avengers
VES, BAFTA, BFCA
4. Prometheus
IPA, BAFTA, VES
5. Skyfall
IPA
Alternate The Dark Knight Rises IPA, BAFTA, BFCA
Potential Surprise Cloud Atlas IPA, BFCA
Shoulda Been a Contender The Amazing Spider-Man

BEST ANIMATED SHORT
Projected Nominees
1. Paperman (Disney)
2. Combustible (Sunrise, Inc.)
3. The Eagleman Stag (Royal College of Art)
4. Tram (Sacrebleu Productions)
5. Adam and Dog (Lodge Films)
Alternate Head Over Heels (National Film and Television School)
Potential Surprise Maggie Simpson in 'The Longest Daycare' (Gracie Films)
Shoulda Been a Contender The Fall of the House of Usher (Melusine Productions, R&R Communications Inc., Les Armateurs, The Big Farm)

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT
Projected Nominees
1. The Education of Mohammad Hussein (Loki Films)
2. Paraiso (The Strangebird Company) CEH
3. Open Heart (Urban Landscapes Inc.)
4. Kings Point (Kings Point Documentary, Inc.)
5. Mondays at Racine (Cynthia Wade Productions)
Alternate Inocente (Shine Global, Inc.)
Potential Surprise The Perfect Fit (SDI Productions Ltd.)
Shoulda Been a Contender Redemption (Downtown Docs)

BEST LIVE-ACTION SHORT
No information available at this time.

* * *

KEY

Contenders' names are followed, when appropriate, by acronyms of the major awards groups (see below) that have already named them winners (in orange) or nominees (in purple). Some nominations are still pending (they appear in italics).

ACE = 63rd Eddie Awards (TBA)

ADG = 17th Art Directors Guild Awards (Feb. 2, 2013)

AFI = 13th American Film Institute Awards (TBA)

ASC = 27th American Society of Cinematographers Awards (TBA)

BAFTA = 66th British Academy Film Awards (TBA)

BFCA = 18th Critics' Choice Awards (Jan. 10, 2013)

BSFC = 33rd Boston Society of Film Critics Awards (Dec. 9, 2012)

CAS = 49th Cinema Audio Society Awards (TBA)

CDG = 15th Costume Design Guild Awards (TBA)

CEH = 6th Cinema Eye Honors (Jan. 9, 2013)

DCAC = 11th Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Awards (Dec. 10, 2012)

DGA = 65th Directors Guild of America Awards (TBA)

FI = 26th Independent Spirit Awards

HFPA = 70th Golden Globe Awards (TBA)

IAFA = 40th Annie Awards (TBA)

IFP = 22nd Gotham Independent Film Awards (Nov. 26, 2012)

IPA = 17th Satellite Awards (Dec. 16, 2012)

LAFCA = 38th Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards (TBA)

MPSE = 60th Golden Reel Awards (TBA)

NBR = 84th National Board of Review Awards (TBA)

NSFC = 47th National Society of Film Critics Awards (TBA)

NYFCC = 78th New York Film Critics Circle Awards (TBA)

NYFCO = 12th New York Film Critics Online Awards (Dec. 9, 2012)

PGA = 24th Producers Guild of America Awards (Jan. 26, 2013)

SAG = 19th Screen Actors Guild Awards (Jan. 27, 2013)

USC = 25th USC Scripter Awards (TBA)

VES = 11th Visual Effects Society Awards (Feb. 5, 2013)

WGA = 65th Writers Guild of America Awards (Feb. 17, 2013)

* * *

ABOUT SCOTT FEINBERG AND THE "FEINBERG FORECAST"

Scott Feinberg is one of the film industry's most trusted awards analysts and has one of the world's best track records at forecasting the Oscars, something that he has been doing since 2001. His best showings came in 2006 (when he correctly called 21 of 24 winners) and 2004 (when he correctly called 20 of 24 winners). He was the only pundit to project long-shot best picture nominations for The Reader (2008), The Blind Side (2009) and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011).

Scott factors into his projections personal impressions (based on advance screenings at festivals or elsewhere), publicly available information (release dates, genres, talent rosters and teasers/trailers often offer valuable clues), historical considerations (comparing and contrasting how other films with similar pedigrees have resonated with the Academy), precursor awards (some awards groups have better track records than others of correlating with the Academy) and regular conversations with industry insiders (including fellow members of the press, awards strategists, filmmakers and voters).