FEINBERG & FRIENDS, Ep. 5: Scott & The Film Experience's Nat Rogers on the Awards Race (Audio)

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Stitches - H 2011
Sony Pictures

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Stitches - H 2011

I'm very pleased to bring you the fifth episode of "Feinberg & Friends," a podcast about the awards race that airs on The Race every week, usually on Tuesdays.

Each episode features a discussion between me and a different guest -- a film blogger, critic or journalist of some other variation -- about 10 different awards-related topics (which we list in the text accompanying the audio so that you know exactly what you're signing up for) and runs for approximately 30 minutes (so that if one topic is not of particular interest to you it will only be about three minutes before we're on to the next one, which hopefully will be).

PHOTOS: Hollywood's New Leading Ladies

I was delighted that my friend Nathaniel Rogers, who owns and operates the Oscar blog The Film Experience, agreed to join me for this episode. I really enjoyed our chat, during which we tackled the following 10 questions...

1. Based on everything that we know, what is out front in the best picture race?

2. Nat sees more of the entries for best foreign language film than just about anyone, which begs the question: which of this year's 63 submissions are most likely to make the Academy's shortlist?

3. Is The Ides of March an awards contender or pretender?

4. In each of the past three years, one film has produced two nominees for best supporting actress -- Doubt (2008), Up in the Air (2009), and The Fighter (2010). Can The Descendants, which features strong work from both Shailene Woodley and Judy Greer, make it four in a row?

5. Sony Pictures Classics announced this week that it plans to campaign for Keira Knightley (A Dangerous Method) in lead and for all four stars of Carnage -- Jodie Foster, Kate Winslet, Christoph Waltz, and John C. Reilly -- in supporting. Are these smart moves?

6. The general consensus is that Midnight in Paris is on track to score a best picture nod. Few films do, however, without also scoring at least one acting nod. Which member of the Midnight ensemble has the best shot: Owen Wilson for best actor, Corey Stoll for best supporting actor, or Marion Cotillard for best supporting actress?

7. When young actresses go partially or fully nude in a film -- see Elizabeth Olsen (Martha Marcy May Marlene), Carey Mulligan (Shame), Rooney Mara (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn), etc. -- do they substantially help their chances with the Academy?

8. Which of the many veterans in the running for best actress this year -- Ellen Barkin (Another Happy Day), Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs), Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady), Tilda Swinton (We Need to Talk About Kevin), Michelle Yeoh (The Lady), etc. -- have the best shot at scoring a nod?

9. It's been an unusually eclectic and impressive year for costume work, with everything from traditional costume dramas like W.E (Oscar nominee Arianne Phillips) and Jane Eyre (Oscar winner Michael O'Connor) to the far less traditional Captain America (Oscar nominee Anna B. Sheppard) to The Artist (perennial Oscar snub-ee Mark Bridges) stirring up discussion. What films have the inside track on nods?

10. This year, a number of films that looked on paper like serious awards possibilities have gone down in flames upon being screened -- among them, The Beaver, One Day, W.E., and, last weekend, The Rum Diary. Which was the most surprising flop? And which of the last awards hopefuls that have yet to be widely screened for the American press -- The Adventures of Tintin, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, In the Land of Blood and Honey, J. Edgar, War Horse, We Bought a Zoo, and Young Adult -- is most at risk of joining them?

Give it a listen...