Monday, February 16, 2009
Oscar Predictions: Nate Silver
Nate Silver, who writes for New York magazine, predicted 100% correctly at last years Oscars has come out with his predictions for who will win on Oscar night, and by how much. And he has explained why. These could very well be 100% on this year too. Interesting!! ONLY 5 MORE DAYS! Here is Mr. Silver's choices and commentary:
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Last year, Javier Bardem’s sadistic killer in No Country for Old Men swept all the awards. This year, it’s The Dark Knight’s Heath Ledger. Usually we’d need to account for a small chance of an upset; the Academy does lean toward the lighthearted in this category (think Alan Arkin in Little Miss Sunshine). But given Ledger’s untimely death, he’s a lock.
HEATH LEDGER - 89% chance he will win
JOSH BROLIN - 5% chance
PHILLIP SEYMORE HOFFMAN - 4.4% chance
MICHAEL SHANNON - 3.6%
ROBERT DOWNEY JR - 1.2%
winner ............. Heath Ledger for The Dark Knight
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Most of the major awards in the Supporting Actress category have been won by Kate Winslet for The Reader—a role the Academy misguidedly considers a lead. That’s nice for Winslet, not so nice for our computer. Penélope Cruz, who won the bafta for her role in Vicky Cristina Barcelona, would seem the logical default. But computer sez: Benjamin Button’s Taraji P. Henson! Button, which looks like a shutout everywhere else, is the only Best Picture nominee with a Supporting Actress nod, and Best Pic nominees tend to have an edge in the other categories.
TARAJI P. HESON - 51% chance to win
PENELOPE CRUZ - 24.6%
VIOLA DAVIS - 11.6%
MARISA TOMEI - 11.6%
AMY ADAMS - 1.2%
winner .................... Taraji P Henson for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Sean Penn and Mickey Rourke have split the two awards that traditionally predict success in this category, with Penn winning Screen Actors Guild and Rourke the Golden Globe. But Rourke has an additional advantage: If an actor, like Penn, has been nominated several times without nabbing a statue, his odds of winning increase. Once he does win, odds go way down. Penn won Best Actor five years ago for Mystic River.
MICKEY ROURKE - 71.9% chance to win
SEAN PENN - 19.0%
BRAD PITT - 5.9%
FRANK LANGELLA - 3.4%
RICHARD JENKINS - 0.5%
winner ..................... Mickey Rourke for The Wrestler
While Streep has won both the sag Award and the Critics’ Choice for Doubt, Winslet has amassed even more hardware for The Reader (albeit as Supporting Actress—Silver resolved this dilemma by giving Winslet half-credit for awards she won as a Supporting Actress). Equally important: Winslet is due. She’s sitting on her sixth nod without a win, while Streep has won both Best Actress (Sophie’s Choice) and Best Supporting Actress (Kramer vs. Kramer). One thing’s for sure: Anne Hathaway’s going home empty-handed. Could Leo or Jolie be a spoiler? I doubt it.
KATE WINSLET - 51.6% chance to win
MERYL STREEP - 42.4%
ANGELINA JOLIE - 3.1%
ANNE HATHAWAY - 1.9%
MELISSA LEO - 1.0%
the winner .............. Kate Winslet in The Reader
When the Academy wants to rebel, it does so with Best Director—this is where “edgy” films are rewarded when it can’t muster the courage to do so for Best Picture (Ang Lee for Brokeback Mountain, Steven Soderbergh for Traffic). That means Danny Boyle—who has won all the top awards for Slumdog Millionaire—is a shoo-in.
DANNY BOYLE - 99.7% chance to win
GUS VAN SANT - 0.2%
DAVID FINCHER - 0.1%
RON HOWARD - 0.0%
STEPHEN DALDRY - 0.0%
the winner .................. Danny Boyle for Slumdog Millionaire
Slumdog Millionaire won all three awards associated with Oscar success: the Directors Guild Award, the Golden Globe, and the bafta. It’s also a serious film, which the Academy favors. If there’s an upset (which would be a shocker), it will be Milk; guilt over Prop 8 and the Brokeback snub of ’06 could split the vote, with Boyle getting Director and Milk getting Picture.
SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE - 99% chance to win
MILK - 1%
THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON - 0.0%
FROST/NIXON - 0.0%
THE READER - 0.0%
the winner ............ Slumdog Millionaire