Sunday, September 9, 2012

Sept Oscar Buzz & Predictions - The Techs Part 2

    Let's get this underway....
Best Make-Up and Hair
     Former buzz rankings appear in parenthesis after the current ones...
  1.(1)  The Hobbit:  An Unexpected Journey
  2.(2) Lincoln
  3.(5) Les Miserables

  4. Cloud Atlas
  5. Prometheus
  6.(4) The Dark Knight Rises
  Leaving the rankings - Dark Shadows, The Great Gatsby
      I'm thinking Make-Up can be applied this way...
  1. Lincoln - I may not be advocating this film as heavily as most but you can't argue with the fact that Day-Lewis looks just like Abe in the promotional materials.  It's quite reminiscent of the way Streep was turned into Thatcher in last year's winner The Iron Lady.
  2. The Hobbit:  An Unexpected Journey - If you can't figure out why this one will be a contender yourself, then I don't think I can help you.
  3. Cloud Atlas - This spans so many times and places and features the main characters in so many incarnations that there is a lot of OPPORTUNITY to shine in this category.

  4. Les Miserables - I hold a little less hope for this nomination than the buzz because you can only make people look dirty and squalid in so many ways.
  5. Great Expectations - Just the work on turning Bonham-Carter into Miss Havisham should be worth considering.
  6. Zero Dark Thirty - If they can make actor         look JUST like Bin Laden then we'll have a serious contender on our hands.

Best Costume Design
     Period pieces and fantasy usually rule the day, and the buzz this time certainly seems to be leaning in those directions...
  1.(4) Anna Karenina
  2.(2) Les Miserables
  3.(7) Mirror Mirror
  4.(3) Lincoln
  5.(10) Snow White and the Huntsman

  6.(5) The Hobbit:  An Unexpected Journey
  7.(6) Argo
  8.(9) Dark Shadows
  9.(8) Django Unchained
  10. Hyde Park On Hudson
  Leaving the rankings - The Great Gatsby
     I would dress it up more like this...
  1.Les Miserables - Yes Paco Delgado would be a first time nominee, but it's a musical set a couple of centuries ago that I'm expecting to be one of this year's top power contenders across the board.  Duh...
  2. Anna Karenina - THE costume drama of the year, unless it tanks.  What was this category's name again?  Besides, costumer Jaqueling Durran has been nominated twice before when working with director Joe Wright.
  3. Cloud Atlas - Fantasy and multiple time periods.  This is another film I can kind of feel coming.  I am made slightly nervous that the work was done by two costumers with no previous nominations, but...
  4. Django Unchained - Have you SEEN Leo's suits in the promotionals?  Design by twice nominated Sharon Davis (Dreamgirls, Ray)
  5. Snow White and the Huntsman - I refuse to predict both Snow movies and having seen of the costuming in Mirror Mirror, I'm going to lean for now towards the work of five time Oscar winner (and nine time nominee) Colleen Atwood.

  6. Mirror Mirror - But former winner Eiko Ishioka (Dracula) does have a lot of buzz for the work on this film.
  7. The Hobbit:  An Unexpected Journey - Richard Taylor has already won five Oscars, split among Costuming, Make-Up, and Visual Effects, and four of them were for work done on The Lord of the Rings trilogy.  Pedigree or overkill?  I'm not sure.
  8. Great Expectations - No one else is predicting this, and I can't seem to find a costume design credit for this one yet, but it's Dickens, set in period.
  9. Lincoln - I know I'm probably underestimating this film spectacularly, I hope they prove me wrong.
  10. The Master - The time period is a little closer to our own than this Branch of the Academy usually ventures, but design is by last year's winner (for The Artist) Mark Bridges, so who can say?

Production Design
     This is the new, probably more appropriately named version of the longstanding Art Direction category.  And the buzz is saying...
  1.(2) Les Miserables
  2.(6) Anna Karenina
  3.(3) The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
  4. Prometheus
  5.(4) Lincoln

  6.(9) Hyde Park On Hudson
  7.(5) The Dark Knight Rises
  8.(8) Argo
  9.(10) The Master
  10. Django Unchained
  Leaving the Rankings:  The Great Gatsby, Dark Shadows
     I would decorate my list more like this...
  1 Les Miserables - The promos look really fantastic and in for a penny...
  2. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - I don't know why, I just feel like this might be one of the bones thrown to the first installment of this new trilogy.  It will almost certainly be deserving.
  3. Cloud Atlas - When you choose to go out on a limb, go big.
  4. Anna Karenina - If this does turn out to be THE costume drama of the year then it will undoubtedly end up in the mix here as well.
  5. The Master - Expect the Weinstein company to get either this and/or Django Unchained a nod in this category.  This one is already previewing to raves, so we'll go with it for now.

  6. Great Expectations - I feel that this film could be a sleeping giant just waiting for a distribution deal and this would be one of the EASIEST categories for it to break into.
  7. Django Unchained - Like I said before...
  8. Lincoln - I was so underwhelmed by War Horse that I can't let it go yet.
  9. Argo - I think this film's setting may be a little too close to the present day to catch this branch's eye, no matter how well the film seems likely to be thought of, but it's possible.
  10. The Dark Knight Rises - I give this film the final slot on the list because it will almost surely deserve serious consideration, but I have a bad feeling that this is one nomination that will be lost in the Academy's attempt to distance itself from the film.

Visual Effects
     And the buzz appeared from nowhere...
  1.(3) The Avengers
  2.(1) The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
  3.(2) The Dark Knight Rises
  4.(4) Prometheus
  5.(7) Life of Pi

  6. Cloud Atlas
  7.(6) The Amazing Spider-Man
  8.(5) John Carter
  9. Snow White and the Huntsman
  10.(8) Battleship
  Leaving the rankings - The Hunger Games, World War Z
     I stuck really close to the buzz, but there were two films on this list that I just couldn't buy into...
  1. The Avengers - It's hard to imagine the top earning super hero movie of all time failing to earn a nod here, especially when it looked so slick.
  2. The Hobbit:  An Unexpected Journey -  This seems almost as obvious and inescapable as my number one selection.
  3. Life of Pi - There is almost always one nominee that is not as much of a genre picture in the mix, something more "high brow".  My money's on this one.
  4. The Dark Knight Rises - I'm kind of iffy here, but for now I'm still predicting the nomination.
  5. Cloud Atlas - The promos make this look like a real blow out project for VE work.
  6. Prometheus - Could easily replace number 4 or 5 here.
  7. The Amazing Spider-Man - Seems the least likely of three possible super hero flicks in contention, but you never know.
  8. Snow White and the Huntsman - I'm waiting for DVD, but the promotionals looked great and I don't remember any reviewers attacking the effects, so who knows?
  9. The Cabin in the Woods - Buzz is non-existent, but the last thirty minutes of the film were a real showcase.
  10. The Impossible - It would have to blow the tsunami seen in Hereafter out of know.

     Editing is one of the most important technical categories not only because it is a pivotal part of making film, but also because Best Picture is almost always won by a film with a corresponding nomination here.  Let's cut to the buzz...
  1.(1) Zero Dark Thirty
  2.(2) Lincoln
  3.(6) The Master
  4.(3) The Dark Knight Rises
  5.(4) Argo

  6.(5) Les Miserables
  7.(7) Life of Pi
  8. Moonrise Kingdom
  9. Beasts of the Southern Wild
  10.(9) Django Unchained
  Leaving the rankings - The Great Gatsby, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
     I only differ significantly in a couple of ways...
   1. The Master - You had better believe that Harvey Weinstien is going to get the lead horse in his stable one of these slots.  Of course, it is possible that we are being misled, and that horse is Django.  It is edited by two time nominee William Goldenberg and one time nominee Dylan Tichenor.
  2. Argo - This film is also edited by Goldenberg and is looking more and more like a serious Best Picture contender.
  3. Les Miserables - I just think this one will be on of the films duking it out to win the big prize, and the fact that it was edited by Chris Dickens, former winner for Slumdog Millionaire doesn't hurt.
  4. Zero Dark Thirty - The year of Goldenberg continues here as he partners with Dylan Tichenor in this military thriller with probable high artistic sensibilities.
  5. The Dark Knight Rises - Two time nominee and Nolan compound mainstay Lee Smith could still slide in here, even if the film only gets a few nods.

  6. Life of Pi - Editor Tim Squyres has been up once before for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and I think Life of Pi COULD end up being one of the big boys.
  7. Beasts of the Southern Wild - This film is a virtual shoo-in in many categories, but this one is still very much in question.
  8. Inside Llewyn Davis - NEVER underestimate the Coen brothers.
  9. Django Unchained - Weinstein + Tarantino + never nominated Fred Baskin (Kill Bill, Boogie Nights)????
  10. Lincoln - Editor Michael Kahn has been nominated seven times and won three.  All the wins and six of the nominations were for films directed by Spielberg.  It's an impressive record, one that begs the question:  Can they top themselves again?

     In framing the buzz...
  1.(9) Life of Pi
  2.(3) Beasts of the Southern Wild
  3.(1) Lincoln
  4.(2) The Dark Knight Rises
  5.(8) The Master

  6.(10) To The Wonder
  7.(6) Les Miserables
  8.(7) The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
  9. Anna Karenina
  10. Zero Dark Thirty
  Leaving the rankings - Django Unchained, The Great Gatsby
     I think it will look like this when the lights go up...
  1. The Master - The word from early screenings has highly praised this film's visual elements to such an extent that I will be surprised if Mihai Malaimare Jr. does not secure his first nomination for it.
  2. Beasts of the Southern Wild - It seems strange to have two newbies to the Oscar race sitting atop this important category, but Ben Richardson already won the Cinematography award at Sundance and will probably get a nod from the Academy as well.
  3. To The Wonder - Emmanuel Lubezki has been nominated five times (twice teamed with Malick), but never won.  Even if the film is shut out in every other category, it could still find love here.
  4. Life of Pi - Claudio Miranda has only one previous nomination but the early images are GORGEOUS here.
  5. Les Miserables - Cinematographer Danny Coen is another one time nominee, the last time he teamed up with director Tom Hooper on The King's Speech.  The trailer alone shows great promise.

  6. The Dark Knight Rises - It seems strange to predict that this becomes the only installment in the franchise not to earn four time nominee Wally Pfister a nod, but he did just win for Inception, so...?
  7. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - Andrew Lesnie won the Oscar for Fellowship of the Ring and then wasn't nominated for either of the subsequent installments in that trilogy.  Will history repeat itself?  Or will the AMPAS continue to feel that they have given this man ample recognition for his work on this franchise?
  8. Cloud Atlas - Frequent Twyker collaborator Frank Griebe has never been nominated, but his partner on this film John Till has three times, two of which he won.  All I know is that if working together they produce something that looks like a cross between Run Lola Run and The Thin Red Line, they could be unstoppable.
  9. Lincoln - Janusz Kaminski has already had five nods in this category and won two, usually when working with Spielberg, but I'm still remaining skeptical of this film for a minute.
  10. Flight - This film seems set to break into the awards race somewhere.  Might it be here with one time nominee Dan Burgess.

      And that was the techs as of early September.  I'll continue this series in a few days with the Genres after I've updated the Buzzometer. 

Related posts:  Sept Oscar Buzz and Predictions - The Techs: Part One, Awards Season Hits Next Leg, The Dark Knight Transcends, Merchandisers Assemble (Avengers review), June Oscar Buzz and Predictions - The Techs, The Cabin With The Goods, John's Woman in Wrath (John Carter review)

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