Wednesday, June 12, 2013

June Oscar Buzz & Predictions - The Aural Techs

     Trying to predict the technical categories this early out is really a crap shoot.  For starters, the awards are more about the actual work in the actual film than who or what star is (or is perceived as being) overdue at the moment.  Of course, these days there are celebrity cinematographers, composers, even costumers, so sometimes you DO see "career achievement" nominations and wins.  In many of these categories, I'm just going to let the (minimal) buzz speak for itself, and in some I'll offer my alternate predictions.  By the time I update these in...August, maybe...I'll probably be ready to offer my alternate predictions in all categories, but I'm still getting a feel for an awards season that is just getting underway.  As always, buzz rankings will come first, followed where applicable by my thoughts.  For now, these are your four aural craft categories...

  Sound Editing
1. Gravity
2. Elysium
3. Man of Steel
4. The Monuments Men
5. Captain Phillips

6. Star Trek: Into Darkness
7. Pacific Rim
8. Iron Man 3
9. American Hustle
10. All is Lost
     This is a pretty good list for guesswork.  Iron Man 3 seems like something of an enormous long shot, but otherwise pretty good possibilities.  Sound Editing is about the creation of sound effects, primarily.  Science fiction and animation fare a little more strongly here than in Sound Mixing (and I'm a little shocked that no animated film is in the top ten buzz-wise), but generally both Sound Categories are populated with a total mish mash of prestige and blockbuster fare, and the top five are a pretty good mix.
     I would also strongly consider: The Counselor, Frozen, Inside Llewyn Davis, Monsters University, Only God Forgives, Prisoners, Snowpiercer, Twelve Years a Slave, The Wolf of Wall Street & World War Z.

  Sound Mixing
1. Gravity
2. Inside Llewyn Davis
3. The Monuments Men
4. Elysium
5. Man of Steel

6. Captain Phillips
7. Star Trek: Into Darkness
8. Iron Man 3
9. World War Z
10. Black Nativity
     Another smart list (although again Iron Man 3 and even the Star Trek sequel seem unlikely).  Musicals and musically themed movies have a bit of leg up here by comparison to Sound Editing.  That's why Inside Llewyn Davis is so high on this list and absent on the other.  Again, a good of blend of arthouse, popcorn and hybrid is achieved.
     I would not ignore the possibilities of:  All Is Lost, the Counselor, Frozen, Monsters University, Only God Forgives, Pacific Rim, Rush, Snowpiercer, Twelve Years a Slave, The Wolf of Wall Street

  Original Song
1. Out of the Furnace
2. Frozen
3. Inside Llewyn Davis
4. The Sapphires
5. The Great Gatsby
     Or at least, that's what the uninformed, infinitesimal buzz says.  If predicting most of the crafts is hopeless this time of year, that goes double for Original Song.  For the most part, we have no idea what films feature Original Songs, what they will sound like, or who will be writing and/or performing them.  I don't even know if all of the films above have songs that will qualify, although there is some pretty cool stuff on the Gatsby soundtrack.
     I would also keep an eye on:  August: Osage County, Black Nativity, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Monsters University, Oz the Great and Powerful, Planes

  Original Score
1. The Monuments Men
2. Gravity
3. The Counselor
4. The Wolf of Wall Street
5. Oldboy

6. Frozen
7. The Butler
8. Man of Steel
9. Saving Mr. Banks
10. World War Z
     Score is another sticky wicket for early prognosticators because the Music branch is VERY finicky when it comes to their rules about what qualifies as an original score and what doesn't.  However, the notoriety of certain composers (and the AMPAS's tendency to nominate many of the same artists again and again) DO make this one of the few tech categories that I feel like tossing out some ideas about this early in the game:

1. The Monuments Men - Alexander Desplat (0 wins out of 5 nominations)...It's hard to argue that one of the most popular working film composers scoring one of the most obvious "Oscar movies" in years seems like a slam dunk for a nomination, if not a win.
2. Man of Steel - Hans Zimmer (1 win out of 9 nominations)...It also seems impossible that after being nominated this many times, the Academy doesn't plan on giving at least one more statuette to Mr. Zimmer.  This seems like a perfect vehicle for something memorable.
3. Snowpiercer - Marco Beltrani (0 wins out of 2 nominations)...Call it a hunch.  The man seems due his third nod, but he could also get one for World War Z.  I just have this feeling that Snowpiercer is going to be something special all the way around.
4. Gravity - Steven Price (never nominated)...Everyone seems to expect that Mr. Price (who has only scored Attack the Block previously) is going to be THAT break out nominee this year.  It feels like they know something I don't.  I WILL say, however, that a film that is largely about a woman stuck in space walk by herself would provide plenty of opportunity to highlight a strong score to fill, I had to...of empty moments.
5. The Wolf of Wall Street - Howard Shore (2 wins out of 3 nominations in this category)...This is likely to be one of the big awards players this year and Mr. Shore certainly has the Academy's attention, but its not like he's overdue...

6. Twelve Years a Slave - Hans Zimmer...Of course, Man of Steel is not the only perfectly good opportunity that Mr. Zimmer has to wow the Academy this year.
7. Monsters University - Randy Newman (0 wins out of 8 nominations)...Yes, you read that correctly.  Although Mr. Newman has two Oscars for Original Song, he has never won for Score.  His win to nomination ratio in this category makes him arguably the most overdue for a win of any of these composers.
8. Oz, the Great and Powerful - Danny Elfman (0 wins out of 4 nominations)...Talk about iconic multi-nominated composers with no wins...but will this tepidly received picture do it for him?
9. Saving Mr. Banks - Thomas Newman (0 wins out of 4 nominations)...This movie is already making my teeth hurt but I could certainly see this as a possible area of recognition and wins yet.
10. World War Z - Marco Beltrani...Most pundits, I'm sure, would expect Mr. Beltrani to have a better shot with this film than Snowpiercer, but if I can't indulge in a little wishful thinking in June, why bother?
     Don't count out: All Is Lost - Alex Ebert, The Counselor - Daniel Pemberton, Frozen - Christophe Beck, Oldboy - Bruce Hornsby, Rush - Hans Zimmer

     And that's it for today.  I'll be back soon with the six Visual Techs...Froggy

  Related Articles: What "Cannes" We Tell So Far?

No comments:

Post a Comment