After a very tumultuous, often controversial journey, the 2019 Academy Awards are finally upon us. This year’s crop of nominees has made it one of the more difficult years in recent memory to predict, but I’ve narrowed my picks down to the productions I believe will take home the hardware.
Best Picture: Roma
Since its release, Roma has been at the forefront of the best picture race. Cuaron’s memoric depiction of 1970s Mexico is a technical masterpiece (if not lacking somewhat in subjective emotion). There’s still a chance that Green Book could pull an upset, having won the Producers Guild Award as a precursor, but Roma’s momentum remains undeniable.
Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron (Roma)
Look for Cuaron to earn his second Oscar for his work on Roma. With Bradley Cooper — arguably Cuaron’s stiffest competitor at the beginning of Oscar season — being shut out of the category, this feels like a clear lock. Spike Lee likely trails in second, and the Academy could award him the statue as a “lifetime achievement” win, but with Cuaron’s DGA win and the general love for Roma, he’s got this one.
Best Actor: Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody)
The Best Actor race seemed to solidify itself more clearly after the SAG awards, where Malek took home the award ahead of Christian Bale (Vice) and Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born). The Academy loves a transformative performance, and while Bale certainly fits that bill as well, Malek’s turn as the late-great Freddy Mercury has garnered more of the precursors that indicate an Oscar win.
Best Actress: Glenn Close (The Wife)
As previously mentioned, Academy voters often have a propensity for awarding a performer’s overall career rather than a singular performance. That’s likely to happen with Glenn Close and her performance in The Wife. She’s racked up awards from the SAGs, the Golden Globes and the Critics’ Choice Awards, all of which place her ahead of Olivia Colman (The Favourite) and Lady Gaga (A Star is Born) who trail shortly behind.
Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali (Green Book)
Fingers crossed that this remains the only win for Green Book. While his filmic vehicle depicts an overly simplistic view of 1960s racial tensions, Mahershala Ali remains a standout in the film. He’s been the sole contender for this win since the beginning of Oscar season, having taken home hardware in virtually every other awards show. Don’t expect that to stop short of the Oscars.
Best Supporting Actress: Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk)
Most of the time, award like the SAGs demystify the Oscars race. However, this year’s ceremony did the exact opposite when the award for Best Supporting Actress went to Emily Blunt (A Quiet Place), who wasn’t even nominated for the Oscars. The most likely option seems to be Regina King, who took home a Golden Globe and Critics’ Choice award for her performance in If Beale Street Could Talk. It’s possible that Amy Adams (Vice) could pull an upset, having been nominated multiple times in the past, but the momentum is on King’s side.
Best Original Screenplay: The Favourite
Best Adapted Screenplay: BlacKkKlansman
Best Cinematography: Roma
Best Animated Feature: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Best Short Film (Animated): Bao
Best Documentary (Feature): Free Solo
Best Documentary (Short): End Game
Best Short Film (Live Action): Marguerite
Best Foreign Language Film: Roma
Best Editing: Bohemian Rhapsody
Best Sound Editing: First Man
Best Sound Mixing: Bohemian Rhapsody
Best Visual Effects: Avengers: Infinity War
Best Production Design: Black Panther
Best Costume Design: The Favourite
Best Makeup and Hairstyling: Vice
Best Original Score: If Beale Street Could Talk
Best Original Song: “Shallow” (A Star is Born)