My 100% perfect Oscar nomination predictions


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Oscar nominations will be unveiled next Tuesday. Below: my predictions in the top six Academy Awards races.

1. ‘The Social Network’
2. ‘The King’s Speech’
3. ‘The Fighter’
4. ‘True Grit’
5. ‘Black Swan’
6. ‘Toy Story 3’
7. ‘Inception’
8. ‘The Town’
9. ‘127 Hours’
10. ‘The Kids Are All Right’

The top seven films on this list are locks for nominations. Mystery looms over what will nab those bottom three rungs where four films jockey for inclusion. ‘Winter’s Bone’ is the one not shown here, but could break in.


1. David Fincher, “The Social Network”
2. Christopher Nolan, “Inception”
3. Darren Aronofsky, “Black Swan”
4. Tom Hooper, “The King’s Speech”
5. David O. Russell, “The Fighter”

Fincher will win, of course. The only suspense surrounds who’ll be nominated. The above five are the DGA nominees. One of them (but not Fincher) might be bumped for Joel and Ethan Coen (‘True Grit’) or Danny Boyle (‘127 Hours’). There’s a remote chance Lisa Cholodenko (‘The Kids Are All Right’) could squeak in now that a woman finally won here for the first time last year.

1. Colin Firth, ‘The King’s Speech’
2. James Franco, ‘127 Hours’
3. Jesse Eisenberg, ‘The Social Network’
4. Robert Duvall, ‘Get Low’
5. Jeff Bridges, ‘True Grit’

Colin Firth will win, James Franco and Jesse Eisenberg are guaranteed nominations. Duvall and Bridges are vulnerable and could be bumped by Javier Bardem (‘Biutiful’), Mark Wahlberg (‘The Fighter’) or Ryan Gosling (‘Blue Valentine’).

1. Natalie Portman, ‘Black Swan’
2. Annette Bening, ‘The Kids Are All Right’
3. Nicole Kidman, ‘Rabbit Hole’
4. Jennifer Lawrence, ‘Winter’s Bone’
5. Hilary Swank, ‘Conviction’

Some pundits doubt that Swank will make the list, but she scored a SAG nomination and that’s always a great omen. Otherwise, expect Julianne Moore (‘The Kids Are All Right’) or Michelle Williams (‘Blue Valentine’) to sneak in. Outside shot: Lesley Manville (‘Another Year’), who won National Board of Review. Some pundits believe Hailee Steinfeld (‘True Grit’) will be nommed in lead even though she campaigned in supporting. That happened just two years ago with Kate Winslet (‘The Reader’), but I don’t see that scenario repeating now.

1. Christian Bale, ‘The Fighter’
2. Geoffrey Rush, ‘The King’s Speech’
3. Jeremy Renner, ‘The Town’
4. Mark Ruffalo, ‘The Kids Are All Right’
5. Andrew Garfield, ‘The Social Network’

Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo and Andrew Garfield are vulnerable. Three alternates: Michael Douglas (‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps’), John Hawkes (‘Winter’s Bone’), Bill Murray (‘Get Low’).

1. Melissa Leo, ‘The Fighter’
2. Hailee Steinfeld, ‘True Grit’
3. Amy Adams, ‘The Fighter’
4. Mila Kunis, ‘Black Swan’
5. Helena Bonham Carter, ‘The King’s Speech’

Category confusion over Hailee Steinfeld could cause her to be snubbed. If so, one of these four alternatives will get in: Barbara Hershey (‘Black Swan’), Sissy Spacek (‘Get Low’), Jacki Weaver (‘Animal Kingdom’) or Dianne Wiest (‘Rabbit Hole’).

-- Tom O’Neil Illustration by Tom O’Neil