RT's Oscar Picks 2013 - Results

How did we fare this year in our Academy Awards predictions?


Oscar We at Rotten Tomatoes freely admit we're not the world's greatest Oscar prognosticators. Still, we did a bit better than usual this year; while there were some surprises (Sound Editing was a tie?!) and a few winners that aren't all that surprising in retrospect, most of our predictions came true at the 85th Annual Academy Awards. Read on to see how our forecast squared with the final results!




96%

Best Picture: Argo


Momentum has been building for Argo in the past few weeks; it took home best picture honors at the Golden Globes, the BAFTAs, and the Critics' Choice Awards (and not to toot our own horns, but it won the Golden Tomato Award for Best Wide Release as well). Argo hits several sweet spots that the Academy voters find irresistible: it's inspirational, but loaded with historical gravitas; it was both a mainstream hit and a critical favorite; and, perhaps most importantly for voters, it's a celebration of the power of movies and the people who make them. Lincoln and Silver Linings Playbook have enjoyed some dark horse cache, but we think Argo will be the first film since Driving Miss Daisy to win Best Picture without garnering a Best Director nod.

CORRECT


Lincoln
90%

Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis for Lincoln


This category has been in the bag since the ink was dry on Daniel Day-Lewis' contract.

CORRECT

Best Actress: Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook


This was the toughest category for RT editors to whittle down. At opposite ends of the age bracket, Emmanuelle Riva and Quvenzhané Wallis each gave remarkable performances, and Riva in particular could muster some votes. Even more likely is Naomi Watts, whose physically grueling work in The Impossible has also generated buzz. Early on, it looked like Jessica Chastain had this category all sewn up, as critics societies around the country were heaping praise on her. However, in the last couple months, all the Oscar mojo has seemingly shifted toward Jennifer Lawrence; with a Golden Globe, a Critics Choice, and a SAG award under her belt, we think Lawrence will walk away with the Oscar as well.

CORRECT


Lincoln
90%

Best Supporting Actor: Tommy Lee Jones for Lincoln


Each of the nominees has an Oscar to his credit, so there aren't any unjustly ignored sentimental favorites to choose from. Christoph Waltz won the BAFTA and the Golden Globe, but it seems unlikely he'll win just a few short years after his breakout role in Inglourious Basterds. Robert DeNiro has a strong chance, especially since his work in Silver Linings Playbook helped to erase memories of the great actor's string of mediocre films. However, we think Tommy Lee Jones - who was already honored by the Screen Actors Guild --will ultimately claim the Oscar.

INCORRECT - Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained. We shouldn't have discounted Waltz's previous award season victories.

Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway for Les Misérables


Anne Hathaway has enjoyed almost universal Oscar buzz since before Les Misérables even hit theaters, and her wins at the Golden Globes and the BAFTAs confirm her status as the front-runner here. It's possible, though unlikely, that either Helen Hunt or Jacki Weaver will steal this category; if Weaver wins, it could be an early sign that Silver Linings Playbook will have a huge night.

CORRECT


Lincoln
90%

Best Director: Steven Spielberg for Lincoln


Since Ben Affleck was inexplicably snubbed in this category, we think Steven Spielberg will take home the hardware as a consolation prize.

INCORRECT - Ang Lee, Life of Pi. It just wasn't Lincoln's night, and the Academy was obviously more enamored with Life of Pi overall. It's still a mystery why Ben Affleck wasn't even nominated in this category.


88%

Original Screenplay: Django Unchained


The Usual Suspects, Fargo, Lost in Translation, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Juno... The screenplay awards are the place where the Academy honors innovative stuff that's a little too wild and wooly for Best Picture. Quentin Tarantino's consolation prize for Pulp Fiction losing to Forrest Gump was a Best Original Screenplay trophy, and he'll pick up another one for Django Unchained this year.

CORRECT


96%

Adapted Screenplay: Argo


Following up on the last entry, we must make note of the fact that because there are two screenplay awards, it makes sense that one goes to something a little left of center, and the other goes to whatever won Best Picture. So chalk up Argo for the Academy Award for Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay).

CORRECT


93%

Best Foreign Language Film: Amour


Given that Amour was also nominated for Best Picture (not to mention noms for Michael Haneke in the direction and screenwriting categories), this one seems like a lock.

CORRECT


95%

Best Documentary: Searching for Sugar Man


This was another contentious award for RT editors. In a year of particularly strong choices, we think it's down to a three-way race between Searching for Sugar Man, The Invisible War, and The Gatekeepers, with the feel-good vibes of Sugar Man carrying the day over its more somber, issue-oriented peers.

CORRECT


78%

Animated Feature: Brave


Another tough call. We think the competition is ultimately between Brave and Wreck-It Ralph. However, because graying Academy voters can't tell Call of Duty from The Call of the Wild, we're gonna go with the little redhead. (It must be noted that RT editor-in-chief Matt Atchity insists Frankenweenie will win, loudly telling the rest of the staff, "You're all wrong." Sure thing, chief.)

CORRECT


87%

Best Cinematography: Life of Pi


Life of Pi's visual splendor is so mind-blowing that it seems improbable that anyone could steal this category from its cinematographer, Claudio Miranda.

CORRECT


96%

Best Film Editing: Argo


Argo already took home the BAFTA in this category, and we think three-time nominee William Goldenberg will add to the film's Oscar haul.

CORRECT


90%

Best Music - Original Score: Lincoln


John Williams is one of the most nominated figures in Academy history, and hasn't won in a long time. We think he'll win Oscar number six, but Mychael Danna's eclectic score for Life of Pi could surprise some people.

INCORRECT - Life of Pi. We had a feeling Mychael Danna could steal this one, especially since John Williams has so many Oscars to his name already.


92%

Best Music - Original Song: Skyfall


These days, award shows exist for one reason, and one reason alone: to bestow trophies upon Adele.

CORRECT


63%

Best Production Design: Anna Karenina


This looks like a tossup between Anna Karenina and Les Misérables. We decided to go with the period piece based on a classic novel. And when we realized we were being forced to choose between two period pieces based on classic novels, we picked Anna Karenina, because Leo Tolstoy had cooler facial hair than Victor Hugo.

INCORRECT - Lincoln. We got this one completely wrong. Probably should have considered the painstakingly recreated period detail of Civil War-era Washington.


63%

Best Costume Design: Anna Karenina


Take this one to the bank, comrades.

CORRECT


93%

Best Sound Editing: Zero Dark Thirty


The controversy over Zero Dark Thirty's politics have hurt its Oscar chances in a number of categories. Still, few questioned the film's technical brilliance, and we think it's here that Zero Dark Thirty will take home the hardware.

HALF CORRECT - Ties are rare in Oscar history, but not unprecedented. Zero Dark Thirty split the honor with Skyfall.


70%

Best Sound Mixing: Les Misérables


A big deal was made about the fact that the cast of Les Misérables sang their songs live on camera. That's pretty tough to record, especially with canons going off everywhere.

CORRECT


87%

Best Visual Effects: Life of Pi


Dude, remember the tiger in that movie? It was all CGI. Pretty cool, huh?

CORRECT


65%

Best Makeup and Hairstyling: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey


Those ears didn't get pointy all by themselves.

INCORRECT - Les Misérables. We were so focused on the pointy ears we neglected to take note of the grit and grime that accumulated on the faces of the actors portraying 19th Century Gauls.


Best Short Film - Live Action: Curfew


An idiosyncratic dramedy about a depressed writer tasked with babysitting his precocious niece, Curfew has racked up a bunch of festival awards, and we think it will add an Oscar to its haul.

CORRECT


Best Short Film - Animated: Paperman


Paperman is the wistful tale of an office drone who goes to great lengths to reconnect with a beautiful woman he glimpsed on the subway. It's sweet, it's beautifully animated, and it had the benefit of being the opening act for Wreck-It Ralph in theaters.

CORRECT


Best Documentary Short: Open Heart


This is a particularly solemn year for documentary shorts. We think Open Heart, the tale of eight Rwandan children traveling to Sudan for heart surgery, will earn both tears and votes from Academy members.

INCORRECT - Inocente, the story of a homeless girl who dreams of becoming an artist, took home the Oscar.

FINAL TALLY


CORRECT: 18
INCORRECT: 6


For our full Oscar coverage on the day, go to RT's Awards Tour page


Written by Tim Ryan

Comments

Caleb Spacht

Caleb Spacht

Looks about right except for Brave. Wreck It Ralph will win.

Feb 21 - 04:58 PM

Matthew R.

Matthew Reimer

I agree that Wreck-It Ralph should win or else ParaNorman should. I'm fine if one of those two win.

Feb 21 - 05:52 PM

Jesus Ferrer

Jesus Ferrer

Wreck-It Ralph

Feb 22 - 02:29 PM

Sebastian O.

Sebastian Ochoa

Nah? $50 Frankenweenie will win.

Feb 21 - 07:26 PM

Chad Anderson

Chad Anderson

Frankenweenie really should win. It was easily the best animated film of the year, and in my opinion, Burton's best work since Ed Wood

Feb 22 - 01:43 PM

Brice Belian

Brice Belian

I agree Wreck-it Ralph is much better and creative (Brave is rubbish), but it's about forecasting what the Academy will choose and not what we like...

Feb 22 - 02:41 AM

Ethan Faidley

Ethan Faidley

I woulda gone with Frankenweenie

Feb 22 - 04:48 PM

Sam F.

Sam Francis

I'm going with you, bud

Feb 23 - 05:23 PM

King  S.

King Simba

Yeah, I think Wreck-it-Ralph will win the best animated oscar. Pixar seems to be more popular with the Golden Globes than it is with the Oscars (Cars for exampler lost the Oscar to Happy Feet despite winning the Golden Globe for best animated film, while Cars 2 got niminated for best animated film at the Globes though it missed out on a nomination at the Oscars). Plus, the Oscars will probably want to make up to Disney for snubbing Winnie the Pooh last year (Interestingly, not a single Disney animated feature film that wasn't from Pixar has won the Oscar for best animated film).

Feb 23 - 09:35 AM

Irene Bondar

Irene Bondar

No I agree with Rotten Tomatoes. Brave had a moral to the story, whereas Paranorman was just creepy to look at and Wreck-It-Ralph was very plain.

Feb 23 - 08:01 PM

I fight for the users

Ian Fastert

Paranorman had an ingrossing story along with creepy animation, and Brave changed from the bond between a mother and her daughter to action and bears fighting each other. And Ralph had a moral too.

Feb 24 - 06:29 AM

Josh Shepard

Josh Shepard

All movies try to convey some kind of message of moral. Kind of pointless to make one otherwise.

Feb 24 - 01:01 PM

John Wardell

John Wardell

open heart . there is much to think about....

Feb 21 - 05:02 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Safe bets. The Oscars excel at bad decisions, and these seem like exactly the bad decisions they'll make this year.

Feb 21 - 05:09 PM

EdP-Review

edgar perez

please delight us with your choices then...

Feb 22 - 11:48 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Picture, Actor, Director, Cinematography: The Master, Phoenix, PT Anderson; Supp Actor: Sam Jackson; Original Script: Moonrise Kingdom; Original Song/Art, Costume Design: Holy Motors; Actress: Emmanuelle Riva; Supp Actress: Amy Adams

Feb 22 - 12:45 PM

Sean D.

Sean D

I like these. Although I think QT for Screenplay is a worthy choice. And the fact that The Master didn't at least get a best cinematography nod is bogus as well.
I also would have picked Skyfall for best cinematography. If only for the scene where they are fighting silhouetted against the neon lights. That was sexy stuff.

Feb 22 - 02:13 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I still haven't seen "Skyfall", sadly, but I've seen stills from that scene, and it does look amazing.

Feb 22 - 02:44 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Take my word for it "Skyfall" does have some inconsistencies- it's almost as if the writers watched Nolans Batman films to come up with the plot for this one!

Feb 22 - 04:06 PM

King  S.

King Simba

I actually kind of liked it that they followed Nolan's Batman films and left some things up to the viewer. It made Silva more terrifying because we weren't quite sure how he operated (eg, how he escaped out of jail).

Feb 23 - 09:40 AM

Matt Hoffman

matthew hoffman

In a perfect world!

Feb 24 - 11:03 AM

Dave J

Dave J

Silvia was just a regular man who could be shot and killed like everyone else!

Feb 25 - 05:02 PM

Sebastian O.

Sebastian Ochoa

Here's what I think:

Best Picture - I think it will definitely be Argo or Lincoln? Watched both and, while Argo was more entertaining, Lincoln was better overall. However, my favourite this year was Django Unchained. Les Mis was a mistake, but all other nominees are great. Skyfall could've made it, though?

Best Actor - No doubt, Day-Lewis

Best Director - Spielberg. Though Lee deserves it. Must've been hard to direct a film where half your main cast is a VERY realistic tiger.

Best Actress - Very controversial. While I don't have much of an opinion with this one, I would say the Academy will either reward Riva or Lawrence, with the edge for Riva.

Best Supporting Actor - I want Waltz, but it'll be either Jones or De Niro. They were all, however, fantastic.

Best Supporting Actress - Hathaway's basically won. Fields may be competition, however?

Best Animated Picture - Frankenweenie, though Ralph was my favourite :)

Best Original Screenplay - DJANGO!!! WOOOHOOO! Though, there's some strong competish?

Best Adapted Screenplay - It'll be, again, Argo or Lincoln. Lincoln should win, but Argo won't be winning much, despite winning Best Picture, so the Academy will probably award them this one.

Feb 23 - 08:41 AM

King  S.

King Simba

Agreed with most of these, though I think the best actress award race will be between Lawrence and Chastain and the best animated oscar will go to Wreck-it-Ralph.

Feb 23 - 09:46 AM

Sam F.

Sam Francis

Agree with most... Best Picture, I feel Argo would win, but I would really love 'Beasts of the Southern Wild' to win. Les Mis, it has the makings of a typical Best Picture nominee... *shrugs* Loved it, but definitely will not win.

Feb 23 - 05:27 PM

Sebastian O.

Sebastian Ochoa

You sure say "win" a lot. But yes, BotSW was amazing.

Feb 23 - 08:54 PM

Sebastian O.

Sebastian Ochoa

Here's some other predictions:

Best Cinematography - Life of Pi, absolutely. Though, I'm surprised they didn't nominate Amour.

Best Film Editing - Now that Argo is seeming more and more like the frontrunner, the voters will probably be trying to make up for Affleck's snub. Therefore, they'll probably be giving Argo random awards that it doesn't truly deserve. Voila.

Best Makeup - If it's not Les Mis, it's the Hobbit.

Best Original Score - John Williams? Yeah, right. I'm giving this one to Life of Pi. I don't car how many times John's been nominated.

Best Original Song - Adele's got this one. If not, I'm sure the Ted song might be the one to look out for.

Best Production Design - Despite this award normally going to historic films, there's a reason why Pi was nominated, and that was to win. Notice that Pi will probably win most of the technical awards.

Best Sound Editing - Again, Pi. Pi's last year's Hugo and 2010's Inception.

Best Sound Mixing - Enjoy your only other award apart from Hathaway, Miserables.

Visual Effects - Pi. Duh!

Costume Design - Ehhh. No one cares. Sure, Karenina. Why not?

Feb 23 - 08:53 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Hey, Sebastian, your picks were very accurate, even when they went to your runners-up like Lawrence and Lee.

Feb 25 - 05:26 PM

Tom Valentino

Tom Valentino

Lincoln will win Best Picture and Director!

Feb 21 - 05:11 PM

Jon West

Jon West

God help us if they do.

Feb 22 - 11:24 AM

David Czebieniak

David Czebieniak

God help us??...really??...wow...talk about an overreaction.

Feb 22 - 07:15 PM

Jose Rojas

Jose Rojas

Respond to an "overreaction" with an overreaction. Good job.

Feb 23 - 11:15 AM

JG Marroquin Yanes

JG Marroquin Yanes

de acuerdo con casi todo, aunque en pelicula animada deberia de ser frankenweenie

Feb 21 - 05:11 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Ang Lee was on Nightline the other day and he said not "all" scenes of the tiger are all CGI!

Feb 21 - 05:21 PM

Brian Schwartz

Brian Schwartz

I dunno... I thought Death of a Shadow was the best live action short film. Very original!

Feb 21 - 05:33 PM

Darian Dorafshar

Darian Dorafshar

Agreed

Feb 22 - 01:59 PM

Tevi Supangat

Tevi Supangat

I also go with 'Wreck It Ralph'... 'Brave' in my humble opinion is hmmm.. 'so - so'..

Feb 21 - 05:43 PM

Sam F.

Sam Francis

Agree on 'Brave'...

Feb 23 - 05:27 PM

Matthew R.

Matthew Reimer

I agree that Wreck-It Ralph should win or else ParaNorman should. I'm fine if one of those two win.

Feb 21 - 05:52 PM

Jesus Ferrer

Jesus Ferrer

Wreck-It Ralph

Feb 22 - 02:29 PM

Matthew R.

Matthew Reimer

I would like Lincoln to take home Best Picture because now I'm starting to think that Argo is overrated.

Feb 21 - 05:56 PM

Dave J

Dave J

It's funny you should say that because just the other day, and according to Jimmy Carter who was President at the time when this "Argo" thing happened said that it was the Canadians or the Canadian Ambassador that did all the work- not the CIA! But he still liked the film despite it's accuracies!

Feb 22 - 02:37 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

The whole chase at the end is a fabrication. I don't mind it so much because it's simply an entertainment kind of film, and unlike "ZD30", the inaccuracies don't contradict the moral point of the film.

Feb 22 - 02:46 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Oh yes, thank you for reminding me about that because Carter also said that the chase thing didn't happened either- his description was different! And while the torture scenes in ZDT are still in dispute since some say it didn't happened while they're others say that it did! I have to say though, ZDT is not the first film that has done this though- "Battle Of Algiers" also made claims that the torture tactics worked back at that particular time as well!

Feb 22 - 03:50 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

No one disputes the use of torture, it's a matter of public record. The question is in its effectiveness. Actually, I agree with the film's defenders that, if anything, it shows that torture was slow to produce desired results. But Panetta has gone on record saying that the information regarding Bin Laden's courier was aquired from a detainee PRIOR to being tortured. (Of course, someone could have wondered why there was a mansion next to a military academy in a relatively poor area of Pakistan) I take more issue with Bigelow and Boal's attempts to play victim over being called out for this inconsistancy. "It's just a movie" doesn't gel with the stressed importance of what was supposed to be an accurate account, barely a year after the fact, and at a time when the photos of OBL's corpse are still classified. It's just not particularly honest, and they should admit it.

Feb 22 - 04:04 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Well, in defense of ZDT- all I can say is that it's just a "Rashomon" since you may be correct about the sh-t you're saying about the couriers but the thing is that Panetta never wanted to participate in the making of this film no matter how much they're willing to pay him, saying that the only information Bigelow used are the ones she can get- this project was initially intended to be based from some book a few years ago written about the ordeal by someone who was at one time part of that mission which was to go after OBL, so after he was killed- Bigelow had to change her film again into doing just that!

Feb 22 - 04:28 PM

Keegan W.

Keegan W.

i'd bet Tony Kushner takes home the oscar for adapted screenplay

Feb 21 - 06:04 PM

Ken H.

Ken Cruiser

I really want Waltz to win for acting, but i think that the clear winner in this category is the one who the academy members decided to cast aside. Leonardo Dicaprio.

Feb 21 - 06:29 PM

Ahmed Reloaded

Ahmed Reloaded

Leonardo is my pick too. His best acting so far.

Feb 22 - 03:05 PM

Sebastian O.

Sebastian Ochoa

Nah? $50 Frankenweenie will win.

Feb 21 - 07:26 PM

Chad Anderson

Chad Anderson

Frankenweenie really should win. It was easily the best animated film of the year, and in my opinion, Burton's best work since Ed Wood

Feb 22 - 01:43 PM

Christian P.

Christian Perkins

I am predicting Jessica Chastain to win for Best Actress, and "Wreck-It Ralph" for Best Animated Feature. "Brave" was good, but Disney's animated films have improved in quality since they merged with Pixar. Disney deserves its first win since "Winnie the Pooh" was snubbed.

I do want "Amour" to win for Best Original Screenplay, but "Django Unchained" looks like the frontrunner. "Life of Pi" for Best Original Score!

Feb 21 - 07:27 PM

Christopher256G

Christopher Greffin

I hope your right on best actress, but the backlash on the movie which has been so totally undeserved I fear will take Chastain as collateral damage.

Feb 21 - 10:02 PM

Lawrence Garcia

Lawrence Garcia

I hope that Jessica Chastain wins as well, but I think that at this point it's between Jennifer Lawrence and Emmanuelle Riva. I hate that the backlash affected her chances so much.

Feb 21 - 11:54 PM

JD Shippel

JD Shippel

The baseless allegations and petty controversy surrounding ZDT is such a shame. It really should have cleaned up in nominations and deserves to win Picture, Screenplay, and Best Actress (and Bigelow sure as hell deserved a directing nom)

Feb 22 - 11:54 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Leon Panetta counts as baseless?

Feb 22 - 12:46 PM

Bruno Fleitas

Bruno Fleitas

No, no, no, Chastain's acting was superb, enough to beat Lawrence.

Feb 21 - 07:29 PM

Jon West

Jon West

She was flat, boring, and non-existent the last 30 minutes of the movie.

Feb 22 - 11:25 AM

JD Shippel

JD Shippel

False. She was subtle, something the role called for. She was brilliant.

Feb 22 - 11:55 AM

David Platt

David Platt

Agreed; shame the film she was in is a dull, boring mess. She was brilliant the film wasn't, it was no where near as good as The Hurt Locker.

Feb 22 - 01:04 PM

Bryce Sage

Bryce Sage

@ David what were you smoking? Hurt Locker was an overrated bore and ZD30 is the best film this year, more sorely snubbed than Argo (which steals all the pity votes ZD30 should be getting).

Feb 22 - 04:07 PM

Venkatesh Saranathan

Venkatesh Saranathan

I think the movie was flat and emotionless. Almost like a documentary of events. I didn't find myself rooting or attached towards Chastain's character unlike Argo. Rooting for Lawrence to win Best actress.

Feb 22 - 04:31 PM

Fargo Penneau-Tbakhi

Fargo Penneau-Tbakhi

If Roger Deakins doesn't win I'm boycotting the Oscars. I already am disappointed considering Affleck and Bigelow's snubs.

Feb 21 - 07:33 PM

Dick Travis

Mick Travis

I know: Deakins has been nominated 10 F*CKING TIMES...so has Thomas Newman, for that matter!

Feb 21 - 09:38 PM

David Platt

David Platt

Deakins may have been nominated alot, but clearly the Cinematography in Life of Pi is far better then any of the nominees; it should and will win.

Feb 22 - 01:02 PM

David Czebieniak

David Czebieniak

boycotting...hmmm. that's an idea...if my choices don't win, I was thinking about stomping my feet & holding my breath...perhaps a boycott is the correct thing to do......sheeeesh.

Feb 22 - 07:21 PM

Edwin Arauz

Edwin Arauz

I think Emmanuelle Riva will win Best Actress. Also Cristoph Waltz name is already on that Oscar

Feb 21 - 07:33 PM

Max Folk

Max Folk

*Cannon not canon. Canon refers to a general law or principle. Cannons blow stuff up.

Feb 21 - 08:36 PM

Sebastian O.

Sebastian Ochoa

What exactly are you referring to?

Feb 23 - 06:38 AM

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