Predictions: 2013 Oscar nominees

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This Thursday brings my annual morning of being excited and nervous and telling myself I won’t yell at the TV. And then doing it anyway.

That’s right, it’s the Oscar nominations, for a change announced before the Golden Globes, not after.  Before Thursday’s big announcements, allow me to make some predictions for the major categories. Note: I think it’s boring to just go with all of the conventional, majority predictions. Better to be risky and wrong than safe and right, since on some level it’s just a lot of group-think anyway.

Best Picture
“Argo”
“Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Django Unchained
 “Les Miserables
“Life of Pi”
 “Lincoln”
“The Master”
“Silver Linings Playbook”
Skyfall
“Zero Dark Thirty”

Thinking/hoping “The Master” has enough people who love it to rack up the necessary votes—kind of like “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” did last year, despite the fact that movie’s horrible. If not, I think “Amour” is more likely than “Moonrise Kingdom,” unfortunately.

Best Actor
Bradley Cooper, “Silver Linings Playbook”
Daniel Day-Lewis, “Lincoln”
John Hawkes, “The Sessions”
Joaquin Phoenix, “The Master”
Denzel Washington, “Flight”

There could be enough “Les Miserables” backlash to keep Hugh Jackman out. I say that puts Cooper in. Fingers crossed for Phoenix, who indeed may be edged out by Jean Valjean.

Best Actress
Jessica Chastain, “Zero Dark Thirty”
Jennifer Lawrence, “Silver Linings Playbook”
Marion Cotillard, “Rust and Bone”
Emmanuelle Riva, “Amour”
Naomi Watts, “The Impossible”

The Oscars are often stupid/frustrating. I fear they will overlook Quvenzhane Wallis’ incredible performance in “Beasts of the Southern Wild.” This way if I’m wrong, I’ll be thrilled. If anyone else gets in, it’s Helen Mirren for “Hitchcock,” not Rachel Weisz for “The Deep Blue Sea.”

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams, “The Master”
Ann Dowd, “Compliance”
Sally Field, “Lincoln”
Anne Hathaway, “Les Miserables”
Helen Hunt, “The Sessions”

Would love to see Samantha Barks (who’s better than Hathaway) in there for “Les Miserables.” Hoping people have the good sense to avoid Nicole Kidman in “The Paperboy.” We could see Judi Dench in here for “Skyfall,” but many people love Dowd’s (lead) turn in “Compliance,” and this category has a history of long shots, so I’m going with it.

Best Supporting Actor
Robert De Niro, “Silver Linings Playbook”
Leonardo DiCaprio, “Django Unchained”
Philip Seymour Hoffman, “The Master”
Tommy Lee Jones, “Lincoln”
Matthew McConaughey, “Magic Mike”

Christoph Waltz deserves it more than DiCaprio, but sometimes voters make up their minds too early. (Again, this is one where I’ll be happy if I’m wrong.) Really rooting for McConaughey to get in. He’s much more deserving than Alan Arkin (“Argo”) or the strong-but-not-award-worthy Javier Bardem (“Skyfall”). Sadly, chances are slim for Dwight Henry (“Beasts of the Southern Wild”). If not McConaughey, then I say Jason Clarke (“Zero Dark Thirty”) sneaks in.

Best Director
Ben Affleck, “Argo”
Katheryn Bigelow, “Zero Dark Thirty”
Michael Haneke, “Amour”
Ang Lee, “Life of Pi”
Steven Spielberg, “Lincoln”

It would be nice if the aforementioned “Master” supporters (yes, I’m one of them, but I don’t get to vote) will also give Anderson a much-deserved Best Director nomination. Yeah, yeah, probably not. That spot will more likely go to Quentin Tarantino (“Django Unchained”) or, my pick, Haneke, who has a big wave of support behind his arguably least-shocking film, the still-upsetting “Amour” (which will probably be in for Best Picture if it’s in for Best Director.) Certainly wouldn’t complain if David O. Russell (“Silver Linings Playbook”) or Tom Hooper (“Les Miserables”) got in instead of Lee, but I’m rooting for Anderson.

Watch Matt on “You & Me This Morning,” Friday at 6:55 a.m. on WCIU, the U

mpais@tribune.com

 

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