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Mr Firth's Speech and Other 2011 Oscar Predictions


By RA - Posted on 27 February 2011

Last year I did pretty well with my Oscar predictions when not deviating too far from the bookies' favourites. You know they do their homework. Longshots very rarely make it.

Based on that line of reasoning, this year's voting slip seems to have come with one field already filled in. Colin Firth has already won the Best Actor. Okay, there is the formality of anguished close-ups as the golden envelope is tremulously ripped open, and Mr Firth must give his victory speech (what are the odds that he will be tongue-tied like the regal character of his film?), but the little statuette is as good as his.

Colin Firth had his first nomination last year for his bereaving, gay professor in A Single Man. So he's got the momentum of a recent nom in the same category, and the feel-good, royal character always helps in La-la land. And he's Colin Firth. If he's doesn't win, it will be the biggest British upset in recent Oscar history. Bookmaker Paddy Power is even offering to refund losing bets on the Oscars 2011 if Firth doesn't win for Best Actor.

It will also probably mean that the film doesn't manage to convert its numerous nominations into a haul of Oscars. I'm assuming that the King's Speech will do well in my choice of winners. It has a total of 12 nominations for (take a breath) aforementioned Lead Actor, Geoffrey Rush as Actor in a Supporting Role,  Helena Bonham Carter for Actress in a Supporting Role, Art Direction, Cinematography, Costume Design, Directing, Film Editing, Original Score, Best Picture,  Sound Mixing, and Original Screenplay.

Looking at the bookies' picks there's still many close calls: Best Picture seems to be a coin toss between Social Network and The King's Speech from among the 10 nominations. You can get 100/1 odds on Danny Boyle's 127 Hours and Winters Bone. True Grit is languishing at 40/1 - probably a good outsider to have a punt on here. As I suggested last year, grittiness does well in the Oscars. This year it will probably be of the regal determination kind that scores well. As a consolation David Fincher will win the director award for the Social Network.

I'd like to see Banksy turn up at the Osars in a monkey outfit, but when I weigh up the two favourites in the documentary category, Through the Gift Shop and Inside Job, there's no doubt in my mind which was more powerful and memorable.

I'd also like to see the beautiful, Edinburgh-set animation The Illusionist earn an Oscar, but the mega-watt energy, and home advantage, that Woody, Buzz, and co. bring from Toy Story III, will likely blow this more modest creation out of the water. Yes, it is a trequel, but Academy members are probably passed caring about that kind of thing, certainly for the animation category.

The Fighter's Melissa Leo and Christian Bale are the bookies' favourites in the supporting roles awards. I'm inclinded to favour unconventional speech therapist Geoffrey Rush for the King's Speech and True Grit's youthful Hailee Steinfeld.

In the Foreign Language category, Biutiful seems to have the momentum and buzz. But I'm going with Denis Villeneuve's turbulent, Middle Eastern, family drama Incendies.

Here's the Golden Globe Award Winners

  • Best Picture (Drama): Social Network
  • Best Director: David Fincher (Social Network)
  • Best Actor: Colin Firth (King's Speech)
  • Best Actress: Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
  • Best Comedy or Musical: Kids Are All Right
  • Best Actor in in Comedy or Musical: Paul Giamatti, Barney's Version
  • Best Actress in Comedy or Musical: Annette Bening, Kids Are All Right
  • Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo, The Fighter
  • Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, The Fighter
  • Best Animated Feature: Toy Story 3
  • Best Foreign Film: In A Better World (Denmark)
  • Best screenplay: Aaron Sorkin (Social Network)
  • Best Original Score: Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross in Social Network
  • Best Original Song: "You Havent Seen the Last of Me" Burlesque

Here's how bookie William Hill see the Oscars going at time of writing:

  • Best Picture: The King's Speech
  • Best Director: David Fincher (Social Network)
  • Best Actor: Colin Firth
  • Best Actress: Natalie Portman
  • Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale
  • Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo
  • Best Animated Feature: Toy Story III
  • Best Documentary - Inside Job
  • Best Foreign Language - Biutiful
  • Best Adapted Screenplay - Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)
  • Best Original Screenplay - David Seidler (King's Speech)
  • Best Visual Effects - Inception

Here's how bookie Paddy Power sees the Oscars going at time of writing:

  • Best Picture: The King's Speech
  • Best Director: David Fincher (Social Network)
  • Best Actor: Colin Firth
  • Best Actress: Natalie Portman
  • Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale
  • Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo
  • Best Animated Feature: Toy Story III
  • Best Foreign Language Film: Biutiful
  • Best Documentary: Inside Job

My predictions *

  • Best Film: The King's Speech
  • Best Director: David Fincher
  • Best Actor: Colin Firth
  • Best Actress: Natalie Portman
  • Best Supporting Actor: Geoffrey Rush
  • Best Supporting Actress: Hailee Steinfeld
  • Best Animated Feature: Toy Story 3
  • Best Cinematography: True GriRoger Deakins (9 nominations! Time for a first win.)
  • Best Documentary: Inside Job
  • Best Art Direction: "King's Speech", Eve Stewart (Production Design); Judy Farr (Set Decoration)
  • Best Costume Design: Jenny Beavan, King's Speech
  • Best Original Score: Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross in Social Network
  • Best Original Song: We Belong Together, “Toy Story 3" Music and Lyric by Randy Newman
  • Best Foreign Language Film: Incendies (Canada)
  • Best Film Editing: Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter, Social Network
  • Best Sound Editing: Richard King, Inception
  • Best Sound Mixing: The King's Speech, Paul Hamblin, Martin Jensen and John Midgley
  • Best Visual Effects: Inception, Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb
  • Best Adapted Screenplay - Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)
  • Best Original Screenplay - David Seidler (King's Speech)

 * I don't have a crystal ball