Oscar Predictions by Stan Robinson
One of the 20 Best Film Critics in America makes his predictions for the 2014 Academy Awards®.
The History of the “Oscar®”
By Stan Robinson
The Oscar® statue is movie’s greatest prize, as the motion picture industry prepares for its biggest awards presentation: Annual Academy Awards®, commonly known as the Oscars®. This year, on Sunday March 2, 2014 on ABC-TV, the 86th Annual Academy Awards® will be presented with Ellen DeGeneres returning as host. The viewership for the broadcast is expected to surpass the 40 million viewers of last year’s telecast. Because of the wide range of films, both big and small, and the slate of 10 best picture nominees (up from five nominees since 2010), anticipation is high as speculation and predictions abound.
The American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, formed in 1927, is a professional honorary organization of motion picture artists and craftsmen, with the primary goal to advance the arts and science of motion pictures.
The gold statue depicts a knight holding a crusader’s sword, standing on a reel of film with five spokes, signifying the original branches of the Academy: Actors, Writers, Directors, Producers, and Technicians. The award is 8.5 pounds in weight, 13.5 inches tall, and cast in Britannia metal and plated in 24-karat gold, with a round, black marble base.
When the statute was created in 1928, it was referred to as the Academy Award of Merit. Several stories lay claim to naming the statue Oscar. The one that the Academy supports is then Academy librarian Margaret Herrick remarked that the statue looked a lot like her Uncle Oscar (Pierce). The name stuck, and the Academy staff began referring to the statue as ‘Oscar’.
Writing about Katherine Hepburn’s Best Actress win in 1934, Hollywood columnist Sidney Skolsky used the name ‘Oscar’ in his column, and it seemed to stick after that, although the Academy didn’t recognize the name ‘Oscar’ officially until 1939.
Early on award winners were announced before the ceremony allowing newspapers to have the winners listed in late-night editions. However, newspapers began printing the Oscar edition earlier in the evening, and by 1940, ceremony attendees could pick up a paper and find out who won while on their way to the ceremony.
Perhaps sensing that this early notification would bring an end to people actually attending, and to add the suspense that we now associate with the ceremony, the Academy began keeping results in the sealed envelopes we know today. Now, when the Oscar presenter says, “and the Oscar goes to…” we’re all finding out the winners at the same time.
On Oscar® night, millions of people throughout the world will watch the show on ABC-TV. The Oscars® is an American social occasion, the place where the popular and powerful, walk the ‘red carpet’, and go to see and be seen!
Here is some historical date for Oscar viewership on ABC over the past decade or so, along with the Best Picture winner for each year:
2013 – 40.3 million viewers ~ ‘Argo’
2012 – 39.3 million viewers ~ ‘The Artist’
2011 – 37.9 million viewers ~ ‘The Kings Speech’
2010 – 41.3 million viewers ~ ‘The Hurt Locker’
2009 – 36.3 million viewers ~ ‘Slumdog Millionaire’
2008 – 32.0 million viewers ~ ‘No Country for Old Men’
2007 – 40.2 million viewers ~ ‘The Departed’
2006 – 38.9 million viewers ~ ‘Crash’
2005 – 42.1 million viewers ~ ‘Million Dollar Baby’
2004 – 43.5 million viewers ~ ‘Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King’
2003 – 33.0 million viewers ~ ‘Chicago”
2002 – 41.8 million viewers ~ ‘A Beautiful Mind’
2001 – 42.9 million viewers ~ ‘Gladiator’
Stan Robinson – One of the 20 Best Film Critics in America, a retired First Assistant Director (as of October 2008) has 22 years of film production experience on feature films, documentaries, and music videos.
Currently, Stan is a ‘board of directors’ member of the “Phoenix Film Critics Society” the official association that represents the movie reviewing press members in the State of Arizona, whose movie reviews appear in the print, broadcast mediums, and on-line. http://www.PhoenixFilmCriticsSociety.org
In February 2010, Stan Robinson was chosen as one of the “20 Best Film Critics in America”, NCM Media Network’s national campaign. Stan Robinson’s film production credits available at IMDB.com
Born in Chicago, Illinois, his career in film production started after film school and an internship at NBC-TV News Chicago, which led to a permanent position as a News Film Editor in 1972.
After leaving NBC-TV, a film production assignments in Chicago include “The Blue Brothers”, and “Touch and Go” among others. In 1986, Stan relocated to Central Florida and worked as an Assistant Director, and Transportation Captain on numerous film productions. Projects include the movies “The Adventures of Huck Finn”, “Dead Presidents,” “The Dream Trap,” “To Die For, and many, many other films.
Outlets for movie reviews, celebrity interviews, and motion picture industry articles:
Print – AZ Weekly Entertainment Magazine; Phoenix, AZ
Print – Resident News ‘Newsletter’ National, 21 states & Canada
On-line – “Screen Scene” Movie Newsletter www.ScreenScene.org
On-line – Movie Reviews, Interviews, Articles Examiner.com/National
Stan Robinson’s 86th Academy Awards® Predictions – 2014
The 86th Academy Awards® on Sunday March 2, 2014 on ABC-TV are one of the most watched events world wide, and movie reviewers from around the world will give their predictions on who will come away with the coveted Oscar®. The viewer’s worldwide for last year’s telecast topped 40.3 million viewers.
Here’s a look at the major categories and my predictions with my full list below.
Who will win – ‘Gravity’ ~ with strong ‘buzz’ from winning many of the craft awards and many of those members are Academy® voters, this look’s to be the favorite.
Who should win – ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ doing a period film where one has to capture the spirit, mood, and the look of a point in time in the past, this one provides a stark view of the 70s and the ‘aides-phobia’ of the time.
Best Actor in a Leading Role:
Who will win – Matthew McConaughey presented a character both emotionally and physically depicting the plight of someone who is terminally ill in ‘Dallas Buyers Club, with the will of a powerful lesson to never give up, for an inspiring performance. A Screen Actors Guild winner points to a win.
Best Actor in a Supporting Role:
Who will win – Jared Leto is virtually unrecognizable from his usual male persona as the transvestite aides victim in ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ who was completely comfortable in his choice of sexuality while dealing with the gravity of his illness. Screen Actors Guild winner for his performance.
Best Actress in a Leading Role:
Who will win – Cate Blanchett won the Screen Actors Guild award for her very good performance in ‘Blue Jasmine’ and just as history has demonstrated, the winner of the SAG Award is almost a sure win for an Oscar.
Who should win – Meryl Streep gave an absolutely stunning portrayal in August: Osage County, totally against type to her many character portrayals of past films, to create another memorable character on her long list of outstanding performances.
Best Actress in a Supporting Role:
Who will win – Lupita Nyong’o who also won the Screen Actors Guild Award for best supporting actress, has the ‘buzz’ for a win for ’12 years a Slave’, with a high percentage of their winners and Oscar®.
Who should win – A Tie with a very close race with outstanding performances by both Jennifer Lawrence in ‘American Hustle’ and Julia Roberts for an against type performance in ‘August: Osage County. This would be my official ‘Tie’ for Oscar® history in this category.
Who will win – Alfonso Cuaron for ‘Gravity’ demonstrated the skill and intuitive challenge of presenting a film with outer space as his set and only two actors to present a powerful story of man’s will to survive. Winning the Directors Guild Award is almost a shoe-in, in its 67 year history only around 8 times did the DGA winner, NOT go on to win the Oscar®.
Who will win – ‘Gravity’ has a lot of ‘buzz’ with its visual style depiction of what it would be like to be in outer space with the wonders, amazements, and, the dangers of that virtually ‘new frontier’ as mankind continues to explore its vastness. Craft award winner from the American Society of Cinematographers.
Best Animated Feature Film:
Who will win – ‘Frozen’ with its outstanding appeal to both the young and the old, exceptional musical songs and mesmerizing animation is a very strong contender for the Oscar® with three craft award wins.
Who should win – ‘The Wind Rises’ as its appeal is in its simplicity as it presents a very appreciative factor for adults who find the historical journey of one man’s quest to fly and design aircraft fascinating.
Full predictions list
Best Picture: ‘Gravity’
Actor in a Leading Role: Matthew McConaughey, ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ – SAG winner
Actor in a Supporting Role: Jared Leto, ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ – SAG winner
Actress in a Leading Role: Cate Blanchett, ‘Blue Jasmine’ – SAG winner
Actress in a Supporting Role: Lupita Nyong’o, ’12 Years a Slave’ – SAG winner
Animated Feature Film: ‘Frozen’ – Four Craft award wins
Art Direction: ‘Gravity’ – Art Directors Guild winner
Cinematography: ‘Gravity’ – American Society of Cinematographers winner
Costume Design: ‘12 Years a Slave’ – Costume Designers Guild winner
Directing: Alfonso Cuaron, ‘Gravity’ – Directors Guild of America winner
Documentary Feature: ‘The Square’ – Directors Guild of America winner
Documentary Short Subject: ‘Karma Has No Walls’
Film Editing: ‘American Hustle’ – American Cinema Editors winner
Foreign Language Film: ‘The Great Beauty’
Makeup: ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ – Make Up Artists & Hair Stylists Guild winner
Music (Original Score): ‘The Book Thief’ – John Williams
Music (Original Song): ‘Let it Go’ – Frozen
Production Design: ‘Gravity’ – Art Directors Guild Winner
Short Film (Animated): ‘Get a Horse!’
Short Film (Live Action): ‘Helium’
Sound Editing: ‘Gravity’ – Motion Picture Sound Editors winner
Sound Mixing: ‘Gravity’ – Cinema Audio Society winner
Visual Effects: ‘Gravity’ – Visual Effects Society winner
Writing (Adapted Screenplay): ‘Captain Phillips’ – Writers Guild of America winner
Writing (Original Screenplay): ‘Her’ – Writers Guild of America winner