Oscar History

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Entries in Punditry (67)


Final Oscar Predictions

A shorter version of this article was originally shared on Towleroad

With the 90th Academy Awards coming tomorrow another tradition must precede it:  predicting the Oscar winners! If you're a frequent reader of The Film Experience, you've probably been following this race for an entire year and now it's about to end. Those who only follow in the last month have a lot of catching up to do (I have a friend here in NYC doing that Best Picture marathon -- all nine movies).  If you'd like to keep up more emphatically next year please sign up for our mailing list as we will begin weekly newsletters shortly after the Oscars with exclusive content.


But this season's race ends Sunday night. Hopefully without a snafu on the epic scale of last year’s Envelope Gate when La La Land was read out as Best Picture when Moonlight had actually won. Can you believe that Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway are returning for a do over? (Or do you think that news is smoke and mirrors to hide another surprise in store?)

I am sad to share that there’s a possibility that all of the best “Best Pictures” (Get Out, Lady Bird, and Call Me By Your Name) go home empty-handed but what else is new? Not to be pessimistic but Oscar night is often a come down from the multiple-winners joy of nomination morning. Or to quote the great Stephen McKinley Henderson in Lady Bird...


The high probability of wins you don't like is why you should always attend or throw a fun Oscar party and try not to take it too seriously. Enjoy the gowns and the speeches and celebrate every film and celebrity you love as they're paraded before you on Hollywood's High Holy Night. 

Let’s call each individual Oscar race after the jump. Links will take you to the Oscar chart in question...

Click to read more ...


Final Balloting is Underway...

Members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (that's AMPAS to you!) can now cast their votes on the Oscar winners in all categories. They have one week to do so with ballots closing on February 27th. The long stretch between nominee and winner voting should ostensibly give them time to screen all the movies they may have been late in getting to and to really suss out their views of "Best" in each category, but strangely this waiting period doesn't usually result in the game-changing upheavals, contrarian impulses, or reconsiderations that you would think would be possible. That's especially true when the precursors march forward in total agreement (as recently discussed in the BAFTA winners post). 

So while we can't bring you DRAMA in these last 12 days pre-Oscar (del Toro, McDormand, Oldman, Janney and Rockwell are all as locked as locked can be) we hope to find other ways to entertain you as we count down and wrap up the film year in these next two weeks. 

Nevertheless if you have a miracle request / FYC to Academy voters put it out their into the universe (i.e. the comments) in a positive 'look at this beauty' way.


Blueprints: The Nominees for Best Original Screenplay

With the Oscar nominations finally announced, Jorge takes a deep dive into the nominees for Best Original Screenplay.

We all rose to the crack of dawn on Tuesday morning to hear Tiffany Haddish give the most upbeat and energetic nomination announcements in recent memory. One of the best picked categories was Best Original Screenplay. Even though there were no real surprises, it showcases a range of diversity not often seen: among the nominees is a Pakistani, a Mexican, a black man, and three women. Three of those people were also nominated for Best Director.

So let’s do a quick roundup on the nominees, their writers, their past history with Oscar, and what scene might have helped land them that nomination... 

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Globe Predictions Anyone?

by Nathaniel R

A few days back David Poland asked the Gurus of Gold to predict the Globes and I became obsessed with the notion that I, Tonya would be the surprise heavyweight. I was pretty much alone in that with nearly the entire group thinking Lady Bird's got this in the bag (a couple of people think Get Out). I think my I Tonya prediction was more a product of my fear since the wildly positive response to the movie surprised me and sent me back for a second viewing which only strengthened my resolve that it's a) not good and b) highly problematic...

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All Oscar Charts Updated

Wanting to while away a few minutes between Christmas feasts, clean up, or socializing? Check out the fully updated Oscar predictions. A gain here or there for Get OutThree Billboards, Victoria & Abdul, Mudbound, and Wonder a big net loss for Darkest Hour and various tinkering. Meanwhile Oscar voting doesn't even start until January 5th so here comes the last big push for campaigns to get those screeners watched and the movies talked about!

Would Be Totally Confusing If It Were Still 5 Only, Right?: Picture
Will Hurt From the Inevitable Snubs: Director and Original Screenplay
Outcome Still Feels Quite Cloudy: Foreign Film, Adapted Screenplay, Animation and Docs
Locked But For "Never Underestimate Judi Dench" Factor: Actress
Precursors Shook 'Em Up: ActorSupporting Actor, Supporting Actress
Anyone's Guess: Visuals and Aurals


Does Woody Harrelson spell trouble for Willem Dafoe?

by Nathaniel R

A police chief and a hotel manager, both overwhelmed and sympathetic and arguably the moral center of their movies.

It's been a long time since we had a double-nomination situation in Best Supporting Actor. The last time it happened was 26 years ago when Ben Kingsley and Harvey Keitel were nominated together for Bugsy (1991) - a curious event since Keitel was so much stronger in another Oscar nominated classic from that year. Given the rise of Woody Harrelson with that Screen Actor's Guild nomination and the overall assumed strength of Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri in the Best Picture race, it could well happen again. His co-star Sam Rockwell, already felt locked and loaded for the same movie in a (somewhat) larger part. 

But does this spell trouble for Willem Dafoe in The Florida Project? Consensus was beginning to form that Dafoe, who became famous in the mid 80s and has worked ever since, would easily walk away with the Oscar this year...

Click to read more ...


"Shape of Water" way way out front at the Critics Choice Awards

by Nathaniel R

As always, full disclosure: I am a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association. So this award announcement is always filled with anxiety for me because I want to be heard. We all want to be heard. Nevertheless most of the longer shots I rallied for didn't make it, he said, pushing away a single tear. The Shape of Water led with 14 nominations... and it was so far out front it nearly doubled the nominations afforded to its nearest rivals (a clump of them jammed together with 8 nominations each:  Call Me By Your Name, Lady Bird, Dunkirk, and The Post).

As ever I'm disappointed that the nominations double so heavily as "general Oscar pundit predictiveness" but here they are in their fullness with very immediate and perhaps too impulsive commentary after the jump.

Click to read more ...


Every Oscar Chart Updated!

Oscar voters don't begin voting for quite some time still but precursors season is off like a shot: we've already had the Gotham Awards, the Spirit nominations, the NBR and NYFCC announcements and the Directors Guild of America got their nomination ballots this week, too. They generally come close to matching Oscar's eventual list and in ye olden times of 5 wide categories they were considered the single best predictor for the eventual Best Picture nominees. We pray they choose wisely this year. It'd be so great to have a female director in the shortlist this year, wouldn't it? (hint hint

In case you've missed various posts like Adapted Screenplay confusion, the diverse director field, and the deep best actress & supporting actress bench, please to know that every Oscar prediction chart has been revamped. Some new text, some fresh images, and definite shifts in ranking. Read them and weep or rejoice depending on whether your favorites are predicted or not.