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The 2006 Oscars

Mister Nizz

... Well, since I did this last year I might as well try to pick them again this year.

Best Film
Brokeback Mountain, Diana Ossana and James Schamus
Capote, Caroline Baron, William Vince, and Michael Ohoven
Crash, Paul Haggis and Cathy Schulman
Good Night, and Good Luck., Grant Heslov
Munich, Kathleen Kennedy, Steven Spielberg, and Barry Mendel

PREDICTION: This is the year of the PCALF (politically correct alternative lifestyle film). The real race is between CAPOTE and BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN. I'm going to buck the trend (so to speak) and pick CAPOTE, because of the strong performance of Mr. Phillip Seymour Hoffman.

Best Foreign Language Film
La Bestia nel cuore / Don’t Tell (Italy)
Joyeux Noël / Merry Christmas (France)
Paradise Now (Palestine)
Sophie Scholl – Die Letzten Tage / Sophie Scholl – The Final Days (Germany)
Tsotsi (South Africa)

PREDICTION: I've seen only one, and that's DIE LETZTEN TAGE, so my bet is on PARADISE NOW, for political reasons.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Capote
Terrence Howard, Hustle & Flow
Heath Ledger, Brokeback Mountain
Joaquin Phoenix, Walk the Line
David Straitharn, Good Night, and Good Luck.

PREDICTION: Again, it may be the year of the PCALF but in a race between Ledger and Hoffman, Hoffman wins by three lengths. Ledger may be "daring", but he's not that great of an actor. Not that THAT means much when it comes to the Oscar nod.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Judi Dench, Mrs. Henderson Presents
Felicity Huffman, Transamerica
Keira Knightley, Pride & Prejudice
Charlize Theron, North Country
Reese Witherspoon, Walk the Line

PREDICTION: Hmmm. Dame Judi Dench, A Desperate Housewife, the skinny woman from Pirates of the Carribean, The winner from last year in another unattractive country role in a movie nobody went to see, and the lady from Legally Blonde. A lot of people are talking up Witherspoon for this, I'll predict Dench just because she's so much better than all those other tarts.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
George Clooney, Syriana
Matt Dillon, Crash
Paul Giamatti, Cinderella Man
Jake Gyllenhaal, Brokeback Mountain
William Hurt, A History of Violence

PREDICTION: Gyllenhall. The PCALF factor. 'Nuff said.

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Amy Adams, Junebug
Catherine Keener, Capote
Frances McDormand, North Country
Rachel Weisz, The Constant Gardener
Michelle Williams, Brokeback Mountain

PREDICTION: Hard one to call, mostly cuz nobody cares much. I'll roll the dice and add the PCALF modifier to get Michelle Williams.

Best Achievement in Directing
George Clooney, Good Night, and Good Luck.
Paul Haggis, Crash
Ang Lee, Brokeback Mountain
Bennett Miller, Capote
Steven Spielberg, Munich

PREDICTION: My guess is either Miller or Spielberg, my personal taste leaning towards Spielburg. However, more likely Miller (not just PCALF, but there's the "we've given Spielburg a gazillion of these things already" factor at play here).

Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen
Crash, Paul Haggis and Bobby Moresco; story by Paul Haggis
Good Night, and Good Luck., George Clooney and Grant Heslov
Match Point, Woody Allen
The Squid and the Whale, Noah Baumbach
Syriana, Stephen Gaghan

PREDICTION: Wow, I've seen all of one of those. Throwing a dart at the screen: Clooney and Heslov, for variety. Critics hate Oscar Sweeps, it means less to write about.

Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published
Brokeback Mountain, Larry McMurtry and Diana Ossana
Capote, Dan Futterman
The Constant Gardener, Jeffrey Caine
A History of Violence, Josh Olson
Munich, Tony Kushner and Eric Roth

PREDICTION: I'd LIKE it to be A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE (because it's a Cronenburg) but it will most likely be BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN.

Best Animated Feature Film
Hauru no ugoku shiro / Howl’s Moving Castle, Hayao Miyazaki
Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride, Tim Burton and Mike Johnson
Wallace and Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Nick Park and Steve Box

PREDICTION: Howl's Moving Castle, if there's any justice. VERY hard to call, as both Miyazaki AND Burton AND Park have received awards before.

Best Achievement in Cinematography
Batman Begins, Wally Pfister
Brokeback Mountain, Rodrigo Prieto
Good Night, and Good Luck., Robert Elswit
Memoirs of a Geisha, Dion Beebe
The New World, Emmanuel Lubezki

PREDICTION: Tempting to shout the PCALF factor here, esp. because of all the scenery shots. But I think it will go to either GEISHA or GOOD NIGHT, for variety.

Best Achievement in Editing
Cinderella Man, Mike Hill and Dan Hanley
The Constant Gardener, Claire Simpson
Crash, Hughes Winborne
Munich, Michael Kahn
Walk the Line, Michael McCusker


Best Achievement in Art Direction
Good Night, and Good Luck., Art Direction: Jim Bissell; Set Decoration: Jan Pascale
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Art Direction: Stuart Craig;
Set Decoration: Stephenie McMillan
King Kong, Art Direction: Grant Major; Set Decoration: Dan Hennah and Simon Bright
Memoirs of a Geisha, Art Direction: John Myhre; Set Decoration: Gretchen Rau
Pride & Prejudice, Art Direction: Sarah Greenwood; Set Decoration: Katie Spencer

PREDICTION: KING KONG, though there's room for an upset by GEISHA and/or PRIDE AND PREJUDICE.

Best Achievement in Costume Design
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Gabriella Pescucci
Memoirs of a Geisha, Colleen Atwood
Mrs. Henderson Presents, Sandy Powell
Pride & Prejudice, Jacqueline Durran
Walk the Line, Arianne Phillips

PREDICTION: PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. Historical Costume dramas tend to do well.

Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score
Brokeback Mountain, Gustavo Santaolalla
The Constant Gardener, Alberto Iglesias
Memoirs of a Geisha, John Williams
Munich, John Williams
Pride & Prejudice, Dario Marianelli

PREDICTION: Dart at the screen time. BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN.

Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Song“In the Deep” from Crash, Music by Kathleen “Bird” York and Michael Becker; Lyric by Kathleen “Bird” York
“It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp” from Hustle & Flow, Music and Lyric by Jordan Houston, Cedric Coleman, and Paul Beauregard
“Travelin’ Thru” from Transamerica, Music and Lyric by Dolly Parton

PREDICTION: It's Hard out Here for a Pimp, a bunch of critics showing how cool they are.

Best Achievement in Makeup
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Howard Berger and Tami Lane
Cinderella Man, David Leroy Anderson and Lance Anderson
Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith, Dave Elsey and Annette Miles

PREDICTION: Narnia, by a country mile.

Best Achievement in Sound
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,
Terry Porter, Dean A. Zupancic and Tony Johnson
King Kong, Christopher Boyes, Michael Semanick, Michael Hedges and Hammond Peek
Memoirs of a Geisha, Kevin O’Connell, Greg P. Russell, Rick Kline and John Pritchett
Walk the Line, Paul Massey, D.M. Hemphill and Peter F. Kurland
War of the Worlds, Andy Nelson, Anna Behlmer and Ronald Judkins

PREDICTION: Who knows when you get down to all the technical categories? I'm guessing... WAR OF THE WORLDS, merely because I thought the Tripods were soooo creepy sounding.

Best Achievement in Sound Editing
King Kong, Mike Hopkins and Ethan Van der Ryn
Memoirs of a Geisha, Wylie Stateman
War of the Worlds, Richard King

PREDICTION: KING KONG, but if the King wins the one above, then WAR OF THE WORLDS. They hate to repeat themselves.

Best Achievement in Visual Effects
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,
Dean Wright, Bill Westenhofer, Jim Berney and Scott Farrar
King Kong, Joe Letteri, Brian Van’t Hul, Christian Rivers and Richard Taylor
War of the Worlds, Dennis Muren, Pablo Helman, Randy Dutra and Daniel Sudick

PREDICTION: Actually, this is going to be hard to guess. The Cruiseberg WotW was quite striking, visually. And Jackson can incorporate CGI rather well. However, I'm going out on a limb and guessing NARNIA.

Best Documentary, Features
Darwin’s Nightmare, Hubert Sauper
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, Alex Gibney and Jason Kliot
La Marche de l'empereur / March of the Penguins, Luc Jacquet and Yves Darondeau
Murderball, Henry-Alex Rubin and Dana Adam Shapiro
Street Fight, Marshall Curry

PREDICTIONS: MARCH OF THE PENGUINS... it's a feel-good-family-hit, even if it bored the hell out of me.

Best Documentary, Short Subjects
The Death of Kevin Carter: Casualty of the Bang Bang Club, Dan Krauss
God Sleeps in Rwanda, Kimberlee Acquaro and Stacy Sherman
The Mushroom Club, Steven Okazaki
A Note of Triumph: The Golden Age of Norman Corwin, Corinne Marrinan and Eric Simonson

PREDICTION: Dunno, Don't care.

Best Short Film, Animated
Badgered, Sharon Colman
The Moon and the Son: An Imagined Conversation, John Canemaker and Peggy Stern
The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello, Anthony Lucas
9, Shane Acker
One Man Band, Andrew Jimenez and Mark Andrews

PREDICTION: Hard to guess when you've seen only one of them. SO naturally, I'll take a stab at it. Shane Acker.

Best Short Film, Live Action
Ausreisser / The Runaway, Ulrike Grote
Cashback, Sean Ellis and Lene Bausager
The Last Farm, Rúnar Rúnarsson and Thor S. Sigurjónsson
Our Time Is Up, Rob Pearlstein and Pia Clemente
Six Shooter, Martin McDonagh

PREDICTION: Dunno, haven't seen ANY of these, but I like the German Game DIE AUSREISSER, so I'm giving it to the film of the same name.

Honorary Academy Award: Robert Altman

Bravo, Bob!!!