As the precursor awards continue unabated until Oscar night, I’m going to be providing a weekly update highlighting the films that have won and lost momentum through the precursor awards (and in some cases other outside influences).
While there weren’t many groups to announce this last week, they were some big ones with the Directors Guild of America being the biggest prize of all. The Annie Awards, American Society of Cinematographers, Cinema Audio Society, and USC Scripter awards all trying to redefine the races over which their groups have influence.
But, before we get into this week’s winners and losers, let’s take a look at what’s coming up this week:
Tuesday, Jan. 28 – Costume Designers (Awards) (Official)
Wednesday, Jan. 29 – Visual Effects Society (Awards) (Official)
Wednesday, Jan. 29 – Cesar Awards (Nominations) (Official)
Thursday, Jan. 30 – London Critics (Awards) (Official)
Thursday, Jan. 30 – Casting Society (Awards) (Unconfirmed)
Thursday, Jan. 30 – Academy Awards Voting Begins (Official)
Saturday, Feb. 1 – Art Directors (Awards) (Official)
Saturday, Feb. 1 – Writers Guild (Awards) (Official)
Sunday, Feb. 2 – British Academy (Awards) (Official)
Sunday, Feb. 2 – Online Film & TV Association (Awards) (Official)
1917 was a huge winner this past week with big wins from the Directors Guild of America and the American Society of Cinematographers. The former will prove to be a good omen in its push towards Best Picture while the latter might help boost Roger Deakins to a second Oscar after having been denied so many times before.
Klaus shocked just about everyone when it swept the Annie Awards, winning every single award for which it was nominated and, with I Lost My Body, leaving Disney and Dreamworks in the dust with Frozen II picking up the only two non-Netflix prizes in the feature film category. While that might not mean an Oscar win is coming, it’s definitely a boost.
Ford v Ferrari is a winner this week only because 1917 was not nominated at the Cinema Audio Society. Had it been, it might not have won at all, but this gives it a small boost into the Oscars even if it will ultimately lose.
Little Women also won a fairly big prize this weekend when it took home the USC Scripter prize for best screenplay adaptation. If it goes on to win the Writers Guld prize, then Gerwig would be sitting in a strong position to win the Oscar as well.
Parasite needed the DGA prize to win the Oscar for Best Picture. While it’s still possible to carry that off, its calculations for pulling off an upset become incredibly complicated.
Toy Story 4 is thought to be the Oscar frontrunner, but the Annie Awards stomped on that status by completely ignoring the Pixar film. While that wound might not be fatal, bleeding out before the Oscars is still possible.
The Irishman had one chance to re-frame the narrative of the Adapted Screenplay race by winning over Little Women. That didn’t happen. The number of paths Netflix’s tentpole film has towards any Oscars at all have been severely diminished. This might just be another Gangs of New York kind of year for Scorsese.
Jojo Rabbit also needed the USC prize to stay in the narrative. That film also has few places where it could pull off an upset. Losing the DGA also didn’t help, but director Taika Waititi wasn’t nominated at the Oscars, so that loss wasn’t terribly injurious.