For our first Rundown article, we look at one of two musical categories. After the jump, you’ll find our winner and runner-up predictions for Best Original Score as well as general commentary about the race. Thursday, we’ll cover the other musical category: Best Original Song.
Best Original Score
- 1917 (WL O) (TB O) (TL O)
- Joker (PP O)
- Little Women
- Marriage Story
- Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
- 1917 (PP O)
- Joker (WL O) (TB O) (TL O)
(color and symbol key at bottom of page)
Wesley Lovell: This is a tough category this year with four titles that could all claim the prize unless sentiment wins out, then there are five titles that can win. John Williams isn’t likely to win on his 52nd nomination for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker unless sentiment reins. The other four are all possible. Joker has earned numerous accolades while 1917, Little Women, and Marriage Story are all well regarded scores. In the end, I suspect that 1917 will build towards juggernaut status and will sweep this award along, but I won’t ever count out Joker.
Peter J. Patrick: This seems to be between first-time nominee Hildur Guonadottir, the brilliant Icelandic composer of Joker, who also scored 2019’s Chernobyl for HBO and veteran Thomas Newman who received his fifteenth nomination for 1917, who has yet to win. Either one would be a great choice, but I think the momentum is with Guonadottir after her unexpected Golden Globe win.
Tripp Burton: This is a category filled with some heavy hitters, including multi-winners Randy Newman (who has actually never won in this category, only song) and Alexandre Desplat, as well as all-time winner John Williams. In the end, though, it will come down to two Best Picture heavyweights: 1917, with a score by 15-time nominee and 0-time winner Thomas Newman, and Joker, by newcomer Hildur Guonadottir, who would become the first female to win this category. I’m guessing Newman finally gets his due, but wouldn’t be surprised with either of them.
Thomas La Tourrette: I think this will come down to either the string heavy work in Joker or the more cerebral score of 1917. I have not seen 1917 yet, but I hear that it works incredibly well with the movie. I do not remember the score from Joker, though I heard that Hildur Guonadottir’s work inspired others on the set. Little Women had a very nice and fitting score, but it stands little chance of winning. Randy Newman’s work on Marriage Story seemed a little pretentious and I do not see it having a chance. At one point it seemed John Williams might win for his latest Star Wars entry, as it would be a nice career honor. He continues to be the most Oscar-nominated living person, but the last time he won was in 1993 for Schindler’s List. Now it just feels that his latest nomination has been lost in the talk of other movies, so I doubt he could win. I may change my mind after seeing 1917, but at this point I think it will win. There may, or may not, be a backlash against Joker. If there is, then this is one award it might not win. So I will go with 1917.
Appears on Four Lists
Appears on Three Lists
Appears on Two Lists
Wesley Lovell Peter Patrick Tripp Burton Thomas LaTourrette
[New] = New Prediction
[Return] = Prior Prediction Returning
(O) = Original Prediction
(R) = Rundown Series