Oscars 2011 Forecast: The Ones to Watch

It’s the eve of Oscar Night and we’ve pretty much exhausted any and all conversation of the current nominees, but never fear because after tomorrow night, we will close the door on this awards season and the viscous cycle will begin again.

From Sundance, Tribeca and Cannes, all the way down to Venice and Toronto and everything in between, we are in the midst of another awards season storm.

Here’s what The Real Reel’s forecast looks like:

Black Swan

Directed by Darren Aronofsky

Synopsis: A thriller that hones in on the relationship between a veteran ballet dancer and a rival. (Imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders

Darren Aronofsky (Best Director): I’ve read the script to this one and this film is classic Darren.

Natalie Portman (Best Actress): This will be one of two films released in 2010 for her, the other is the medieval stoner comedy “Your Highness”.  Her last nomination was in 2005 for Closer but I think her versatility will be in her favor come nomination time, granted she knocks this performance out the park.

Winona Ryder & Mila Kunis (Supporting Actress): Their scenes are scattered about in the film but they are very memorable.

Darren Aronofsky & Mark Heyman (Best Original Screenplay) You read the synopsis and I’ve read the script, it’s pretty darn original.

Love & Other Drugs

Directed by: Edward Zwick

Synopsis: A salesman competes in the cutthroat world of pharmaceuticals to hawk a male performance enhancement drug. Based on Jamie Reidy’s memoir “Hard Sell: The Evolution of a Viagra Salesman.” (Imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Anne Hathaway (Best Actress): Early reviews have already pegged Hathaway to earn her 2nd nomination in 2 years.  Her character in the film has early onset Parkinson’s and from what I’ve read Annie knocks it out of the park. Not to mention, she’s naked for half of the film.


Directed by: Christopher Nolan

Synopsis: In a world where technology exists to enter the human mind through dream invasion, a single idea within one’s mind can be the most dangerous weapon or the most valuable asset. (Imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Inception (Best Picture): This is probably one of the most anticipated films of the year and with the 10 best picture nominations presumably returning next year, I’m predicting that Nolan will finally get retribution for “The Dark Knight” snub last year.

Christopher Nolan (Best Director & Original Screenplay): He’s directed some AMAZING films, from “Memento” to “The Dark Knight” and I’m banking on “Inception” to be his ticket in.

Leonardo DiCaprio (Best Actor): With the success of Shutter Island and the inevitable success of Inception, you can bet that Leo will be at the Academy Awards, especially to make up for the “Revolutionary Road” snub. Yes Academy, we still remember!!

Marion Cottilard & Joseph Gordon-Levitt (Supporting Actress & Actor): Not too sure how large their roles are but you never want to count either of these two out.

The Social Network

Directed by: David Fincher

Synopsis: A story about the founders of the social-networking website, Facebook (imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Justin Timberlake (Supporting Actor): I know what you’re thinking but I’ve read the script, and if he executes his role on-screen as well as it is written on paper, he definitely has the possibility of contending next season.

Jesse Eisenberg (Actor): Same goes for this guy, his character comes across so well on paper , that if executed correctly, he could nab a nomination. Not to mention his film “Holy Rollers” did extremely well at Sundance. Jesse is the real deal.

Aaron Sorkin (Adapted Screenplay): Like I said, I’ve read the script and it’s awesome. I finished it in one sitting.


Directed by: Clint Eastwood

Synopsis: A supernatural thriller centered on three people — a blue-collar American, a French journalist and a London school boy — who are touched by death in different ways. (imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Clint Eastwood (Best Director): It wouldn’t be awards season nowadays without a Clint Eastwood film. He’s been snubbed to years in a row (Gran Torino & Invictus), so maybe 2011 is his year.

127 Hours

Directed by: Danny Boyle

Synopsis: A mountain climber becomes trapped under a boulder while canyoneering alone near Moab, Utah and resorts to desperate measures in order to survive. (imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Danny Boyle (Best Director): Proving his versatility for material, ‘127 Hours’ will be Boyle’s first film since ‘Slumdog Millionaire.”  And judging by the premise and the cast, this film has contender written all over it.

James Franco (Best Actor):  Considering he was forgotten about for his work in “Milk”, James Franco could very well contend the greater category of Best Actor. He is also starring in “Your Highness” along with Portman, so his name will be on the tip of everyone’s tongue come awards season.

Simon Beaufoy & Danny Boyle (Original Screenplay): Beaufoy knocked it out the park with the adaptation of “Slumdog”, so I can only imagine how his mind works with an original piece.

True Grit

Directed by: The Coen Brothers

Synopsis: A tough U.S. Marshal helps a stubborn young woman track down her father’s murderer. (imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

The Coen Brothers (Best Director): They unfortunately didn’t make the cut this year, but with the expected success of the Christmas Day released remake and the success of “A Serious Man”, their nomination is almost a given.

The Kids Are All Right

Directed by: Lisa Cholodenko

Synopsis: Two children conceived by artificial insemination bring their birth father into their family life (imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Julianne Moore & Annette Benning (Best Actress): Both received exceptional reviews from Sundance for their performance and the film has been picked up by Focus Features. I expect one of them to get a Lead Actress nod while the other settles for Supporting.

Mark Ruffalo (Supporting Actor): Same as with Leo, the success of “Shutter Island” and his own film “Sympathy for Delicious” being well received at Sundance, could be just the push he needs for a nomination.

Stuart Blumberg & Lisa Cholodenko (Original Screenplay): Come on, you gotta admit, the story is pretty creative.

Betty Anne Waters

Directed by: Tony Goldwyn

Synopsis: A working mother puts herself through law school in an effort to represent her brother, who has been wrongfully convicted of murder and has exhausted his chances to appeal his conviction through public defenders (imdb.com)

Forecasted contenders:

Hilary Swank (Best Actress): She missed the mark this year with “Amelia” but judging by early reviews of the film, she could very well find herself in contention for her 3rd Oscar. Wouldn’t that be fun? Annette Benning vs. Hilary Swank, round 2.

Sam Rockwell (Best Actor): Yes, after years of character roles, Sam Rockwell could finally get his first Oscar nomination. I’ve read nothing but great things from early reviews of his performance.

Juliette Lewis (Supporting Actress): If nominated, it would be her first in 20 years. Like both of her co-stars, nothing but the highest of praises about her performance.

And there you have it!! That’s how I’m forecasting the 2011 Awards Season. Of course there will be some surprises and upsets, but for now I think we’ve got a good bunch of performances to look forward to.

photo by: Aceshowbiz.com


3 Responses to “Oscars 2011 Forecast: The Ones to Watch”

  1. Where is Never Let Me Go? Early indications are that it features three outstanding performances from its leads and might earn second nods for Keira Knightley and Carey Mulligan and a first nod for Andrew Garfield.

    • Never let me goes release date has been moved to march making it a contender for next year but not a very viable one.


  1. Oscar 2012 Forecast: The Ones to Watch | The Real Reel - February 26, 2011

    […] Take a look at how The Real Reel fared with last year’s forecast. […]

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