It might seem a little too early to be talking about the 2020 awards season, but with so many incredible films already making waves (and plenty more to come in the next month), our TV sets are practically vibrating with Oscars buzz already. And, if you fancy yourself something of a gambling man, then you might be looking for a handful of hot tips to place your bet on this awards season.
Fortunately for you, our friends at bookmaker Fitzdares have done the hard work of crunching the numbers and offered up their guide to the pictures and performances tipped for serious success at the Oscars next year. Here, Joe Hodgson of the Fitzdares Times shares his invaluable insights.
A passion project long in the making, The Irishman saw Scorsese reunite with Robert De Niro for their ninth collaboration — alongside Al Pacino, Joe Pesci and Stephen Graham. And, while this film (thanks to its veritable galaxy of Hollywood stars) will no doubt go down as one of 2019’s most important pieces of cinema, its significance does not begin and end with a cracking 3 hours and 29 minutes of entertainment — it also wins the unofficial award of being the year’s most stylish.
Coming in with the top odds for Best Picture, Joe explains, “Its pioneering use of digital de-ageing could act as a hook to ensnare potential Academy voters.” However, he notes that the extremely long running time and starkly white male-heavy cast may well work against it — as may the fact that it is a Netflix release.
- The Irishman 2/1
- Marriage Story 4/1
- Joker 5/1
- Once Upon A Time in Hollywood 7/1
- 1917 4/1
According to Joe, the Best Actress statuette appears to already have Renée Zellweger’s name etched upon it — which must be mighty dispiriting news for her fellow potential nominees. Her performance in Judy – as Judy Garland – transcends the rainbow, leaving the competition all the way back in Kansas.
Should anyone’s pleas be answered, however, Joe advises taking an outside gamble by backing Lupita Nyong’o and her critically-acclaimed performance in Us. The ever-brilliant Scarlett Johansson might also be in the running, with the release of Marriage Story just around the corner.
- Renee Zellwegger 8/11
- Scarlett Johansson 4/1
- Charlize Theron 5/1
- Cynthia Erivo 6/1
- Saoirse Ronan 8/1
If the predicted surge of The Irishman transpires, then Robert de Niro could well wind-up back among the Lead Actor nominees (for the first time since Cape Fear in 1992). Also in the running, Adam Driver should improve upon last year’s Best Supporting Actor nomination on the back of his turn in Marriage Story.
Antonio Banderas’ odds are looking fairly healthy for his turn in Pain & Glory, and don’t be too befuddled if Adam Sandler unexpectedly gate-crashes the nominations party for his role in Uncut Gems. However, having already achieved cult-like status and smashed box office records — it could well be the Joker himself, Joaquin Phoenix, who gets the last laugh.
- Joaquin Phoenix 4/11
- Adam Driver 4/1
- Robert De Niro 8/1
- Edward Norton 9/1
- Antonio Banderas 9/1
Best Director is another category looking good for The Irishman, as Joe explains, “This is Scorsese’s 25th film as director – which is a jolly nice number for an anniversary celebration.” It certainly does seem fitting that Scorsese could scoop this coveted prize for his return to the genre with which he has become synonymous. Should he and his film score the evening’s heftiest statues, Joe reminds us it will become the first ever non-studio Best Picture Oscar winner.
The legendary Sam Mendes is also in the running — and really knows how to end a decade on a high note. 20 years ago, he made his feature film directorial debut with American Beauty, which went on to win the Best Picture Oscar, scoring Best Director for Mendes — the most recent director to prevail for a debut. Now, he’s back with his World War I epic 1917, which would give him the longest gap between two wins.
- Martin Scorsese 5/4
- Quentin Tarantino 10/3
- Sam Mendes 11/4
- Bong Joon Ho 5/1
- Noah Baumbach 7/1
Best Supporting Roles...
However, as Joe rightly points out, the Best Supporting categories are where the real A-list parties are happening this year. In the actor’s category the likes of Brad Pitt (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood), Tom Hanks (A Beautiful Day in the Neighbourhood), Al Pacino (The Irishman), Anthony Hopkins (Two Popes), and Willem Dafoe (The Lighthouse) could be propping up the bar in the early hours next February.
Over in the Best Supporting Actress lounge, prepare yourself for a round of louche cocktails with Jennifer Lopez (Hustlers), Laura Dern (Marriage Story), Maggie Smith (Downton Abbey), and about half of the cast of Greta Gerwig’s highly anticipated new version of Little Women.
Anyone know how we can score tickets to that after party?
Looking for more award-winning TV and film? Here’s what you should be watching on Netflix this December…