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Who will take home the Oscars?

Ed predicts the winners of Sunday's Awards

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La La Land will likely take home plenty of awards
  • La La Land will likely take home plenty of awards

The Hollywood Employee Recognition Awards air this Sunday night at 8:30 PM on ABC. Jimmy Kimmel is hosting, so the jokes should be pretty good. Expect to see a handful of winners played off by the orchestra when their acceptance speeches run past the deadline. This will be followed by at least two long comedy bits – one involving an uncomfortable-looking celebrity in the audience — that fall flat while eating up precious time that could have been used by the winners.

We'll also hear several heartfelt speeches by performers convinced their golden oratory will be so stirring that it will cause Donald Trump to resign and turn over control of the nation to Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, or Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

NUVO will list all the nominees online, but we've prepared a selection of the categories you're probably most interested in here.


Best Picture:
Arrival, Fences, Hacksaw Ridge, Hell or High Water, Hidden Figures, La La Land, Lion, Manchester by the Sea, Moonlight

The best movie I saw in 2016 is Hell or High Water. The action-packed contemporary western/heist story is entertaining, exciting, stirring, and even thought-provoking. I've seen it several times and it holds up beautifully. I predict that, twenty years from now, this is the 2016 film that will be the most celebrated.

It doesn't have a prayer.

Hidden Figures is the biggest hit of the nine nominees. Moonlight and Manchester by the Sea have racked up numerous awards by critics and other groups. But La La Land has mowed down almost everything in its path. Sure, the Screen Actors Guild failed to nominate it for their equivalent of Best Picture. Sure, people are getting tired of the movie winning over and over. But it's a peppy, creative musical about aspiring actors and musicians set in Los Angeles. Most of the Academy members work or live in La La Land and this flick is going to clean up tonight.

Should Win: Hell or High Water
Will Win: La La Land


Best Actor:
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea; Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge; Ryan Gosling, La La Land; Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic; Denzel Washington, Fences

I hope Ryan Gosling is practicing his good sport smile, because the La La Land Victory Train is going to briefly jump the track when it comes to his category. Casey Affleck has received a number of awards for his fine work in Manchester by the Sea, but Denzel Washington took the prize in the recent Screen Awards Guild Awards for his big performance in Fences. I think it's going to happen again, making Denzel a two-time Oscar Best Actor winner.

Should Win/Will Win: Denzel Washington


Best Actress:
Isabelle Huppert, Elle; Ruth Negga, Loving; Natalie Portman, Jackie; Emma Stone, La La Land; Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins

The race here is between the highly respected Isabelle Huppert, who was stunning in Paul Verhoeven's Elle, and Emma Stone, who co-stars in La La Land. Sorry, Isabelle.
Should Win: Isabelle Hubbert
Will Win: Emma Stone


Best Supporting Actor:
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight; Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water; Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea; Dev Patel, Lion; Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals

Dev Patel was great in Lion, but Mahershala Ali was even better in Moonlight. He will win easily.

Should Win/Will Win: Mahershala Ali

Best Supporting Actress:
Viola Davis, Fences; Naomie Harris, Moonlight; Nicole Kidman, Lion; Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures; Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea

Viola Davis shouldn't be in this category. She gave a lead, not supporting, performance. If she'd been in the Best Actress category I think she would have beat Emma Stone. But they didn't, and she's in this category, and she will win it.
Should Win/Will Win: Viola Davis

Best Director:
Damien Chazelle, La La Land; Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge; Barry Jenkins, Moonlight; Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea; Denis Villeneuve, Arrival

Barry Jenkins took pain and made poetry in Moonlight and this would be the perfect spot to thank him and apologize for passing his film over for La La Land. If he wins, get ready for a possible Best Picture upset. That won't happen, though, and Damien Chazelle will receive another trophy for his crowded mantel-place.
Should Win: Barry Jenkins
Will Win: Damien Chazelle

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Arrival, Eric Heisserer; Fences, August Wilson; Hidden Figures, Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi; Lion, Luke Davies; Moonlight, Barry Jenkins, story by Tarell Alvin McCraney

Fences wisely stuck close to its stage play source. Good decision, but it will cost them this prize. Moonlight deserves it, and they're going to get it.
Should Win/Will Win: Moonlight


Best Original Screenplay:
20th Century Women, Mike Mills; Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan; La La Land, Damien Chazelle; The Lobster, Yorgos Lanthimos; Efthimis Filippou, Manchester by the Sea

Have you SEEN The Lobster? Despite losing air towards the end, the film puts the “original” back into “Best Original Screenplay. It's not going to win, though, and my cherished Hell or High Water is out of luck too. I think Manchester by the Sea will get its reward here, unless the La La Land streak is even bigger than I anticipate.

Should Win: The Lobster
Will Win: Manchester by the Sea


Best Animated Feature:
Kubo and the Two Strings, Travis Knight and Arianne Sutner; Moana, John Musker, Ron Clements and Osnat Shurer; My Life as a Zucchini, Claude Barras and Max Karli; The Red Turtle, Michael Dudok de Wit and Toshio Suzuki; Zootopia, Byron Howard, Rich Moore and Clark Spencer

Kubo and the Two Strings is a dark horse contender, but the detailed cityscapes of Disney's Zootopia will prevail.

Should Win: Kubo and the Two Strings
Will Win: Zootopia


Best Documentary Feature:

13th, Ava DuVernay, Spencer Averick and Howard Barish; Fire at Sea, Gianfranco Rosi and Donatella Palermo; I Am Not Your Negro, Raoul Peck, Remi Grellety and Hebert Peck; Life, Animated, Roger Ross Williams and Julie Goldman; O.J.: Made in America, Ezra Edelman and Caroline Waterlow

OJ: Made in America is outstanding, but the eight hour documentary was produced by ESPN for its TV series 30 for 30, where it aired to great acclaim. Yes, it played at Sundance. Yes, it played briefly in theaters in New York and L.A. to qualify for Oscar contention, but I maintain that it's a TV show and does not belong here. Want to argue the point? Get back to me after you spend 8 hours in a theater watching a movie.

Should Win: Not OJ: Made in America
Will Win: OJ: Made in America, resoundingly


Best Foreign Language Film:

A Man Called Ove (Sweden)
Land of Mine (Denmark)
Tanna (Australia)
The Salesman (Iran)
Toni Erdmann (Germany)

Toni Erdmann is well liked, and the fact that a big budget American remake of it is in the works could influence voters, but filmmaker Asghar Farhadi (A Separation) is so well respected that his drama The Salesman will take the trophy.

Should Win: Toni Erdmann
Will Win: The Salesman

Best Cinematography:
Arrival, Bradford Young
La La Land, Linus Sandgren
Lion, Greig Fraser
Moonlight, James Laxton
Silence, Rodrigo Prieto

I could argue for Lion or Arrival, but La La Land has this sewn up.

Should Win/Will Win: La La Land


Best Costume Design:
Allied, Joanna Johnston
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Colleen Atwood
Florence Foster Jenkins, Consolata Boyle
Jackie, Madeline Fontaine
La La Land, Mary Zophres

A case could be made for Jackie, but La La Land will scoop this one up.
Should Win: Jackie
Will Win: La La Land

Best Film Editing:
Arrival, Joe Walker
Hacksaw Ridge, John Gilbert
Hell or High Water, Jake Roberts
La La Land, Tom Cross
Moonlight, Nat Sanders and Joi McMillon

The war scenes in Hacksaw Ridge were expertly assembled, and the action scenes in Hell or High Water were exciting and easy to follow visually, but the editing of the musical numbers in La La Land will earn it another win.
Should Win: Hell or High Water
Will Win: La La Land

Best Makeup and Hair:
A Man Called Ove, Eva von Bahr and Love Larson
Star Trek Beyond, Joel Harlow and Richard Alonzo
Suicide Squad, Alessandro Bertolazzi, Giorgio Gregorini and Christopher Nelson
sexy Harley Quinn or Star Trek Beyond for the sexy alien with the groovy lined white face?
Should Win/Will Win: Star Trek Beyond

Best Original Score:
Jackie, Mica Levi
La La Land, Justin Hurwitz
Lion, Dustin O’Halloran and Hauschka
Moonlight, Nicholas Britell
Passengers, Thomas Newman

Should Win/Will Win: La La Land

Best Original Song:
“Audition (The Fools Who Dream),” from La La Land - Music by Justin Hurwitz; lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
“Can’t Stop the Feeling,” from Trolls - Music and lyrics by Justin Timberlake, Max Martin and Karl Johan Schuster
“City of Stars,” from La La Land - Music by Justin Hurwitz; lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
“The Empty Chair,” from Jim: The James Foley Story - Music and lyrics by J. Ralph and Sting
“How Far I’ll Go,” from Moana - Music and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda

Should Win/Will Win: La La Land

Best Production Design:
Arrival, Patrice Vermette, Paul Hotte
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Stuart Craig, Anna Pinnock
Hail, Caesar!, Jess Gonchor, Nancy Haigh
La La Land, David Wasco, Sandy Reynolds-Wasco
Passengers, Guy Hendrix Dyas, Gene Serdena

Will Win: La La Land


Best Sound Editing:
Arrival, Sylvain Bellemare
Deep Water Horizon, Wylie Stateman and Renee Tondelli
Hacksaw Ridge, Robert Mackenzie and Andy Wright
La La Land, Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
Sully, Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman

La La Land could take this, but I think Mel Gibson's war scenes will get a nod here.

Should Win/Will Win: Hacksaw Ridge

Best Sound Mixing:
Arrival, Bernard Gariepy Strobl and Claude La Haye
Hacksaw Ridge, Kevin O’Connell, Andy Wright, Robert Mackenzie and Peter Grace
La La Land, Andy Nelson, Ai-Ling Lee and Steve A. Morrow
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, David Parker, Christopher Scarabosio and Stuart Wilson
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, Greg P. Russell, Gary Summers, Jeffrey J. Haboush and Mac Ruth

Will Win: La La Land

Best Visual Effects:
“Deepwater Horizon,” Craig Hammack, Jason Snell, Jason Billington and Burt Dalton
“Doctor Strange,” Stephane Ceretti, Richard Bluff, Vincent Cirelli and Paul Corbould
“The Jungle Book,” Robert Legato, Adam Valdez, Andrew R. Jones and Dan Lemmon
“Kubo and the Two Strings,” Steve Emerson, Oliver Jones, Brian McLean and Brad Schiff
“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” John Knoll, Mohen Leo, Hal Hickel and Neil Corbould

Should Win: Doctor Strange
Will Win: The Jungle Book


Best Animated Short:
Blind Vaysha,Theodore Ushev
Borrowed Time, Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj
Pear Cider and Cigarettes, Robert Valley and Cara Speller
Pearl, Patrick Osborne
Piper, Alan Barillaro and Marc Sondheimer

Will Win: Piper

Best Documentary Short:
4.1 Miles, Daphne Matziaraki
Extremis, Dan Krauss
Joe’s Violin, Kahane Cooperman and Raphaela Neihausen
Watani: My Homeland, Marcel Mettelsiefen and Stephen Ellis
The White Helmets, Orlando von Einsiedel and Joanna Natasegara

Will Win: The White Helmets


Best Live Action Short:
Ennemis Interieurs, Selim Azzazi
La Femme et le TGV, Timo von Gunten and Giacun Caduff
Silent Nights, Aske Bang and Kim Magnusson
Sing, Kristof Deak and Anna Udvardy
Timecode, Juanjo Gimenez

Will Win: Ennemis Interieurs

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