2021 oscars predictions
Opinion Pieces/Other Writing

Man vs Bunny: The 2021 Oscar Winner Predictions

A man starts a competition with his rabbit to see who can predict the Oscars better.

The 2021 Oscar nominations were just announced a few hours ago so the internet is abuzz with chatter about who was snubbed, who is deserving and who will win. So you might be wondering why Flickmetic is the best website to go to for even more noise concerning the biggest–and longest–night in Hollywood? The simple answer is because Flickmetic is doing something a little bit different than you might otherwise have expected.

Sure, there are still predictions about who is going to take home the bacon on April 25th when the 2021 Oscars airs. But do these other articles have a human vs a member of the lagomorph family? Nope! That makes this article infinitely cuter than every other predictions article. So it is I (Tyler), squaring off against the true love of my life, Castle–also known as “The Best Bunny Critic in the Business.”

So here’s what we’re going to do. I’m going to post the list, taken from IndieWire (with minor alterations) then not only am I going to make my prediction and give my general opinion, but I am also going to refer to the rabbit, who will manifest his own forecast. Castle won’t give an explanation because he likes to be mysterious; he will just throw out his pick and then let you fill in the blanks. And I know what you’re thinking: isn’t this a way for me to make two predictions? I assure you that there is a system in place for the rabbit’s prognostication.

This is legitimately my first time seeing the list so every reaction is a genuine one. It’s kind of like a play-by-play in a sense because I don’t know what’s actually coming after each category, so I may make an observation only to be incorrect later on. I also won’t pretend to have seen every single flick mentioned, or heard every song, but I will make note of that where applicable or at least when it’s necessary. It usually won’t be.

Best Picture
The Father
Judas and the Black Messiah
Promising Young Woman
Sound of Metal
The Trial of the Chicago 7

Tyler’s prediction: Nomadland. It has a serious chance because it was so beloved not only as a movie as a whole, but from a directorial and acting perspective as well. I’m assuming both Chloé Zhao and Frances McDormand get some love, at least in the form of nominations. But we will see as we continue. I would have actually considered Promising Young Woman, not because I love it (I liked it), but because it seems of the time. Ultimately though, we can have a female empowerment narrative while embracing something like Nomadland, which is just better all around. While Nomadland is not my favourite movie of the year–it ranks highly, however–I wouldn’t mind seeing it sweep everything because it’s deserving.

Castle’s prediction: Mank.

Best Director
Thomas Vinterberg for Another Round
David Fincher for Mank
Lee Isaac Chung for Minari
Chloé Zhao for Nomadland
Emerald Fennell for Promising Young Woman

Tyler’s prediction: Chloé Zhao, but this one is tough. I didn’t adore Mank nearly as much as the Academy seems to, or critics for that matter, but it’s hard to deny the directorial prowess. I mean, it’s David Fincher. However, Nomadland is better directed and it checks some boxes. Zhao was the second best directorial effort this year according to my own list so I’m not trying to say that it’s only because she’s both Asian and a woman, but it’s definitely worth mentioning. I also just figured out that she’s the first person of colour to get a nomination in this category so if that’s true, that’s a really hard story to pass on when the flick itself is so damn good. Let’s see what the bun says.

Castle’s prediction: Emerald Fennell.

Best Actor
Riz Ahmed in Sound of Metal
Chadwick Boseman in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Anthony Hopkins in The Father
Gary Oldman in Mank
Steven Yeun in Minari

Tyler’s prediction: Chadwick Boseman. I gave Riz Ahmed the best actor award in my own awards because I count body of work and he was splendid in two flicks this year. I believe that even his performance in just Sound of Metal outshines Boseman’s final role but it’s close. But that’s the thing, it’s Boseman’s final role and it’s an absolute doozy. He’ll win this and there’s no hate associated with that. Take it away, bun.

Castle’s prediction: Gary Oldman.

Clearly on the Mank train.

Best Actress
Viola Davis in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
Andra Day in The United States vs. Billie Holiday
Vanessa Kirby in Pieces of a Woman
Frances McDormand in Nomadland
Carey Mulligan in Promising Young Woman

Tyler’s prediction: Frances McDormand. Maybe it’s bias–although it’s worth nothing that I love Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom as well–but I have a lot of faith in Nomadland’s chances. Viola Davis is a gem but McDormand this year is hard to beat. Mulligan was quite enjoyable and unfortunately I didn’t see The United States vs Billie Holliday or Pieces of a Woman, though the buzz for both is considerably less, so I feel secure enough to say that it won’t be either of them.

Castle’s prediction: Andra Day.

Best Supporting Actor
Sacha Baron Cohen in The Trial of the Chicago 7
Daniel Kaluuya in Judas and the Black Messiah
Leslie Odom Jr. in One Night in Miami
Paul Raci in Sound of Metal
Lakeith Stanfield in Judas and the Black Messiah

Tyler’s prediction: Daniel Kaluuya but aaaaaaaaaargh. So here’s an insider secret for the 2021 Flickmetic Movie Awards (yes, we’re talking about them already): I count Judas and the Black Messiah as a film released this year and I haven’t decided whether Stanfield or Kaluuya have the best performance in it. Powerhouses, the lot of ’em. So when I see this it makes me face my own mortality. But with that said, Kaluuya plays the charismatic leader and this is a performance I can see winning an Oscar, especially with the attention he has gotten.

Castle’s prediction: Paul Raci.

Best Supporting Actress
Maria Bakalova in Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
Glenn Close in Hillbilly Elegy
Olivia Colman in The Father
Amanda Seyfried in Mank
Youn Yuh-jung in Minari

Tyler’s prediction: Maria Bakalova. I haven’t seen Hillbilly Elegy or The Father and believe that Mank will be a case of many nominations (apparently) and few wins, though I could see it winning some of them for sure. I don’t know, it was fun seeing Bakalova burst on the scene and get all the accolades that she has. I can see her pulling this one off but maybe it’s a dark horse because Borat Subsequent Moviefilm is not exactly Mank, Minari or The Father.

Castle’s prediction: Amanda Seyfried.

Castle clearly thinks otherwise.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Sacha Baron Cohen and Co-Writers for Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
Florian Zeller and Christopher Hampton for The Father
Chloé Zhao for Nomadland
Kemp Powers for One Night in Miami
Ramin Bahrani for The White Tiger

Tyler’s prediction: Kemp Powers. Again, I haven’t seen The Father but in terms of screenplay I think One Night in Miami is the clear winner. The script is phenomenal. I’m not saying the script for Nomadland isn’t great, but it’s not where its greatest strengths are. One Night in Miami lives and dies with the dialogue, specifically, and it will be rewarded as such. I know The Father has gotten a lot of respect but it just doesn’t seem to be a frontrunner.

Castle’s prediction: Chloé Zhao.

Wait a second…

Best Original Screenplay
Will Berson, Shaka King, Keith Lucas, and Kenny Lucas for Judas and the Black Messiah
Lee Isaac Chung for Minari
Emerald Fennell for Promising Young Woman
Derek Cianfrance, Abraham Marder, Darius Marder for Sound of Metal
Aaron Sorkin for The Trial of the Chicago 7

Tyler prediction: Emerald Fennell. You know, I’m going off the rails with this one (I think?). While it’s tempting to give it to Aaron Sorkin, it’s important to note that while he gets nominated a lot, he doesn’t always win… contrary to what it feels like. I believe that Fennell’s outing shows the right amount of social commentary and cleverness in its writing to snag a victory. I won’t be surprised if I’m wrong.

Castle prediction: Lee Isaac Chung.

Best Animated Feature
Over the Moon
Shaun the Sheep Movie: Farmageddon

Tyler’s prediction: Over the Moon. I haven’t seen it but I originally wrote this:

Soul, while the real winner should be Wolfwalkers. I mean, look, it’s Pixar delivering a film with a diverse cast and doing it well. I got nothing but love for Soul even if I have some criticisms of it, but Wolfwalkers is special. I’m generally okay with Pixar dominance but not this year, please. With that said, Onward got slept on more than it should have–in part because that weird pandemic thing started–and I guess I slept on Shaun the Sheep.

– A younger and less intelligent me.

Then upon careful consideration I realized that I needed to ride the Over the Moon war wagon for the sake of bunnies everywhere. Bungee shoots beams out of her ears. So I’m dying on this hill. If Over the Moon doesn’t win, Castle and I riot.

Castle’s prediction: Over the Moon.

Best International Feature Film
Another Round
Better Days
The Man Who Sold His Skin
Quo Vadis, Aida?

Tyler’s prediction: Collective. Got to be honest, I’ve only seen Another Round and quite enjoyed it but I’ve seen no others so I’m just taking a stab in the dark. And that’s the best place to stab something.

Castle’s prediction: Another Round.

What does this say about my bunny?

Best Documentary
Crip Camp
The Mole Agent
My Octopus Teacher

Tyler’s prediction: Crip Camp. I know of this one! I also know that it got a lot of love upon release from those who saw it, and the subject matter is interesting. But in my heart I’m cheering for My Octopus Teacher because while I never got around to viewing it, I know it annoyed a small–but loud–group of people who seriously, and stupidly, thought that he was pounding out the octopus. Stop making things weird. But anyway, I could never relate to a movie where a human finds his true self because of a love for an animal. Heh…

Castle’s prediction: Crip Camp.

A consensus, finally!

Best Cinematography
Sean Bobbitt for Judas and the Black Messiah
Erik Messerschmidt for Mank
Dariusz Wolski for News of the World
Joshua James Richards for Nomadland
Phedon Papamichael for The Trial of the Chicago 7

Tyler’s prediction: Joshua James Richards. In the immortal words of Barrett from Final Fantasy 7, ”but you gotta understand that there ain’t no gettin’ offa this train we’re on, till we get to the end of the line.” This is the first one where I think, if Nomadland doesn’t win this is a travesty.

Castle’s prediction: Sean Bobbitt.

Best Costume Design
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

Tyler’s prediction: Emma. It seems like the type of flick that would win this sort of thing. It’s one of the things that stuck out most to me, not that I’m important at all.

Castle’s prediction: Mulan.

Best Film Editing
The Father
Promising Young Woman
Sound of Metal
The Trial of the Chicago 7

Tyler’s prediction: Promising Young Woman. Despite the flaws, the editing was not one of them.

Castle’s prediction: Nomadland.

Wait, I’m the one who is supposed to be all aboard the Nomadland train.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Hillbilly Elegy
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

Tyler’s prediction: Emma I’m out of my element here because I suck at style but I can see Emma sweeping these visual awards, honestly. It’s deserving of it.

Castle’s prediction: Mank.

Ahhh, balance has been restored to the Force.

Best Original Score
Da 5 Bloods
News of the World

Tyler’s prediction: Soul. It was tempting to give it to Minari but I think that while Minari was well-received, it’s going to be the case of a lot of nominations and few–if any–wins. A well-regarded Pixar movie about music featuring a black cast and powerful music will win this. And to be frank, it should.

Castle’s prediction: Da 5 Bloods.

No Castle! Bad boy! Oh, who am I kidding? You’re the best boy, even though you picked Da 5 Bloods.

Best Original Song
“Fight For You” from Judas and the Black Messiah
“Hear My Voice” from The Trial of the Chicago 7
“Husavik” from Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga
“lo Sì (Seen)” from The Life Ahead (La Vita Davanti a Se)
“Speak Now” from One Night in Miami

Tyler’s prediction: “Fight For You.” I’m not really sure and considered “Speak Now” but “Fight For You” has that kind of anthemic quality in its messaging. I mean, it has “fight” in the title. Though I suppose “Hear My Voice” has a sympathetic quality.

Castle’s prediction: “Hear My Voice.”

Best Production Design
The Father
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
News of the World

Tyler’s prediction: Tenet. For a second I thought this award was for the best sound design and I had a conniption when I saw Tenet, but I can give it props for its production design, sure. This was a hard call for me. During most of this article I go back and forth between personal taste and trying to get inside the head of the Academy, I believe this one is purely personal taste.

Castle’s prediction: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.

Best Sound
News of the World
Sound of Metal

Tyler’s prediction: Sound of Metal. This one has to be a certainty, doesn’t it? The sound is an integral character itself and the most driving factor towards the excellence of the flick. If Sound of Metal doesn’t win this then you might as well re-do the entire ceremony and just give this award to Tenet so, at the very least, the entire thing can just be insane. And kill me in the process.

Castle’s prediction: News of the World.

Best Visual Effects
Love and Monsters
The Midnight Sky
The One and Only Ivan

Tyler’s prediction: Tenet. I didn’t expect to be showering Tenet with gifts at the tail-end of this thing but here we are.

Castle’s prediction: Love and Monsters.

You know, he might be onto something. An underdog, I dig it.

Best Documentary (Short Subject)
A Concerto Is a Conversation
Do Not Split
Hunger Ward
A Love Song for Latasha

Tyler’s prediction: Colette.

Castle’s prediction: A Concerto Is a Conversation.

Best Short Film (Animated)
Genius Loci
If Anything Happens I Love You

Tyler’s prediction: Burrow.

Castle’s prediction: Burrow.

Best Short Film (Live Action)
Feeling Through
The Letter Room
The Present
Two Distant Strangers
White Eye

Tyler’s prediction: Two Distant Strangers.

Castle’s prediction: The Letter Room.

So what have we learned today, class? Well, hopefully that I am not a complete idiot and I get some of them right. But we also learned that the rabbit is a big fan of Mank. We will see you after the Oscars air and we will see who wins this epic battle.

He is gathering his riot gear already.

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