Academy Awards 2014 Predictions: Who is Going to Win?

It's 2014, and the annual awards season is on. With the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards behind us, we're armed and ready to predict the winners of the biggies―the Academy Awards. This Buzzle article has more.
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Academy awards predictions for 2014
Uncle Oscar needs a walking stick!

With the average age of an Academy voter being in the range of 62, it's no surprise that history and virtue (12 Years a Slave) score way ahead of groundbreaking VFX (Gravity) and debauchery (American Hustle).
There's no Tom Hanks for Saving Mr. Banks (or Captain Philips). But yes, there's Jonah Hill (for playing Jonah Hill) in The Wolf of Wall Street. Hmm ... strange are the ways of the Academy Awards, isn't it?

But we're not trying to make sense out of the nominations here; wouldn't that take endless hours? All we are doing is putting up a list of our favorites, and we've even added a slight Academy-styled eccentricity to it. Of course, voting for the awards will take place somewhere around mid-February, and the ceremony itself is scheduled to take place on March 2nd. Each year, once the nominations are out, movie fans from the general public as well as the media outlets begin frenzied speculations regarding the winners of popular categories (excluding the technical awards). So, for now, here's a list of who we think will win the Oscars in 2014.

Best Picture
12 Years a Slave

Okay, so year after year, we see a big and upbeat movie pitted against a smaller one mostly based on history. This time around, it's American Hustle and 12 Years a Slave playing these parts. Interestingly, anything upbeat and entertaining has never been able to beat history and staidness in the Academy's mind. Which is precisely the reason why 12 Years a Slave has a greater chance of nailing the biggie.

Best Director
Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave

Steve McQueen

We're placing our money on Steve McQueen, but the odds are slightly in favor of Alfonso Cuarón.

The director of the movie which wins the Best Picture stands a fair chance of winning. But there are exceptions too. Don't we all know how Ben Affleck got Argo'd last year? So this time, Steve McQueen may just be the first black director to win the coveted trophy. But if Oscar predictability is to be believed, Alfonso Cuarón may just slip in by a whisker with his fabulous creation, Gravity.

Best Actor
Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club

Matthew McConaughey

Chiwetel Ejiofor and Leonardo DiCaprio are no match for Matthew McConaughey this year.

With a long-standing chick flick career behind him, Matthew McConaughey has come into his element of late, delivering a sterling performance in Dallas Buyers Club. And though he does stand a good chance at the Oscars, he is in excellent company, with Chiwetel Ejiofor in 12 Years a Slave, and this-is-my-fourth-nomination-without-a-win, Mr. Leonardo DiCaprio himself.

Best Actress
Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine

Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett all the way, but with a tiny glimmer of hope for Sandra Bullock.

Multiple Best Actress awards are a rarity in Oscarland, unless you're Katharine Hepburn. So while Sandra Bullock was awesome in Gravity, she ain't no Ms. Hepburn by a long shot. Cate Blanchett in Blue Jasmine may just elbow her out, especially if we are to consider the results of the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards. She seems to be on a roll, this awards season.

Best Supporting Actor
Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club

Jared Leto

Jared Leto seems like a safe bet, with his closest contender being Michael Fassbender.

Michael Fassbender was in top form in 12 Years a Slave. But Jared Leto's been on an awards sweeping spree with his performance in Dallas Buyers Club. His performance as a transgender AIDS patient, Rayon, involved a massive physical transformation―losing more than 30 pounds, and spending much of his time in high heels and makeup. All this good work resulted in a performance so sublimely sensitive that it gained admiration from all quarters.

Best Supporting Actress
Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle

Jennifer Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence or Lupita Nyong'o? It's 50-50 right now.

If you'd ask me, this is the category which will see one of the closest battles ever fought at the Oscars. It's Lupita Nyong'o vs. Jennifer Lawrence. 12 Years a Slave vs. American Hustle. Jennifer managed to bag the Golden Globe, whereas Lupita took home the SAG Award, with both performances wowing us alike. Both performances cannot be pitched against one another; they come from entirely different worlds. Jennifer's Roselyn in American Hustle is fiery one moment, vulnerable the other, and makes the shift convincingly. Lupita Nyong'o plays the tortured, yet miraculously whimsical slave Patsey, 'with an air of loftiness that neither labor nor lash could rid her of'. Who'll grab the Oscar? Hard to tell.

Best Original Screenplay
David O. Russell and Eric Singer, American Hustle

Tough call, again. The ones that look rock solid are David O. Russell and Eric Singer for American Hustle, Woody Allen for Blue Jasmine, and Bob Nelson for Nebraska. We're putting our money on American Hustle, but the Academy sure can spring a surprise.

Best Adapted Screenplay
John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave

John Ridley for 12 Years a Slave. No questions asked.

Best Animated Feature
Frozen

It's not been one of the best years for animation, and the Academy nominations do substantiate this notion. Hayao Miyazaki's The Wind Rises and Disney's Frozen are the only ones that look promising, with the latter probably having a slight edge.

So, these were our predictions for this year's Academy Awards; we'll of course, have to wait until March 2 to find out for real.
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Published: January 23, 2014
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