For Your Consideration: Our 2016 Oscar Predictions

We cast our ballot for this year's ceremony.

This year’s highly controversial Academy Awards ceremony is all set to go down on ABC on Sunday night, with the venerable Chris Rock acting as as host (and perhaps Jesus taking the wheel). It’s a notably competitive year, not necessarily because the films this year have been particularly stupendous, but because the best ones represented are somewhat evenly matched. The “frontrunners” are The Revenant and Spotlight, but there are cases to be made for other films being more likely and/or more deserving pretty much across the board. What will happen with George Miller and Mad Max: Fury Road is probably the most interesting race to watch, though, considering how unpredictable blockbusters usually are on Oscar night.

Unpredictable as everything may be, there are certain patterns to look out for, and some really fantastic films to weigh and consider. Thus, we’ve taken the liberty of laying down our picks—for what should win, and what will win. You can head down the red carpet with us below.


BEST PICTURE

The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Brooklyn
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Room
Spotlight

What Should Win: Spotlight
What Will Win: The Revenant

BEST DIRECTOR

Lenny Abrahamson, The Room
Alejandro Iñárritu, The Revenant
Adam McKay, The Big Short
Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Who Should Win: Alejandro Iñárritu, The Revenant
Who Will Win: George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST ACTOR in a leading role

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo
Matt Damon, The Martian
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Who Should Win: Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Who Will Win: Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

BEST ACTRESS in a leading role

Cate Blanchett, Carol
Brie Larson, Room
Jennifer Lawrence, Joy
Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Who Should Win: Brie Larson, Room
Who Will Win: Brie Larson, Room

BEST ACTOR in a supporting role

Christian Bale, The Big Short
Tom Hardy, The Revenant
Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight
Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies
Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Who Should Win: Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies
Who Will Win: Tom Hardy, The Revenant

BEST ACTRESS in a supporting role

Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Rooney Mara, Carol
Rachel McAdams, Spotlight
Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl
Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Who Should Win: Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Who Will Win: Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

BEST WRITING adapted screenplay

Charles Randolph and Adam McKay, The Big Short
Nick Hornby, Brooklyn
Phyllis Nagy, Carol
Drew Goddard, The Martian
Emma Donoghue, Room

Who Should Win: Nick Hornby, Brooklyn
Who Will Win: Drew Goddard, The Martian

BEST WRITING original screenplay

Matt Charman, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Bridge of Spies
Alex Garland, Ex Machina
Pete Doctor, Meg LeFauce, and Josh Cooley, Inside Out
Josh Singer and Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
Jonathan Herman, Andrea Berloff, Straight Outta Compton

Who Should Win: Alex Garland, Ex Machina
Who Will Win: Josh Singer and Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM

Anomalisa
Boy and the World
Inside Out
Shaun the Sheep Movie
When Marnie Was There

What Should Win: Inside Out
What Will Win: Inside Out

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Emmanuel Lubezki, The Revenant
Edward Lachman, Carol
Roger Deakins, Sicario
John Seale, Mad Max: Fury Road
Robert Richardson, The Hateful Eight

Who Should Win: Emmanuel Lubezki, The Revenant
Who Will Win: Emmanuel Lubezki, The Revenant

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Carol
Cinderella
The Danish Girl
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Revenant

Who Should Win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Who Will Win: Carol

BEST DOCUMENTARY feature

Amy
Cartel Land
The Look of Silence
What Happened, Miss Simone?
Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom

What Should Win: Amy
What Will Win: Amy

BEST FILM EDITING

The Big Short
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Revenant
Spotlight
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Who Should Win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Who Will Win: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

Son of Saul
Mustang
A War
Embrace of the Serpent
Theeb

What Should Win: Son of Saul
What Will Win: Son of Saul

BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

The Revenant
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out a Window and Disappeared
Mad Max: Fury Road

What Should Win: Mad Max: Fury Road
What Will Win: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST MUSIC original score

Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight
Carter Burwell, Carol
John Williams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Thomas Newman, Bridge of Spies
Johann Johannson, Sicario

What Should Win: Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight
What Will Win: Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight

BEST MUSIC original song

“Earned It,” Fifty Shades of Grey
“Manta Ray,” Racing Extinction
“Til It Happens to You,” The Hunting Ground
“Simple Song #3,” Youth
“Writing’s On the Wall,” Spectre

What Should Win: “Earned It,” Fifty Shades of Grey
What Will Win: “Writing’s On the Wall,” Spectre

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

The Danish Girl
Mad Max: Fury Road
Bridge of Spies
The Martian
The Revenant

Who Should Win: Mad Max: Fury Road
Who Will Win: The Martian

BEST SOUND EDITING

Mad Max: Fury Road
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
The Martian
Sicario
The Revenant

Who Should Win: Sicario
Who Will Win: Mad Max: Fury Road

BEST SOUND MIXING

Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Who Should Win: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Who Will Win: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Ex Machina
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

What Should Win: Mad Max: Fury Road
What Will Win: 
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

The 88th Academy Awards will air on this Sunday, February 28 on ABC.

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