By Abb Jones
The Reelness

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has just announced its nominations for the 2020 Oscars. The big winner? Joker, with 11 nominations, closely followed by three films with 10 nominations: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, 1917 and The Irishman. 

Below is the complete list of nominees along with notable surprises and/or snubs in each category (click on the movies highlighted in yellow for our reviews):


Best Picture:

Ford v Ferrari
The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit
Little Women
Marriage Story
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

The Reelness Prediction: We called it – nailed all nine nominees. Admittedly it is an odd Oscar year for Best Picture, with no clear frontrunner. For now, there are FIVE potential frontrunners:  Golden Globe winners 1917 and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, JoJo Rabbit (which tops OUR list of 10 Best Movies of 2019), Joker, and Cannes Film Festival winner Parasite.

Renée Zellweger in Judy

Best Actress

Cynthia Erivo, Harriet
Scarlett Johansson, Marriage Story
Saoirse Ronan, Little Women
Charlize Theron, Bombshell
Renee Zellweger, Judy

The Reelness prediction: Renée Zellweger and Charlize Theron are the two frontrunners here, with Zellweger widely expected to win. As expected, Scarlett Johansson and Saoirse Ronan were locks on the next two spots, with the fifth, a toss up between Awkwafina and Cynthia Erivo, going to Erivo.

Joaquin Phoenix in Joker

Best Actor

Antonio Banderas, Pain and Glory
Leonardo DiCaprio, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Adam Driver, Marriage Story
Jonathan Pryce, The Two Popes
Joaquin Phoenix, Joker


Christian Bale, Ford v Ferrari
Taron Egerton, Rocketman

The Reelness prediction: A couple of upsets, with Antonio Banderas and Jonathan Pryce edging out Christian Bale and Rocketman‘s Taron Egerton. Golden Globe winner Joaquin Phoenix should STILL win for his disturbingly terrific performance, despite that odd, off-putting acceptance speech at the Globes.

Margot Robbie in Bombshell

Best Supporting Actress

Kathy Bates, Richard Jewell
Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Scarlett Johansson, Jojo Rabbit
Florence Pugh, Little Women
Margot Robbie, Bombshell


Jennifer Lopez, Hustlers

The Reelness prediction: Laura Dern is the current frontrunner, but we suspect that could change, as Margot Robbie and Scarlett Johansson are frankly both more deserving of this Oscar. We are going to go with Robbie for the surprise win Oscar night. Kathy Bates snags the fifth spot for her role in Richard Jewell, edging out Jennifer Lopez in Hustlers.

Brad Pitt in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Best Supporting Actor

Tom Hanks, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Anthony Hopkins, The Two Popes
Al Pacino, The Irishman
Joe Pesci, The Irishman
Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood


Taika Waititi, Jojo Rabbit

The Reelness prediction: No surprises here – the five nominees are exactly those we picked. Brad Pitt has ALL the award season momentum, with Tom Hanks his closest competition. The three older gents in the two Netflix movies round out the five, mostly for sentimental reasons, although honestly, Taika Waititi’s hysterical, satirical portrait of a goofy Adolf Hitler in Jojo Rabbit is by far the best performance of the entire lot of them.

Director Sam Mendes on the set of 1917

Best Director

Martin Scorsese, The Irishman
Todd Phillips, Joker
Bong Joon Ho, Parasite
Sam Mendes, 1917
Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood


Taika Waititi, Jojo Rabbit
Greta Gerwig, Little Women

The Reelness prediction: Todd Phillips slipped in for Joker, edging out Taika Waititi in Jojo Rabbit. Here Sam Mendes will probably win, reinforcing 1917‘s Best Picture chances.


Best Original Screenplay

Knives Out, Rian Johnson
Marriage Story, Noam Baumbach
1917, Sam Mendes and Krysty Wilson-Cairns
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Quentin Tarantino
Parasite, Bong Joon Ho and Han Jin Won

The Reelness prediction: Parasite is by far the most cleverly constructed and deserving screenplay of the bunch. But Marriage Story resonates with LOTS of divorcees. Plus there is the cute factor of having life partners Noam Baumbach and Greta Gerwig each win original and adapted screenplay Oscars for their respective films on the same night.

Writer/director/actor Taika Waititi and Roman Griffin Davis in Jojo Rabbit

Best Adapted Screenplay

The Irishman, Steven Zaillian
Jojo Rabbit, Taika Waititi
Joker, Todd Phillips and Scott Silver
Little Women, Greta Gerwig
The Two Popes, Anthony McCarten

The Reelness prediction: We called this tight five-some with Taika Waititi (deservedly) the big frontrunner with his hilariously subversive, and really sweet story, Jojo Rabbit.

Toy Story 4

Best Animated Feature

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
I Lost My Body

Missing Link
Toy Story 4


Frozen II

The Reelness Prediction: Toy Story 4 was the most clever, entertaining and surprisingly original (and for a sequel, no less!) of the lot, and SHOULD win. The snub of Frozen II, after its historic milestone of being the biggest box office animated film of all time is a shocker.

Best Animated Short

Dcera (Daughter)
Hair Love



Best Live Action Short

Neat Football Club
The Neighbors’ Window
A Sister


Best Cinematography

1917, Roger Deakins
The Irishman, Rodrigo Preto
Joker, Lawrence Sher
The Lighthouse, Jarin Blaschke
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Robert Richardson

The Reelness prediction:  1917, with its incredible cinematography that gives the illusion of the film being shot in a single take, makes Roger Deakins the easy win in this category, despite impressive work from Jarin Blaschke in The Lighthouse.

Little Women

Best Costume Design

Little Women
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Jojo Rabbit

The Irishman


Dolemite Is My Name
Downton Abbey

The Reelness prediction: Wow, we missed this one! All but one of our predictions (especially Rocketman and Dolemite Is My Name) got overlooked. New frontrunners here will be Little Women and Jojo Rabbit.

For Sama

Documentary Feature

American Factory
The Cave
The Edge of Democracy
For Sama


Apollo 11
The Biggest Little Farm

The Reelness predictions: Wow – shutouts of the two standouts in this category that made our 10 Best Movies of 2019:  Apollo 11, an immersive, start-to-finish first person look at the historic 1969 moon walk, featuring never before seen footage, and The Biggest Little Farm, the life affirming tale of a couple creating a self-sustaining, organic farm north of Los Angeles.

The favorites now are For Sama, the tale of a woman raising her daughter in Aleppo during the Syrian Civil War and American Factory, an eye-opening look at the differences between American and Chinese factory workers when the Americans visit a car glass factory in China.

Best Documentary Short Subject

In The Absence
Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (if you’re a girl)
Life Overtakes Me
Stay Close
Walk Run Cha-Cha

Ford v Ferrari

Best Editing

Ford v Ferrari
The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit

The Reelness prediction: Expect Ford v Ferrari, with all its whiz-bang sound and editing, to take this one.

Park So Dam and Choi Woo Shik in Parasite

International Feature Film (formerly Foreign Language Film):

Corpus Christi, Poland
Honeyland, North Macedonia

Les Misérables, France
Pain and Glory, Spain

Parasite, South Korea

The Reelness predictions: If there is anything as close to a sure thing, it is that Parasite, South Korea’s big prize winner at 2019’s Cannes Film Festival, will easily win the Oscar in this category. Spain’s Pain and Glory is its closest competition just because of its wide release and its big name stars Antonio Banderas and Penélope Cruz.

Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie in Bombshell

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil

Downton Abbey

The Reelness predictions:  Bombshell‘s dramatic, prosthetic-filled transformation of Charlize Theron into Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly makes it the clear frontrunner. Nominations for Joker (clown, is in!) and Judy (Renée Zellweger IS Judy) and Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, were all expectedjust because Angelina Jolie looked so devilishly good. The snub of Downton Abbey was a shame – apparently voters couldn’t get past their TV series-to-film snobbery.

Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.

Best Production Design

The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

The Reelness prediction: There are two frontrunners here – Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, with its meticulous detail in making 1969 come alive on the big screen, be it clothes, cars, locales, television shows and products of the era. And 1917, with its harrowing details to make the horrors of trench warfare come alive.

Joachin Phoenix in Joker

Best Original Score

Joker, Hildur Gudnadóttir
Little Women, Alexandre Desplat
Marriage Story, Randy Newman
1917, Thomas Newman
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, John Williams

The Reelness predictions: Icelandic composer Hildur Guðnadóttir’s chilling, cello-laden score in Joker sets such a perfect, dark mood that it is the one to beat, especially after winning the Golden Globe. The nominations of Marriage Story and 1917 also makes this a battle between the Newman cousins, with a courtesy nod to five-time Oscar winner John Williams (who won for the original Star Wars film) for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

Frozen II‘s “Into the Unknown” has its eyes on Oscar for a Best Original Song nomination… and likely win.

Best Original Song

Breakthrough, “I’m Standing with You”
Frozen II, “Into The Unknown”
Harriet, “Stand Up”
Rocketman, “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again”
Toy Story 4, “I Can’t Let You Throw Yourself Away”


The Lion King, “Spirit”
Aladdin, “Speechless”

The Reelness prediction: No Oscar love for Beyoncé this year, with the snub of “Spirit” from The Lion King. This should be a two song horserace between the Idina Menzel/AURORA duet “Into the Unknown” from Frozen II and Elton John’s Golden Globe winner “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” from Rocketman. 

Matt Damon and Christian Bale in Ford v Ferrari

Best Sound Editing

Ford v Ferrari
Once Upon A Time in Hollywood
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

The Reelness prediction: Ford v Ferrari had AMAZING sound and should win, with 1917‘s sounds of war providing some serious competition.

Best Sound Mixing

Ad Astra
Ford v Ferrari
Once Upon A Time in Hollywood

The Reelness prediction: Ford v Ferrari for the same reason as in the prior category.

The Lion King

Visual Effects

Likely nominees:

Avengers: Endgame
The Irishman
The Lion King
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

The Reelness predictions: The Lion King, with its ground breaking, freakishly realistic-looking blend of live action and animation, is the one to beat in this category. Other easy picks are 1917, which has AMAZING visual effects and The Irishman, with its gimmicky but cool de-aging software. As expected, the category’s franchise behemoths Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Avengers: Endgame snagged the two remaining nominations.

There you have it – THE LIST. The 92nd Academy Awards will be held Sunday, February 9th at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, televised live (on ABC in the United States) and in more than 225 countries and territories around the globe.

Who do YOU think will win? Add your comments below!

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