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Iain’s Better Oscar Predictions Through Statistics – 2019

Iain’s Better Oscar Predictions Through Statistics – 2019

My annual predictions for the four main Oscars went a little awry last year. I correctly predicted that Alfonso Cuarón would win for directing Roma and that Rami Malek’s performance in Bohemian Rhapsody would earn him the Lead Actor Oscar. However, I was surprised by Olivia Colman’s perfomance in The Favourite earning her the Lead Actor Oscar over Glenn Close in The Wife. Five of the eight Best Picture nominated films were in close contention last year, so Green Book beating out The Favourite wasn’t a huge surprise, but it did bring my average down. The predictions were based on a statistical model that I developed that uses information on factors associated with past winners (such as other Oscar nominations, total number of Oscar nominations, previous Oscar nominations/wins, Golden Globe wins, Guild wins). See my Oscar Prediction Website for further details of how the predictions are made.

My overall success rate over the last 14 years stands at 80%. Here are my nominations for this year.

Best Motion Picture of the Year

1917 is in a good position to add the Best Picture Oscar to its Producer’s Guild and Golden Globe (Drama) wins. Joker has the most nominations (11) of all the nominated films and is the next most likely to win. Golden Globe (Musical or Comedy) winner, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, and Martin Scorsese’s 10th Oscar-nominated movie, The Irishman, both with 10 nominations, aren’t far behind. Each of these four movies also has a Best Director nomination, as does Parasite, which has an outside chance of winning. It’s very unlikely that any of the remaining four nominated films will win.

  • 1917: 71%
  • Joker: 10%
  • Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood: 7%
  • The Irishman: 7%
  • Parasite: 2%
  • Jojo Rabbit: 1%
  • Little Women: 1%
  • Marriage Story: 1%
  • Ford v Ferrari: <1%

Best Achievement in Directing

The director of 1917, Sam Mendes, is also well placed to add a second Best Director Oscar to the one he won for directing American Beauty in 1999. He’s in a strong position as he’s already won the Director’s Guild and Golden Globe Director awards. Martin Scorsese has also won a Best Director Oscar before (for 2006’s The Departed), but there’s less chance he’ll win again this year. Todd Phillips, Quentin Tarantino, and Bong Joon Ho would all be surprising winners.

  • Sam Mendes for 1917: 84%
  • Martin Scorsese for The Irishman: 10%
  • Todd Phillips for Joker: 3%
  • Quentin Tarantino for Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood: 2%
  • Bong Joon Ho for Parasite: 1%

Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

Joaquin Phoenix would seem to be a lock for finally winning an Oscar for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role. He’s received two previous nominations for Best Lead Actor and one for Best Supporting Actor. This year, he’s already won the Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe (Drama) Best Actor awards. He also benefits from the fact that Taron Egerton won the Golden Globe (Musical or Comedy) Best Actor award for his performance in Rocketman, but didn’t receive a Best Lead Actor Oscar nomination. It would be a major shock if any of the other four nominees won over Phoenix.

  • Joaquin Phoenix in Joker: 99.8%
  • Adam Driver in Marriage Story: <1%
  • Leonardo DiCaprio in Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood: <1%
  • Antonio Banderas in Pain and Glory: <1%
  • Jonathan Pryce in The Two Popes: <1%

Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Renée Zellweger has a good chance of adding a Best Lead Actress Oscar to the Best Supporting Actress Oscar she won for Cold Mountain in 2003. She scores high having already won the Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe (Drama) awards. And, like Joaquin Phoenix, she also benefits from the lack of a nomination for the Lead Actress Golden Globe (Musical or Comedy) winner (Awkwafina in The Farewell). Saoirse Ronan and Scarlett Johansson have an outside chance of upsetting the odds as their movies are also nominated for Best Picture, but Cynthia Erivo and Charlize Theron (who won previously for 2003’s Monster) are unlikely to win.

  • Renée Zellweger in Judy: 86%
  • Saoirse Ronan in Little Women: 5%
  • Scarlett Johansson in Marriage Story: 5%
  • Cynthia Erivo in Harriet: 2%
  • Charlize Theron in Bombshell: 1%