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Year-in-Advance 2012 Oscar Predictions

It’s roughly 350 days until the next Oscar ceremony. You know what that means: time to break out your year-in-advance Oscar predictions!

Is it ridiculous that I’m looking so far ahead into next year’s Oscar race? Absolutely. After all, The King’s Speech took the Academy Award for Best Picture two weeks ago. Furthermore, the majority of this year’s Oscar contenders look to hit theaters in the latter half of the year, particularly in the last three months. We don’t even know how the critics and industry groups will react to the majority of these films.

All I can do at this point is guess how things will turn out, but when isn’t that the case?

There are two reasons I’m predicting the Oscars in these wee pre-natal stages. The first deals with the certain factors that come into play even before things really heat up. 

For instance, we’ve got the Eric Roth (Forrest Gump)-penned, Stephen Daldry (The Reader)-helmed post-9/11 drama Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Industry favorites Sandra Bullock and Tom Hanks and newcomer Thomas Horn lead the film, and adored actors such as Viola Davis, John Goodman, Max von Sydow, and Jeffrey Wright play supporting characters.

Additionally, the long-awaited Terrence Malick semi-autobiographical drama The Tree of Life finally hits theaters. The May release gives little awards promise, but given the anticipation and likely critical adoration, it could be an overwhelming hit with voters.

Other films that could go the distance with the Academy include Steven Soderbergh’s thriller Contagion, Tate Taylor’s drama The Help, and the Clint Eastwood-helmed biopic J. Edgar

My other reason is just a pure passion for this sort of practice. More or less, I’ve been doing year-in-advance Oscar predictions since 2008. That was the year when films like The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and Revolutionary Road topped off most early predictions. Nobody even imagined that Slumdog Millionaire, a film with a narrative that perfectly complements its wonderful story, would win Best Picture. Of course, I’m not sure how many people knew that the film even existed. Still, this has become something of a tradition for me.

My year-in-advance predictions for the top eight categories are listed below. Feel free to throw in some commentary or even make some early predictions of your own!

BEST PICTURE
1. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
2. The Tree of Life
3. J. Edgar
4. Contagion
5. The Help
6. A Dangerous Method
7. Young Adult
8. My Week with Marilyn
9. On the Road
10. War Horse

THE NEXT TEN…
11. The Ides of March
12. One Day
13. Super 8
14. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
15. We Bought a Zoo
16. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
17. The Descendants
18. Coriolanus
19. Blackthorn
20. Like Crazy 

BEST DIRECTOR
1. Stephen Daldry (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close)
2. Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life)
3. Steven Soderbergh (Contagion)
4. Clint Eastwood (J. Edgar)
5. Jason Reitman (Young Adult)

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. Tate Taylor (The Help)
7. Simon Curtis (My Week with Marilyn)
8. Steven Spielberg (War Horse)
9. David Cronenberg (A Dangerous Method)
10. Walter Salles (On the Road)

BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE
1. Leonardo DiCaprio (J. Edgar)
2. Antonio Banderas (The Skin That I Inhabit)
3. Dominic Cooper (The Devil’s Double)
4. Sean Penn (The Tree of Life)
5. Colin Firth (The Promised Land)

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. George Clooney (The Descendants)
7. Ryan Gosling (The Ides of March)
8. Tom Hanks (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close)
9. Matt Damon (We Bought a Zoo)
10. Sam Riley (On the Road)

BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE
1. Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn)
2. Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady)
3. Emma Stone (The Help)
4. Sandra Bullock (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close)
5. Anne Hathaway (One Day)

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. Charlize Theron (Young Adult)
7. Adepero Oduye (Pariah)
8. Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs)
9. Felicity Jones (Like Crazy)
10. Elizabeth Olsen (Martha Marcy May Marlene)

BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
1. Christopher Plummer (Beginners)
2. Brad Pitt (The Tree of Life)
3. Viggo Mortensen (A Dangerous Method)
4. Armie Hammer (J. Edgar)
5. Jim Broadbent (The Iron Lady)

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. Thomas Horn (Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close)
7. Michael Shannon (The Broken Tower)
8. Christopher Plummer (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo)
9. Steve Buscemi (On the Road)
10. John Hawkes (Martha Marcy May Marlene)

BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
1. Amy Adams (On the Road)
2. Vanessa Redgrave (Coriolanus)
3. Dame Judi Dench (J. Edgar)
4. Robin Wright (Moneyball)
5. Alexandra Roach (The Iron Lady)

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. Allison Janney (The Help)
7. Jessica Chastain (The Tree of Life)
8. Octavia Spencer (The Help)
9. Naomi Watts (J. Edgar)
10. Kristen Stewart (On the Road)

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
1. The Tree of Life
2. Young Adult
3. J. Edgar
4. Contagion
5. Take This Waltz

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. Super 8
7. Jesus Henry Christ
8. Like Crazy
9. Martha Marcy May Marlene
10. Midnight in Paris

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
1. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
2. The Help
3. One Day
4. On the Road
5. My Week with Marilyn

THE NEXT FIVE…
6. The Ides of March
7. We Bought a Zoo
8. The Descendants
9. War Horse
10. Coriolanus

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