Best director Oscar predictions

Alex Corey

Notes on Rankings:
1. Winning seasons defined as any year that a director won at least one oscar.
2. The five films not nominated for both Best Director and Best Picture have been excluded because they seldom win historically.
3. Argo‘s low ranking explained.

1. David O. Russell Silver Linings Playbook
His first feature was titled Spanking the Monkey
and from 1994-2009, he received zero Oscar nominations. Since then
Russell has coached two consecutive casts in which at least 3/4 primary
actors were nominated and both films (
The Fighter 2010, Silver Linings Playbook
2012) have received Best Picture and Best Director nominations. The
oscar-nominated screenplay, which he helped adapt may also boost his
stock. Russell is likely to win with the Best Picture/Best Director
one-two punch and how fitting it would be after the Academy nominated
him in 2010 for “The Fighter”.

X factor here is Robert De Niro, who is nominated for Best Supporting
Actor, his first in 21 years. His last win was in 1980 for
Raging Bull, when Ordinary People won Best Picture, snubbing Raging Bull. Ordinary People had three acting nominations that year; this year, Silver Linings Playbook has four. This is the most complete film in terms of writing, directing and acting.

2. Steven SpielbergLincoln
In his previous nine Oscar-nominated Seasons, Spielberg is 2-9. However, in historical films (The Color Purple, Schindler’s List, Saving Private Ryan, Munich, Letters From Iwo Jima, War Horse) he is 2-6.

film is stacked at the acting position with Tommy Lee Jones, Sally
Field and Daniel Day-Lewis– arguably the best actor to ever grace the
screen. The guy is a freak of nature on-camera. In terms of Oscar
nominations, Day-Lewis is 2-4 in career oscar nominations. He will
likely break .500 this year which would make him 3-5 All-Time. Jack
Nicholson and Meryl Streep are the only actors with three oscars.
Nicholson is 3-12 and Streep is 3-17. Additionally, if Day-Lewis wins,
he would become the first actor in history to win three oscars for a
leading role.

3. Michael HanekeAmour
Haneke gained a cult following with Funny Games (2007) and serious award attention for The White Ribbon (2009), however this is his first Oscar-nominated season. Haneke, who is also a playwright, wrote the screenplay for Amour and directed Emanuelle Riva in an Oscar-nominated performance. For Amour, he implemented a minimalistic scheme with great acting and writing along with a simple setting and editing style.

4. Benh ZeitlinBeasts of The Southern Wild
the Oscars had a Rookie of the Year award, it would go to Zeitlin who
directed mostly novice actors in his debut film. Despite a lack of
obvious playmakers (No Daniel Day-Lewis here) his main actress, the
adorable Quvenzhane Wallis has become the youngest actress ever
nominated. Also, Dwight Henry, who plays her father in the film is
convincing in his role, despite no prior acting experience. It is rare
for a debut film to win best picture, hence the oscar hopes for Zeitlin
are slim.

5. Ang LeeLife of Pi
Ang Lee won Best Director for Brokeback Mountain in 2005 but lost Best Picture which went to Crash.
The issue with this film is that it has no bench. Aside from an
All-Star director, there really isn’t a whole lot of talent here. The
second biggest playmaker on this cast is the computed-generated bengal

*Ben Affleck – Argo
This is a great ensemble but it isn’t playoff ready because it lacks depth at the actor position. Other nominees Silver Linings Playbook (4 nominations for acting) and Lincoln (3 nominations for acting) have deeper rosters. The Academy nominated Argo
for best picture to acknowledge Ben Affleck’s hard work but the lack of
a deeper roster and the strength of the other screenplays this year
will end
Argo‘s Best Picture awards streak from the Golden Globes and BAFTA.