Tuesday, January 10, 2012

84th Oscar Best Director Updates (1/10/12)

It’s that time of the year when the Oscar races are tightening up, and while I still give you my long list of the top fifty possibilities, we all know that those who aren’t moving towards the top by this point are necessarily falling out of contention very quickly.

That doesn’t mean, however, that I’m simply going to take yesterday’s Directors Guild announcement as the final word. While they have a pretty good track record of picking the winners, it is not at all uncommon for them to include one director who doesn’t make Oscar’s final nomination list. This year, I think that director will be David Fincher.

The top contenders to steal Fincher’s thunder are Terrence Malick, Bennett Miller and Steven Spielberg. So for at least a few more days, I am going to allow myself the luxury of holding onto Malick’s independent spirit. There will be plenty of time for you to tell me how stupid I was for not going with one of the more commercial films after the nominations are announced on January 24. I may have also been a little hard on Steven Spielberg (moving him from first place to eighth), but if your film is intended to be a sentimental crowd-pleaser, and you miss out on the directing nod from both the Golden Globes and the DGA, then my little blog isn’t going to save the day by keeping you at the top of the list.

Here are today’s rankings for the 84th Oscar Best Director race, with previous ranking shown in parenthesis after each entry.

1. Michel Hazanavicius for The Artist (Predicted Winner) (previous rank 3)
2. Martin Scorsese for Hugo (previous rank 14)
3. Alexander Payne for The Descendants (previous rank 2)
4. Woody Allen for Midnight In Paris (previous rank 9)
5. Terrence Malick for The Tree Of Life (previous rank 4)

6. David Fincher for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (previous rank 7)
7. Bennett Miller for Moneyball (previous rank 10)
8. Steven Spielberg for War Horse (previous rank 1)
9. Nicolas Winding Refn for Drive (previous rank 17)
10. George Clooney for The Ides Of March (previous rank 8)
11. Stephen Daldry for Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close (previous rank 5)
12. Tate Taylor for The Help (previous rank 12)
13. Steve McQueen for Shame (previous rank 13)
14. Tomas Alfredson for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (previous rank 11)
15. Clint Eastwood for J. Edgar (previous rank 6)
16. Asghar Farhadi for A Separation (New)
17. Jeff Nichols for Take Shelter (previous rank 31)
18. Lars von Trier for Melancholia (previous rank 33)
19. Lynne Ramsay for We Need To Talk About Kevin (previous rank 26)
20. Sean Durkin for Martha Marcy May Marlene previous rank 19)
21. Jason Reitman for Young Adult (previous rank 16)
22. David Cronenberg for A Dangerous Method (previous rank 15)
23. David Yates for Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 2 (previous rank 34)
24. Simon Curtis for My Week With Marilyn (previous rank 22)
25. Phyllida Lloyd for The Iron Lady (previous rank 20)

26. Paul Feig for Bridesmaids (New)
27. Kenneth Lonergan for Margaret (New)
28. Steven Soderbergh for Contagion (previous rank 24)
29. Roman Polanski for Carnage (previous rank 21)
30. Pedro Almodovar for The Skin I Live In (La Piel Que Habito) (previous rank 30)
31. Mike Mills for Beginners (previous rank 40)
32. Dee Rees for Pariah (previous rank 27)
33. Thomas McCarthy for Win Win (New)
34. J.C. Chandor for Margin Call (New)
35. Ralph Feinnes for Coriolanus (previous rank 28)
36. Angelina Jolie for In The Land Of Blood And Honey (previous rank 18)
37. J.J. Abrams for Super 8 (previous rank 37)
38. Steven Spielberg for The Adventures Of Tintin: The Secret Of The Unicorn (previous rank 29)
39. Gavin O’Connor for Warrior (previous rank 39)
40. Jonathan Levine for 50/50 (previous rank 41)
41. Drake Doremus for Like Crazy (previous rank 32)
42. Oren Moverman for Rampart (previous rank 38)
43. Yimou Zhang for The Flowers Of War (Jin Ling Shi San Chai) (previously listed in 85th Oscar race, rank 13)
44. Rupert Wyatt for Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes (New)
45. Cameron Crowe for We Bought A Zoo (previous rank 23)
46. John Michael McDonagh for The Guard (New)
47. Luc Besson for The Lady (previous rank 35)
48. Cary Fukunaga for Jane Eyre (previous rank 36)
49. Rodrigo Garcia for Albert Nobbs (previous rank 25)
50. Agnieszka Holland for In Darkness (W Ciemnosci) (New)

As always, check the Tracker Pages in the upper right hand corner of this blog for the most updated predictions in all categories!
See Best Director predictions for other years HERE.
See predictions for other categories at the 84th Oscars HERE.
Switch to another year: 84th,  85th,  86th,  87th,  88th,  89th  


  1. I'm so conflicted on that fifth slot - Fincher or Malick? I'm leaning towards the former...but I really can't tell.

    Nice, detailed predictions! You put me to shame!

  2. Thanks Marshall! Dragon Tattoo does seem to be on the rise, but I just wonder if it will be too out there for the Academy. Not that Tree Of Life isn't "out there" too, but in a totally different way.

    And don't sell yourself short. You've got some pretty detailed analysis going on your blog too!