New Oscar Rules: Predicting the Nominees Just Got Harder

E:  What, you weren’t expecting an Oscar post in June?  Well, sometimes it happens.  And this?  Is a big deal.  My fake job?  It just got harder.  A hell of a lot harder.  To compensate for the fact that pretty much anyone who pays attention can pick the winners, the Academy has come up with a new plan.  Now it’s going to be super hard to pick – not the eventual winners, sigh, but the Best Picture Nominees.  Remember how, two years ago, the Academy decided it was tired of snubbing popular films like The Dark Knight and losing ratings, and so upped the number of nominees to ten?  And how lots of people have grumbled that this would result in a dilution of the brand? That all ten films couldn’t be worthy best picture candidates?

Well, the Academy came up with a tricky answer to this question.  They’ve decided that any film getting at least 5% of the #1 rankings from the nomination ballots will get a Best Picture nomination.  And that could, technically, produce the top limit of 10 Best Picture nominees.  But how likely is that?  So, come nomination morning, we could be looking at five nominees.  Or 6.  Or 8.  Or 10.  But we just won’t know how many until it happens.


Now, it’s interesting that they’re only going to do this in Best Picture.  It would have been nice to see, say, Ryan Gosling pick up a 6th nomination this year for his work in Blue Valentine, just to pick an example not at random.  And it’s quite interesting to think where the number’s going to land in any given year, and how much it’s going to change.  I’m pretty sure that they wouldn’t go lower than 5 (though that could easily happen given this formula).  And I have a feeling it’s not going to go as high as 10.  But will it result in a different number of nominees every year?

This also almost completely guarantees that no one will predict Best Picture accurately.

It’s a good thing I like a challenge.


4 comments on “New Oscar Rules: Predicting the Nominees Just Got Harder

  1. MMGF says:

    While it certainly does add a brand new level of complexity for us, it really IS going to be fun, isn’t it? Not only predicting films, but also numbers! And I bet there’ll be some years where you get the number perfect. 🙂

    • E says:

      It is. But, I don’t know. Best picture was the hardest category (well, that and director) back when it was five. Now it’s going to be that much more devilish. So, great, and – yikes!

      Mostly am very excited about this, but I would trade it for actually being surprised by a major category winner. Trying to think of the last time that happened…

  2. M says:

    You can take a page out of the playbook and run a regular “Nominationology” piece that details which films are in, out or “on the bubble” at that particular time. Then, when nomination day approaches you will need to provide your predictions with locks, probables, and bubble movies. Obviously, you’ll have to have appropriate ordering, so that if say, there are seven nominees, you have your predictions ranked so we know what you thought was eighth, and see if your top seven were the ones that made it.

    • E says:

      Oh, rankings, that’s the plan. Definitely. I do generally list locks, solid bets, long shots, etc… It may have to be more number oriented this year.

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