There are always categories that Oscar experts take for granted because they assume everyone knows who is going to win by now. Later today I will write on the categories that are not certain, and that will be a far more interesting article, but for now, let's see which people are certain to win.
Best director - Kathryn Bingelow for "The hurt locker". She won the DGA and the PGA, and is the front-runner for this award. James Cameron has a slight chance of winning, but it is highly unlikely, he is rooting to take best picture.
Best Actor - Jeff Bridges for "Crazy Heart". He has been sweeping every award ceremony so far (SAG, Globes) and will win come March 7th, no doubt about it. He has also been nominated for 4 oscars before and the Academy thinks he is overdue.
Best supporting Actress - Mo'nique for "Precious: based on the novel "Push" by Sapphire" Again, she has swept the award season but also received a lot of critic recognition before the awards season. There is no way she is not winning, no other actress in the category has a chance.
Best supporting Actor - Christoph Waltz for "Inglourious Basterds". He was the best supporting actor and his chances of winning are almost close to 100%. Everyone loves him because he gives entertaining speeches, and was simply the best actor of the cast.
Best Adapted screenplay - Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner for "Up in the air". This film, which was once a front-runner for best picture in November, will simply have to conform to best screenplay, the same way "Sideways" and "Little miss sunshine did". It has won the globe (beating "Inglourious Basterds" which everyone was rooting for) and also won the Writer's guild awards, making it a clear front-runner.
Best Animated feature - "Up", Won the Annie (animation) award and has won the globe, the producer's guild award for best animated feature and every other award it could win. It was also the best of the bunch, and the Academy loves Pixar.
Best Documentary - "The cove". People say its a race between "The cove" and "Food Inc.", but "The cove" has won every single award in the awards season, and is far more entertaining than "Food inc." Although the topic is food is not a new one for documentaries to tackle, "The cove" showed courage and the power of human will, and the academy will love it.
Best music (original score) - "Up". It was perfect and the academy will love it as it is the only one that has earned any buzz.
Best music (original song) - The weary kind', song from "A crazy heart". Who else?
Best art direction - "Avatar". No surprise there.
Best make-up - "Star Trek"
Best film editing - "The hurt locker". This is the one category that "The hurt locker" simply has no competition, the editing made the film great, and it was one of the best in the last years.
Best visual effects - "Avatar". Indeed the best, they are revolutionary and fantastic.