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Way too early Oscar 2015 predictions

“12 Years a Slave” took the best picture crown on Sunday, rounding out a respectable night for my Oscar predictions (I finished 19 of 24). But now that 2013 is officially in the books, there’s no better time than the present to take a peek at what the 2015 Oscars may look like.

Jason Reitman's dramedy "Men, Women & Children" is likely to be much lighter than "12 Years," which is something the Academy may gravitate towards. Work from Bennett Miller, Angelina Jolie and Christopher Nolan will also be in the mix.
The Oscars

Last year, I ended up predicting 10 of the 34 nominees in the main six categories, and a number of eventual nominees in my fringe picks, including having Matthew McConaughey’s Best Actor winning performance at the top of my predictions for that category in April. Other picks, well lets just say they didn’t exactly pan out.

We’re still two months away from Cannes, not even sure of all the films that will be released this year, and have only have the names involved to go on for most of these films – nobody knows what’s coming for us in 2014. But what the hell, let’s roll the dice anyway. Here are my way too early predictions for the top six categories at next year’s Academy Awards.

Best Picture
1. Men, Women & Children
2. Foxcatcher
3. Fury
4. The 33
5. Get On Up
6. The Search
7. Interstellar
8. Unbroken
9. Inherent Vice
10. Boyhood

Fringe contenders: The Imitation Game, A Most Wanted Man, Big Eyes, Gone Girl

Best Director
1. Jason Reitman – Men, Women & Children
2. Bennett Miller - Foxcatcher
3. David Ayer - Fury
4. Christopher Nolan - Interstellar
5. Richard Linklater – Boyhood

Fringe contenders: Angelina Jolie (Unbroken), Michel Hazanavicius (The Search), Paul Thomas Anderson (Inherent Vice), David Fincher (Gone Girl), Tim Burton (Big Eyes)

Best Actor
1. Steve Carell – Foxcatcher
2. Antonio Banderas –The 33
3. Brendan Gleeson – Cavalry
4. Chadwick Boseman – Get On Up
5. Philip Seymour Hoffman – A Most Wanted Man

Fringe contenders: Mark Ruffalo (Infinitely Polar Bear), Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game), Jack O’Connell (Unbroken), Joaquin Phoenix (Inherent Vice), Adam Sandler (Men, Women & Children)

Best Actress
1. Jessica Chastain – The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby
2. Marion Cotillard – Two Days, One Night
3. Reese Witherspoon – Wild
4. Naomi Watts – While We’re Young
5. Rooney Mara - Carol

Fringe Contenders: Jennifer Lawrence (Serena), Kelly Reilly (Cavalry), Berenice Bejo (The Search), Amy Adams (Big Eyes), Michelle Williams (Suite francaise),

Best Supporting Actor
1. James Franco – True Story
2. Mark Ruffalo – Foxcatcher
3. JK Simmons – Whiplash
4. Ethan Hawke – Boyhood
5. Paul Dano – Love & Mercy

Fringe contenders: Garret Hedlund (Unbroken), Robert Duvall (The Judge), Channing Tatum (Foxcatcher), Michael Shannon (99 Homes)

Best Supporting Actress
1. Jane Fonda – This is Where I Leave You
2. Rosemarie DeWitt – Men, Women & Children
3. Annette Bening – The Search
4. Vanessa Redgrave – Foxcatcher
5. Laura Dern – 99 Homes

Fringe contenders: Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game), Patricia Arquette (Boyhood), Meryl Streep (Into the Woods), Viola Davis (Get On Up), Judy Greer (Men, Women & Children)

Food for thought here, as any real talk won’t get going until the first major contenders unveil themselves at Cannes. These films, or any others waiting to surprise us, have a lot to live up to after the 2014 Oscar season.

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