This is it.
With the final round of Oscars voting currently underway, we’re less than a week away from the 91st Academy Awards ceremony on Feb. 24.
‘Cold War’ for Best Foreign Language Film
Polish filmmaker Paweł Pawlikowski garnered acclaim for documentaries like From Moscow to Pietushki with Benny Yerofeyev (1990) and Tripping with Zhirinovsky (1994) and the feature films Last Resort (2000) and My Summer of Love (2004).
In 2015, his film Ida, about a young woman on the verge of taking vows as a Catholic nun, won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
His latest film, Cold War, follows a man and a woman who fall in love in the ruins of post-war Poland and is loosely inspired by the lives of Pawlikowski’s parents.
The movie was awarded Best Foreign Language Film by the National Board of Review and has received three Oscar nominations: Best Director, Best Foreign Language Film, and Best Cinematography, indicating widespread support across the Academy’s branches.
It’s interesting that Cold War and category frontrunner Roma are both black-and-white semi-autobiographical films.
Roma won Best Foreign Film at the Golden Globes and the BAFTA Awards. However, Cold War has been surging of late — winning the top prize at the American Society of Cinematographers annual awards ceremony over Roma.
With Alfonso Cuarón’s film being seen as the frontrunner for Best Picture, it’s possible Academy voters spread the wealth and award Cold War for Best Foreign Film instead. If so, they would be following the New York Film Critics Circle and London Film Critics’ Circle, who made the same choice.
888 Sportsbook is taking bets on Best Foreign Film and currently has Pawlikowski’s Cold War valued at +900.
‘Black Panther’ for Best Picture
But what if Roma doesn’t win Best Picture?
Co-written and directed by Ryan Coogler (of Fruitvale Station and Creed), Black Panther could pull off a colossal upset at the 2019 Academy Awards.
The first superhero film to ever be nominated for Best Picture, Black Panther racked up seven nominations at the Academy Awards, three nods at the Golden Globes, and two wins at the Screen Actors Guild Awards.
It’s important to note that actors make up the largest percentage of the Academy, so their votes can have a huge impact on the Oscars race. In the last decade, the SAG ensemble winner has gone on to win Best Picture at the Academy Awards 50 percent of the time.
If Black Panther places high enough on the most preferential ballots, it might just pull out a win over Roma and Green Book.
‘Black Panther’ for Best Costume Design
According to GoldDerby, The Favourite is a 10/3, well, favorite, for the Best Costume Design Oscar.
Directed by Yorgos Lanthimos (of The Lobster and The Killing of a Sacred Deer), The Favourite is set in the early 18th century and explores the relationship between two cousins (Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz) vying to be court favorites of Queen Anne (Olivia Colman).
Nominated for 10 Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, and two Best Supporting Actress nods, The Favourite ties with Cuarón’s Roma as the most-nominated film of 2018.
Typically, period pieces rule the day with this award; just look at this year’s nominees.
Nominated for Mary Poppins Returns, Sandy Powell has won three Academy Awards for her work in Shakespeare in Love, The Aviator, and The Young Victoria. Nominee Alexandra Byrne (Mary Queen of Scots) has five nominations and one win under her belt for 2007’s Elizabeth: The Golden Age. Mary Zophres was nominated for her work on True Grit (2010) and 2016’s La La Land.
Nominee Ruth E. Carter, who designed the Afro-futurist costumes for Black Panther, was previously nominated for her work on Spike Lee’s Malcolm X and Steven Spielberg’s Amistad. If there’s a potential upset to be had in this category, it’s a win for Black Panther, currently sitting at 18/5 odds at GoldDerby.
Carter recently won Best Costume Design at the Critics’ Choice Awards and is set to be honored at the 21st annual Costume Designers Guild Awards, so it’s possible that the Academy chooses to spread the wealth and gives the trophy to Carter. The Favourite may have to settle for just Best Original Screenplay and Best Production Design.
PointsBet NJ sportsbook is taking bets on Best Costume Design and currently has Coogler’s film valued at +275.