ASC Awards predictions: Oscar frontrunner ‘Gravity’ will win Best Cinematography

With an unprecedented seven nominees, the American Society of Cinematographers cited all five of this year’s Oscar nominees for Best Cinematography —  “The Grandmaster,” “Gravity“, “Inside Llewyn Davis” and “Prisoners.” 

At both kudos, “Gravity” is the overwhelming favorite to win with odds of 2/13 at this Saturday’s ASC Awards and 1/10 at the Academy Awards on March 2

The ASC nominees are: 

Sean Bobbitt, “12 Years a Slave
Barry Ackroyd, “Captain Phillips
Philippe Le Sourd, “The Grandmaster
Emmanuel Lubezki, “Gravity
Bruno Delbonnel, “Inside Llewyn Davis
Phedon Papamichael, “Nebraska
Roger Deakins, “Prisoners

Oscar frontrunner Lubezki (“Gravity”) already has two ASC trophies — “Children of Men” (2006) and “The Tree of Life” (2011) — but no Academy Award. He contended at the Oscars for both of those films and for the ASC-nominated “Sleepy Hollow” (1999) as well as for “The Little Princess” (1995) and “The New World” (2005). 

Last year, Deakins took home his third ASC prize for “Skyfall” — following wins for “The Shawshank Redemption” (1994) and “The Man Who Wasn’t There” (2001). He has yet to claim an Oscar despite 10 nominations. He contends with the ASC for the 12th time this year for his lensing of “Prisoners” and has odds of 25/1.  

Delbonnel has contended at the ASC twice before — “Amelie” (2001) and “A Very Long Engagement,” (2004), winning for the latter. He contended at the Oscars for both of those films as well as “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” (2009). He has odds of 25/1 to win his first ASC Award. 

Papamichael is nominated for the first time for a motion picture; he has two previous ASC nominations in the TV movie/miniseries category for “Wild Palms” (1994) and “White Dwarf” (1996). He has never contended at the Oscars and has odds of 50/1 here as does first-time ASC nominee Bobbitt (“12 Years a Slave”) who was snubbed at the Oscars.  

Ackroyd, who earned an ASC and Oscar nomination for “The Hurt Locker” (2010), has odds of 1001/1 as does rookie ASC and Oscar nominee Le Sourd (“Grandmaster”). 

Over its 28-year history, the ASC has predicted 110 of the 140 Oscar nominees, including getting all five of this year’s contenders. However, the ASC choice for the best in the business has presaged the eventual winner at the Oscars only 13 times in 27 years. Indeed, of this year’s three previous ASC champs — Deakins, Lubezki and Delbonnel — none have yet won Oscars, despite a combined 18 nominations.  

The academy has favored special-effects extravaganzas for the last four consecutive years: “Avatar” (2009), “Inception” (2010), “Hugo” (2011), and “Life of Pi” (2012). The ASC only agreed on one of those choices (“Inception”), while in the other years choosing films whose visuals weren’t driven by effects: “White Ribbon” (2009), “The Tree of Life” (2011), and “Skyfall” (2012).

However, this year both sets of kudos look like they will go for the spectacle of “Gravity.” Do you agree? What do you think is going to win Best Cinematography at the ASC Awards? Vote below using our easy drag-and-drop menu.

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