Oscars predictions: Guilds give ‘Birdman’ the edge, Pete Hammond says

“I keep switching around,” Pete Hammond (Deadline) confesses about his Oscar predictions, referring to the confusion all pundits feel about picking “Birdman” or “Boyhood” for Best Picture.

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“I’m looking at all of the tea leaves and they’re obviously sending mixed signals,” he adds. “But mostly the guilds are sending signals for ‘Birdman‘ and you can’t get around that. You can’t deny the significance of the PGA, DGA and SAG.

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“In the end, I’m picking ‘Birdman,'” he notes, but not with total confidence. “BAFTA is really troubling me. I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that they almost completely shut out ‘Birdman.’ ‘Boyhood’ won Best Picture and Director and that’s key because they have many of the same voters as the Oscars.”

Over the past six years, BAFTA has correctly predicted the Academy Award for Best Picture six times, so that suggests “Boyhood” will repeat this Sunday. However, “Birdman’s” victory at PGA is equally, or more, significant considering the Producers’ Guild has correctly forecasted the top Oscar seven times.

“I know this is a real problem!” Hammond gasps. “One of them is wrong!

“I find talking to academy members, they’re all over the map,” he says. “I don’t hear ‘Birdman’ as much as I thought I would considering all of the things it’s winning. I really hear ‘Whiplash‘ more than any other movie. This has been going on for the longest time. I was interested to see how much it won at BAFTA. They voted for it in sound and editing there and, of course, in supporting actor, which it’s going to win. That’s interesting. It’s a small, little movie.”

Sizing up the race for Best Actor, he says, “I think Eddie Redmayne‘s gonna win. It’s that kind of role. It looks like acting to academy members. It’s his to lose. If he does lose, oddly enough, I don’t think he loses to Michael Keaton. I think he loses to Bradley Cooper. Cooper is well liked. This is his third nomination in a row. That’s a very good sign. He’s got the physical transformation. We haven’t seen him go head to head against Redmayne and Keaton. The movie was too late in the game to figure into the early awards.”

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7 thoughts on “Oscars predictions: Guilds give ‘Birdman’ the edge, Pete Hammond says

  1. I liked Boyhood, but Birdman completely blew me away! Likewise, Redmayne’s awe-fully good (& is only at the start of his career), but Keaton is just raw & heartbreaking & real. I will probably cry if they don’t think he’s earned this.

  2. @Louis yup, what Matt said. And even without the SAG, since 1995, only 2 films (Saving Private Ryan and Apollo 13) that won both PGA and DGA still went on to lose the Oscar for Best Picture. But here are some stats in Boyhoods favor: You have to go all the way back to 1977 (Annie Hall) when a film that didn’t win the Golden Globes for Best Comedy/Musical went on to win the Oscar for Best Picture. Birdman did NOT win the Golden Globe for Best Comedy/Musical. You have to go as far back as 1980 (Ordinary People) that a film won Best Picture without a Best Editing nomination. Birdman does NOT have an Editing nomination. Also, if your predicting Birdman to win Best Picture, but have Redmayne winning over Keaton, let me throw this out there. Since 1990, there has been only one film (Dances With Wolves) with more than three acting nominations that lost all three of them, but still went on to win Best Picture.

  3. I have to say, everyone keeps bringing up if you lose all three Guilds (PGA, DGA, & SAG), your chances of winning Best Picture drops dramatically. However, just last year, 12 Years a Slave lost the SAG and DGA and still won Best Picture. 12 Years tied with Gravity for the PGA. Last year, we were one PGA vote or two shy of 12 Years a Slave becoming the new Braveheart. So, when we bring up that it wasn’t since Braveheart in 95 that a film lost all three guilds and still went on to win Best Picture, it was almost last year when that happened! We have no idea how close Boyhood was to winning PGA, it could have been only a few votes. I kinda think the stats that Birdman have to hurdle to win Best Picture are just as staggering as Boyhood, if not even more so. (No editing nom & no golden globe for best comedy/musical)

  4. Honestly, at this point, I’d be fine with either Boyhood or Birdman winning it. Hell, even a Best Picture win for The Grand Budapest Hotel or Whiplash would make me reasonably happy.

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