Between them our 21 Oscar experts derived from major media outlets are predicting that one of these five films will win Best Picture this year: “Darkest Hour,” “Dunkirk,” “Mudbound,” “The Post,” or “The Shape of Water.” All but “The Post” have screened already.
“Mudbound” debuted at Sundance, “Dunkirk” was a huge hit this summer and “Darkest Hour” and “The Shape of Water” have been wowing the festival crowds in recent weeks.
See how our experts rank Oscar contenders according to the likelihood of winning in the top eight races. Use the drop-down menus at the top of each page to see the other seven categories.
Here’s how the Oscar Best Picture predictions break down by expert as well as the most up-to-date odds for each of the top 10 contenders to win:
1. “Dunkirk” (11/2 odds): Nine experts
Thelma Adams (Gold Derby), Joyce Eng (TV Guide), Tim Gray (Variety), Christopher Rosen (Entertainment Weekly), Anne Thompson (Indiewire), Peter Travers (Rolling Stone), Brian Truitt (USA Today), Adnan Virk (ESPN), Jeffrey Wells (Hollywood-Elsewhere), Susan Wloszczyna (RogetEbert.com)
2. “The Post”: Six experts (15/2 odds)
Erik Davis (Fandango), Edward Douglas (Tracking Board), Dave Karger (IMDB), Tariq Khan (Fox News), Tom O’Neil (Gold Derby), Keith Simanton (IMDB),
3. “The Shape of Water”: Two experts (9/1 odds)
Matthew Jacob (Huffington Post), Sara Vilkomerson (Entertainment Weekly),
4. “Call Me By Your Name” One expert: (15/2 odds)
Nicole Sperling (Entertainment Weekly)
5. “Darkest Hour” Two experts: (9/1 odds)
Scott Mantz (Access Hollywood), Sasha Stone (Awards Daily)
6. “Get Out” (16/1)
7. “Untitled Paul Thomas Anderson Movie” (16/1)
8. “Mudbound”: One expert (22/1 odds)
Kevin Polowy (Yahoo)
9. “The Big Sick” (28/1)
10. “Downsizing” (33/1)
“Dunkirk” helmer Christopher Nolan is way out front to win Best Director, with 15 experts predicting him to prevail on his first time in this race for his epic depiction of a key defeat for Allies in WWII. That support translates into leading odds of 2/1. Also expected to be in contention in this category for the first time is Guillermo del Toro, who has three votes and odds of 5/1 for his fantasy film “The Shape of Water.”
Two-time Oscar champ Steven Spielberg (“Schindler’s List,” “Saving Private Ryan”) doesn’t have any first-place votes but is ranked high enough by the overall group of experts for his upcoming true-life drama “The Post” to be in third place with odds of 7/1. Rounding out the top five with one vote each are Luca Guadagnino (“Call Me By Your Name”), who is at 9/1, and Joe Wright (“Darkest Hour”) with odds of 14/1.
Gary Oldman has a huge lead over the competition, with 17 of our 21 experts predicting he will win Best Actor for his portrayal of Winston Churchill in the WWII drama “Darkest Hour.” While the actor lost his only Oscar bid in 2012 for “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” to another first-time nominee (Jean Dujardin, “The Artist”), his toughest opponent this year could be three-time champ Daniel Day-Lewis (“My Left Foot,” “There Will be Blood,” “Lincoln”). His upcoming collaboration with Paul Thomas Anderson is said to be his farewell to film and two experts think he will get an Oscar as a going away present.
Sally Hawkins also has a commanding lead in Best Actress, albeit not quite as big as Oldman’s, with 11 experts predicting she will win her first Oscar for her sensitive performance as a deaf woman who befriends an alien in “The Shape of Water.” That gives her odds of 13/5. Her nearest rival is three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep (“Kramer vs. Kramer,” “Sophie’s Choice,” “The Iron Lady”) who has three votes (and odds of 5/1) for her portrayal of Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham in “The Post.” Two other Oscar winners have one vote apiece (and odds of 9/1): Frances McDormand (“Fargo”) for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” which just won the audience award at TIFF; and Judi Dench (“Shakespeare in Love”) for returning to the Oscar-nominated role of Queen Victoria in “Victoria and Abdul.”
Be sure to make your Oscar nomination predictions so that Hollywood studio executives can see how their films are faring in our Academy Awards odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on January 23.