When the 2017 Oscar nominations are announced January 24, how many will “Hell or High Water” ride off with? Directed by David Mackenzie, the modern-day western stars Oscar winner Jeff Bridges (“Crazy Heart,” 2009) as grumpy Texas Ranger Marcus Hamilton, who must solve a string of bank heists before his retirement. Let’s take a look at the racetrack odds derived from our experts’ predictions to see where “Hell or High Water” might contend in many of the Oscar categories.
Best Picture – “Hell or High Water” is currently in eighth place (14/1 odds) to earn a Best Picture nomination. It trails the following seven films for that top prize: “La La Land,” “Manchester by the Sea”,” “Moonlight,” “Fences,” “Arrival,” “Lion” and “Hacksaw Ridge.” If it prevails, it would be the first western to win Best Picture at the Oscars since “No Country for Old Men” (2007).
Best Director – Mackenzie is in eighth place (100/1 odds) in our experts’ Best Director rankings. If he scores a nom at the DGA Awards his Oscar odds will likely shoot up, but right now our experts predict that Damien Chazelle (“La La Land”) will win with leading 8/4 odds. In our recent webchat with Mackenzie, he told us that he “embedded myself as much as I possibly could into the landscape and culture of the world we were trying to describe.”
Best Acting – Bridges is a lock for a Best Supporting Actor nom with 9/2 odds, but what about his co-stars Ben Foster (supporting) and Chris Pine (lead)? As of this writing, both younger actors have 100/1 odds to earn a nomination, making Bridges the only likely acting nominee for the film.
Best Original Screnplay – “Hell or High Water’s” chances increased in this race when “Moonlight” was deemed ineligible for the Original Screenplay prize and had to move over to the Adapted Screenplay arena. If screenwriter Taylor Sheridan is nominated (he has 11/2 odds), it will be his first career Oscar bid.
Best Film Editing – At 66/1 odds, “Hell or High Water” is a Top 10 contender for Best Film Editing, though our experts believe that “La La Land” (7/4) will win. Editor Jake Roberts was just nominated at the ACE Eddie Awards, which bodes well for his Oscar hopes.
Best Score – Will composers Nick Cave and Warren Ellis (100/1 odds) earn a surprise nom for their haunting music score? Whatever the case, it seems a foregone conclusion that “La La Land” maestro Justin Hurwitz (8/5 odds) will eventually take home the trophy.
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how their films are faring in our Oscar odds. You can keep changing your predictions right up until just before nominations are announced on January 24 at 5:00 am PT/8:00 am ET. Be sure to read our contest rules. And join in the fierce debate over the Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our forums.