Oscars Experts: ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ flies to third place

Notice the two charts above. The left-hand one details our Experts’ predictions for Best Picture back on Oct. 1, while the right-side side shows their updated predictions on Dec.  8. In the past two months, “Saving Mr. Banks” has sky-rocketed from seventh to third.

As more and more of our Experts are seeing this Disney flick about the making of “Mary Poppins,” they continue to update their predictions. (Likewise for late releases “American Hustle” and “The Wolf of Wall Street”).

 We’ve seen a huge ground-swell of support for this Christmas release, suggesting strong staying power — at least where our Experts are concerned. While we won’t have a true feel for the film’s Oscar chances until it opens nationwide on Dec. 20, as it stands now, “Saving Mr. Banks” is the one feel-good film out of the bunch. People are exiting the theatres with smiles on their faces as they hum some of those famous “Mary Poppins” tunes.

Although only three Experts — Matt Atchity (Rotten Tomatoes), Michael Hogan (Vanity Fair) and Christopher Rosen (Huffington Post) — are predicting “Saving Mr. Banks” will win Best Picture, five more have it in their top three.

Our Experts are in agreement that Emma Thompson is a shoo-in for a Best Actress nomination for playing P.L. Travers, the acid-tongued creator of the Mary Poppins character, who doesn’t want to give up the movie rights. Just last week she was hailed by the National Board of Review.

And Tom Hanks is a frontrunner in the Best Supporting Actor race for playing the very patient Walt Disney. He won back-to-back Best Actor Oscars (“Philadelphia” in 1993 and “Forrest Gump” in 1994).

The film is directed by John Lee Hancock and also stars Colin Farrell, Paul Giamatti, Bradley Whitford, Jason Schwartzman and Rachel Griffiths.

Below, watch our recent interview with Hancock and then vote for Best Picture using our easy drag-and-drop menu.

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