The Oscar stat that could mean trouble for ‘A Star is Born’ in the Best Picture race

We are predicting that Bradley Cooper’s remake of the Hollywood classic “A Star is Born” will reap a leading 11 Oscar nominations, including bids for the marquee categories of director, actor, actress, supporting actor, and adapted screenplay. But based on our Oscar odds charts, the film is expected to win just two races, both below-the line: Best Original Song (“Shallow”) and Best Sound Mixing. Were it to also take home Best Picture, that would mean a total haul of just three Academy Awards. 

That’s not a horrendous number – plenty of films have won the top prize with that overall result, including “Moonlight,” “12 Years a Slave,” and “Argo.” But what do those three winners have in common?

They all won above-the-line awards along with their Best Picture Academy Awards. All three won Best Adapted Screenplay. “Moonlight” also claimed Supporting Actor for Mahershala Ali while “12 Years a Slave” took Supporting Actress for Lupita Nyong’o. (Even “Spotlight,” which only won two Oscars in total and became the first Best Picture winner to do so since 1953’s  “The Greatest Show on Earth,” won an above-the-line Oscar in Original Screenplay.)

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Cooper is second to Alfonso Cuaron (“Roma”) in Best Director and Christian Bale (“Vice”) in Best Actor while Lady Gaga lags behind Glenn Close (“The Wife”) in Best Actress. And the film ranks third and fourth, respectively, in Best Supporting Actor (Sam Elliott) and Adapted Screenplay.

The last movie to win Best Picture without also winning an above-the-line award was “Rebecca.” That was way back in 1941.

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Even more troubling for Cooper and company is that each of its strongest Best Picture rivals is expected to take home an above-the-line Oscar. “Roma” is set to win Best Director; “BlacKkKlansman” and “The Favourite” will pick up Adapted and Original Screenplay respectively; Supporting Actor for Mahershala Ali and “Green Book” is all but guaranteed; “Vice” is a favourite for Best Actor; and Regina King is still the predicted winner of Supporting Actress for “If Beale Street Could Talk.”

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 22.

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