Oscars 2019 predictions slugfest: Watch Chris Beachum and Rob Licuria fiercely debate all 24 categories in 24 minutes

“I really want to get Best Picture right!” proclaims managing editor Chris Beachum about his thoughts on the heated Best Picture race at this year’s Oscars. He recently joined senior editor Rob Licuria to fiercely debate in a new slugfest and continue their annual tradition of dishing their predictions for all 24 Oscar categories in 24 minutes. “I have been umm-ing and ahh-ing about this one for a very long time,” Licuria agrees, as they both agonize over some of the tougher categories to predict, especially the competitive Best Picture category. Watch our video chat above.

“I am going with ‘Roma,’ and I have been a ‘Roma’ sceptic for the whole season,” Licuria admits. “Two weeks ago I was like, OK, I’m done I am happy with this prediction. This is not easy! ‘Green Book’ is in there, ‘Black Panther’ is in there, ‘BlacKkKlansman’ is in there, and ‘The Favourite’ really killed it at the BAFTAs last week,” he says. “I think we’re ready to see a foreign language, black and white film win Best Picture!”

“That’s what I have,” Beachum agrees. “It’s not the most logical choice from a historical standpoint, but it has won so many of the things that it needed to win. The SAG ensemble not being there sort of bothers me, but are they really going to give it SAG ensemble?,” he asks. “What bothers me more though is what was the last Best Picture that had no SAG nominations? They nominated two of the actresses at the Oscars, but SAG didn’t nominate either one. That’s troubling. And of course the editing snub is troubling, but we got past that on ‘Birdman.'”

“Speaking of the actors,” Licuria pipes in, “seeing Marina de Tavira and Yalitza Aparicio nominated means the actors [branch] do love this film, and that’s got to help the film for sure,” he says.

“One that really intrigues me is ‘Green Book,'” Beachum argues. “We’ve already seen it win a preferential [ballot] like the Oscars have, where they don’t just use the number one votes, they also look to see potentially your second and third place, so it helps to be a movie that is not down on many ballots  in seventh or eighth,” he explains. “It’s already won a preferential, like ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ has won a Globe, and it got both of its actors in. The only thing it missed was directing,” he says, adding “that really means more than almost any other little thing that you look at.”

SEE Which guild points the way to the Best Picture winner at the Oscars?

“I think also that ‘Black Panther’ should not be completely and utterly swept aside because it’s still quite popular,” Licuria says about the blockbuster and SAG ensemble winner. “I am envisioning a scenario where on a preferential a lot of people who just really love that film have it up towards the top of their list, which allows that film to maybe squeak ahead in a very close race with three other films. This category is going to keep us awake for a few more days!”

See Chris’ and Rob’s latest predictions and see how they compare to rankings by dozens of our Experts.

PREDICT the Oscar winners now; change them until February 24

Be sure to check out how our experts rank this year’s Oscar contenders. Then take a look at the most up-to-date combined odds before you make your own 2019 Oscar predictions. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on February 24.

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