Tuesday, February 16, 2016

'The Big Short' and 'Spotlight' win at the Writers Guild Awards, heating up the Oscar race

It's February 16. That means that we're a mere 12 days away from Oscar Sunday. For many films, it's now or never at this point. Studios are putting all of their assets into getting voters to select their films, as most Academy members are filling out their ballots this week. Certain categories are pretty much set. In fact, I'd say that most categories are a done deal besides the big one. Leonardo DiCaprio will win Best Actor for his gritty, committed performance in The Revenant. Brie Larson is close to a sure thing for her emotionally devastating turn in Room. Sylvester Stallone is a lock. Alicia Vikander is looking more and more like a guarantee as the race pushes forward. And much to my disappointment, Alejandro G. Inarritu will probably win his second straight Best Director Oscar over the extraordinary efforts of Mad Max: Fury Road's George Miller. The screenplay categories are also pretty set- The Big Short and Spotlight will win Best Adapted and Original Screenplay, respectively. So the results of Saturday night's Writers Guild Awards weren't necessarily a surprise. But it continued to complicate an already ridiculous race.

The Big Short and Spotlight took home the big prizes on Saturday night, winning the coveted Adapted and Original Screenplay awards at the Writers Guild Awards. There was no other foreseeable result but it still leaves the race in a very tight spot. So far, The Big Short has taken home awards at the Writers and Producers Guilds. The Revenant won Best Drama at the Golden Globes, as well as the DGA Award and Best Film at the BAFTAs (the British Oscars). And Spotlight emerged victorious at the SAG and WGA Awards, as well as numerous critical wins. With under two weeks to go, three films remain competitive in this crazy race and I'm still not sure if any film has a better chance than the other. The Big Short has history on its side- after all, the PGA is usually a great Oscar predictor. The Revenant has momentum, as well as the power of DiCaprio and Inarritu, both beloved Oscar favorites. And finally, Spotlight seems to be the consensus pick. There's very little divisiveness in regards to this film- pretty much everyone loves it. If I had to take a bet right now, Spotlight will win thanks to the balloting system that the Oscars use. But I really don't know. This is gonna go right down to the wire.

Image Credits: Rolling Stone, Joblo

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