Thanks in large part to Amy Poehler and Tina Fey, the Golden Globes have become a near equal to the Oscars in terms of actual ceremony anticipation. (With all due respect to Ricky Gervais, returning as host next year, we’ll miss these two.) But first come the nominations, which will be announced this Thursday morning. And they should be a very interesting batch.
That’s because the Globes spread out their nominations in separate categories for drama and for comedy/musical. As a result, a lot of folks with essentially no chance at Oscar nominations could land some deserved recognition (think two years ago when Julie Delpy, Greta Gerwig and Julia Louis-Dreyfus all scored best actress nominations in the Comedy/Musical category).
On the drama side, there’s sure things “Spotlight” and “The Revenant” alongside a bunch of films fighting out for the last three slots: “Carol,” “Brooklyn,” “Mad Max: Fury Road,” “Room,” “Bridge of Spies,” “The Hateful Eight,” “Steve Jobs” and “The Danish Girl.”
Meanwhile, “The Martian” is the absolute frontrunner in the comedy/musical side of the equation (despite its questionable categorization as a comedy or musical), with “Joy,” “The Big Short,” “Trainwreck,” “Grandma,” “Spy,” “Cinderella,” “Sisters,” “Diary of a Teenage Girl” and “Burnt” among the films aiming to join it (and then in all likelihood, lose to it).
On the next page are predictions in every film category (and check out some thoughts on the TV categories here). Come Thursday morning, the Globes’ occasionally wacky ways (remember when Tom Cruise got nominated for his “Tropic Thunder” cameo?) could upset these rather obvious choices. But that’s just part of the fun.
Best Motion Picture – Drama
Surprisingly, only three times in the past decade has the winner here corresponded with Oscar’s best picture winner: “Slumdog Millionaire,” “Argo” and “12 Years a Slave.” But considering that the vast majority of the main contenders this
year should qualify here instead of as a “comedy or musical,” it’s likely that our ultimate Oscar winner will at least get nominated here first.
At this point, Tom McCarthy’s “Spotlight”
seems like the lock, with “Bridge of Spies” and “The Revenant” looking very strong as well. But with so many options, many possibilities remain: “Brooklyn,” “Carol,” “Creed,” “The Hateful Eight,” “Mad Max: Fury Road,” “Steve Jobs” and “Room” are all eligible here, too. Surely these films wish they’d added a few more laughs
and/or songs-and-dances so they could have a more breezy ride on the other side.
“Bridge of Spies”
Spoiler: “The Hateful Eight”
Wishful Thinking: “Mad Max: Fury Road”
Likely Winner: “Spotlight”
Best Motion Picture – Comedy/Musical
“The Martian” has this category pretty much locked down, even if some might question how exactly it qualifies. But
what joins it? Well, David O. Russell’s “Joy”
seems like a safe bet, even if it hasn’t been met with that much warmth from critics (it would be Russell’s third film in a row to get in here). So does Adam McKay’s “The Big Short,”
which would more or less guarantee the presence of Ryan Gosling, Brad Pitt, Christian Bale and Steve Carell at the ceremony. But then it gets murky.
Will Tina and Amy be welcomed back with a nod for “Sisters”?
Will indies like “Diary of a Teenage Girl,” “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl” and “Tangerine”
sneak in? Could Amy Schumer end off her epic year with some love from the HFPA? We won’t know until Thursday.
“The Big Short”
“The Diary of a Teenage Girl”
Wishful Thinking: “Tangerine”
Likely Winner: “The Martian”
Steven Spielberg has been nominated for a whopping 14 Golden Globes, 11 of which came from this category. Even when the Academy overlooked him for films like “The Color Purple” or “A.I. Artificial Intelligence,” he got in with the Globes. Does that mean he’s going to be up for his twelfth statue with “Bridge of Spies”? It sure seems like a same bet, as does Ridley Scott and Tom McCarthy getting in for “The Martian” and “Spotlight,” respectively. But those last two slots are a bit of a battle.
Alejandro González Iñárritu, Todd Haynes, Quentin Tarantino, George Miller, John Crowley, Danny Boyle, Lenny Abrahamson and David O. Russell are all feasible possibilities, but at least six of them will miss out.
Todd Haynes, “Carol”
Alejandro González Iñárritu, “The Revenant”
Tom McCarthy, “Spotlight”
Ridley Scott, “The Martian”
Steven Spielberg, “Bridge of Spies”
Spoiler: George Miller, “Mad Max: Fury Road”
Wishful Thinking: Charlie Kaufman & Duke Johnson, “Anomalisa”
Likely Winner: Ridley Scott, “The Martian”
Best Actress – Drama
The race for the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Drama is very likely
to look close to the Oscar race for Best Actress as few genuine
contenders are likely to come out of the comedy/musical race — except that Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander are eligible here for “Carol” and “The Danish Girl,” and not in the supporting category. That makes for a very crowded house.
Saorise Ronan (“Brooklyn”) and Brie Larson (“Room”) are the only true locks, with Mara, Vikander, Cate Blanchett (“Carol”), Charlotte Rampling (“45 Years”), Carey Mulligan (“Suffragette”) and Charlize Theron (“Mad Max”) looking to make up the other three nominees. We’re betting both Mara and Vinkander get in alongside the former’s co-star Blanchett. But it’s a tough call.
Cate Blanchett, “Carol”
Brie Larson, “Room”
Rooney Mara, “Carol”
Saorise Ronan, “Brooklyn”
Alicia Vikander, “The Danish Girl”
Spoiler: Charlize Theron, “Mad Max: Fury Road”
Wishful Thinking: Charlotte Rampling, “45 Years”
Likely Winner: Rooney Mara, “Carol”
Best Actress – Comedy/Musical
This one has the potential to be our favorite category at the Golden Globes this year. While Jennifer Lawrence is definitely the frontrunner for “Joy” (which could potentially mean her third Golden Globe win in five years), the Globes will hopefully fill the rest of the category out with wonderful women who are long shots for Oscar nods. Wouldn’t it be something if Blythe Danner, Lily Tomlin, Maggie Smith and Lawrence’s new BFF Amy Schumer made the cut, too? Or what about Bel Powley or Kitana “Kiki” Rodriquez for “Diary of a Teenage Girl” or “Tangerine,” the latter becoming the first trans person to receive a Golden Globe nomination? Or even Tina Fey and/or Amy Poehler for “Sisters,” just to get them back at the ceremony?
In a perfect world, the HFPA would expand the list to 10 and nominate all of these candidates alongside Kristen Wiig for “Welcome To Me.” But it’s more likely that the Globes will take a more traditional star power route by giving notice to Meryl Streep or Sandra Bullock for “Ricki and the Flash” and “Our Brand Is Crisis,” respectively.
Blythe Danner, “I’ll See You In My Dreams”
Jennifer Lawrence, “Joy”
Amy Schumer, “Trainwreck”
Maggie Smith, “The Lady in the Van”
Lily Tomlin, “Grandma”
Best Actor – Drama
If the Globes want star power, this is where they can get it. Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Michael Fassbender, Tom Hanks and Eddie Redmayne are the frontrunners for the five slots here, with Will Smith arguably next in line. But whoever gets nominated here should prepare to lose to DiCaprio. Even though he’s not “due” for a prize at the Globes in the same way that some may argue he’s ready for his Oscar (he’s landed two Globes already and 10 nominations), it seems unlikely anyone can stop his domination of this category all season.
Johnny Depp, “Black Mass”
Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Revenant”
Michael Fassbender, “Steve Jobs”
Tom Hanks, “Bridge of Spies”
Eddie Redmayne, “The Danish Girl”
Spoiler: Will Smith, “Concussion”
Wishful Thinking: Christopher Abbott, “James White”
Likely Winner: Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Revenant”
Best Actor – Comedy/Musical
This category is pretty embarrassing when it comes to options (although, frankly, it’s refreshing to see a year where it’s the men and not the women that are low on contenders). There’s Matt Damon and Steve Carell, both locked right in for “The Martian” and “The Big Short.” And then there’s… Bradley Cooper for “Burnt”? Or Al Pacino for “Danny Collins”?
That’s seriously slim pickings and leaves things very open for a bizarro nominee or two that nobody saw coming. Whoever that might be, they’d join a wacky history in this category. Like when Johnny Depp got two nominations in the same year for “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Tourist.”
The Predicted Nominees:
Steve Carell, “The Big Short”
Bradley Cooper, “Burnt”
Matt Damon, “The Martian”
Robert DeNiro, “The Intern”
Al Pacino, “Danny Collins”
Spoiler: Ben Kingsley, “Learning To Drive”
Wishful Thinking: Seth Rogen, “The Night Before”
Likely Winner: Matt Damon, “The Martian”
Best Supporting Actress
With Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander campaigning in lead, this category has seriously opened up at the Globes. No one seems like a sure thing, and the once unlikelihood of Kristen Stewart getting her first Golden Globe nomination for “Clouds of Sils Maria” has become a genuine possibility. She could very well be joined by Jane Fonda (“Youth”), Jennifer Jason Leigh (“The Hateful Eight”), Rachel McAdams (“Spotlight”) and Kate Winslet (“Steve Jobs”), which would make for a pretty glorious quintet of women, in our opinion. But wouldn’t it be wonderful if they saved a slot for Mya Taylor (“Tangerine”) or Cynthia Nixon (“James White”)?
The Predicted Nominees:
Jane Fonda, “Youth”
Jennifer Jason Leigh, “The Hateful Eight”
Rachel McAdams, “Spotlight”
Kristen Stewart, “Clouds of Sils Maria”
Kate Winslet, “Steve Jobs”
Spoiler: Joan Allen, “Room”
Wishful Thinking: Mya Taylor, “Tangerine”
Likely Winner: Jennifer Jason Leigh, “The Hateful Eight”
Best Supporting Actor
Is this Sylvester Stallone’s trophy to lose, as it appears to also increasingly be the case
for the Oscar race? Stallone, Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hardy and Mark Rylance
are all looking solid here — but
remember, this is among the categories where HFPA voters tend to be the
wackiest. Tom Cruise got a nod here for “Tropic Thunder.” So did
Michael Douglas for “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,” John Travolta for
“Hairspray” and Will Ferrell for “The Producers.” None of them stood a
shot at Oscar, so don’t necessarily try and predict this race with the
same mind as you would the Oscars (though we basically are anyway).
The Predicted Nominees:
Tom Hardy, “The Revenant”
Michael Keaton, “Spotlight”
Mark Ruffalo, “Spotlight”
Mark Rylance, “Bridge of Spies”
Sylvester Stallone, “Creed”
Spoiler: Idris Elba, “Beasts of No Nation”
Wishful Thinking: Jacob Tremblay, “Room”
Likely Winner: Sylvester Stallone, “Creed”
Original and adapted screenplays feed into a single category at the Globes, which makes it particularly tough to predict. Only three films in the past seven years — “Gone Girl,” “It’s
Complicated” and “The Ides of March” — have received nominations in
this category at the Globes and then not gone on to get a Best Picture
nomination at the Oscars, suggesting this should be full of the year’s
most major contenders. “Spotlight” and “The Martian” seem like givens, with “Carol,” “Brooklyn,” “The Hateful Eight,” “The Revenant,” “Joy,” “Steve Jobs,” “Bridge of Spies,” “The Big Short” and “Room” among
the many screenplays with potential to join them.
The Predicted Nominees:
“The Big Short”
“The Hateful Eight”
Best Foreign Film
Often a film or two not eligible for the Oscars sneaks in here, like
“Blue is the Warmest Color” two years ago or Angelina Jolei’s “In The Land of Blood and
Honey” back in 2011. Could Palme d’Or winner “Dheepan” or critical darling “Victoria” provide further example of that after not being selected by their respective countries for Oscars? Perhaps, but whatever ends up happening with the nominations, Hungary’s “Son of Saul” is all but certainly winning this prize.
“A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence”
“Son of Saul”
Wishful Thinking: “Taxi”
Likely Winner: “Son of Saul”
Best Animated Feature
This is definitely “Inside Out”‘s to lose. “Anomalisa,” “The Good Dinosaur,” “Minions,” “The Peanuts Movie” and “Shaun The Sheep Movie” are among other contenders, and they’ll make up the nominations, but Pixar’s summer hit remains the frontrunner. Like the foreign film race, this is one Golden Globe win we can pretty much already call.
“The Good Dinosaur”
“The Peanuts Movie”
“Shaun The Sheep Movie”
Wishful Thinking: “The Prophet”
Likely Winner: “Inside Out”
Best Original Song/Best Original Score
The Globes tend to be more friendly to mainstream acts here than the Oscars (U2, Coldplay and Taylor Swift all got nominated here two years ago), so look for The Weeknd, Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga, Wiz Khalifa and Ellie Goulding all potentially finding nominations and thus potentially giving films like “Fifty Shades of Grey” and “Furious 7” more Golden Globe nominations than your favorite indie.
Predicted Song Nominees:
“Earned It” (“Fifty Shades of Grey”)
“Love Me Like You Do” (“Fifty Shades of Grey”)
“One Kind of Love” (‘Love & Mercy”)
“See You Again” (“Furious 7”)
“Til It Happens To You” (“The Hunting Ground”)
Spoiler: “Hands of Love” (“Freeheld”)
Wishful Thinking: “Salted Wound” (“Fifty Shades if Grey”)
Likely Winner: “Til It Happens To You” (“The Hunting Ground”)
Predicted Score Nominees:
“Bridge of Spies”
“The Hateful Eight”
So what would these predictions mean for overall nomination tallies? If we were miraculously correct across the board, “Spotlight” will lead with seven nominations, while “The Revenant,” “Bridge of Spies” and “Carol” would follow with five each. But anything could happen on Thursday.
Peter Knegt is Indiewire’s Contributing Editor and awards columnist. Follow him on Twitter.
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