It is a simple fact of life that I am always right. I have only been wrong approximately four to five times in my life and at least one of those times wasn’t even really my fault. (RELATED: 2014 Oscar nominations: Snubs and surprises)
If you are a betting man, here is the only list of Oscar predictions you need to read before you place your bets ahead of Sunday’s ceremony.*
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Who should win: June Squibb, “Nebraska”
Who will win: Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave.” If it were any other year, I would say that Jennifer Lawrence would pull out another win. Her performance in “American Hustle” was great and she is on a roll. But she has not campaigned at all for the role and has essentially said in interviews that she doesn’t want the Oscar. (She’s a smart one: She realizes that her star could burn out very quickly.) Squibb was my personal favorite in this category, but she doesn’t have enough momentum and neither does her relatively quiet film. On the other hand, Nyong’o has been pulling out all of the stops on the campaign trail and is equally deserving. “12 Years” won’t pick up any other acting awards, so voters will give this to the beautiful newcomer.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Who should win: Michael Fassbender, “12 Years a Slave”
Who will win: Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club.” Sure, Jared Leto had something of a career renaissance after being out of films for the past seven years, and yes he became emaciated for his emotionally difficult role. He will win the Academy Award. If it were up to me, Fassbender would take home the gold. His performance was the best and most gut-wrenching aspect of “12 Years,” and it’s unfortunate that it has been overshadowed.
Who should win: Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
Who will win: Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine.” Blanchett is a lock in the least competitive category of the year. Amy Adams is the only other contender for “American Hustle.” She was truly great in that role, but Blanchett was greater and she has scooped up every award she has been nominated for this season. This is indisputably her year.
Who should win: Leonardo DiCaprio, “Wolf of Wall Street”
Who will win: Leonardo DiCaprio, “Wolf of Wall Street.” You thought I was going to say Matthew McConaughey, didn’t you?! Not so fast. McConaughey has had a killer couple of years, with serious roles in “Mud,” “Dallas Buyers Club” and the recent “True Detective.” He is now a Very Serious Actor and Hollywood could be quick to reward him for a career 360. But Leo has been waiting in the wings for a decade now. He’s never deserved the Oscar more, even though “Wolf” is bawdy and ridiculous. But I think voters — especially the acting bloc, which is the Academy’s largest bloc — will reward Leo over McConaughey. His time will come, but he’ll have to wait — just like Leo did. (Here’s a more scientific reasoning behind Leo’s winning theory.)
Who should win: “Her,” “Wolf of Wall Street,” or “12 Years a Slave”
Who will win: “12 Years a Slave.” Barring some sort of “Argo” upset again this year, “12 Years” is set for best picture. It’s a beautifully shot, historical epic that tackles slavery so, yeah, the producers can go ahead and start printing out BluRay covers with “ACADEMY AWARD WINNER FOR BEST PICTURE” on them. “Gravity” is likely the only contender that could pull out a win. I wish voters wouldn’t be such babies and vote for “Wolf of Wall Street,” but they won’t so put your money on “12 Years.”
*Neither Taylor Bigler nor The Daily Caller is liable for any money that you may lose when betting on Oscar winners and it’s all your fault if you bet on an essentially meaningless awards ceremony and the winners that are voted on based on politics, not artistic merit.