Final Oscar Predictions, Part 2: Makeup, Music, Costumes, Sets & Cinematography

Today it's time for the second group of tech awards, which include makeup, music, costumes, sets, and cinematography. Some of these categories are a little easier to call, but most still have a fairly strong runner-up right behind it, so let's get going:



  • Gravity
  • Inside Llewyn Davis
  • Prisoners
  • Nebraska
  • The Grandmaster

This is Gravity's to lose. It won the Cinematography guild award, along with the BAFTA, and the Academy has gone for the 3D epic in this category the last three times it was eligible (Life of Pi, Hugo, Avatar). It's really no contest.

Winner: Gravity

Alternate: None, I can't imagine it losing.



  • The Great Gatsby
  • 12 Years a Slave
  • American Hustle
  • Gravity
  • Her

Now, this is a tricky one, despite first glance indicating that Gatsby should have it. It's won all the requisite precursor awards, including the ADG and BAFTA, but sometimes the Oscars go a different way in this category, especially regarding movies they don't like. Gatsby got mixed to negative reviews and is only nominated for two Oscars, and last year's Anna Karenina was another critically mixed film that won all the precursors for production design, only to lose the Oscar to Lincoln. Often this category goes to the film with the most overall nominations, which tells me 12 Years a Slave, American Hustle or even Gravity could be in the running. Then again, this may be overthinking things, as badly received films like Alice in Wonderland and Memoirs of a Geisha still managed a win here. I'll stick with Gatsby for now, but it's not a lock at all.

Winner: The Great Gatsby

Alternate: 12 Years a Slave

Dark Horse: American Hustle



  • The Great Gatsby
  • The Grandmaster
  • 12 Years a Slave
  • The Invisible Woman
  • American Hustle

Now, in this category they never have a problem rewarding badly received films, and usually the loudest, flashiest, biggest period costumes take it. The Great Gatsby has won most of the costume awards, including the BAFTA but just the other day, 12 Years a Slave won the Costume Designers Guild award in a bit of an upset, so that may signal that this is a place besides screenplay where they can reward the Best Picture frontrunner. I'm going to go out on a bit of a limb here and say 12 Years, because of that guild win. It's a limb because Gatsby's costumes are undoubtedly flashier and that almost always prevails, but I just have a feeling this year may be different.

Winner: 12 Years a Slave

Alternate: The Great Gatsby

Dark Horse: American Hustle



  • Gravity
  • The Book Thief
  • Her
  • Philomena
  • Saving Mr. Banks

I really think this belongs to Gravity (and yes, that movie will be picking up the most statues on Oscar night). Philomena is the spoiler, as it's really the only chance for that film to win something, and reports are that the older members in the Academy loved the movie, but I feel pretty safe choosing Gravity here.

Winner: Gravity

Alternate: Philomena

Dark Horse: None, I'd be shocked it it wasn't one of those two.



  • "Let it Go," Idina Menzel (Frozen)
  • "The Moon Song," Karen O. (Her)
  • "Happy," Pharell Williams (Despicable Me 2)
  • "Ordinary Love," U2 (Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom)

This is an exciting category because this is the first time in years the Song award has actually been competitive, and there are two genuine big hits among the nominees. I'm going to go with "Let it Go," because that song has basically swept the country as part of the phenomenon that is Frozen, but never count out U2, who will be performing at the ceremony, along with the others. As for the quality, I personally think "Happy" is the catchiest and best song of these nominees, and with the song a big hit in its own right and Pharell Williams on a Grammy-winning hot streak, he could very well be the surprise winner too. I'm going with Frozen due to the momentum of the movie, but I really don't think "Let it Go" is up there with the best Disney song winners of the past (I'm sorry, but that song is no "Under the Sea" or "A Whole New World.")

Winner: "Let it Go"

Alternate: "Happy"

Dark Horse: "Ordinary Love"



  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa
  • Lone Ranger

Dallas Buyers Club. Slam dunk. As I said last week there's no way the Academy allows the word Jackass to be engraved on an Oscar, and The Lone Ranger was one of the worst reviewed movies of last year. Maybe if it was just the makeup artists voting they might consider the other two, but with the whole Academy chiming in? No.

Winner: Dallas Buyers Club

Alternate: None.