The Oscar Warrior: WGA Noms, A Quick Analysis

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As mentioned in our predictions column yesterday, the nominations by the Writers Guild (WGA) might give us a better idea what the Academy’s Writers’ Branch might pick for the Oscars, and now that they’ve announced, there aren’t that many surprises really, but it does give us a much clearer picture of what to expect from the Academy.

As far as the original screenplays, they nominated three of the same things we picked for screenplay (50/50, Midnight in Paris and Bridesmaids), but left out Michel Hazanavicius’ screenplay for The Artist, which as we stated, wasn’t eligible. They picked Win Win, which we suggested yesterday might have some support, as well as Diablo Cody’s Young Adult, which we kind of spaced on mentioning. One of those will be dropped out in favor of The Artist and we’re not completely ruling out Mike Mills’ screenplay for Beginners either. WGA often can go 3 for 5 in this category with the Academy.

Next, we have the adapted screenplays and they went four for five with our picks. The one screenplay they nominated, which we didn’t, was the Steve Zaillian screenplay for David Fincher’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, which shows some more support for the thriller, which could help it get more Oscar nominations than we expected earlier, possibly screenplay and maybe Best Picture? We’ll see. We went with War Horse with the caveat that it might seem too schmaltzy for the Academy screenwriters and the WGA ignoring it does seem to bolster that idea. If the Academy writers feel the same way, we’re looking at the five adapted screenplay nominations right there, but again, WGA and the Academy rarely coincide one for one, so expect one of those screenplays to not make the cut. The other four are solid but we think the WGA may go with Moneyball over The Descendants, which we still think will win the Oscar.