This will be the million dollar question throughout the upcoming Oscar season. Most agree that Leonardo DiCaprio is long over due for an Oscar win. He has been nominated 5 times.

1993– Best supporting actor- WHAT’S EATING GILBERT GRAPE. (Tommy Lee Jones won for THE FUGITIVE)

2004– Best actor nomination- THE AVIATOR (Jamie Fox won for RAY)

2006 -Best actor nomination – BLOOD DIAMOND (Forest Whitaker won for LAST MAN IN SCOTLAND)

2013 – Best Actor – THE WOLF OF WALL STREET (Matthew Mcconaughy won for DALLAS BUYERS CLUB)

There are several Tumblr pages dedicated to his plight :
Poor Leo Tumblr Page
Leonardo Oscar

This year DiCaprio tries again in THE REVENANT.  Alejandro González Iñárritu’s follow-up to BIRDMAN, last years best picture winner.

Based on the novel by Michael Punke, THE REVENANT is based on true story.  DiCaprio plays Hugh Glass, a fur trapper who is injured in a fight with a bear. His colleague John Fitzgerald played Tom Hardy robs him and leaves him for dead, but Glass survives and promises revenge on Fitzgerald.

The trailer was released this week, officially kicking off his Oscar campaign.

Regardless of which actors and actresses win on Sunday night, everyone has their own personal favorites. Here are some of mine:

Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years A Slave)

Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)

Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years A Slave)

Leonardo Dicaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street)

Michael B. Jordan (Fruitvale Station)

Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke (Before Midnight) **spoiler***

Forest Whitaker (The Butler)

Sarah Paulson (12 Years A Slave)

Bruce Dern (Nebraska)

The Golden Globes have a history of predicting Oscar winners. Even after the Academy moved up their due dates. Oscar ballots were due 4 days before the Globes happened, but last year all four of the academy’s acting picks came from the Golden Globes. Over the past 20 years, the Globes have chosen actor Oscar winners 80% of the time. The Oscar voters have their nominations in, but they still need to vote for the winners. The Golden Globes become an audition for Oscar night. If a Globe winner gives a good speech and comes across as likable, their chance at an Oscar goes way up. Sunday Night Leonardo Dicaprio, Matthew McConaughey , Jared Leto and Alfonso Cuaron. All had great speeches and the AMPAS wants them giving speeches on Oscar night. My best guess is that last night locked a nomination for Dicaprio, locked a win for McConaughy and Leto. Director is still up in the air. Right now it is between Steve McQueen Alfonso Cuaron and David O’ Russell.

Right now the Best Actor race is between Chiwetel Ejiofor in 12 YEARS A SLAVE and Robert Redford in ALL IS LOST.  Both rolls may seem very different, but in reality they are almost the same. Both are survival stories. Both actors have to convey the psychological toll that their predicaments cause. And both do so brilliantly, but in different ways. It is hard to imagine anyone beating out Ejiofor at this point, but nothing is a lock. The scenes below are examples of why Chiwetel Ejiofor and Robert Redford are the two to beat.

Matt McConaughey lost an incredible amount of with for THE DALLAS BUYERS CLUB.  I am sure you saw the pictures. Doctors were worried that his body was beginning to shut down due to his low weight, but it looks like it paid off. Many are predicting a Best Actor nomination for McConaughey and with the string of great performances lately including this years MUD, he might finally get an Oscar.

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As I try to predict this years Oscar winners, I realize what a strange year it has been. The date changes have for the first time left the Oscar voters to choose nominees before any other major awards were announced. They were for the first time “on their own”. If the date changes never happened we would have seen Katheryn Bigelow and Ben Affleck nominated for Best Director.  ARGO would win BP and Affleck for Director. Not so easy this year. Some say if ARGO wins then they really hate LINCOLN and Ang Lee will win, or it will be a split. ARGO and Spielberg, or if they Spielberg wins Director than LINCOLN will win picture. I am going with the split.

I am torn in the Best Actress category. Jennifer Lawrence is the favorite to win, but I hated Silver Linings. Lawrence is young enough to have more opportunities to win. Emmanualle Riva is 86 and has been acting most of her life. It is now or never. But the old white guys are more likely to to vote with their penis and choose Lawrence. I am sticking with Riva and I am probably wrong, but I learned last year that going with the consensus is not always the way. Especially this year.

They want to honor LINCOLN somewhere if not Best Picture, it does after all have the most nominations. Daniel Day Lewis will win Actor, but I am torn with Best Supporting. Tommy Lee Jones has won a few other awards, but has not campaigned much. While Robert Deniro is in full campaign mode. Weinstein and Co. are trying to make SLP more about mental illness than a romcom. Deniro crying with Katie Couric about David O’Russells son’s fight with mental illness. Ugh..it is a romcom and a bad one. All 5 Supporting Actor nominees have won Oscars before, so maybe it is Deniro’s time again, but I am going with Tommy Lee.

Here goes nothing:

Best Motion Picture of the Year
Argo
Amour
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Bradley Cooper in “Silver Linings Playbook”
Daniel Day-Lewis in “Lincoln”
Hugh Jackman in “Les Misérables”
Joaquin Phoenix in “The Master”
Denzel Washington in “Flight”

Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Alan Arkin in “Argo”
Robert De Niro in “Silver Linings Playbook”
Philip Seymour Hoffman in “The Master”
Tommy Lee Jones in “Lincoln”
Christoph Waltz in “Django Unchained”

Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty
Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook
Emmanuelle Riva in Amour
Quvenzhané Wallis in Beasts of the Southern Wild
Naomi Watts in The Impossible

Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Amy Adams in The Master
Sally Field in Lincoln
Anne Hathaway in Les Misérables
Helen Hunt in The Sessions
Jacki Weaver in Silver Linings Playbook

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
Brave
Frankenweenie
ParaNorman” Sam Fell and Chris Butler
The Pirates! Band of Misfits
Wreck-It Ralph

Achievement in Cinematography
Anna Karenina Seamus McGarvey
Django Unchained Robert Richardson
Life of Pi Claudio Miranda
Lincoln Janusz Kaminski
Skyfall Roger Deakins

Achievement in Costume Design
Anna Karenina Jacqueline Durran
Les Misérables Paco Delgado
Lincoln Joanna Johnston
Mirror Mirror Eiko Ishioka
Snow White and the Huntsman Colleen Atwood

Achievement in Directing
Amour Michael Haneke
Beasts of the Southern Wild Benh Zeitlin
Life of Pi Ang Lee
Lincoln Steven Spielberg
Silver Linings Playbook David O. Russell

Best Documentary Feature
5 Broken Cameras
The Gatekeepers
How to Survive a Plague
The Invisible War
Searching for Sugar Man

Best Documentary Short Subject
Inocente
Kings Point
Mondays at Racine
Open Heart
Redemption

Achievement in Film Editing
Argo
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Best Foreign Language Film of the Year
Amour 
Kon-Tiki
No”
A Royal Affair
War Witch

Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling
Hitchcock
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Les Misérables


Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)
Anna Karenina
Argo
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Skyfall

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song)
Before My Time from Chasing Ice
Everybody Needs A Best Friend from Ted
Pi’s Lullaby from Life of Pi
Skyfall from Skyfall
Suddenly from “Les Misérables

Achievement in Production Design
Anna Karenina
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Lincoln

Best animated Short Film
Adam and Dog
Fresh Guacamole
Head over Heels
Maggie Simpson in The Longest Daycare
Paperman

Best Live Action Short Film
Asad
Buzkashi Boys
Curfew
Death of a Shadow
Henry

Achievement in Sound Editing
Argo
Django Unchained
Life of Pi
Skyfall
Zero Dark Thirty

Achievement in Sound Mixing
Argo
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Skyfall

Achievement in Visual Effects
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Life of Pi
Marvel’s The Avengers
Prometheus
Snow White and the Huntsman

Adapted Screenplay
Argo
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Silver Linings Playbook

Original Screenplay
Amour Written by Michael Haneke
Django Unchained Written by Quentin Tarantino
Flight Written by John Gatins
Moonrise Kingdom Written by Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola
Zero Dark Thirty Written by Mark Boal

amour

Best Picture nominee AMOUR is not exactly a happy movie, or is it?  As we celebrate Valentines Day you can not think of the love the husband has for his wife in AMOUR. A man will do anything to care for his sick wife. It begs the question, how much is too much? When can you let go?

While AMOUR will not win Best Picture, it will win Best Foreign Language Film. Emmanuelle Riva plays the sick wife who must be cared for by her husband. Riva is nominated for Best Actress. She is the oldest nominee ever for in the Best Actress category. She will turn 86 on Oscar night February 24th. Jennifer Lawrence is the favorite to win, but what an honor it would be for Riva to take home the Oscar. Reports are that she is very frail, but rumor has it that she will be attending the Academy Awards if she is able. Watch the scene below and try to convince me that Jennifer Lawrence gave a better performance.

Here is a clip of a real life couple suffering the same obstacles, but define what love (amour) really is: