They Shoot Oscar Prognosticators, Don't They?

Globe and SAG Nods Further Muddy the Oscar Water

By J. Don Birnam

December 14, 2017

Give me my SAG award!

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The Golden Globe and SAG nominations have come up, sending an already unpredictable Oscar season into further turmoil as the two groups went in wildly different directions. In just three short days, the Best Picture race muddied substantially for the Oscars. And while some of the favorites continued to do well in the acting races, there are still at least one or two slots open in all four acting categories.

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The Globes Taketh…

Heading into the week, it seemed as if The Shape of Water was doing poorly, given the relative lack of mention with the critics groups. It was instead The Post, The Florida Project, Lady Bird, and Call Me By Your Name which had received citations from the first precursors.

But just like that, the ever-quirky Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) had something else to say about it. Even though international flavor movies seem to be right up their alley, CMYBN did not do particularly will, missing out on both Director and Screenplay nominations. Instead, it was The Shape of Water that they really enjoyed, along with The Post. Both received nominations across the board, including for Director and Screenplay. The same could be said for Three Billboards which, as we shall see below, essentially becomes the only movie with good tallies from the Globes AND from SAG.


The other thing that the Globes did was really skew heavily towards late-breaking movies. They saw it fit to reward All The Money in the World not just with a Best Director nod for Ridley Scott, but also Christopher Plummer for a role he landed a few weeks ago. And the upcoming musical The Greatest Showman, also did well, including nods for its star Hugo Jackman. Daniel Day-Lewis in Phantom Thread was also cited. Clearly, the HFPA wanted to remind us that they have seen all the unreleased movies of the year.

In the acting categories, it has always been hard to take much stock in the Globes given that they have ten slots in the lead roles. Nominees like Jessica Chastain for Molly’s Game or Emma Stone for Battle of the Sexes are just completely unlikely to make any noise anywhere else down the awards season. On the other hand, the supporting categories, which tend to align with SAG and then with Oscar, can be more helpful. Hong Chau, for example, got a nod, meaning that this category is congealing around her, Metcalf, Janney and most likely Mary J. Blige, with that fifth slot up for grabs.

How much do the Globes matter anyway? It’s hard to tell. Don’t forget that last year they broke their own record with La La Land, only to see that movie fall just one award short of the most important one. But, on the other hand, speech rehearsals are a thing, and they seem to have more in common with the Academy voters than, say, SAG does in some situations. Their four acting picks were much closer to Oscar than SAG’s were.

So who will win? I’m expecting The Shape of Water to battle Three Billboards in Drama, with Lady Bird most likely taking Comedy. You will probably see Del Toro win Director, and I expect acting prizes for Chalamet, Franco, and Dafoe in the guys, and McDormand, Ronan, and a true toss-up slightly favoring Metcalf.

Check out the most relevant Globes nominations next page

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