Oscar Voting Closes: Which Movies Will Make the Cut?

At 5 p.m. PT, voting for the 95th Academy Awards nominations closed.

It seems mundane, but we venture into the unknown each year, trying to determine the tastes of over 9,500 Academy members. I’ve had dozens of conversations with voters, industry experts and awards strategists, trying to determine which way the Academy could be leaning when the nominees are announced on Jan. 24.

The last beat of influence on the Oscar race was from the Critics Choice ceremony, where “Everything Everywhere All at Once” triumphed with five wins including best picture and director.

Many precursors give clues to what a particular category could look like. However, with voting now closed, we are flying blind without the Writers Guild Award nominations, which come out after Oscar noms are announced, USC Scripter Awards (indicator for adapted screenplay), ACE Eddies (a major indicator for editing) and BAFTA noms (strongest clue on where the British voting bloc is putting its love).

Here are some things I’ve learned from conversations with voters:

“Top Gun: Maverick” love is real and could go all the way.

“Top Gun: Maverick” is beloved, and many members indicate this is their best picture pick or ranked incredibly high on their ballots. Discussions with members of the acting branch have not indicated the alleged “fifth spot” is going to Tom Cruise, but you can choose virtually anyone (Hugh Jackman, Paul Mescal, etc.) and place your bets.

An unspoken secret: many voters don’t love “The Fabelmans.”

When asking about “The Fabelmans,” there are many passionate admirers of the family drama based on director Steven Spielberg’s life. However, a prominent member of the producers’ branch shared with Variety: “I really didn’t like it.”

Many discussions have been had with other members about their unenthusiastic response to the Universal Pictures film. This does not signal a shocking “Fabelmans” best picture or directing snub, but it could hint at key misses coming on Tuesday morning. The same goes for Todd Field’s “Tár,” which is looking to come up short in some tech races but still has hopes to pop up in cinematography and editing.

“Everything Everywhere’s” fate depends on the international members.

The international members are the hardest to gauge this time around. They’ve been a clutch demographic for successful showings like “The Father” (2020) and Penélope Cruz for “Parallel Mothers” (2021). The problem is many movies are splitting that love such as “All Quiet on the Western Front,” “Living,” “RRR” and “Triangle of Sadness.” Even “Tár” eats into the demographic.

When it comes to “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” the big night at the Critics Choice Awards surely helped, but the general consensus is that it is loved by younger Academy members and divided with older ones. While many feel confident about the Daniels’ placement in the best director race (which is a smart choice), I’ve been burned too many times by that branch to trust their judgments all the time. People suggest we need to see if the international voters come aboard.

Possible category switcharoos, and the search for the lone screenplay and “WTF?” nominees.

I’ve shared my theory with actors’ branch members that Michelle Williams’ SAG miss could be explained by the NomCom expecting to see her in the supporting actress category for “The Fabelmans.” At least two branch voters tell Variety they voted for the four-time nominee in supporting actress. Interestingly, that’s not the only lead/supporting switch I came across.

Brendan Gleeson had at least two mentions alongside his co-star Colin Farrell for “The Banshees of Inisherin” in best actor, rather than supporting, where he’s campaigned. He would be an interesting “fifth slot” selection, but would likely doom any hopes of Farrell winning in the end (or himself).

Traditionally, in the expanded era, we’ve seen a screenplay nominee with no other mentions and an actor who shocks, without any precursors. In the case of the writer, some suspects include “Aftersun” and “Triangle of Sadness” (if they come up short in other categories), “She Said” (without Carey Mulligan) and “Glass Onion” (without Janelle Monáe or a tech nod).

Who are the suspects in the acting races without any other mentions? Tom Hanks (“A Man Called Otto” in lead or “Elvis” in supporting), Nina Hoss (“Tár”), Ben Whishaw (“Women Talking”) or Gabriel LaBelle (“The Fabelmans”).

Regarding the Andrea Riseborough “surge” that has occurred in the last couple of days for her work in “To Leslie,” it’s either the most brilliant PR stunt ever performed or something crazy is about to occur with a jaw-dropper in best actress. I’m inclined to believe the former, with only one mention of her film coming from an AMPAS voter, and it wasn’t even an acting branch member.

With voting now closed, any nominations announced after today will not “influence” the race but only supplement it with (possible) helpful information.


See the latest film predictions, in all 23 categories, in one place on Variety’s Oscars Collective. To see the ranked predictions for each individual category, visit Variety’s Oscars Hub.See the 2022-2023 Awards Season calendar for all key dates and timelines.

Find the final BAFTA Awards predictions below (announcing Thursday, Jan. 19), and check back for the final Oscars predictions to drop on Thursday morning.

EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE, from left: Tallie Medel, Stephanie Hsu, 2022. ph: Allyson Riggs /© A24 / Courtesy Everett Collection
Courtesy Everett Collection

Final BAFTA Predictions

All nominee credits listed are not final and are determined by BAFTA and the Academy. The distributors listed are for the U.S.

Best Film

  • “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.)
  • “Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24)
  • “Tár” (Focus Features)
  • “Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount Pictures)

Alternate: “Living”

Director

  • Edward Berger, “All Quiet on the Western Front” (Netflix)
  • Alice Diop, “Saint Omer” (Neon)
  • Todd Field, “Tár” (Focus Features)
  • Baz Luhrmann, “Elvis” (Warner Bros.)
  • Martin McDonagh, “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • Charlotte Wells, “Aftersun” (A24)

Alternate: Gina Prince-Bythewood, “The Woman King”

Leading Actor

  • Austin Butler, “Elvis” (Warner Bros.)
  • Brendan Fraser, “The Whale” (A24)
  • Felix Kammerer, “All Quiet on the Western Front” (Netflix)
  • Daniel Kaluuya, “Nope” (Universal Pictures)
  • Paul Mescal, “Aftersun” (A24)
  • Bill Nighy, “Living” (Sony Pictures Classics)

Alternate: Colin Farrell, “The Banshees of Inisherin”

Leading Actress

  • Cate Blanchett, “Tár” (Focus Features)
  • Jessica Chastain, “The Good Nurse” (Netflix)
  • Viola Davis, “The Woman King” (Sony Pictures)
  • Ana De Armas, “Blonde” (Netflix)
  • Lesley Manville, “Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris” (Focus Features)
  • Michelle Yeoh, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24)

Alternate: Danielle Deadwyler, “Till”

Supporting Actor

  • Brendan Gleeson, “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • Barry Keoghan, “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • Ke Huy Quan, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24)
  • Eddie Redmayne, “The Good Nurse” (Netflix)
  • Micheal Ward, “Empire of Light” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • Ben Whishaw, “Women Talking” (MGM/United Artists Releasing)

Alternate: Brad Pitt, “Babylon”

Supporting Actress

  • Angela Bassett, “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (Marvel Studios)
  • Hong Chau, “The Whale” (A24)
  • Kerry Condon, “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • Dolly De Leon, “Triangle of Sadness” (Neon)
  • Lashana Lynch, “Living” (Sony Pictures Classics)
  • Aimee Lou Wood, “Living” (Sony Pictures Classics)

Alternate: Jamie Lee Curtis, “Everything Everywhere All at Once”

Original Screenplay

  • “Aftersun” (A24) — Charlotte Wells
  • “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures) — Martin McDonagh
  • “Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24) — Daniel Kwan, Daniel Scheinert
  • “Tár” (Focus Features) — Todd Field
  • “Triangle of Sadness” (Neon) — Ruben Östlund

Alternate: “Elvis”

Adapted Screenplay

  • “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” (Netflix) — Rian Johnson
  • “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio” (Netflix) — Guillermo del Toro, Matthew Robbins, Gris Grimly, Patrick Hale
  • “Living” (Sony Pictures Classics) — Kazuo Ishiguro
  • “She Said” (Universal Pictures) — Rebecca Lenkiewicz
  • “Women Talking” (MGM/United Artists Releasing) — Sarah Polley, Miriam Toews

Alternate: “Top Gun: Maverick”

Production Design

  • “Avatar: The Way of Water” (20th Century Studios) — Dylan Cole, Ben Procter (production designer), Vanessa Cole (set decorator)
  • “Babylon” (Paramount Pictures) — Florencia Martin (production designer), Anthony Carlino (set decorator)
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.) — Catherine Martin, Karen Murphy (production designer), Bev Dunn (set decorator)
  • “The Fabelmans” (Universal Pictures) — Rick Carter (production designer), Karen O’Hara (set decorator)
  • “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio” (Netflix) — Curt Enderle (production designer), Guy Davis (set decorator)

Alternate: “All Quiet on the Western Front”

Cinematography

  • “Athena” (Netflix) — Matias Boucard
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.) — Mandy Walker
  • “Empire of Light” (Searchlight Pictures) — Roger Deakins
  • “Tár” (Focus Features) — Florian Hoffmeister
  • “Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount Pictures) — Claudio Miranda

Alternate: “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)

Costume Design

  • “Babylon” (Paramount Pictures) — Mary Zophres
  • “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (Marvel Studios) — Ruth E. Carter
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.) — Catherine Martin
  • “Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris” (Focus Features) — Jenny Eagan

Alternate: “Amsterdam”

Editing

  • “Aftersun” (A24) — Blair McClendon
  • “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures) — Mikkel E.G. Nielsen
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.) — Jonathan Redmond, Matt Villa
  • “Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24) — Paul Rogers
  • “Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount Pictures) — Eddie Hamilton

Alternate: “Moonage Daydream”

Make Up & Hair

  • “All Quiet on the Western Front” (Netflix) — Heike Merker (hair and makeup designer, SFX design)
  • “Amsterdam” (20th Century Studios) — Nana Fischer (makeup department head), Lori McCoy Bell (hair department head), Adruitha Lee (hair department head)
  • “Babylon” (Paramount Pictures) — Heba Thorisdottir (makeup department head), Jaime Leigh McIntosh (hair department head)
  • “The Batman” (Warner Bros.) — Naomi Donne (makeup designer), Mike Marino (prosthetics design), Zoe Tahir (hair designer)
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.) — Shane Thomas (hair and makeup designer), Mark Coulier (prosthetics designer), Jason Baird (prosthetics supervisor for Tom Hanks and Austin Butler), Louise Coulston (key hairdresser)

Alternate: “The Whale”

Sound

  • “All Quiet on the Western Front” (Netflix) — Lars Ginzel, Frank Kruse, Markus Stemler, Viktor Prášil
  • “Avatar: The Way of Water” (20th Century Studios) — Gwen Whittle (supervising sound editor), Gary Summers, Mike Hedges (re-recording mixers), Chris Boyes (supervising sound editor, re-recording mixer), Tony Johnson (production sound mixer), Julian Howarth
  • “Babylon” (Paramount Pictures) — Steven Morrow (production sound mixer), Mildred Iatrou Morgan (supervising sound editor), Andy Nelson (re-recording mixer) Ai-Ling Lee (supervising sound editor, re-recording mixer)
  • “Elvis” (Warner Bros.) — David Lee (production sound mixer), Wayne Pashley (sound designer, supervising sound editor), Andy Nelson, Michael Keller (re-recording mixers)
  • “Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount Pictures) — Mark Weingarten (production sound mixer), James H. Mather, Al Nelson (supervising sound editors), Chris Burdon, Mark Taylor (re-recording mixers)

Alternate: “Everything Everywhere All at Once”

Special Visual Effects

  • “Avatar: The Way of Water” (20th Century Studios)
  • “The Batman” (Warner Bros.)
  • “Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness” (Marvel Studios)
  • “Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore” (Warner Bros.)
  • “Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount Pictures)

Alternate: “All Quiet on the Western Front”

Original Score

  • “Babylon” (Paramount Pictures) — Justin Hurwitz
  • “Empire of Light” (Searchlight Pictures) — Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross
  • “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio” (Netflix) — Alexandre Desplat
  • “Tár” (Focus Features) — Hildur Guðnadóttir
  • “Women Talking” (MGM/United Artists Releasing) — Hildur Guðnadóttir

Alternate: “All Quiet on the Western Front”

Animated Film

  • “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio” (Netflix)
  • “Marcel the Shell With Shoes On” (A24)
  • “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” (DreamWorks Animation)
  • “Turning Red” (Pixar)

Alternate: “Lightyear”

Documentary

  • “All That Breathes” (HBO Documentary Films/Sideshow)
  • “All the Beauty in the Bloodshed” (Neon)
  • “The Ghost of Richard Harris” (Abacus Media Rights)
  • “Moonage Daydream” (Neon)
  • “Navalny” (CNN/Warner Bros.)

Alternate: “Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, a Journey, a Song”

Film Not in English Language

  • “All Quiet on the Western Front” (Germany)
  • “Close” (Belgium)
  • “Corsage” (Austria)
  • “Decision to Leave” (South Korea)
  • “EO” (Poland)

Alternate: “RRR”

Casting

  • “Aftersun” (A24)
  • “All Quiet on the Western Front” (Netflix)
  • “Elvis”
  • “Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical”
  • “Triangle of Sadness” (Neon)

Alternate: “The Banshees of Inisherin”

British Film

  • “Aftersun” (A24)
  • “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • “Blue Jean” (Magnolia Pictures)
  • “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande” (Searchlight Pictures)
  • “Lady Chatterley’s Lover” (Netflix)
  • “Living” (Sony Pictures Classics)
  • “Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris” (Focus Features)
  • “Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical” (Netflix)
  • “The Swimmers” (Netflix)
  • “The Wonder” (Netflix)

Alternate: “Emily”

Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer

  • “Aftersun”
  • “Donna”
  • “Electric Malady”
  • “Emily”
  • “Wayfinder”

Alternate: “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande”

British Short Animation

  • “The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse”
  • “Christopher at Sea”
  • “Your Mountain is Waiting”

British Short Film

  • “Bus Girl”
  • “A Fox in the Night”
  • “An Irish Goodbye”
  • “Love Languages”
  • “Wanderland”