Oscars 2024 predictions. Who will win and who should win

The much-anticipated event in the world of film takes place on Sunday, March 10, and the host of the gala is none other than Jimmy Kimmel. BBC Culture's film critics provide predictions for the major categories.

The Academy Awards ceremony takes place on Sunday, March 10. photo: Shutterstock (Archive)

“Oppenheimer,” which tells the story of the man who created the atomic bomb during World War II, leads the nominations list by far.

The best picture

It's hard to predict which film will take the top prize at the Oscars: In recent years, both “The Power of the Dog” and “La La Land” seemed to be favorites, but both ended up being defeated. However, it would be a major blow if “Oppenheimer” did not win in this category.

Oppenheimer' is a film that tackles an important subject and has an exceptional cast, but it's also technically impressive. “Christopher Nolan's J. Robert Oppenheimer biopic is far more complex than the average Hollywood drama 'based on a true story'“, is the opinion of Nicholas Barber.

Also worthy of consideration are certain aspects, according to Barber, such as the smashing success it had at the worldwide box office and the nominations it received – 13 in total.

Although not his favorite, Barber claims that “Oppenheimer” “would and will be a worthy winner“.

Oppenheimer,” explosive yet character-driven, with a perfect balance of art and commercial, is on track to win Best Picture. “Killers of the Flower Moon” and “Poor Things” are also great in different ways, but Oppenheimer's ambition and ingenuity rightfully make it the better film of this year”, claims Caryn James.

Best director

All movies made by Christopher Nolan deserved to put him in the running for Best Director. Okay, maybe not “Insomnia” or “Interstellar,” but pretty much everything from “Memento” to “Inception” to “Oppenheimer,” this year's likely Best Picture winner, which he also wrote. He's never won, but this is his year, and not just because he should. It recently received the Directors Guild Award, usually a good indicator of how the Oscars will go. More than any other film this year, “Oppenheimer” is shaped by a singular director's visionJames said.

Christopher Nolan will win for directing “Oppenheimer,” of course. He directed 'Memento', 'The Prestige', 'Inception', 'Interstellar', 'Dunkirk' and a 'Batman' trilogy, and yet he's never won an Oscar, so it's undoubtedly his turn to take home a gold statuette or three. (He could also take home one for writing the movie and one for producing it)Barber stated.

The best actor

Cillian Murphy will probably win this award, as he should. There's still a chance for Paul Giamatti to win for his ironic and poignant performance in “The Holdovers.” After all, Giamatti's role as the cantankerous professor is more spectacular, the kind of role Oscar voters often favor over more nuanced performances. But Murphy's recent win over Giamatti at the Screen Actors Guild Awards gives him an edgeJames said.

Best actress

Lily Gladstone from “Killers of the Flower Moon” and Emma Stone from “Poor Things” are tied. For me, Gladstone has a supporting role rather than a leading role, and the strategy of positioning her as the heroine of the film was slightly disingenuous. (If the story in “Killers of the Flower Moon” had actually been told from her character's perspective, it would have been a better movie). But Gladstone has spoken eloquently about the importance of seeing Native Americans on screen, and Stone has already won an Oscar, so voters may well feel that nominating Gladstone would be the best choice. My own pick would be Carey Mulligan, who was magnificent as Leonard Bernstein's wife in 'Maestro', but Bradley Cooper's film doesn't seem to be turning its nominations into wins this awards season“, stated Barber.

Best Supporting Actor

This category is full of important features, but it's also one of the easiest to choose from. Robert Downey Jr, who has been racking up awards all season as Oppenheimer's antagonist, will win. It's hard to argue with that when his performance is so unflinching and powerful. But Robert De Niro gives one of the best performances in years in “Killers of the Flower Moon” and deserves the award just as much. And Ryan Gosling is as funny as can be in “Barbie,” but the comedy has a hard time competing with the drama. Still, Gosling will sing “I'm Just Ken” at the show, which is all I really wanted from this year's Oscars” stated James.

Best Supporting Actress

Emily Blunt, Danielle Brooks, America Ferrara and Jodie Foster can sit back and enjoy the champagne on Oscar night because they won't have to worry about giving a speech. Throughout awards season, one thing everyone has agreed on is that the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress goes to Da'Vine Joy Randolph for her soulful performance as the grieving cook in 'The Holdovers' “. She has already won countless awards for the role, including a Golden Globe, a Bafta and a Screen Actors Guild Award, and has managed to deliver a moving and funny speech each time. It wouldn't surprise me if her name was engraved on the trophy weeks agoBarber said.

Best adapted scenario

The Baftas rarely predict the Oscars, but Cord Jefferson's win for adapted screenplay, along with the Independent Spirit Award, indicates momentum that puts him in the lead. Voters are clearly loving “American Fiction,” which earned nominations for best picture, best actor – Jeffrey Wright – and an unexpected nod for best supporting actor – Sterling K Brown. It won't win in those categories, so rewarding Jefferson's screenplay is a way to recognize the film. Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach also deserve an Oscar for their creativity and success with “Barbie,” but I suspect the Academy's craziness in putting the screenplay in the adapted category will go against them.r,” James stated.

Best Original Screenplay

“Anatomy of a Fall” won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival last May, and since then has picked up numerous awards in various categories, but its screenplay has been particularly praised. No wonder. The film is equal parts a gripping mystery story and a chilling portrait of an ailing marriage. Another favorite in this category is David Hemingson's screenplay for “The Holdovers”, an extremely well-finished work. Either of them could win — and Celine Song's charming script for “Past Lives” has a chance — but “The Holdovers” might have the edge. Or maybe that's an illusion, because I, too, love it so muchBarber said.

Best Foreign Film

By now, the French commission that proposed “The Taste of Things” instead of “Anatomy of a Fall” must realize what a mistake it made. “The Taste of Things” wasn't even nominated, and “Anatomy of a Fall” could have won, or at least made a real contender for “The Zone of Interest.” Under these conditions, Jonathan Glazer's Holocaust drama, which takes us inside the banal evil of a Nazi family, is the clear winner. However, if I had to choose, I would go for Matteo Garrone's Io Capitano, the hauntingly beautiful and timely story of a teenager desperately trying to make his way from Senegal to Italy.”James noted.

Best Animated Film

“Elemental” wasn't Pixar's best animated film, nor was “Nimona,” Robot Dreams didn’t really impress either, awesome as they both are, so that leaves “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” and “The Boy and the Heron.” My guess is that “Spider-Man” will walk away with the Oscar. And it's honest – the way it brings together a multitude of animation styles and techniques into one kinetic pop-art animation is impressive. But the same could be said about the first film in the series, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse”, which won the Oscar for best animated film in 2019. The Academy should really award a sequel that offers more of the same movie? I don't think so, but they gave an Oscar to “Toy Story 4,” so voters obviously see things differently. I'd rather they go with Hiyao Miyazaki's stunning The Boy and the Heron. The 83-year-old Studio Ghibli legend last won an Oscar in this category for Spirited Away in 2003, so it would be great if he could win one more before he retires for good.”says Barber.

Best Documentary Film

Some documentaries are artistically ambitious, while others succeed primarily because of their subject matter, such as last year's winner Navalny, more relevant than ever after the death of Aleksei Navalny. This year's likely and worthy winner, 20 Days in Mariupol, is another political, issue-focused film. His reporting from a war-torn Ukrainian city is revealing and hard-hitting, and could also win him votes because of the widespread support for Ukraine in the US and Europe. Kaouther Ben Hania's Four Daughters is also political and more artistic, as it brings together actors and real people to document the story of a mother who saw two of her daughters recruited by the Islamic State group. But the unforgettable Mariupol is even more compellingsays James.

The best soundtrack

This is another category that seems to be safe. Ludwig Goransson has already won a Bafta and a Golden Globe for Oppenheimer's soundtrack, so it would be amazing if he didn't get an Oscar for it too. It helps that the Swede is now a mainstay in Hollywood, having composed the scores for “Black Panther” and “The Mandalorian,” but even if you discount his other work, his powerful Oppenheimer soundtrack stands out as a masterpiece that conveys the mathematical complexity of the story and the unease that gives you chills and turns your stomach. Goransson deserves to win and he will. That said, there is stiff competition from Jerskin Fendrix, a seasoned British pop musician who was hired to score the Poor Things movie after only making one album. As quirky and seductive as and the film's heroine, Fendrix's music has the air of a person playing with toy instruments and tripping over their own unique soundBarber stated.

The best picture

“Among the nominees are the legendary Ed Lachman, who produced exquisite black-and-white photography in 'El Conde', and Rodrigo Prieto, for the colors of 'Killers of the Flower Moon.' But the Oscar can and should go to Hoyte van Hoytema for “Oppenheimer,” a film that takes us both in intimate scenes and in the vast desert landscapes of the bomb test sitesays James.