Hooray for Oscars! They're the most entertaining--and convenient--way to chat about the films we love. Predictions are therefore primarily for purposes of amusement and discussion. The listed predictions are purely from a fan's perspective and do not reflect the personal choices of the author, although some element of endorsement is inevitable when one says that a contender has what it takes to go all the way. Coverage of the Canadian Screen Awards may be found here.

2016 Race
★ Round 1: Once More unto the breach.

 (updated Oct. 23)

Best Picture:
La La Land
Manchester By the Sea
Miss Sloane

What about: Allied, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Birth of a Nation, Lion, Hidden Figures, Love & Friendship, Moonlight, Nocturnal Animals, Silence, Toni Erdmann, Sully, 20th Century Women

Best Director
Damian Chazelle, La La Land
Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
Jeff Nichols, Loving
Denis Villeneuve, Arrival
Denzel Washington, Fences

What about: Maren Ade, Toni Erdmann; Pablo Larrain, Jackie; Ang Lee, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk; David Mackenzie, Hell or High Water; John Madden, Miss Sloane; Mike Mills, 20th Century Women; Martin Scorsese, Silence; Robert Zemeckis, Allied

Best Actress
Amy Adams, Arrival
Jessica Chastain, Miss Sloane
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Emma Stone, La La Land

What about: Kate Beckinsale, Love & Friendship; Annette Bening, 20th Century Women; Sonia Braga, Aquarius; Marion Cotillard, Allied; Viola Davis, Fences; Sally Field, Hello, My Nameis Doris; Isabelle Huppert, Elle; Ruth Negga, Loving

Best Actor
Casey Affleck, Manchester By the Sea
Ryan Gosling, La La Land  
Tom Hanks, Sully
Dev Patel, Lion
Denzel Washington, Fences

What about: Adam Driver, Paterson; Ethan Hawke, Born to Be Blue; Jake Gyllenhaal, Nocturnal Animals; Logan Lerman, Indignation; Liam Neeson, Silence; Nate Parker, Birth of a Nation; Chris Pine, Hell or High Water; Brad Pitt, Allied

Best Supporting Actress
Viola Davis, Fences
Naomie Harris, Moonlight
Nicole Kidman, Lion
Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Miss Sloane
Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea

What about: Margaret Bowman, Hell or High Water; Linda Emond, Indignation; Sarah Gadon, Indignation; Greta Gerwig, 20th Century Women; Helen Mirren, Eye in the Sky; Julianne Moore, Maggie’s Plan; Alison Pill, Miss Sloane; Chloe Sevigny, Love & Friendship, Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures

Best Supporting Actor
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
Ben Foster, Hell or High Water
Hugh Grant, Florence Foster Jenkins
Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals

What about: Jovan Adepo, Fences; Mahershala Ali, Moonlight; Tracy Letts, Indignation,; Trevonte Rhodes, Moonlight; Alan Rickman, Eye in the Sky; Mark Strong, Miss Sloane, Tom Wilkinson, Denial

Adapted Screenplay
Love & Friendship
Nocturnal Animals

What about: Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, Elle, Lion, Silence

Original Screenplay
Hell or High Water
Manchester by the Sea
Miss Sloane

What about: Birth of a Nation, Café Society, The Edge of Seventeen, Jackie, The Lobster, Toni Erdmann, 20th Century Women, Wiener-Dog

Best Film Editing
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Manchester by the Sea
Star Wars: Rogue One

What about: Miss Sloane, Moonlight, Sully

Best Cinematography
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Nocturnal Animals

What about: AmericanPastoral, Birth of a Nation, Café Society, Silence

Best Score
Finding Dory
La La Land

What about: Manchester By the Sea

Best Song
Gleason, “Hoping and Healing”
La La Land, “City of Stars”
Moana, “Because It’s Lin-Manuel Miranda”
Sing Street, “Drive It Like You Stole It

What about: Deepwater Horizon (“Take Me Down”), La La Land (“Audition - Those Who Dream”), Wiener-Dog (“The Ballad of Wiener-Dog”)

Best Costumes
Florence Foster Jenkins
Hail, Caesar!
La La Land
Love and Friendship

What about: Absolutely Fabulous, American Pastoral, Birth of a Nation, Café Society, The Dressmaker, The Magnificent Seven, Silence

Best Production Design
Hail, Caesar!
La La Land

What about: American Pastoral, Birth of a Nation, Café Society, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Florence Foster Jenkins, Love and Friendship, Silence

Best Visual Effects
The Jungle Book
Star Wars: Rogue One

What about: Deepwater Horizon, Suicide Squad, Sully

Best Documentary

What about: Miss Sharon Jones!, Life, Animated, Into the Inferno, OJ Simpson: Made in America, Tickled!, Tower,

Best Foreign Language Film
The Ardennes (Belgium)
Ma’Rosa (Philippines)
Neruda (Chile)
Sand Storm (Israel)
Toni Erdmann (Germany)

Other submissions reviewed: It's Only the End of the World (Canada), Elle (France), Port of Call (Hong Kong),  Fire at Sea (Italy), Very Big Shot (Lebanon), Eva Nova (Slovakia), The Age of Shadows (South Korea), My Life as a Courgette (Switzerland), As I Open My Eyes (Tunisia).

Best Animated Film
Kubo and the Two Strings
The Red Turtle

What about: My Life as a Courgette, Zootopia

★2015 Race

Round 1: Where's the Story, Oscar Glory? (Oct. 29)
Round 2: Canucks in Contention: Could 2015 Be Canada's Biggest Year Yet? (Nov. 20)
Round 3: Golden Globes Predictions and Oscar Update (Dec. 8) 
Round 4/5: Hungry Films, but who gets the noms? (Jan. 13)
Round 6: Final Predictions - 'Fasten Your Seatbelts. It's Going to Be a Bumpy Night!'
Recap: Spotlight Wins: Oscar Season End on Much-Needed High Note

★2014 Oscar race
Round 1: Let's Get this Party Started!
Round 2: Could Award Season Revive These Contenders?