Black Star Oscar Predictions

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Unless the Academy tosses a couple of curve balls, this ought to be the easiest year in memory to predict the outcome of The Oscars.

Afterall, Dreamgirls not even landed nominations for Best Picture. Best Director or Best Script Adaptation has paved the way for perennial also-ran Martin Scorcese and The Departed as virtual shoo-ins in those three categories.

Similarly, Helen Mirren was lucky that Jennifer Hudson was nominated as a Supporting Actress, while Forest Whitaker was equally fortunate that Leonardo DiCaprio was nominated for Blood Diamond instead of The Departed. In fact, the only acting category up for grabs is the Best Supporting Actor, where early favorite Eddie Murphy’s lead over Alan Arkin evaporated because the voting hadn’t officially closed by the time that Norbit opened.

With so little mystery in store among the major awards, what little tension there is on Oscar night will revolve around the lesser categories and which film will take home the most gilded statuettes. Given the intense competition, none is likely to win more than The Departed, which will garner at least three, probably four, in this prognosticator’s humble opinion.

Regardless, here are not only my picks to win, but my designation of the most deserving nominees, and which pictures and performances were overlooked entirely by Oscar.

Best Picture: Will Win: The Departed. Deserves to Win: The Queen
Snubbed: Dreamgirls, Thank You for Smoking, The Good Shepherd.

Best Director: Will Win: Martin Scorcese (The Departed). Deserves to Win: Stephen Frears (The Queen).  Snubbed: Bill Condon (Dreamgirls).

Best Actor: Will Win: Forest Whitaker (The Last King of Scotland).
Deserves to Win: Forest Whitaker (The Last King of Scotland). Snubbed: Leonardo DiCaprio (The Departed).

Best Actress: Will Win: Helen Mirren (The Queen). Deserves to Win: Helen Mirren (The Queen).  Snubbed: Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls).

Best Supporting Actor: Will Win: Alan Arkin (Little Miss Sunshine).  Deserves to Win: Eddie Murphy (Dreamgirls). Snubbed: Michael Sheen (The Queen), Jack Nicholson (The Departed).

Best Supporting Actress: Will Win: Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls).  Deserves to Win: Jennifer Hudson (Dreamgirls). Snubbed: Diane Lane (Hollywoodland).

Best Original Screenplay: Will Win: Little Miss Sunshine
Deserves to Win: The Queen. Snubbed: The Good Shepherd.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Will Win: The Departed. Deserves to Win: Notes on a Scandal. Snubbed: Dreamgirls.

Best Foreign Film:  Will Win: Pan’s Labyrinth: Deserves to Win: Water
Snubbed: District B-13, Lower City, 13 (Tzameti).

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