OSCAR PREDICTION CHARTS — December 22, 2008

NUTSHELL: Massive hemorrhaging and slipping and sliding all over the charts this week, I can’t even keep up. A lot happens in a week and a half during December, and so it is that I am at an absolute loss on the acting categories. Sure, the same names are popping up over and over again, but it’s the same six or seven names, leaving anyone’s guess as to who will get the shaft here and there. The supporting races are particularly bewildering. The real question mark below, however, is “WALL-E” and its historic march toward a potential Best Picture nomination. Can it become the first animated film to slide into the race since the introduction of an animated field? Your guess is as good as mine.

Column: “A season less ordinary…or is it?”

Sort charts by: Main Categories/Technical Categories

BEST PICTURE
1 “Slumdog Millionaire”
Fox Searchlight Pictures/Warner Bros. Pictures
2 “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Paramount Pictures
up
3 “Frost/Nixon”
Universal Pictures
up
4 “Milk”
Focus Features
down
5 “The Dark Knight”
Warner Bros. Pictures
6 “WALL-E”
Paramount Vantage
NEW
7 “Doubt”
Miramax Films
up
8 “Revolutionary Road”
Paramount Vantage
down
9 “The Reader”
The Weinstein Company
NEW
10 “The Wrestler”
Fox Searchlight Pictures
down

DIRECTING
1 Danny Boyle
“Slumdog Millionaire”
2 David Fincher
“The Curious case of Benjamin Button”
up
3 Gus Van Sant
“Milk”
down
4 Christopher Nolan
“The Dark Knight”
5 Woody Allen
“Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
NEW
6 Ron Howard
“Frost/Nixon”
7 John Patrick Shanley
“Doubt”
up
8 Sam Mendes
“Revolutionary Road”
down
9 Darren Aronofsky
“The Wrestler”
down
10 Clint Eastwood
“Gran Torino” (or “Changeling”)

ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE
1 Mickey Rourke
“The Wrestler”
up
2 Sean Penn
“Milk”
down
3 Frank Langella
“Frost/Nixon”
4 Clint Eastwood
“Gran Torino”
5 Brad Pitt
“The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
up
6 Richard Jenkins
“The Visitor”
up
7 Leonardo DiCaprio
“Revolutionary Road”
down
8 Josh Brolin
“W.”
down
9 Dustin Hoffman
“Last Chance Harvey”
NEW
10 Javier Bardem
“Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
NEW

ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE
1 Kate Winslet
“Revolutionary Road”
up
2 Meryl Streep
“Doubt” (or “Mamma Mia!”)
up
3 Anne Hathaway
“Rachel Getting Married”
up
4 Melissa Leo
“Frozen River”
up
5 Angelina Jolie
“Changling”
up
6 Sally Hawkins
“Happy-Go-Lucky”
up
7 Cate Blanchett
“The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
down
8 Kristin Scott Thomas
“I’ve Loved You So Long”
down
9 Kate Beckinsale
“Nothing But the Truth”
10 Kate Winslet
“The Reader”
NEW

ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
1 Heath Ledger
“The Dark Knight”
2 Philip Seymour Hoffman
“Doubt”
3 Josh Brolin
“Milk”
4 Robert Downey Jr.
“Tropic Thunder”
up
5 Dev Patel
“Slumdog Millionaire”
6 James Franco
“Milk”
up
7 Michael Shannon
“Revolutionary Road”
down
8 Eddie Marsan
“Happy-Go-Lucky”
9 Ralph Fiennes
“The Duchess” (or “The Reader”)
NEW
10 Bill Irwin
“Rachel Getting Married”
down

ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
1 Penélope Cruz
“Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
2 Viola Davis
“Doubt”
up
3 Taraji P. Henson
“The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
down
4 Kate Winslet
“The Reader”
up
5 Marisa Tomei
“The Wrestler”
6 Amy Adams
“Doubt”
up
7 Rosemarie DeWitt
“Rachel Getting Married”
down
8 Rebecca Hall
“Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
NEW
9 Vera Farmiga
“Nothing But the Truth”
NEW
10 Frances McDormand
“Burn After Reading”
NEW

WRITING (ADAPTED SCREENPLAY)
1 “Slumdog Millionaire”
Written by Simon Beaufoy
Based on the book “Q&A” by Vikas Swarup
2 “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Written by Eric Roth; Screen Story by Eric Roth, Robin Swicord
Based on the short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald
3 “Doubt”
Written by John Patrick Shanley
Based on his play
up
4 “Frost/Nixon”
Written by Peter Morgan
Based on his play
5 “The Dark Knight”
Written by Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan
Story by David S. Goyer, Christopher Nolan
Based on characters created by Bob Kane
6 “Revolutionary Road”
Written by Justin Haythe
Based on the short story by Richard Yates
down
7 “The Reader”
Written by David Hare
Based on the novel by Bernhard Schlink
up
8 “Gomorrah”
Written by Maurizio Braucci, Ugo Chiti, Gianni Di Gregorio, Matteo Garrone, Massimo Gaudiso, Roberto Saviano
Based on the book by Roberto Saviano
down
9 “The Class”
Written by François Bégaudeau, Robin Campillo, Laurent Cantet
Based on the book by François Bégaudeau
10 “Defiance”
Written by Clay Frohman, Edward Zwick
Based on the book by Nechama Tec

WRITING (ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY)
1 “Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
Written by Woody Allen
2 “Rachel Getting Married”
Written by Jenny Lumet
3 “Milk”
Written by Dustin Lance Black
4 “The Visitor”
Written by Thomas McCarthy
5 “Happy-Go-Lucky”
Written by Mike Leigh
up
6 “WALL-E”
Original story by Pete Docter, Andrew Stanton
Screenplay by Jim Reardon, Andrew Stanton
up
7 “The Wrestler”
Written by Robert Siegel
down
8 “Gran Torino”
Written by Nick Schenk
NEW
9 “Changeling”
Written by J. Michael Straczynski
up
10 “Waltz with Bashir”
Written by Ari Folman
NEW

ANIMATED FEATURE FILM
1 “WALL-E”
Walt Disney Pictures
2 “Kung Fu Panda”
DreamWorks SKG
3 “Waltz with Bashir”
Sony Pictures Classics
4 “Bolt”
Walt Disney Pictures
5 “Horton Hears a Who!”
20th Century Fox
6 “The Tale of Despereaux”
Universal Pictures
7 “Igor”
The Weinstein Company
8 “Space Chimps”
20th Century Fox
9 “Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa”
DreamWorks SKG
10 “Star Wars: The Clone Wars”
Warner Bros. Pictures