Theres no doubt who our readers are willing on to win the most important trophy at the Oscars this time. Slumdog Millionaire has won three-fourths of your votes and if that is how the Academy votes, Monday morning will witness Indias tryst with Oscar destiny.
With 13 nominations, The Curious Case of BenjamiN BUTTON has more nominations than Slumdog Millionaire (10). And that naturally makes the David Fincher film about a man ageing backwards an equally strong candidate for Best FIlm. Around 12% of you think that Button will win the big one. But the feel-good factor of Slumdog Millionaire seems too strong in these hard times.
The dark horse in this category, Stephen Daldrys The Reader can be the surprise Oscar winner. The Academy is known to favour films which have not really run riot at other award ceremonies. The Reader with its passionate tones and political overtones could be that film of 2009. t2 readers have given The Reader 6% votes primarily because of Kate Winslets terrific turn in the lead.
Many feel that Milk is way too political and pro-gay to get the ultimate trophy at the Academy Awards. But then the Oscars are also known to have always made up for their past mistakes. By giving Milk the Best Film trophy, the Academy may want to make up for the decision to go for Crash in place of Brokeback Mountain a few years ago. Only 5% of our voters believe in the Oscars going the Milky way, though.
Many were surprised at the inclusion of Frost/Nixon in the Best Film nomination list. Because it is not expected to challenge the other four films. Its not that the Ron Howard film doesnt deserve to be there but the movie is too dry to win the Best Film trophy, given the trend at the Academy Awards. No wonder, only a couple of our t2 readers have voted for Frost/Nixon.
Even three months back, not many had even heard of Danny Boyle but now everyones rooting for this Trainspotting Britisher to win the Best Director Oscar. If he does go on to win it for Slumdog Millionaire, Danny would have done more for Bollywood than any Indian director has ever done
For someone who made Se7en and Zodiac to make Benjamin Button is a big achievement in itself. With some luck David Fincher might win the Best Director trophy. At least 8% of our voters think so.
Gus Van Sant, the man who made Elephant and Good Will Hunting, gives more strength to this category and while Milk is a brilliant film, its all being credited to Sean Penns performance. Not many of you have voted for Gus, quite in line with the Academy.
A favourite with the Academy, this is the third directing nomination for Stephen daldry, having been there before for Billy Elliot and The Hours. However, just 4% of you think that Daldry is in with a chance for The Reader.
Ron Howard is the only man in this category who has already won a Best Director Oscar (for A Beautiful Mind). But he is the least likely among the five to pick up another trophy for Frost/Nixon. Our knowledgeable voters have given Howard just a handful of votes.
When one nominee gets over 90% of the total votes, do the other nominees deserve a mention? Well, not surprisingly, A.R. Rahman wins your overwhelming vote for the Best Score. His Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack looks tough to beat given the importance of the music in the film. But its never good to be a favourite in any category at the Oscars. Thomas Newmans Wall-E score, which is number two on your list, can easily spoil the party for us all. One cannot also discount Alexandre Desplats grand score for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Heres hoping we can all sing Jai ho at the end of it all.
With no slumdog in the acting categories, the best actor and best actress voting havent been that one-sided
Kate Winslet is your favourite to win the Best Actress trophy for her brilliant performance in Stephen Daldrys The Reader. At the Golden Globes, Kate won the Best Actress award for Revolutionary Road and the Best Supporting Actress trophy for The Reader! Will she finally be sixth time lucky at Kodak Theatre?
With 21% votes, Angelina Jolie is closest to Kate in the Best Actress category for Clint Eastwoods period film Changeling. While many t2 readers obviously love Jolie, it would need a mini-miracle for the actress to win it this time. But then miracles do happen at the Oscars.
When you look at the 15 nominations Meryl Streep has got at the Oscars, you really feel that she deserved to win a few more of those golden statuettes. And although 12% of you think she will win it this time, theres quite a lot of Doubt about her chances.
The darkest horse at the Oscars this year because very few of you have seen Frozen River, but Melissa Leo can surprise many at the Kodak Theatre. Around 10 per cent of t2 readers who voted for her could have the last laugh on Monday morning.
Before the Kate typhoon began blowing, Anne Hathaway was considered a strong contender at the Oscars. Not anymore, though. No wonder not many of you have voted for the Rachel Getting Married nominee.
Star power is at work in the Best Actors list. Despite his triumph at the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild Awards, Mickey Rourke is no match for Brad Pitts popularity amongst our readers. Pitt is effective as the man who lives life in reverse gear in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, but will it be enough to win the Oscar? We have to wait and watch.
Around 6 per cent voters feel Frank Langella has done enough as Richard Nixon in Frost/Nixon to win the Best Actor trophy. But if Langella does win, it could lead to an Oscargate!
His nomination was a surprise and something tells us that Richard Jenkins will spring no more surprises. Hardly any votes from you for The Visitor confirms that Jenkins will just be visiting Kodak Theatre.
With 18% votes, Mickey Rourke is at number two. Those who have seen The Wrestler feel strongly that theres only one man who deserves the Best Actor trophy. But Rourkes wild wild ways in the wake of the Golden Globe win can lose it for him.
If Rourke stumbles, Sean Penn should pick it up. Thats the buzz in Hollywood. Penns perfect performance in and as Milk has 14% t2 readers rooting for him. It would need more than that if the votes have to translate into a golden statuette.