Variety Critics Pick Their Oscar Nominees

Oscars Plenty to go Around
Shout

Film critics, we’re often told, don’t vote for the Oscars — but if they did, here’s what at least three of their nomination ballots might look like. We listed our top five choices for best director, actor/actress, supporting actor/actress, original/adapted screenplay and cinematography. For best picture, we allowed ourselves 10 choices, based on the unlikely but theoretically possible outcome of 10 nominees in that category.

PETER DEBRUGE

Peter Debruge
@askdebruge

BEST PICTURE
“12 Years a Slave”
“Dallas Buyers Club”
“Her”
“Inside Llewyn Davis”
“Our Children”
“The Past”
“Rush”
“Short Term 12”
“Stories We Tell”
“Wadjda”

BEST DIRECTOR
Joel and Ethan Coen, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”
Spike Jonze, “Her”
Joachim Lafosse, “Our Children”
Steve McQueen, “12 Years a Slave”

BEST ACTOR
Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”
Oscar Isaac, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club”
Tahar Rahim, “The Past”
Miles Teller, “The Spectacular Now”

BEST ACTRESS
Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
Sandra Bullock, “Gravity”
Emilie Dequenne, “Our Children”
Greta Gerwig, “Frances Ha”
Brie Larson, “Short Term 12”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Niels Arestrup, “Our Children”
Daniel Bruhl, “Rush”
Michael Cera, “Magic Magic”
John Goodman, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Scarlett Johansson, “Her”
Carey Mulligan, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”
Lea Seydoux, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”
Shailene Woodley, “The Spectacular Now”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Spike Jonze, “Her”
Thomas Bidegain, Joachim Lafosse, Matthieu Reynaert, “Our Children”
Asghar Farhadi, “The Past”
Peter Morgan, “Rush”
Ken Scott, “Starbuck”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
John Ridley, “12 Years a Slave”
Kyle Patrick Alvarez, “C.O.G.”
Peter Berg, “Lone Survivor”
Clio Barnard, “The Selfish Giant”
Daniel Cretton, “Short Term 12”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Sean Bobbitt, “12 Years a Slave”
Bruno Delbonnel, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Emmanuel Lubezki, “Gravity”
Hoyte Van Hoytema, “Her”
Anthony Dod Mantle, “Rush”

JUSTIN CHANG

justin chang variety

Justin Chang
@justincchang

BEST PICTURE
“American Hustle”
“Before Midnight”
“Blue Is the Warmest Color”
“The Grandmaster”
“Gravity”
“Her”
“Inside Llewyn Davis”
“Stories We Tell”
“The Wolf of Wall Street”
“The World’s End”

BEST DIRECTOR
Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”
Richard Linklater, “Before Midnight”
David O. Russell, “American Hustle”
Martin Scorsese, “The Wolf of Wall Street”
Wong Kar Wai, “The Grandmaster”

BEST ACTOR
Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Wolf of Wall Street”
Chiwetel Ejiofor, “12 Years a Slave”
Oscar Isaac, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Robert Redford, “All Is Lost”
Toni Servillo, “The Great Beauty”

BEST ACTRESS
Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
Sandra Bullock, “Gravity”
Adele Exarchopoulos, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”
Brie Larson, “Short Term 12”
Zhang Ziyi, “The Grandmaster”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Elyes Aguis, “The Past”
Daniel Bruhl, “Rush”
James Franco, “Spring Breakers”
John Gallagher Jr., “Short Term 12”
James Gandolfini, “Enough Said”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Pauline Burlet, “The Past”
Scarlett Johansson, “Don Jon”
Julianne Moore, “What Maisie Knew”
Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”
Lea Seydoux, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
J.C. Chandor, “All Is Lost”
Spike Jonze, “Her”
Abbas Kiarostami, “Like Someone in Love”
Shane Carruth, “Upstream Color”
Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright, “The World’s End”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
John Ridley, “12 Years a Slave”
Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, “Before Midnight”
Abdellatif Kechiche and Ghalia Lacroix, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”
Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, “The Spectacular Now”
Terence Winter, “The Wolf of Wall Street”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Luca Bigazzi, “The Great Beauty”
Bruno Delbonnel, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Mahmoud Kalari, “The Past”
Philippe Le Sourd, “The Grandmaster”
Emmanuel Lubezki, “Gravity”

SCOTT FOUNDAS

Scott Foundas
@foundasonfilm

BEST PICTURE
“12 Years a Slave”
“American Hustle”
“At Berkeley”
“Blue Is the Warmest Color”
“The Counselor”
“Gravity”
“Her”
“Inside Llewyn Davis”
“Nebraska”
“The Wind Rises”

BEST DIRECTOR
Joel and Ethan Coen, “Inside Llewyn Davis”
Alfonso Cuaron, “Gravity”
Spike Jonze, “Her”
Hayao Miyazaki, “The Wind Rises”
David O. Russell, “American Hustle”

BEST ACTOR
Bruce Dern, “Nebraska”
Leonardo DiCaprio, “The Wolf of Wall Street”
Will Ferrell, “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues”
Matthew McConaughey, “Dallas Buyers Club”
Robert Redford, “All Is Lost”

BEST ACTRESS
Amy Adams, “American Hustle”
Cate Blanchett, “Blue Jasmine”
Judi Dench, “Philomena”
Adele Exarchopulos, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”
Felicity Jones, “The Invisible Woman”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Barhkad Abdi, “Captain Phillips”
Bradley Cooper, “American Hustle”
James Franco, “Spring Breakers”
Stacy Keach, “Nebraska”
Jared Leto, “Dallas Buyers Club”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Jennifer Lawrence, “American Hustle”
Lupita Nyong’o, “12 Years a Slave”
Joanna Scanlan, “The Invisible Woman”
Lea Seydoux, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”
June Squibb, “Nebraska”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
John Ridley, “12 Years a Slave”
Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke, “Before Midnight”
Abdellatif Kechiche and Ghalia Lacroix, “Blue Is the Warmest Color”
Francois Ozon, “In the House”
Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope, “Philomena”

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell, “American Hustle”
Cormac McCarthy, “The Counselor”
Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig, “Frances Ha”
Spike Jonze, “Her”
Joel and Ethan Coen, “Inside Llewyn Davis”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Emmanuel Lubezki, “Gravity”
Rob Hardy, “The Invisible Woman”
Roger Deakins, “Prisoners”
Bojan Bazelli, “The Lone Ranger”
Benoit Debie, “Spring Breakers”

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  1. Chip Croft says:

    Can’t believe not one of you picked Fruitvale Station for any category! By far one of the best films of the year! You should be ashamed!

  2. Jean Howard says:

    The Wolf of Wall Street is encouraging drug use and poor behavior in the young of this country.
    Let us not give this poor movie an award.

    • Xauf Mon says:

      The only way to read Wolf as encouraging drug use is to walk out before the last act.

    • Adam Gertler says:

      I don’t really think that’s a reason to not give a movie an award. The movie’s brilliant. If we are to ignore films that feature protagonists engaging in bad behavior, maybe we should retroactively strip The Godfather, Goodfellas, Scarface, Pulp Fiction of their awards. You feel me?

    • Joyce says:

      Jean Howard, do you work for D.O. Russell? Are you a member of the same team that brought down Zero Dark Thirty? If not, did you even see The Wolf of Wall Street before you jumped on the negativity bandwagon?

  3. Pierre Edelman says:

    Dear Scott, what fascinates me is that between the 3 of you you’ve covered all the real possibilities. My dilemma is that sometimes it is good for a less great pic. to get an oscar when its originality makes a difference with “mainstream”. But I know, I have bad taste. I would have given an Oscar to “Mulholand Drive”…ahahah. Decisions like that would encourage Studios & big wigs to take MORE RISKS toward original vision(Spike Jonze). The consequences would be “audience wake up & education”, raising the “level” of entertainment instead of re hashing Vertigo, Rosemary’s baby, and so on…PS Sometimes a so called so-so film becomes a personal Iconic Film :”Dallas Buyers Club” Good Luck, Gentlemen!

  4. Debruge should be fired for not knowing to include the future winner gravity on his list

  5. RL says:

    I have never ubderstood how a picture can be nominated as Best and the director of that movie isn’t nominated.

    • Samr says:

      Directors (about 400 of them) vote for directors, actors vote for actors but all 6000 members vote for best picture, there’s gonna be a disconnect

  6. Susan Schmidt says:

    So happy to see “The World’s End” on this list. It and it’s stars and creators truly deserve the honor.

  7. GeorgeValentin says:

    I am saddened to see FRUITVALE STATION omitted from the Best Picture lists.

  8. joao says:

    You guys know very little about cinema!

  9. Well,this list was a complete joke and a waste of time….

  10. Admin says:

    Is this is a joke. Will Farrell, Michael Cera…

  11. Joyce says:

    Peter Debruge: How do you explain your choice of Cuaron as a nominee for best director when Gravity isn’t one of your best picture nominees?

  12. kenmandu says:

    Has anyone actually seen “Llewyn Davis”? It’s a total bummer about a modestly talented and boring character. It’s a cynical, uninformed, and jaundiced view on what was a magical era in Greenwich Village which was way ahead of the curve to where the culture would catch up to in a few years. The Coens even had this creep beat up twice because “they thought ” it would be fun to beat up a folk singer”.. Even the soundtrack is over-rated with a overabundance of dirges not reflecting the variety of approaches to this kind of music that would explode in the 60’s within several years…

  13. DGA Guy says:

    It’s hard to take Debruge seriously as a critic when he has such a hard on for the brilliant “American Hustle” and fawns all over Steve McQueen’s turgid whitey basher “12 years a slave”. Please include Pater Bart’s list as well. He’s the most significant, qualified and educated Variety writer on film.

  14. Bill says:

    …which is why it’s good these critics don’t have OSCAR ballots.

  15. but Tahar Rahim is a supporting on the past.

  16. Francis A. Hecker says:

    It’s good to see that Blue Is The Warmest Color got a lot of love, especially with Léa Seydoux because I think some people are talking enough about how Amazing she was. That was definitely one of my favorite movies of the year.

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