Like an adventurer lost in the desert crawling toward an oasis, movie lovers are sweating out summers’ mostly bombastic movies looking longingly toward autumn when the lion’s share of Oscar contenders arrive.
That isn’t to say there aren’t a few films that are already in theaters – most notably “Once Upon A Time in Hollywood,” “The Farewell,” and possibly “Avengers: Endgame” — that could be among the nominated for an Academy Award.
Of course, last year about this time, everyone was predicting a coronation of “A Star is Born” and the possibility of Ryan Gosling winning Best Actor for “First Man.” “A Star is Born” took home one Oscar for (“Best Original Song”) and Gosling wasn’t even nominated.
So, who knows what will happen? Well, oddsmakers think they do and SBR’s best sportsbooks already are laying odds on which movie may be nominated to take home the statuette for “Best Picture.”
Oscar nominations will be announced Jan. 13 and the Oscars awarded on Feb. 24. These are early odds and likely to change dramatically the closer we get to the new year.
Select choices for contention are:
- “Once Upon A Time In Hollywood” (in theaters now) – Director Quentin Tarantino’s movie about the movie business in the time of Charles Manson starring Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio and Margot Robbie is getting critical praise and good box office buzz. As of today, this is the frontrunner for the Best Picture Oscar. Odds: +700
- “The Farewell” (in theaters now) – Comedian Awkwafina is getting rave reviews as well as the movie about a family keeping its matriarch in the dark about her cancer diagnosis. Expect both the actress and the film to get a lot of attention during awards season. +2000
- “The Irishman” (October 13) – Director Martin Scorsese and his usual suspects (Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci) are next in frontrunner contention for Best Picture in this film about a mob hitman who alleges to have killed labor leader Jimmy Hoffa. Odds: +800
- “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” (October 18) – The trailer alone is a like cool breeze on hot summer day offering sweetness, kindness and a sense of peace in this troublesome time. Academy Award winner Tom Hanks, as the beloved TV icon Mr. (Fred) Rogers, seems to be a shoo-in for his 6th Oscar nomination, too. It this film were to win, it definitely would be a beautiful day in the neighborhood. +900
- “Ad Astra” (September 20) – The Academy likes space movies if they are done well and this one, under the direction of James Gray and starring Brad Pitt as an astronaut in search of his dad who went missing looking for extra-terrestrial life, could catch a star and maybe an Oscar. +2100
- “Harriet (November 1) – Cynthia Erivo’s portrayal of hero Harriet Tubman who rose above an ugly moment in U.S. history will help this movie’s momentum at the Oscars. +3300
- “Fair and Balanced (December 20) – Fox News gets big screen treatment with John Lithgow playing Roger Ailes (John Lithgow) who is about to have a serious woman problem (Margot Robbie, Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron). Odds: +2100
- “Little Women” (December 25) –Director/writer Greta Gerwig will receive her second nomination as best director (“Baby Bird”) for this classic tale of sisters coming of age starring Emma Watson, Saoirse Ronan, Florence Pugh, Meryl Streep and Laura Dern. Odds: +2800
- “1917” (December 25) – Sam Mendes directs and Benedict Cumberbatch stars this movie about two British soldiers in World War I tasked with delivering a message into enemy territory to stop a deadly ambush. Odds: +1100
Of movies that have already come and gone from theaters:
Taron Egerton’s turn as Elton John in “Rocketman,” was a much better performance than last year’s winner Rami Malik as Freddie Mercury in “Bohemian Rhapsody.” The movie too seemed to better accurately tell the story of the rock veteran than “Bohemian” as well. Odds: +2600
As the culmination of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, “Avengers: Endgame” might get some action and a nod for Best Picture. And how ‘bout nominating Chris Hemsworth for best use of a beer belly. Wait, that isn’t a category? Burrrrp. +2600