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BEST DIRECTOR- Inarritu vs Linklater?
- Richard Linklater, “Boyhood”
- Alejandro G. Inarritu, “Birdman”
- Ava DuVernay, “Selma”
- Morten Tyldum, “The Imitation Game”
- David Fincher, “Gone Girl”
Possible Contenders: Damien Chazelle (“Whiplash”), Wes Anderson (“The Grand Budapest Hotel”), Bennett Miller (“Foxcatcher”), Clint Eastwood (“American Sniper”)
Premature Prediction for the Actual Award:
Winner: Richard Linklater
Chance to Steal: Ava DuVernay
I honestly do not feel comfortable giving this prediction. It is a crowded group, and the director’s branch for this award votes unpredictably and often for a sum of all accomplishments rather than individual work. Given this, big-shots like Fincher, Anderson, and Eastwood can cause real trouble for the likes of Tyldum and Chazelle. Linklater is a “no brainer” lock. Spending twelve years on a single film and pulling it off with style and substance is a serious accomplishment. If you have seen “Birdman,” it is no surprise that Inarritu is a clear choice for a nomination. The movie is a gem to look at, and Inarritu’s fresh direction makes the story come together all the more perfectly. DuVernay’s nomination marks a milestone in Oscar history, making her the first black woman director to receive the nomination. Women do not typically even receive director nominations, making hers all the more special. She is a lock because 1) she deserves it (Selma is currently at 100% on Rotten Tomatoes after almost 80 critics have seen it) and 2) I highly doubt the Academy is going to pass up the opportunity to make history. I have mentioned Weinstein’s name throughout this article. For those of you who don’t know, he is the single most persuasive individual in the Oscar game. The movies that his company produces clean up in the award season, and his influence on the community has played a massive role in who wins the big awards in the end (see “The Kings Speech” instead of “The Social Network”…) Morten Tyldum has received some negative critiques as a director, but his film is pulling in the big bucks and has the Weinstein stamp of approval. Fincher is a wager- but a good one to make. Chazelle’s little film “Whiplash” has been making big waves, and people are taking notes. Anderson has yet to receive a nomination for his directing and “The Grand Budapest Hotel” is his most successful film to date. Bennett Miller has received plenty of notice for his soul-crushingly dark and true crime drama. Clint Eastwood is a household name, and American Sniper is getting positive marks on directing in addition to a much needed newfound following.