2015 Best Picture Oscar Power Rankings


We’re quickly approaching the 2015 Oscars. Here, you can see my 2015 Best Picture predictions in order of likelihood for a nomination. But only films that have premiered (in theaters or at a festival) will be considered for my 2015 Oscar predictions. As unknowns become knowns, they’ll be added (or knowingly omitted) from this list. And only films/directors/performances that have a genuine shot at a 2015 Oscar nomination will be brought up in this space.

On-paper contenders are making themselves known, which means the race is finally revealing itself. It’s thin, guys. Not quality wise, per se, but legitimate Academy-friendly contenders are hard to come by in 2014 for whatever reason. That doesn’t mean there aren’t films—and more importantly, good films—that are destined to become 2015 Best Picture nominees, but rather something like Whiplash, which seemed like it might get overwhelmed by the season’s bigger, buzzier contenders, is fairly strong.

But it’s still just mid-November (the 19th to be exact), and a lot can change as critics groups weigh in. The race is about to kick into a new gear, folks. Get ready.

2015 Best Picture Predictions

1.) The Imitation Game (prev. 1)
The surest of the sure things. Harvey Weinstein has his eyes on the prize. We’ll see where it sits when Phase 2 rolls around.

2.) Boyhood (prev. 4)
I was really unsure about this one when it came to the awards race, but it was a huge hit (relatively speaking) for IFC, and people simply love what Linklater pulls off. It’s one of the most interesting awards profiles in recent memory, and it’s a sure-fire nominee.

3.) Selma (prev. N/A)
The strongest by far of the late-breaking contenders. Ava DuVernay’s MLK “biopic” drew raves from pretty much everyone who’s seen it, and after the relative disappointment that was the reaction to Interstellar, Paramount must be breathing a big sigh of relief. It’s in the race.

4.) Birdman (prev. 2)
It’s almost certainly in the race. If it starts sweeping the critics prizes, The Imitation Game and Boyhood better look out.

5.) The Theory of Everything (prev. 3)
I was skeptical going into TIFF, but there’s no arguing with those notices, at least not as far as a 2015 Best Picture nomination goes.

6.) Whiplash (prev. 7)
A white hot candidate. I’d wondered if it would be able to stay strong following its release, but those concerns are gone. It’s now playing in 800+ theaters and shows no signs of letting up. People are discovering and loving this movie, and that ought to carry over to a nomination.

7.) Gone Girl (prev. 5)
If not for its sensational box office, its candidacy might feel dicier. It’s still far from a sure thing.

8.) Interstellar (prev. N/A)
Definitely not the candidate many (including Paramount, from the sound of things) thought it could be. Still, filmmakers admire the hell out of it. It could be the type of film that doesn’t have broad support but manages a nomination anyway on the backs of just enough fervent supporters.

9.) American Sniper (prev. N/A)
“Good” Eastwood means it’s a contender. But I don’t hear anyone saying it’s “great” Eastwood.

10.) Foxcatcher (prev. 6)
It was a questionable contender since Cannes, but a weaker than expected (by me at least) critical response means Sony Pictures Classics is going to need to work it.

11.) Mr. Turner (prev. 8)
The Academy’s British contingent will need to come out in force in support of Mike Leigh’s latest. I’m really skeptical of its chances, but it’s not out of the question.