Spielberg's film will have big support from the acting branch (three acting nominations seem like a forgone conclusion), Tony Kushner's script is a mortal lock for Best Adapted Screenplay, its below-the-line contributors (specifically composer John Williams, cinematographer Janusz Kaminski and editor Michael Kahn) are all respected past winners and nominees and it's the most culturally relevant film of the bunch -- perhaps even more than either "Argo" or "Zero Dark Thirty."
Well, it's official: We're now less than two months away from the 85th annual Oscar nominations. Are we having fun yet? ("Party Down" references never die.)
Best Actress has nothing on Best Actor. Consider the lineup of male performers with a legitimate chance of being nominated: Daniel Day-Lewis, Joaquin Phoenix, Denzel Washington, John Hawkes, Anthony Hopkins, Hugh Jackman, Bradley Cooper, Ben Affleck and Jamie Foxx. Truthfully, I could make an argument for any of those guys -- especially Cooper, who is a revelation in "Silver Linings Playbook"; he gives a performance that will forever change how audiences view him as an actor.
This Hitchcock is so well made, so much fun and so suspenseful that it would make the original Hitchcock proud.
The Avengers. Joss Whedon deserves some kind of award for turning what could have been the clunkiest superhero-supergroup spectacle since Fantastic Four into a razor-sharp, bullet-fast fun-fest, but they don't give Oscars for that.
Hey, Mike. That sound you just heard was everyone at Warner Bros. breathing a sigh of relief: Argo is a hit, meaning it has cleared another hurdle on its charge toward Best Picture.
So just when legend Quentin Tarantino decided this was his lucky year, Paul Thomas Anderson, Peter Jackson, Kathryn Bigelow, Tom Hooper, and more just felt in their bones as well -- that 2013 was going to give them that longing prize. Bad timing.
Welcome to Gold Rush, HuffPost Entertainment's weekly breakdown of all things Oscar. Between now and Feb. 25, 2013, executive arts and entertainment editor Michael Hogan and entertainment editor Christopher Rosen will chat about awards season and which films will make the most noise at the 85th annual Academy Awards.
Hey, Mike: Another week, another favorite? "Life of Pi" premiered at the New York Film Festival on Friday and thrust itself into the Oscar conversation with the force of a Bengal tiger attacking a villainous hyena
Not only does it make the film look incredible, but also important. It's genetically engineered to make Academy voters exclaim, "'Les Miserables' is revolutionary! Tom Hooper is a genius! Anne Hathaway deserves two trophies! Let's throw this one all the Oscars, some BAFTAs and maybe even a Pulitzer!"
Welcome to The Chase, HuffPost Entertainment's weekly breakdown of all things Oscar. Between now and Feb. 25, 2012, executive arts and entertainment editor Michael Hogan and entertainment editor Christopher Rosen will chat about awards season and which films will make the most noise at the 85th annual Academy Awards.