(The Academy of Motion Pictures announces it 2013 Oscar nominees tomorrow morning. Indy's film critic, Miles X. Logan, lists his choices below.)
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln) is a sure thing. Academy favorite Denzel Washington (Flight) will probably get a nod. Les Miserables is the kind of sweeping saga the voters typically reward, so Hugh Jackman will probably get a Best Actor nomination. John Hawkes (Sessions), a versatile and underrated actor, may finally get his reward this year. Bradley Cooper, once considered a long shot for his role in Silver Linings Playbook has momentum and may be a surprise pick. Old war horses like Clint Eastwood or Anthony Hopkins lurk. Pretty boys Leo DiCaprio and Ben Affleck could also sneak in.
Best Actress: What, no Meryl? Jennifer Lawrence is this year's it girl and is odds-on to win it all for her stunning performance in Silver Linings Playbook. Also pencil in Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty). Sally Field does a remarkable interpretation of Mary Todd Lincoln and could be an upsetter come Oscar night – The academy really likes her.
Emannuelle Riva deserves a nomination for Amour and we think she will get it. Anne Hathaway will probably get nominated for Les Mis but it will really be for gamely bombing as the Oscar show host in 2011. Marion Cotillard and or Quvenzhane Wallis would be more deserving.
Best Picture: Remember the academy now nominates 10 movies. The sure things are Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty, Les Mis, and Django Unchained. Silver Linings Playbook is on a roll now; Amour deserves a nod and should get it. We loved Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Life Of Pi also deserves a nod. The Hobbit is visually stunning, and is picking up momentum. Other possibilities are Argo, The Master, Moonrise Kingdom, Beasts Of The Southern Wild, and The Dark Knight Rises.
Best Supporting Actor: This is tight one, with five of our most cherished actors vying for the statue. They are Philip Seymour Hoffman (The Master), Tommy Lee Jones (Lincoln) Leo DiCaprio (Django), Alan Arkin (Argo) and Robert De Niro (Linings). Bill Nighy and Tom Wilkinson, both excellent in Marigold, may cancel each other out. Long shots include Matthew McConaughey and Hal Holbrook.
Best Supporting Actress: Field and Hathaway, both of whom could be nominated for Best Actress, become the favorites if they drop into this category. Nicole Kidman, wearing her own nose this time around, was sensational in Paperboy and is a real contender. The academy loves Amy Adams (The Master), Maggie Smith (Marigold), and Helen Hunt (Sessions). Jackie Weaver (Playbook) may benefit from the buzz.
Best Director: The statue typically goes to the director of the Best Movie, so pencil in Steven Spielberg (Lincoln), Quentin Tarantino (Django), and Kathryn Bigelow (Zero) as surefire nominees. Add David O. Russell to the list for his work on Silver Linings. That leaves Ang Lee (Pi), Tom Hooper (Le Mis), and Michael Haneke (Amour) fighting it out for the final slot.