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Oscar derby update: 'Invictus,' 'The Hurt Locker' lead best-picture race

October 29, 2009 |  4:20 pm

Invictus hurt locker oscars news

Adding to the Oscar best-picture predictions we received this week from 14 leading pundits, Gold Derby just got two more batches — one from New York Post film critic Lou Lumenick, the other from Robert Osborne, star of Turner Classic Movies, host of the Oscars' red carpet and author of the official book "80 Years of the Oscar."

Robert foresees these 10 flicks being nominated for best picture: "Away We Go," "An Education," "The Hurt Locker," "Invictus," "Nine," "Precious," "The Road," "A Serious Man," "Up," "Up in the Air."

Lou picks these top 10: "2012," "Avatar," "The Hurt Locker," "Inglourious Basterds," "Invictus," "The Informant!" "The Lovely Bones," "Nine," "Up," "Up in the Air."
 
Combining those prophesies with the results of the three charts we featured over the past few days (here, here and here), below is a breakdown of how pundit support is split among these films. The number in parenthesis after each title is the tally of pundits predicting it will be nominated.

Also participating in the our pundit panel are Thelma Adams (Us Weekly), Erik Davis (AOL Cinematical), Scott Feinberg (AndTheWinnerIs), Paul Gaita (The Circuit, The Envelope), Pete Hammond (Notes on a Season, The Envelope), Elena Howe (The Envelope), Dave Karger (Entertainment Weekly), Kevin Lewin (World Entertainment News Network), Steve Pond (TheWrap), Richard Rushfield (Gawker), Peter Travers (Rolling Stone), Jeff Wells (Hollywood-Elsewhere) and Susan Wloszczyna (USA Today).

Only "The Hurt Locker" and "Invictus" get backing from all 16 sages. Scoring 15 is "Precious" (Lumenick doesn't pick it) and "Up in the Air" (Lewin is a hold-out). Two gurus spurn "Up" (Feinberg and me) and three don't back "Nine" (Gaita, Pond and Wloszczyna).

Missing from the "Avatar" bandwagon are Hammond and Wells. Travers and Rushfield are among the five gurus who don't buy that "The Lovely Bones" will make it. And there's less support for "An Education" than I thought there'd be (Karger and Hammond don't think it will make the grade). When our pundits waffled (Wells says either "District 9" or "Inglourious Basterds" will be nommed; Hammond equivocates between "It's Complicated" and "Julie & Julia"), I don't give the films full votes below, but you can give them half votes, if you like.

"THE HURT LOCKER" (16) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Gaita, Hammond, Howe, Karger, Lewin, Lumenick, O'Neil, Osborne, Pond, Rushfield, Travers, Wells, Wloszczyna

"INVICTUS" (16) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Gaita, Karger, Hammond, Howe, Lewin, Lumenick, O'Neil, Osborne, Pond, Rushfield, Travers, Wells, Wloszczyna

"PRECIOUS" (15) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Gaita, Hammond, Howe, Karger, Lewin, O'Neil, Osborne, Pond, Rushfield, Travers, Wells, Wloszczyna

"UP IN THE AIR" (15) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Gaita, Hammond, Howe, Karger, Lumenick, O'Neil, Osborne, Pond, Rushfield, Travers, Wells, Wloszczyna

"UP" (14) — Adams, Davis, Gaita, Hammond, Howe, Karger, Lewin, Lumenick, Osborne, Pond, Rushfield, Travers, Wells, Wloszczyna

"NINE" (13) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Hammond, Howe, Karger, Lewin, Lumenick, O'Neil, Osborne, Rushfield, Travers, Wells

"THE LOVELY BONES" (12) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Gaita, Hammond, Howe, Karger, Lewin, Lumenick, O'Neil, Pond, Wloszczyna

"AVATAR" (10) — Adams, Davis, Feinberg, Gaita, Karger, Lumenick, O'Neil, Pond, Travers, Wloszczyna

"AN EDUCATION" (10) — Adams, Feinberg, Gaita, Howe, Osborne, Pond, Rushfield, Travers, Wells, Wloszczyna

"INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS" (7) — Feinberg, Hammond, Karger, Lumenick, O'Neil, Pond, Wloszczyna

"THE ROAD" (6) — Davis, Gaita, Howe, Lewin, O'Neil, Osborne

"A SERIOUS MAN" (5) — O'Neil, Osborne, Pond, Travers, Wells

"BRIGHT STAR" (3) — Howe, Rushfield, Wells

"STAR TREK" (2) — Adams, Karger

"WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE" (2) — Gaita, Rushfield

"AWAY WE GO" — Osborne

"BROTHERS" — Rushfield

"DISTRICT 9" (1) — Travers

"THE INFORMANT!" — Lumenick

"IT'S COMPLICATED" — Wloszczyna

"JULIE & JULIA" — Feinberg

"MOON" — Lewin

"SHERLOCK HOLMES" — Lewin

"2012" — Lumenick

"THE YOUNG VICTORIA" — Hammond

Photos: "Invictus," left (Warner Bros.); "The Hurt Locker," right (Summit)

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Comments

Interesting that most of the movies selected here haven't even been shown yet (never mind released). Obviously these dimwits are more interested in making predictions based on manufactured "buzz" than on serious critical judgment. Despite the BP competition having been expanded to ten contenders this year (which is meaningless to begin with inasmuch as there will still be only five directing nominations), there has been a grand total of three English-language films released to date that can be said to be bona-fide contestants: Hurt Locker, Up and Where the Wild Things Are. Bright Star is superb but hasn't made a dime whereas An Education will need a box-office boost or a slew of celebrity- champions to boost its credentials in this race. Nothing else has made much of an impression, and you can't send out enough Blue Ray screeners to get Academy members to nominate Transformers, This is It or The Hangover.


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