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Some change is a comin’ in Best Picture.
Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman from Focus Features moves back to the #1 spot, where I probably should have kept it. More festival screenings, more good word of mouth and a topicality that will be unmatched among other top-level Best Picture contenders is what finds the film back in the top spot. As is typical of early Oscar predictions, first looks, images and teaser trailers influence the charts, sometimes dramatically. Steve McQueen’s Widows (20th Century Fox) was #1 last month on the strength of what I felt was a very effective first teaser. This month we got our first look at Universal’s First Man, Oscar winner Damien Chazelle’s follow-up to 6-time Oscar winner La La Land. It’s a solid trailer, if very familiar territory. Still, it holds onto the #2 spot. Expect Adam McKay Dick Cheney biopic Backseat (from Annapurna) to shake things up once its first official images and/or teasers are revealed.
A big change this month is Yorgos Lanthimos’s The Favourite. It moves up from #9 to #6 as I believe it will be Fox Searchlight’s main contender this year. The current Best Picture-winning studio, Fox Searchlight will likely have two (or more) films to push and that likely will be BP-nominated, as they did last year (and have before). That other film, Can You Ever Forgive Me?, stays in the top 10, swapping spots with The Favourite.
Holding steady this month are Barry Jenkins’s If Beale Street Could Talk from Annapurna, his follow-up to his Oscar-winning Best Picture winner Moonlight. There have been a few test screenings for the film that were met with some mixed reviews but I’m not putting more stock into those than necessary. Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut A Star Is Born from Warner Bros. sticks around at #8. I have a feeling this could find itself in the top 5 in the coming months.
I can see a handful of films in the Next Up section fighting their way into (or back into) the top 10 by fall including Beautiful Boy (Amazon), Destroyer (Annapurna), the Ruth Bader Ginsburg biopic On the Basis of Sex (Focus Features) and Green Book, which has set to secure US distribution but I expect an announcement on that soon.
Here are my 2019 Oscar predictions in Best Picture for June 18, 2018.
Green – moves up
Red – moves down
Blue – chart debut
|1. BlacKkKlansman (Focus Features – 8/10)|
|2. First Man (Universal – 10/12)|
|3. Backseat (Annapurna – 12/14)|
|4. Widows (20th Century Fox – 11/16)|
|5. If Beale Street Could Talk (Annapurna – 11/30)|
|6.The Favourite (Fox Searchlight – 11/23)|
|7. The Front Runner (Sony Pictures)|
|8. A Star is Born (Warner Bros – 10/5)|
|9. Can You Ever Forgive Me? (Fox Searchlight – 10/19)|
|10. Mary Queen of Scots (Focus Features – 12/7)|
|Ad Astra (20th Century Fox – 1/11/19)|
|Beautiful Boy (Amazon – 10/12)|
|Black Panther (Disney – 2/16)|
|Boy Erased (Focus Features – 9/28)|
|On the Basis of Sex (Focus Features – 11/9)|
|Peterloo (Amazon – 11/9)|
|Untitled Pippa Bianco aka Share (A24)|
|Bohemian Rhapsody (20th Century Fox – 11/2)|
|Crazy Rich Asians (Warner Bros – 8/17)|
|Fighting with My Family|
|Hereditary (A24 – 6/8)|
|The Hummingbird Project|
|Leave No Trace (Bleecker Street Media)|
|The Little Stranger (Focus Features – 8/31)|
|Loro (Focus Features)|
|Mary Poppins Returns (Disney – Christmas)|
|The Mercy (Lionsgate)|
|Mid 90s (A24)|
|Old Man and the Gun (Fox Searchlight – 10/5)|
|Outlaw King (Netflix)|
|The Sisters Brothers (Annapurna)|
|Wendy (Fox Searchlight)|
|The Wife (Sony Pictures Classics – 8/3)|
|The Women of Marwen (Universal – 11/21)|