Mon. Aug 10th, 2020

2020 Golden Globes Predictions – Motion Picture

In what might be the wildest Golden Globes in a while, with so many categories open and without a true frontrunner in the Motion Picture categories, I’ve probably never felt more unsure of my Golden Globe winner predictions as this year. After turning everything upside last year with wins for Green Book and Bohemian Rhapsody that set them both on a course to be the big Oscar winners just a month later, where will the Hollywood Foreign Press Association go this year? Will they embrace mediocrity and middle ground once again or will they try and set a different path?

While Marriage Story has the most nominations going in (6), missing that crucial Best Director nod for Noah Baumbach seems like a death knell but it didn’t hurt BoRhap last year. But that’s a bit of an apples or oranges comparison especially when you have a billion dollar hit with a transformative performance right there in Joker – which is nominated for Best Director. Maybe the Globes will default to Martin Scorsese and The Irishman. He’s a three-time Best Director winner here and The Irishman is the only Best Motion Picture Drama contender to be nominated for director and screenplay.

The 77th Golden Globe Awards will be held this Sunday, January 5th and air live from the Beverly Hilton at 5pm PST / 8pm EST and be hosted by Ricky Gervais.

Here are my winner predictions in all Motion Picture categories.


  • 1917
  • Irishman
  • Joker
  • Marriage Story
  • The Two Popes

It’s wild that the biggest award of the night might actually be the toughest to predict. The HFPA love Joker but Marriage Story has the most nominations (6) and The Irishman is only drama contender to land screenplay and director mentions. The Two Popes even has a shot here as I hear voters loved it too. The last award of the night and it’s going to be a nail-biter. But, after giving it to Bohemian Rhapsody last year, a film without a director or screenplay nomination, literally anything can happen.

Will Win: Joker
Could Win: The Irishman
Should Win: Marriage Story
Should Have Been Nominated: Ford v Ferrari or Waves


  • Dolemite Is my Name
  • Jojo Rabbit
  • Knives Out
  • Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
  • Rocketman

This should be a cakewalk for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (it’s got directing, screenplay and acting noms) but there’s an outside shot for Jojo Rabbit or even Rocketman to swoop in and surprise. Ok, really outside.

Will Win: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Could Win: Jojo Rabbit
Should Win: Jojo Rabbit
Should Have Been Nominated: Booksmart or Hustlers


  • Bong Joon Ho, Parasite
  • Sam Mendes, 1917
  • Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
  • Martin Scorsese, The Irishman
  • Todd Phillips, Joker

This category has a healthy history of rewarding the director of a foreign language film over the helmers of their English-language counterparts, most recently last season when Alfonso Cuarón for Roma, which also won Foreign Language Film. Ang Lee (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) and Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) happened in the 2000s (each had one other nomination but no acting) and this year Bong Joon Ho and Parasite fit that mold. Not only that, Globe voters I’ve talked to love Parasite so much it would have been nominated, and probably could have won, in the Best Drama category were it not for the HFPA’s own rules disallowing foreign language films to compete there.

Will Win: Bong Joon Ho, Parasite
Could Win: Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
Should Win: Bong Joon Ho, Parasite
Should Have Been Nominated: Lulu Wang, The Farewell

Oscar Podcast #78: Golden Globe Predictions with Kyle Buchanan of the New York Times


  • Christian Bale, Ford v Ferrari
  • Antonio Banderas, Pain and Glory
  • Adam Driver, Marriage Story
  • Joaquin Phoenix, Joker
  • Jonathan Pryce, The Two Popes

For the longest while I was settled on Adam Driver (Marriage Story) winning here but now I’m not so sure. While the love for his performance is there, and for his film, I can’t deny that Joker was loved by the group and that voters loved fully transformative performances. That puts Joaquin Phoenix out in front and a win here could be the beginning of a full season run.

Will Win: Joaquin Phoenix, Joker
Could Win: Adam Driver, Marriage Story
Should Win: Adam Driver, Marriage Story
Should Have Been Nominated: Kelvin Harrison, Jr., Luce


  • Cynthia Erivo, Harriet
  • Scarlett Johansson, Marriage Story
  • Saoirse Ronan, Little Women
  • Charlize Theron, Bombshell
  • Renée Zellweger, Judy

Anyone thinking that Renée Zellweger (Judy) has any competition here is kidding themselves. This is HFPA catnip and no other nominee really comes close. Scarlett Johansson might have a tiny chance for an upset but only if voters go all in for Marriage Story.

Will Win: Renée Zellweger, Judy
Could Win: Scarlett Johansson, Marriage Story
Should Win: Renée Zellweger, Judy
Should Have Been Nominated: Lupita Nyong’o, Us


  • Daniel Craig, Knives Out
  • Roman Griffin Davis, Jojo Rabbit
  • Leonardo DiCaprio, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
  • Taron Egerton, Rocketman
  • Eddie Murphy, Dolemite Is My Name

A tougher category to predict than you’d think, as I think three performances have an almost equal shot at winning. All five nominees come from the five films nominated for Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy (the opposite of Best Actress) but I’m giving the edge to Egerton here. A big hit, doing his own singing, pressing the flesh like no other contender on this list and no one is going to want/appreciate this more than he will. That said, don’t be surprised at all if it’s DiCaprio or Murphy, both previous Globe winners.

Will Win: Taron Egerton, Rocketman
Could Win: Leonardo DiCaprio, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Should Win: Eddie Murphy, Dolemite Is My Name
Should Have Been Nominated: Viveik Karla, Blinded By the Light


  • Awkwafina, The Farewell
  • Ana de Armas, Knives Out
  • Beanie Feldstein, Booksmart
  • Emma Thompson, Late Night
  • Cate Blanchett, Where’d You Go Bernadette

This is between Awkwafina and Ana de Armas. The Farewell is nominated in foreign language film (the only place it was allowed to compete, it might have struggled in the top category) but Knives Out hit Best Musical or Comedy and another acting nomination. The HFPA loves to coronate future stars and de Armas is about to have a huge year with the new Bond film coming and her starring role as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde. That might be too much for them not give it to her.

Will Win: Awkwafina, The Farewell
Could Win: Ana de Armas, Knives Out
Should Win: Awkwafina, The Farewell
Should Have Been Nominated: Charlize Theron, Long Shot


  • Tom Hanks, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
  • Al Pacino, The Irishman
  • Joe Pesci, The Irishman
  • Brad Pitt, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
  • Anthony Hopkins, The Two Popes

This is Brad Pitt’s to lose. Full stop.

Will Win: Brad Pitt, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
Could Win: Joe Pesci, The Irishman
Should Win: Brad Pitt, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
Should Have Been Nominated: Song Kang Ho, Parasite


  • Annette Bening, The Report
  • Margot Robbie, Bombshell
  • Jennifer Lopez, Hustlers
  • Kathy Bates, Richard Jewell
  • Laura Dern, Marriage Story

Is it going to be Laura or Jennifer? I’ve been going back and forth on this and Lopez feels like such a Globes choice, like Sylvester Stallone was a few years ago. Dern might feel more like an Oscar choice to them and it’s not like they haven’t thrown a few curveballs in the supporting categories before, like Aaron Taylor-Johnson beating Mahershala Ali in 2017..

Will Win: Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Could Win: Jennifer Lopez, Hustlers
Should Win: Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Should Have Been Nominated: Taylor Russell, Waves


  • Marriage Story
  • Parasite
  • The Two Popes
  • Once Upon A Time In Hollywood
  • The Irishman

Can Quentin Tarantino make it win #3 on Sunday? Although he’s been nominated in the screenplay category three times before, his wins have come from his films also nominated for Best Motion Picture. That bodes well for him here as Once Upon a Time… is nominated everywhere. But look out for Bong Joon Ho to go 3/3 or even Noah Baumbach to sneak in and grab it.

Will Win: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Could Win: Parasite
Should Win: Parasite
Should Have Been Nominated: The Farewell


  • Motherless Brooklyn
  • Little Women
  • Joker
  • 1917
  • Marriage Story

This feels like the best place for a win for 1917 (although some of my colleagues see the film as a much bigger contender in Best Drama and Best Director) and could set Thomas Newman on the path to win his first Oscar after 14 nominations there. There’s a good case to make for Joker or Marriage Story too, especially if either end up sweeping.

Will Win: 1917
Could Win: Joker
Should Win: 1917
Should Have Been Nominated: Us or The Farewell


  • “Beautiful Ghosts,” Cats
  • “I’m Gonna Love Me Again,” Rocketman
  • “Into the Unknown,” Frozen II
  • “Spirit,” The Lion King
  • “Stand Up,” Harriet

The Globes snubbed Cats but nominated Taylor Swift for Original Song. The Oscars snubbed Swift’s song but Cats is still eligible everywhere else. What to do, what to do. There’s definitely room for Swift to still win here but it’s probably down to Elton John and Beyoncé. If he loses to either of them though I wonder if we’ll get the same stinkface reaction like when he lost to Madonna.

Will Win: “I’m Gonna Love Me Again,” Rocketman
Could Win: “Spirit,” The Lion King
Should Win: “Beautiful Ghosts,” Cats
Should Have Been Nominated: “Glasgow,” Wild Rose


  • Frozen II
  • The Lion King
  • Missing Link
  • Toy Story 4
  • How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World

The Globes were sneaky, and maybe a bit shady, by nominating The Lion King here and it would be a riot if they chose it as their winner. But I think it will be either Toy Story 4 or Frozen II. Missing Link is the only original film of the bunch but it just might be too small for them, as deserving a winner as it would be.

Will Win: Toy Story 4
Could Win: Frozen II
Should Win: Missing Link
Should Have Been Nominated: I Lost My Body


  • The Farewell – US/China
  • Les Misérables – France
  • Pain and Glory – Spain
  • Parasite – South Korea
  • Portrait of a Lady on Fire – France

Parasite. Next.

Will Win: Parasite – South Korea
Could Win: The Farewell – US/China
Should Win: Parasite – South Korea
Should Have Been Nominated: And Then We Danced – Sweden

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