We seem to be back in the era where a film editing nomination is crucial to a Best Picture win. Back in the day, it was an absolute must. 1980’s Ordinary People was the last to manage it without one until 2014’s Birdman. But since then, every BP winner had secured one, even if editing wasn’t as showy a factor of the film as it was with other nominees, like 2015’s Spotlight and 2018’s Green Book.
There’s a very real chance that Nomadland, a Best Picture frontrunner, could find itself out. As Chloé Zhao is writer, director and editor of her film, we could see what happened to Alfonso Cuarón just a few years ago with Roma. That film earned 10 nominations, with Cuarón himself earning four nominations from it: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Best Cinematography. He won director and cinematography but as the film’s editor he was snubbed. It’s not like the editing branch hasn’t nominated directors who edit their own films before; the Coen Brothers, who go by the pseudonym Roderick Jaynes for their editing work, have made it in for Fargo and No Country for Old Men.
The American Cinema Editors (ACE) don’t announce their nominations until March 11, just four days before Oscar nominations. That’s cutting it a little too close to the wire for me.
Here are my ranked 2021 Oscar predictions in Film Editing for February.
Green – moves up ↑; Red – moves down ↓; Blue – new or re-entry this month +; Black – no change ↔
1. The Trial of the Chicago 7 ↔ (Netflix) – BAFTA longlist, BFCA
2. Nomadland ↔ (Searchlight Pictures) – BAFTA longlist, BFCA
3. Mank ↔ (Netflix) – BAFTA longlist, BFCA
4. News of the World ↔ (Universal Pictures) – BAFTA longlist
5. Tenet ↑ (Warner Bros) – BAFTA longlist, BFCA
6. Sound of Metal ↑ (Amazon Studios) – BAFTA longlist, BFCA
Mikkel E.G. Nielsen
7. The Father ↔ (Sony Pictures Classics) – BAFTA longlist, BFCA
8. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom ↔ (Netflix)
9. Promising Young Woman + (Focus Features) – BAFTA longlist
10. Da 5 Bloods ↓ (Netflix) – BAFTA longlist
I’m Thinking of Ending Things ↔ (Netflix)
Judas and the Black Messiah ↓ (Warner Bros) – BAFTA longlist
The Midnight Sky ↓ (Netflix)
Minari ↔ (A24)
One Night in Miami… ↔ (Amazon Studios)
Palm Springs ↔ (Hulu/Neon)
Andrew Dickler and Matt Friedman
The White Tiger + (Netflix)