Sat. Oct 24th, 2020

FINAL 2019 Oscar Predictions: SOUND EDITING and SOUND MIXING

Black Panther, left, and Bohemian Rhapsody are poised to hit the right notes

A few months ago we all could have easily called Sound Mixing for A Star Is Born and called it a day. But that was when some pundits had it pegged as the Best Picture frontrunner and before the arrival of the box office behemoth and 5-time nominee Bohemian Rhapsody, which has the the Cinema Audio Society (CAS) award and BAFTA for Sound. But this category has done some strange things recently. It was only two years ago that La La Land lost this category to Hacksaw Ridge in a huge shock (not as big as the one that would happen later, but still).

While I think that the Queen biopic will triumph in Sound Mixing, that LLL loss gives me some pause that a ‘loud’ movie like First Man and Black Panther might be the spoiler.

Sound Editing is another animal. Yes, BoRhap won two awards from the Motion Picture Sound Editors (MPSE) guild but they were for ADR/Dialogue and one in the ‘Musical’ category. The main MPSE award for Effects/Foley went to A Quiet Place, which is nominated here. As the film’s only nomination, that makes AQP as a winner a longshot. An even bigger longshot though is Bohemian Rhapsody. Since the creation of this category, over 50 Oscars, a musical or music-driven film has never, ever won. This is a category that has been won solely by action/sci-fi/war and ‘genre’ films exclusively. Could BR break that? Possibly. Especially in a year as weird as this. But I’m not counting on it.

I’m going outside a bit and looking to Black Panther winning. It’s a Best Picture nominee and nodded in both Sound categories. But I won’t be surprised by A Quiet Place or First Man, which are also traditional winners in this category.


1. BLACK PANTHER – Benjamin A. Burtt, Steve Boeddeker
2. A QUIET PLACE – Ethan Van der Ryn, Erik Aadahl (MPSE)
3. BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY – John Warhurst (MPSE x 2)
4. FIRST MAN – Ai-Ling Lee, Mildred Iatrou Morgan
5. ROMA – Sergio Diaz, Skip Lievsay (MPSE)
MPSE – Motion Picture Sound Editors


1. BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY – Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin and John Casali (BAFTA, CAS)
2. FIRST MAN – Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño, Ai-Ling Lee and Mary H. Ellis
3. BLACK PANTHER – Steve Boeddeker, Brandon Proctor and Peter Devlin
4. ROMA – Skip Lievsay, Craig Henighan and José Antonio García
5. A STAR IS BORN – Tom Ozanich, Dean Zupancic, Jason Ruder and Steve Morrow
BAFTA – British Film Academy Awards (Sound only)
CAS – Cinema Audio Society
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