In this, the first years since combining the sound categories (mixing and editing) back into one, we find ourselves with a pretty safe frontrunner in Sound of Metal but one has to wonder if the categories had remained split we would have seen a more competitive sound mixing race with Best Picture frontrunners Nomadland and The Trial of the Chicago 7 both likely in the mix.
You can’t discount Soul‘s nomination here as it’s remarkable in two ways; one by making it into a single category but also by being the first animated film to get a sound nomination since 2010’s Toy Story 3 got in sound editing. Animated films used to get nominations in sound mixing and/or editing all the time but for some reason have disappeared this technical category. As a music-driven film it’s not hard to see its path to getting here; it was nominated at BAFTA and won its categories at the Cinema Audio Society (CAS)and Motion Picture Sound Editors (MPSE). Not only is it safely at #2 there’s even a chance for an upset, albeit a small one. The last animated film to win a sound award was 2004’s The Incredibles (sound editing) but no animated has ever won sound mixing.
9-time Oscar nominee Ren Klyce, nominated as a part of Soul‘s sound team, is also nominated here as a part of Mank‘s team of sound engineers. Initially, it seemed like Mank stood an outside shot with the decision to record the sound of Mank in mono to mimic the time period, and it is indeed effective, but after missing BAFTA and not making a dent elsewhere it doesn’t seem like there’s much of a shot for it to upset.
The 93rd Oscars will be held on April 25 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood and the Union Station in Los Angeles.
Here are my ranked final Oscar predictions in Sound.
1. Sound of Metal (Amazon Studios) – BAFTA, CAS, MPSE (x3)
Nicolas Becker, Jaime Baksht, Michelle Couttolenc, Carlos Cortés and Phillip Bladh
2. Soul (Walt Disney/Pixar) – BAFTA, CAS, MPSE
Ren Klyce, Coya Elliott and David Parker
3. Greyhound (Apple TV+) – BAFTA, CAS, MPSE
Warren Shaw, Michael Minkler, Beau Borders and David Wyman
4. Mank (Netflix) – CAS, MPSE
Ren Klyce, Jeremy Molod, David Parker, Nathan Nance and Drew Kunin
5. News of the World (Universal Pictures) – BAFTA, CAS, MPSE (x3)
Oliver Tarney, Mike Prestwood Smith, William Miller and John Pritchett