Culture » Predicting the 2016 Oscar Nominations
Leonardo DiCaprio, "Best Performances." Photography by Mario Sorrenti, styled by Edward Enninful; W magazine February 2012.

Predicting the 2016 Oscar Nominations

What the Golden Globe awards revealed about the state of the Oscars race.

On Monday morning, Hollywood woke up with a collective hangover: what had exactly happened last night? Did Lady Gaga really win a prize for acting? Did Sylvester Stallone really get a standing ovation? And did a movie about a 19th century frontiersman played by Leonardo DiCaprio really sweep the first major awards show of the season? The Golden Globes proved themselves to be, once again, the industry’s most unpredictable and frustrating awards show, an easily mocked if handy barometer of the state of the Oscars race.

Lynn Hirschberg, W’s editor at large and the woman behind February’s “Best Performances” issue, was watching closely – she was in the ballroom at the Beverly Hilton hotel, in fact – and she emerged from the ceremony with a few takeaways about what the Globes might mean for the Academy Awards nominations to be announced Thursday morning. She lays them out in an interview for W’s first podcast – available to listen below and for subscription on iTunes. Below, some excerpts from the conversation.

On Best Picture
“[The Globes] were an enormous night for The Revenant. Ridley Scott was very much the frontrunner [for Best Director] and it was very surprising Alejandro [González Iñárritu] won; he won last year for Birdman. The Revenant now has a good chance of winning Best Picture at the Oscars, which is not something I would have said before.

It will be interesting on Thursday to see if Star Wars gets in there, that’s the question everybody’s interested in. Usually a bellwether is the ten movies picked by the Producers Guild because those are some of the same voters, but this year it wasn’t one of them. That’s a result of the timing of its release and that no one had seen it in advance. People thought it would be huge, but this is huge-er than anybody guessed.”

On Best Actor
“Leo will go ahead and win every single thing. Leo will be the only lock in this whole derby. [He’s] very much the frontrunner. And, by the way, I just want to say this: Leo’s phenomenal in the movie, he well deserves that honor, and has deserved acting honors for a long time, and he is, as they say, ‘due,’ but it’s not like he’s getting this for a movie that he is not really great in. He is the movie. He’s got great competition – Michael Fassbender, Eddie Redmayne – but it’s not going to matter.”

On DiCaprio’s reaction to Lady Gaga’s win
“Thank God for Leo. I’m not even a Leo fan, but thank God for Leo. That summed it up. Nobody clapped. The room was dead. Because, there’s a famous history with the Golden Globes giving an award to Pia Zadora. It was a thing people referred to when they talked about the Globes as a joke. For years there was the reputation of the Globes that you could buy an award. I don’t want to assume that with Gaga – and by the way she’s massively talented as a singer and a performer. But the idea that she’s choking up and talking about Cher and acting like she’s this remarkable actress when people like Kirsten Dunst in Fargo really were incredible? I know it’s silly, it’s the Globes, but I literally sat there thinking, ‘I want to leave, this is ridiculous.’ I was looking through the paper today and what were the photos of? The photos were of Gaga, so [the Hollywood Foreign Press Association] obviously did what they wanted to do: they got press out of it.”

Best Actress
“The best actress category right now is a contest between Brie Larson [for Room] in the first position and Saoirse Ronan [for Brooklyn] in the second position. [Cate Blanchett] is fantastic in [Carol] but it just seems to people that she won too recently and that throws them. And also, people, for one or two categories, like to pick someone who is new to the Hollywood firmament, they like to anoint a new star like Jennifer Lawrence a few years ago. I think there’s an open question about whether or not someone like Charlotte Rampling gets nominated for Best Actress. She has been campaigning a lot, she was not nominated for a Globe for 45 years but theres a fair amount of love for her in Hollywood. I think it would be good for the planet, as I like to say.”

The Stallone Factor
“Sylvester Stallone [on Sunday night] won the Oscar. I don’t think anything else is going to come close. He’s just going to do a victory lap. The two locks from last night were Leo, which we knew already, and Stallone, which we didn’t totally know. There was not one person who didn’t stand. If you had to pick one person who was greatly, greatly helped by [Sunday] night, it was Stallone. He’s a sentimental favorite in a year when there aren’t many.”

On “The Sean Penn thing:
“This whole thing is a little peculiar. The ethical questions of glorifying [Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman] are worth asking. I’m very nervous about things becoming all about the event and people not thinking through what something means in favor of getting attention for it. We’re living in a time when social media is taking precedence over content, when the noise is more important than what was being said. [Here] the picture became the story, the photograph of him on every front page, above the fold shaking this guy’s hand like he’s the president. It’s a little bit the same thing, albeit in a milder version, to Gaga winning – it’s all about the photo op. I’m sure it got six billion hits, but, is that a good thing? Sean definitely, in a strange bizarre way, increased his stock this week. He made himself important without having a movie, without having a movie in a really long time. Without googling it, try to name Sean’s last three films? This week he was also in the news because of Madonna. I would say the takeaway from this week was not the Golden Globes, but Sean Penn and Madonna. I don’t think he’s not unaware of that, nor do I think she’s unaware of it.”

On Maureen Dowd’s column comparing DiCaprio in The Revenant to Hillary Clinton:
With all due respect to Maureen, I thought that was a stretch. I thought she was desperately trying to get The Revenant in a column but I don’t think it has much to do with Hillary. If she wanted to compare her to Jennifer Lawrence in Joy, I’d see more analogies. Hillary is like a person with a good mop, you know?

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