With the Golden Globes officially kicking off this year's award season, the winners for the film categories will give a good indication of how the Oscars will play out in February.
Obviously, 'A Star Is Born' is expected to do huge business both at the Globes and the Oscars, but it's in the supporting categories and beyond that the real horse race happens. The split between Drama and Comedy / Musical in the Golden Globes allows for some interesting nominations, but whether they'll feed in to the Oscar nominations remains to be seen.
For now, here's the nominees in the film categories and our best guesses as to how they'll play out.
We kick things off with...
Best Motion Picture (Drama)
How 'A Star Is Born' works here will determine how well 'A Star Is Born' will do at the Oscars. By far, it's the favourite to win and there really shouldn't be any surprise if it wins. It's got everything going for it - a fresh acting talent in Lady Gaga, it's the stereotypical Hollywood story, there's self-urination - so why not see it win out here?
Prediction: 'A Star Is Born'
Best Actress (Drama)
Glenn Close - 'The Wife'
Lady Gaga - 'A Star Is Born'
Nicole Kidman - 'Destroyer'
Melissa McCarthy - 'Can You Ever Forgive Me?'
Rosamund Pike - 'A Private War'
The problem with calling predictions for a lot of these movies is the simple fact that we Irish journalists haven't got a chance to see them yet. With the exception of 'A Star Is Born', 'The Wife' and 'Can You Ever Forgive Me?', none of these have been screened here yet. In this instance, however, it doesn't make any difference. Lady Gaga's got this in the meat-covered bag.
Prediction: Lady Gaga - 'A Star Is Born'
Best Actor (Drama)
Bradley Cooper - 'A Star Is Born'
Willem Dafoe - 'At Eternity's Gate'
Lucas Hedges - 'Boy Erased'
Rami Malek - 'Bohemian Rhapsody'
John David Washington - 'Blackkklansman'
As much as it might seem like Bradley Cooper's the favourite to win here, John David Washington would be equally likely in our minds along with Rami Malek for 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. Not that box office earnings count for anything, but the latter was nothing short of a bonanza for all concerned. The likelihood here is that if Cooper doesn't pick up the win in this category, he'll take Best Director instead. If that's the case, expect Rami Malek to win instead.
Prediction: Bradley Cooper - 'A Star Is Born' / Rami Malek - 'Bohemian Rhapsody'
Best Motion Picture (Comedy / Musical)
'Crazy Rich Asians'
'Mary Poppins Returns'
There's a real horse race here between 'Mary Poppins Returns' and 'Crazy Rich Asians', as both were critical and commercial hits. The likelihood is that 'Mary Poppins Returns' will clinch the win here as the Hollywood Foreign Press Association's voting polls are decidedly ancient and they'll like the idea of seieng a classic movie getting a fresh perspective. If they weren't such cowards and if there was such a thing as justice in this world, 'The Favourite' would win without question.
Prediction: 'Mary Poppins Returns'
Best Actress (Comedy / Musical)
Emily Blunt - 'Mary Poppins Returns'
Olivia Colman - 'The Favourite'
Elsie Fisher - 'Eighth Grade'
Charlize Theron - 'Tully'
Constance Wu - 'Crazy Rich Asians'
The smart and safe bet here is Emily Blunt for 'Mary Poppins Returns', but you also have to consider that Olivia Colman picked up the Best Actress gong at the Venice Film Festival and that puts her squarely in contention here. In fact, you could argue that this makes her the frontrunner for the win here. Charlize Theron in 'Tully', bless her, any other year and she'd be the clear and just winner.
Prediction: Olivia Colman - 'The Favourite'
Best Actor (Comedy / Musical)
Christian Bale - 'Vice'
Lin-Manuel Miranda - 'Mary Poppins Returns'
Viggo Mortensen - 'Green Book'
Robert Redford - 'The Old Man And The Gun'
John C. Reilly - 'Stan and Ollie'
This is definitely a hard category to call this year, as there's none of what you'd call a standout winner. Christian Bale's transformation in 'Vice' was pretty spectacular, but it wasn't a particularly showy performance. Not only that, the movie didn't go over with critics particularly well so that'd rule it out. Viggo Mortensen's had all sorts of problems on the promotional tour with 'Green Book', so that's out. Robert Redford was really, really good in 'The Old Man And The Gun', but this is definitely just a nomination to get him to the ceremony and nothing less. John C. Reilly in 'Stan and Ollie', also a big transformation but not terribly showy. That leaves Lin-Manuel Miranda in 'Mary Poppins Returns', essentially a stand-in for Dick van Dyke. Hard one to call, but Robert Redford might actually win out here just by virtue of his enormous career.
Prediction: Robert Redford - 'The Old Man And The Gun'
Best Supporting Actor
Timothee Chalamet - 'Beautiful Boy'
Mahershala Ali - 'Green Book'
Adam Driver - 'Blackkklansman'
Richard E. Grant - 'Can You Ever Forgive Me?'
Sam Rockwell - 'Vice'
Again, another tough category to call for this year. The likelihood is that either Adam Driver or Sam Rockwell will win out here, but for completely different reasons. Adam Driver gave a real, authentic supporting role in 'Blackkklansman', but there were no key moments where he leapt out of the screen at you. He was just in the background, supporting John David Washington, and being a real supporting actor. Sam Rockwell was the same, but from a different tack. He sounded and looked like George Dubya to a tee, but it was always a scene or two with Christian Bale and always at a distance. Again, that's a real supporting actor turn. Richard E. Grant and Timothee Chalamet, on the other hand, were both essentially leads but the nature of the crowded Best Actor categories pushes them here. Mahershala Ali was literally the co-lead with Viggo Mortensen, so why he's here is anyone's guess.
Prediction: Sam Rockwell - 'Vice' / Adam Driver - 'Blackkklansman'
Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams - 'Vice'
Claire Foy - 'First Man'
Regina King - 'If Beale Street Could Talk'
Emma Stone - 'The Favourite'
Rachel Weisz - 'The Favourite'
Why Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz are pitted against one another in this category is just ridiculous, quite frankly. The simple fact is that the split in the vote cancels them both out, meaning neither is terribly likely to win here. Claire Foy in 'First Man' was great and she's won a Golden Globe before 'The Crown' so the voters know here well. Amy Adams, however, was fantastic in 'Vice' and really deserves more notice. The same goes for Regina King in 'If Beale Street Could Talk', as well. There's a threeway-tie here between Amy Adams, Claire Foy and one of the two from 'The Favourite', with Foy being the likely winner.
Prediction: Claire Foy - 'First Man'
Best Director (Motion Picture)
Bradley Cooper - 'A Star Is Born'
Alfonso Cuaron - 'Roma'
Peter Farrelly - 'Green Book'
Spike Lee - 'Blackkklansman'
Adam McKay - 'Vice'
'Roma' has only picked up one nomination in the major film categories for the Golden Globes and it's right here. Does that mean it's more likely to win? Yes and no. HFPA will, whenever it can, vote for someone outside of the usual set that's had a movie that's been in contention. When push comes to shove, there's never a likelihood of them winning. Bradley Cooper is, far and away, the expected winner here but if there's a shred of doubt as to it, it's because of Alfonso Cuaron. Why Yorgos Lanthimos and 'The Favourite' isn't in here is a mystery, because it's certainly deserved. At any rate, expect Cooper to walk away with this one comfortably.
Prediction: Bradley Cooper - 'A Star Is Born'
Best Motion Picture (Animated)
'Isle of Dogs'
'Ralph Breaks The Internet'
'Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse'
This might be the one year where Disney goes home empty-handed in this category. 'Isle of Dogs' and 'Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse' are two of the strongest contenders here and if they were each alone in this category, they'd both be clear winners. 'Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse' is ahead of 'Isle of Dogs' only for the fact that it was released sooner, and is likely to be fresher in people's minds. You might think that's a ridiculous way of choosing, but why else do studios purposefully stack their awards-friendly movies at this time of year if not for that?
Prediction: 'Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse'