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With a Month to Go Until the Oscars, Can Anybody Beat

This yr’s awards season has taken place in isolation and elongation, however the finish is lastly close to. The scaled-down however Zoom-free 93rd Academy Awards will happen nearly precisely a month from now, on April 25 — however in these 4 remaining weeks, you must marvel if there’ll actually be any suspense within the Best Picture race.

With the win for “Nomadland” on Wednesday on the Producers Guild Awards, one of many key prizes on the highway to Oscar, the reply might be no. At an awards present that would have turned “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” “Promising Young Woman” or “Minari” right into a severe rival, “Nomadland” as a substitute grabbed one of many largest business awards to go together with the Golden Globe, Critics Choice Award, Gotham Award and National Society of Film Critics awards it already had.

And you may also throw within the Venice Film Festival’s Golden Lion, the Toronto International Film Festival’s People Choice Award, the Scripter Award and plenty of others.

At this level within the race, with 4 main awards handed out on the Golden Globes, Critics Choice, Writers Guild and Producers Guild Awards, “Nomadland” appears to be in the most effective form of any movie since “Argo” in 2013; the one main award Chloé Zhao’s film hasn’t received to this point is the Writers Guild Award, and it wasn’t eligible for that one as a result of its screenplay wasn’t written underneath guild jurisdiction.

The Searchlight drama received’t be capable of win the Screen Actors Guild ensemble award on April 4, both, as a result of it wasn’t nominated in that class — not a giant shock since its solid was basically Frances McDormand, David Strathairn and a complete lot of nonprofessionals with out SAG playing cards. Whatever movie wins in that class will get a lift, however that enhance will solely actually assist if the winner is “Minari” or “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” because the different three SAG nominees — “Da 5 Bloods,” “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” and “One Night in Miami” — aren’t even nominated for Best Picture.

And six days later, Zhao seemingly will win the highest prize on the Directors Guild Awards on April 10. A DGA win for Lee Isaac Chung, Emerald Fennell, David Fincher or Aaron Sorkin would have a seismic impact on the race — however that guild has not been one for surprises in recent times, and a victory for Zhao would ship her movie into the Oscars as a commanding favourite.

Sure, BAFTA will give out its awards the day after the DGA, with “Promising Young Woman” or “Chicago 7” having one final alternative to shake issues up a bit. But at that time, even a “Nomadland” loss wouldn’t be sufficient to dislodge it from Oscar front-runner standing.

And but once I mentioned that “Nomadland” is in the most effective form of any contender since “Argo” in 2013, I used to be leaving out an necessary piece of knowledge: “La La Land” was in that very same form 4 years in the past, after dominating the Golden Globes and successful the Critics Choice and Producers Guild Awards. But it misplaced to “Moonlight,” as soon as a sure messy envelope fiasco was cleared up on the stage of the Oscars in 2017.

These are instances wherein the quickly altering face of the Academy has seemingly made precursor awards much less and fewer important. Last yr at this level within the race, as an example, “1917” had received the Golden Globe and Producers Guild Award, nevertheless it fell to “Parasite” on the Oscars. A paltry two of the final 5 Producers Guild winners have gone on to take the Oscar, and solely two of the final six Globe winners have performed so.

Still, “Nomadland” has simply navigated the difficult transition from awards given by critics and journalists to ones given by the business. And it doesn’t match the profile of a film that will win with producers however falter with the Academy, which has sometimes occurred with bigger-budget movies like “1917,” “La La Land” and “The Big Short” dropping on the Oscars to “Parasite,” “Moonlight” and “Spotlight,” respectively. (Of the…

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