74th Academy Awards

Feature article by Matt Heffernan <matt@filmhead.com>
March 26, 2002

On March, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the winner of the 74th Annual Academy Awards. Before the ceremony, I listed my picks for who I wanted to win and who I thought would win. This year, I predicted winners for all 24 categories (even the short and documentary ones), along with contributing writers Eugene Kopman and Lauren Snyder. Below, you can see who was nominated and who won, and then we can see how our predictions turned out.

Best Picture
A Beautiful Mind
Gosford Park
In the Bedroom
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Moulin Rouge
My pick: For me, there's no competition: In the Bedroom is clearly the best of the nominees. It wasn't the best film of the year, but both Amelie and Memento were snubbed.
My prediction: Moulin Rouge. All signs point to Baz Luhrmann's epic spectacle, except for the nominations derby. That honor goes to The Fellowship of the Ring, but I think it's too "genre" for the Academy to give it Oscar #1. A Beautiful Mind has youth going for it (having come out since Labor Day) and a lot of popular support, but I think the Academy has been itching to award another musical since 1969.
...and the Oscar goes to: A Beautiful Mind. I know I was going out on a limb, differing from my sure-thing director prediction, but I just had a gut feeling about Moulin Rouge

Best Director
Robert Altman - Gosford Park
Ron Howard - A Beautiful Mind
David Lynch - Mulholland Drive
Peter Jackson - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Ridley Scott - Black Hawk Down
My pick: Peter Jackson, just for the fact that the film made any sense. You couldn't have paid me enough money to be in that editing room.
My prediction: With Luhrmann out of competition, it's really up in the air, but thankfully we have the Director's Guild Awards, that oracle of awards season, to tell us that Ron Howard will get his little gold man.
...and the Oscar goes to: Ron Howard

Best Actress In A Leading Role
Halle Berry - Monster's Ball
Judi Dench - Iris
Nicole Kidman - Moulin Rouge
Sissy Spacek - In the Bedroom
Renée Zellweger - Bridget Jones's Diary
My pick: Sissy Spacek should get her second statue after a 21-year hiatus...
My prediction: ...and so she will.
...and the Oscar goes to: Halle Berry, who gave an incredibly moving speech. It was a huge surprise, but it made a wonderfully fitting follow-up to the tribute to Sidney Poitier, who was the first African-American to win the Best Actor Oscar (in 1964 for Lilies of the Field).

Best Actor In A Leading Role
Russell Crowe - A Beautiful Mind
Sean Penn - I Am Sam
Will Smith - Ali
Denzel Washington - Training Day
Tom Wilkinson - In the Bedroom
My pick: Tom Wilkinson should get it right alongside Spacek...
My prediction: ...but they'll give it to Denzel Washington because a leading man shouldn't be saddled with only a supporting trophy on his mantle.
...and the Oscar goes to: Denzel Washington, which only increased the historical significance of Berry's win.

Best Actress In A Supporting Role
Jennifer Connelly - A Beautiful Mind
Helen Mirren - Gosford Park
Maggie Smith - Gosford Park
Marisa Tomei - In the Bedroom
Kate Winslet - Iris
My pick: Jennifer Connelly, who should've won last year for Requiem for a Dream, but wasn't even nominated.
My prediction: The Academy will make reparations for their error and give it to Connelly. It certainly doesn't hurt that this performance was in a far more mainstream film.
...and the Oscar goes to: Jennifer Connelly

Best Actor In A Supporting Role
Jim Broadbent - Iris
Ethan Hawke - Training Day
Ben Kingsley - Sexy Beast
Ian McKellen - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Jon Voight - Ali
My pick: Jim Broadbent, who can play eccentrics better than anybody; acting insane is easy, but only he can bring that same level of control.
My prediction: Ian McKellen will finally get his Oscar for a role that was, well, less-than-challenging.
...and the Oscar goes to: Jim Broadbent, naturally giving me mixed emotions. I thought McKellen was a lock (as did most people), but I guess I was wrong in assuming that the Academy's taste was poorer than mine.

Best Original Screenplay
Guillaume Laurant, Jean-Pierre Jeunet - Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amelie)
Julian Fellowes - Gosford Park
Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan - Memento
Milo Addica, Will Rokos - Monster's Ball
Wes Anderson, Owen Wilson - The Royal Tenenbaums
My pick: Amelie was the one of the funniest and most touching films I have ever read. I only wish that my French was better.
My prediction: But Julian Fellowes will win for some reason.
...and the Oscar goes to: Julian Fellowes

Best Screenplay Adapted From Another Source
Akiva Goldsman - A Beautiful Mind
Daniel Clowes, Terry Zwigoff - Ghost World
Rob Festinger, Todd Field - In the Bedroom
Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens, Peter Jackson - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Ted Elliott, Terry Rossio, Joe Stillman, Roger S.H. Schulman - Shrek
My pick: Festinger and Field wrote a beautiful, shocking, masterful script for In the Bedroom.
My prediction: Akiva Goldsman will win because A Beautiful Mind needs at least one more major award.
...and the Oscar goes to: Akiva Goldsman

Best Cinematography
Bruno Delbonnel - Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amelie)
Slawomir Idziak - Black Hawk Down
Andrew Lesnie - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Roger Deakins - The Man Who Wasn't There
Donald M. McAlpine - Moulin Rouge
My pick: Bruno Delbonnel turned real Paris locations into Disneyland for Amelie. I'm still puzzling over that accomplishment.
My prediction: Roger Deakins will win because he shot a color film that printed well as black and white.
...and the Oscar goes to: Andrew Lesnie, which may not have been as surprising for some, despite the fact that Deakins had been winning most of the other awards (including the ASC, which is analogous to the DGA Awards for directors).

Best Original Score
John Williams - A.I.: Artificial Intelligence
James Horner - A Beautiful Mind
John Williams - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Howard Shore - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Randy Newman - Monsters, Inc.
My pick: Howard Shore was just as responsible as Peter Jackson for bringing that behemoth together.
My prediction: I think the Academy will realize that, but it's a tough one to predict. Williams does have nice odds, though -- but for which film? I guess if Shore doesn't win, they'll go with Williams' more successful composition for Harry Potter (which will no doubt be recycled for the rest of the series).
...and the Oscar goes to: Howard Shore, and Mr. Two-Noms had to clap from the orchestra pit, baton in hand.

Best Original Song
"If I Didn't Have You" - Randy Newman - Monsters, Inc.
"May It Be" - Enya, Nicky Ryan, Roma Ryan - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
"There You'll Be" - Diane Warren - Pearl Harbor
"Until" - Sting - Kate & Leopold
"Vanilla Sky" - Paul McCartney - Vanilla Sky
My pick: I think Paul has written his best song in thirty years. It has a wonderfully atmospheric melody.
My prediction: Unfortunately, "There You'll Be" was the closest thing to a legitimate hit, so the Evil Schmaltz Queen will finally get her award.
...and the Oscar goes to: Randy Newman, finally winning after 15 other nominations, including his Original Score nomination this year.

Best Art Direction
Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amelie)
Gosford Park
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Moulin Rouge
My prediction: Moulin Rouge. It was pretty much wall-to-wall art direction.
...and the Oscar goes to: Moulin Rouge

Best Costume Design
The Affair of the Necklace
Gosford Park
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Moulin Rouge
My prediction: Gosford Park. The Academy always goes for this type of film, which only requires copying old designs (if the original garments aren't available). I did like Ryan Phillippe's hat, but so much more work and creativity went into the fantasy-oriented nominees.
...and the Oscar goes to: Moulin Rouge, in another case of unusual taste on behalf of the Academy.

Best Film Editing
A Beautiful Mind
Black Hawk Down
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Memento
Moulin Rouge
My prediction: Black Hawk Down, just for its sheer intensity.
...and the Oscar goes to: Black Hawk Down

Best Sound
Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amelie)
Black Hawk Down
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Moulin Rouge
Pearl Harbor
My prediction: Pearl Harbor, just because of its sheer volume.
...and the Oscar goes to: Black Hawk Down, even though the explosions weren't as loud.

Best Sound Effects Editing
Monsters, Inc.
Pearl Harbor
My prediction: Pearl Harbor, because this always goes to a big action film, not a funny little cartoon.
...and the Oscar goes to: Pearl Harbor

Best Visual Effects
A.I.: Artificial Intelligence
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Pearl Harbor
My prediction: The Fellowship of the Ring, for just the first ten minutes alone.
...and the Oscar goes to: The Fellowship of the Ring

Best Makeup
A Beautiful Mind
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
Moulin Rouge
My prediction: A Beautiful Mind will win for the great aging effects on Russell Crowe (and the utter lack of them on Jennifer Connelly), but it's scandalous that Rick Baker's simian perfection in Planet of the Apes didn't even get nominated.
...and the Oscar goes to: The Fellowship of the Ring, because they apparantly thought making John Rhys-Davies look like a troll was harder than making Russell Crowe look like a ruggedly handsome older man (but nothing at all like the real Dr. Nash, who was also in attendance; the presence of his imaginary companions remains unknown).

Best Short Film - Animated
Fifty Percent Grey
For the Birds
Give Up Yer Aul Sins
Strange Invaders
Stubble Trouble
My prediction: For the Birds, because it's the only one anybody has seen (as the opener for Monsters, Inc.).
...and the Oscar goes to: For the Birds

Best Short Film - Live Action
The Accountant
Copy Shop
Gregor's Greatest Invention
Meska Sprawa (A Man Thing)
Speed for Thespians
My prediction: The Accountant, because those sneaky bastards at Price Waterhouse stuffed the ballots.
...and the Oscar goes to: The Accountant. I told you so! Damn scheming bastards...

Best Documentary Short Subject
Artists and Orphans: A True Drama
Sing!
Thoth
My prediction: Sing! -- I just like its saucy punctuation.
...and the Oscar goes to: Thoth, the title subject of which was on stage while director Sarah Kernochan accepted the award and thanked the colorfully eccentric violinist.

Best Documentary Feature
Children Underground
Lalee's Kin: The Legacy of Cotton
Murder on a Sunday Morning
Promises
War Photographer
My prediction: War Photographer, because of the current war, even though none of it was shot it Afghanistan.
...and the Oscar goes to: Murder on a Sunday Morning

Best Animated Feature
Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius
Monsters, Inc.
Shrek
My pick: Monsters, Inc. was more my taste...
My prediction: ...but I guess everybody else preferred Shrek.
...and the Oscar goes to: Shrek

Best Foreign Language Film
Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (Amelie)
Elling - Norway
Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India - India
No Man's Land - Bosnia and Herzegovina
El hijo de la Novia - Argentina
My (completely unfair) pick: I love Amelie so dearly, but I haven't seen the rest.
My prediction: No Man's Land seems to have a monopoly on the buzz.
...and the Oscar goes to: No Man's Land

More predictions
Below are the winners as foretold by contributing writers Eugene Kopman and Lauren Snyder.

Picture
Eugene: The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: A Beautiful Mind
Director
Eugene: Peter Jackson - The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: Robert Altman - Gosford Park
Actresss
Eugene: Sissy Spacek - In the Bedroom
Lauren: Nicole Kidman - Moulin Rouge
Actor
Eugene: Tom Wilkinson - In the Bedroom
Lauren: Denzel Washington - Training Day
Supporting Actress
Eugene: Jennifer Connelly - A Beautiful Mind
Lauren: Jennifer Connelly - A Beautiful Mind
Supporting Actor
Eugene: Ian McKellen - The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: Ian McKellen - The Fellowship of the Ring
Original Screenplay
Eugene: Memento
Lauren: Gosford Park
Adapted Screenplay
Eugene: A Beautiful Mind
Lauren: A Beautiful Mind
Cinematography
Eugene: The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: The Fellowship of the Ring
Score
Eugene: The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: A Beautiful Mind
Song
Eugene: "Vanilla Sky" - Vanilla Sky
Lauren: "Until" - Kate & Leopold
Art Direction
Eugene: Moulin Rouge
Lauren: The Fellowship of the Ring
Costume Design
Eugene: Moulin Rouge
Lauren: Moulin Rouge
Editing
Eugene: The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: Memento
Sound
Eugene: Moulin Rouge
Lauren: Moulin Rouge
Sound Effects Editing
Eugene: Pearl Harbor
Lauren: Pearl Harbor
Visual Effects
Eugene: The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: The Fellowship of the Ring
Make-up
Eugene: The Fellowship of the Ring
Lauren: The Fellowship of the Ring
Animated Short
Eugene: For the Birds
Lauren: For the Birds
Live Action Short
Eugene: A Man Thing
Lauren: The Accountant
Documentary Short
Eugene: Artists and Orphans
Lauren: Artists and Orphans
Documentary Feature
Eugene: Promises
Lauren: Children Underground
Animated Feature
Eugene: Shrek
Lauren: Monsters, Inc.
Foreign Language
Eugene: Amelie
Lauren: Amelie

Honorary Awards

Honorary Oscar "For his extraordinary performances and unique presence on the screen and for representing the industry with dignity, style and intelligence."
Recipient: Sidney Poitier

Honorary Oscar for being "Actor, director, producer, creator of Sundance, inspiration to independent and innovative filmmakers everywhere."
Recipient: Robert Redford

Medal of Commendation
"For his pioneering efforts to improve visual effects in the motion picture industry."
Recipient: Ray Feeney.

Award of Commendation Certificate
"For its ongoing publication of the American Cinematographer Manual, the premiere reference book for motion picture cinematographers."
Recipient: American Society of Cinematographers

Award of Commendation Plaque
"For his ground-breaking efforts on and dedication to the development of the Kodak Super 16mm film format for motion pictures. "
Recipient: Rune Ericson

Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award
"Given to an individual in the motion picture industry whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry."
Recipient: Arthur Hiller

Gordon E. Sawyer Award
"Presented to an individual in the motion picture industry whose technological contributions have brought credit to the industry."
Recipient: Ed Di Giulio

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© 2002 Matt Heffernan