North-east film buffs have named their Oscar picks as Hollywood gears up for its biggest night of the year.
As the movie industry’s biggest names prepare to face the flashbulbs on the red carpet and take their seats at the Dolby Theatre for the 91st Academy Awards, a crew of local film enthusiasts have had their say on who should walk away with the famous golden trophies.
BlacKkKlansman, Black Panther, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Favourite, Green Book, Roma, A Star Is Born and Vice have all been nominated for the Best Picture prize.
Vice president of Aberdeen University Filmmaking Society, Rachel Walker, reckons that perhaps the least known of those titles, Roma, could score an upset victory after its recent success at the Bafta awards.
And she thinks Rami Malek’s performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody will help him to defeat other Best Actor contenders Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Willem Dafoe and Viggo Mortensen.
But the student added: “I think Christian Bale really deserves it.”
Miss Walker believes Olivia Colman “seems the most likely” to secure the Best Actress Oscar but thinks veteran Glenn Close is in with a shout for her role in The Wife.
And she said: “The result I would really like would be for Richard E Grant to pick up best Supporting Actor award after he’s had such a great reaction on Twitter to the nomination, but Mahershala Ali seems like the most probable winner for Green Book.”
Am levitating at this astonishing news. Thank you to @TheAcademy for this nomination in such incredible company. I’m indebted to so many people but most of all @melissamccarthy & Marielle Heller @cyefm ❤️@SearchlightUK pic.twitter.com/CIdJSMLkj1
— Richard E. Grant (@RichardEGrant) January 22, 2019
Amy Smith, a 20-year-old English and Film student at Aberdeen University, is a young programmer for the Belmont Filmhouse – which means she helps stage film festivals at the city venue and assists with the Edinburgh International Film Festival.
The movie aficionado, who also runs her own movie blog called Film for Thought, thinks BlacKkKlansman should win the Best Picture gong.
She said: “It deals with the important issues of racism without having controversy behind it, and everyone I have spoken to has loved the film.
“I would love to see this film win Best Picture and for Spike Lee to finally get the Oscar recognition that he deserves as director.”
Miss Smith added that she is especially intrigued to see which of Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse, Isle of Dogs, Incredibles 2, Ralph Breaks The Internet and Mirai wins for Best Animated Feature.
She said: “One category that I am excited to see awarded is Best Animated Feature, and this is because it seems clear that Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is going to win.
“This was in my top 10 films of the year and it will be nice to see another animation company reach the levels of Disney and Pixar.”
She added: “The acting categories have been tough to call this year, but the one I will be cheering on is Olivia Colman for The Favourite.
“I do not know if her chances of winning are good, but her performance is brilliant and it will be a show-stopping moment if we get to see Colman go on stage and make an acceptance speech.”
Special director of Robert Gordon University’s film society, Ryan Johnson, is hopeful that Black Panther can make history as the first superhero movie to win Best Picture.
He said: “It is really good and different from most Marvel movies, but it would be a surprise if it wins as superhero films don’t usually tend to receive many awards.
“There is a good selection in that category and I can see Bohemian Rhapsody doing well.”
Mr Johnson reckons Christian Bale will be rewarded for his amazing transformation to play Dick Cheney in Vice, but would not rule out that the Academy could be swayed by Rami Malik’s take on Freddie Mercury.
His tip to win Best Actress is Olivia Colman for her performance as Queen Anne in The Favourite.
And Mr Johnson listed The Incredibles 2 as one of his favourite films of 2018, as he expressed hopes that it would receive the Best Animated Feature prize.
The nominees will begin taking to the red carpet at 10pm UK time, with the ceremony itself kicking off at 1am.