Daniel Rester’s Final Nomination Predictions for the 96th Oscars

Well, here goes nothing.

After months of paying attention to film festival results, awards shows, and researching past Oscar nomination correlations, I have finally come up with my final nomination predictions for the 96th Oscars.

Oppenheimer is still the clear frontrunner to win Best Picture as of now. The Holdovers seems to be in second place now according to many. Poor Things is still holding strong though.

Recently, the PGA gave a big boost to Anatomy of a Fall and The Zone of Interest while BAFTA gave a boost to The Holdovers with each of their respective nominations. Meanwhile, Barbie and Killers of the Flower Moon have seemed to dip a little in momentum. All of these films should do well on nomination morning.

The directing and acting branches are a mess of riches this year, which will cause some inevitable snubs. Unfortunately I believe this will cause female directors to get shut out of the director nominations yet again, though Justine Triet still has a good shot. Alexander Payne has seemed to sneek up for the fifth slot though.

I think people are underestimating Annette Bening for Best Actress for Nyad , Sterling K. Brown for Best Supporting Actor for American Fiction, and Andrew Haigh for Best Adapted Screenplay for All of Us Strangers. I believe all three of them will get in. Meanwhile, many are predicting Sandra Hüller for Best Actress for Anataomy of a Fall, but I think she will get snubbed there and instead get a Best Supporting Actress nomination for The Zone of Interest

It’s nearly impossible to be right in every category. I feel mostly confident about my nomination predictions though. It will be exciting to see the way the nominations unfold when they are announced on Tuesday morning whether I am right or wrong.

*** indicates who I think will win in each category as of now. Of course, my winner predictions could change between the nominations announcement on Tuesday and the Oscars themselves in March. I will be making more winner prediction articles in the coming weeks.

Best Picture

American Fiction 

Anatomy of a Fall


The Holdovers 

Killers of the Flower Moon



Past Lives 

Poor Things

The Zone of Interest 

Best Director

Alexander Payne – The Holdovers 

***Christopher Nolan – Oppenheimer

Jonathan Glazer – The Zone of Interest

Martin Scorsese – Killers of the Flower Moon

Yorgos Lanthimos – Poor Things

Best Actress

Annette Bening – Nyad

Carey Mulligan – Maestro

***Emma Stone – Poor Things

Lily Gladstone – Killers of the Flower Moon

Margot Robbie – Barbie 

Best Actor

Colman Domingo – Rustin

Bradley Cooper – Maestro

Cillian Murphy – Oppenheimer

Jeffrey Wright – American Fiction

***Paul Giamatti – The Holdovers

Best Supporting Actress

Danielle Brooks – The Color Purple

***Da’Vine Joy Randolph – The Holdovers

Emily Blunt – Oppenheimer

Jodie Foster – Nyad

Sandra Hüller – The Zone of Interest

Best Supporting Actor

Charles Melton – May December

Robert De Niro – Killers of the Flower Moon

***Robert Downey Jr. – Oppenheimer 

Ryan Gosling – Barbie 

Sterling K. Brown – American Fiction

Best Adapted Screenplay

All of Us Strangers 

***American Fiction 



Poor Things 

Best Original Screenplay

Anatomy of a Fall 

***The Holdovers


May December 

Past Lives

Best Cinematography 

Killers of the Flower Moon 



Poor Things 


Best Costume Design 


The Color Purple

Killers of the Flower Moon


***Poor Things 

Best Editing 

Anatomy of a Fall 


Killers of the Flower Moon 


Poor Things 

Best Production Design 


The Color Purple 

Killers of the Flower Moon


Poor Things 

Best Animated Feature 

The Boy and the Heron 

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nuggets 


***Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

The Super Mario Bros. Movie 

Best Makeup and Hairstyling


The Last Voyage of the Demeter


***Poor Things

Society of the Snow

Best Sound





The Zone of Interest 

Best Visual Effects

***The Creator

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One


Best Original Score


Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny

Killers of the Flower Moon 


Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse 

Best Original Song

“The Fire Inside” – Flamin’ Hot

***“I’m Just Ken” – Barbie

“It Never Went Away” – American Symphony 

“Road to Freedom” – Rustin 

“What Was I Made For?” – Barbie

Best Documentary Feature

American Symphony

Beyond Utopia 

Bobi Wine: The People’s President 

Four Daughters

***20 Days in Mariupol

Best International Feature

Fallen Leaves – Finland

Society of the Snow – Spain

The Taste of Things – France

20 Days in Mariupol – Ukraine

***The Zone of Interest – United Kingdom

Best Animated Short Film

Humo (Smoke)

***Once Upon a Studio


WAR IS OVER! Inspired by the Music of John and Yoko

Wild Summon

Best Live Action Short Film

Chat Mort (Dead Cat)

Invisible Border

The One Note Man

Red, White and Blue


Best Documentary Short Film 

The ABCs of Book Banning

Camp Courage

***Deciding Vote

The Last Repair Shop

Last Song from Kabul

Total Nomination and Win Counts: 

Oppenheimer – 11 nominations, winning 7

Poor Things – 9 nominations, winning 3

Killers of the Flower Moon – 9 nominations, winning 0

Barbie – 8 nominations, winning 2

Maestro – 7 nominations, winning 0

The Holdovers – 5 nominations, winning 3

The Zone of Interest – 5 nominations, winning 1

American Fiction – 4 nominations, winning 1

Anatomy of a Fall – 3 nominations, winning 0

The Color Purple – 3 nominations, winning 0

Napoleon – 3 nominations, winning 0

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – 2 nominations, winning 1

20 Days in Mariupol – 2 nominations, winning 1

Past Lives – 2 nominations, winning 0

Rustin – 2 nominations, winning 0

Ferrari – 2 nominations, winning 0

Society of the Snow – 2 nominations, winning 0

May December – 2 nominations, winning 0

Nyad – 2 nominations, winning 0

Elemental – 2 nominations, winning 0

American Symphony – 2 nominations, winning 0

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny – 2 nominations, winning 0

The Creator – 1 nomination, winning 1

Once Upon a Studio – 1 nomination, winning 1

Yellow – 1 nomination, winning 1

Deciding Vote – 1 nomination, winning 1

All of Us Strangers – 1 nomination, winning 0

Saltburn – 1 nomination, winning 0

Flamin’ Hot – 1 nomination, winning 0

Golda – 1 nomination, winning 0

The Last Voyage of the Demeter – 1 nomination, winning 0 

The Boy and the Heron – 1 nomination, winning 0 

Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nuggets – 1 nomination, winning 0

The Super Mario Bros. Movie – 1 nomination, winning 0

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 – 1 nomination, winning 0

Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One – 1 nomination, winning 0

Beyond Utopia – 1 nomination, winning 0

Bobi Wine: The People’s President – 1 nomination, winning 0

Four Daughters – 1 nomination, winning 0

Fallen Leaves – 1 nomination, winning 0

The Taste of Things – 1 nomination, winning 0

The Teachers’ Lounge – 1 nomination, winning 0

Humo – 1 nomination, winning 0

27 – 1 nomination, winning 0

WAR IS OVER! Inspired by the Music of John and Yoko – 1 nomination, winning 0

Wild Summon – 1 nomination, winning 0

Chat Mort (Dead Cat) – 1 nomination, winning 0

Invisible Border – 1 nomination, winning 0

The One Note Man – 1 nomination, winning 0

Red, White and Blue – 1 nomination, winning 0

The ABCs of Book Banning – 1 nomination, winning 0

Camp Courage – 1 nomination, winning 0

The Last Repair Shop – 1 nomination, winning 0

Last Song from Kabul – 1 nomination, winning 0

Written by
Daniel Rester is a writer for the We Live Film portion of We Live Entertainment. He is a Southern Oregon University alumnus and has a Bachelor of Science degree with a double major in Communication (Film, Television, and Convergent Media) and Emerging Media and Digital Arts. He has been involved with writing and directing short films for years. Rester also won 2nd place in the Feature Screenplay Competition in the 2015 Oregon Film Awards for his screenplay "Emma Was Here," which is currently in post-production and will be Rester's feature directorial debut.

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