FINAL PREDICTIONS! (for the 86th Academy Awards Nominations)

Here is my fearless forecast of the nominees for the 86th Academy Awards!
(Those in bold are my predicted nominees. Entries are arranged by the strongest chance of getting nominated.)
The leading contenders for Best Picture - 12 Years A Slave, Gravity, and American Hustle.

The leading contenders for Best Picture – 12 Years A Slave, Gravity, and American Hustle.

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BEST PICTURE (I’m counting NINE nominees):
Safe Bets:
1 – 12 Years A Slave
2 – American Hustle
3 – Gravity
4 – Nebraska
5 – Captain Philips

Shaky, But Likely the Ones to Complete the List:
6 – Her
7 – The Wolf of Wall Street
8 – Inside Llewyn Davis
9 – Dallas Buyers Club

They Could Knock Down the Shakier Ones:
10 – Philomena
11 – Saving Mr. Banks
12 – Lee Daniels’ The Butler
13 – Blue Jasmine
14 – Rush

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
15 – Before Midnight
16 – Blue is the Warmest Color
17 – Fruitvale Station

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BEST DIRECTOR

Safe Bets:
1 – Alfonso Cuaron – Gravity
2 – Steve McQueen – 12 Years A Slave
3 – David O. Russell – American Hustle

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – Paul Greengrass – Captain Philips
5 – Spike Jonze – Her
6 – Alexander Payne – Nebraska
7 – Martin Scorsese – The Wolf of Wall Street
8 – Joel & Ethan Coen – Inside Llewyn Davis

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BEST ACTOR

Safe Bets:
1 – Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Years A Slave
2 – Bruce Dern – Nebraska
3 – Tom Hanks – Captain Philips

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – Matthew McConaughey – Dallas Buyers Club
5 – Leonardo DiCaprio – The Wolf of Wall Street
6 – Robert Redford – All is Lost
7 – Oscar Isaac – Inside Llewyn Davis
8 – Christian Bale – American Hustle
9 – Forest Whitaker – Lee Daniels’ The Butler

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
10 – Joaquin Phoenix – Her
11 – Michael B. Jordan – Fruitvale Station

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BEST ACTRESS

Safe Bets:
1 – Cate Blanchett – Blue Jasmine
2 – Sandra Bullock – Gravity
3 – Emma Thompson – Saving Mr. Banks

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – Meryl Streep – August: Osage County
5 – Amy Adams – American Hustle
6 – Judi Dench – Philomena
7 – Adele Exarchopoulos – Blue is the Warmest Color

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
8 – Greta Gerwig – Frances Ha
9 – Brie Larson – Short Term 12
10 – Julie Delpy – Before Midnight

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BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Safe Bets:
1 – Jared Leto – Dallas Buyers Club
2 – Michael Fassbender – 12 Years A Slave

Fighting for the Slots:
3 – Barkhad Abdi – Captain Philips
4 – Bradley Cooper – American Hustle
5 – Daniel Bruhl – Rush
6 – Jonah Hill – The Wolf of Wall Street
7 – James Gandolfini – Enough Said
8 – Will Forte – Nebraska
9 – Tom Hanks – Saving Mr. Banks

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BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Safe Bets:
1 – Lupita Nyong’o – 12 Years A Slave
2 – Jennifer Lawrence – American Hustle
3 – June Squibb – Nebraska

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – Oprah Winfrey – Lee Daniels’ The Butler
5 – Julia Roberts – August: Osage County
6 – Sally Hawkins – Blue Jasmine
7 – Octavia Spencer – Fruitvale Station

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
8 – Jennifer Garner – Dallas Buyers Club
9 – Sarah Paulson – 12 Years A Slave

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BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Safe Bets:
1 – American Hustle
2 – Nebraska
3 – Inside Llewyn Davis
4 – Her

Fighting for the Slots:
5 – Blue Jasmine
6 – Gravity
7 – Dallas Buyers Club
8 – Saving Mr. Banks

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
9 – Enough Said
10 – Frances Ha
11 – Fruitvale Station

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BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Safe Bets:
1 – 12 Years A Slave
2 – The Wolf of Wall Street
3 – Before Midnight
4 – Captain Philips
5 – Philomena

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
6 – August: Osage County
7 – Short Term 12
8 – The Spectacular Now
9 – Blue is the Warmest Color

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BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Safe Bets:
1 – Gravity
2 – Inside Llewyn Davis
3 – 12 Years A Slave

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – Prisoners
5 – Nebraska
6 – The Grandmaster
7 – The Great Gatsby
8 – Her

Longer Shots, But Still Possible:
9 – Captain Philips
10 – Rush

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BEST FILM EDITING

Safe Bets:
1 – Gravity
2 – 12 Years A Slave
3 – American Hustle
4 – Captain Philips

Fighting for the Last Slot:
5 – The Wolf of Wall Street
6 – Rush
7 – Nebraska
8 – Inside Llewyn Davis

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BEST SOUND MIXING

Safe Bets:
1 – Gravity
2 – Captain Philips
3 – 12 Years A Slave
4 – Rush

Fighting for the  Last Slot:
5 – Inside Llewyn Davis
6 – All is Lost
7 – American Hustle

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
8 – Lone Survivor
9 – Pacific Rim
10 – The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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BEST SOUND EDITING

Safe Bets:
1 – Gravity
2 – Captain Philips
3 – Rush

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – All is Lost
5 – Iron Man 3
6 – Inside Llewyn Davis

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
7 – Pacific Rim
8 – 12 Years A Slave
9 – Lone Survivor
10 – The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Safe Bets:
1 – Gravity
2 – The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Fighting for the Slots:
3 – Pacific Rim
4 – Star Trek Into Darkness
5 – Iron Man 3
6 – Elysium
7 – World War Z
8 – The Lone Ranger

Longer Shots (The Rest of the Shortlist):
9 – Oblivion
10 – Thor: The Dark World

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BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

Safe Bet:
1 – American Hustle

Fighting for the Slots:
2 – Dallas Buyers Club
3 – The Great Gatsby
4 – The Lone Ranger
5 – Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters
6 – The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Long Shot (The Rest of the Shortlist):
7 – Bad Grandpa

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BEST ORIGINAL MUSIC SCORE

Safe Bets:
1 – Gravity
2 – 12 Years A Slave
3 – Philomena

Fighting for the Last Slot:
4 – The Book Thief
5 – All is Lost

6 – Captain Philips
7 – Rush
8 – Her
9 – Monsters University

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BEST ORIGINAL SONG

Safe Bet:
1 – “Let It Go” – Frozen

Fighting for the Slots:
2 – “Young and Beautiful” – The Great Gatsby
3 – “My Lord Sunsine (Sunrise)” – 12 Years A Slave
4 – “The Moon Song” – Her
5 – “Amen” – All is Lost
6 – “Atlas” – The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
7 – “Monsters University” – Monsters University

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
8 – “Shine Your Way” – The Croods
9 – “Sweeter than Fiction” – One Chance

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BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

Safe Bets:
1 – 12 Years A Slave
2 – Gravity
3 – American Hustle
4 – The Great Gatsby
5 – Saving Mr. Banks

Possible Spoilers:
6 – Her
7 – Inside Llewyn Davis
8 – The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

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BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Safe Bets:
1 – Saving Mr. Banks
2 – American Hustle
3 – The Great Gatsby
4 – Inside Llewyn Davis
5 – 12 Years A Slave

Possible Spoilers:
6 – The Invisible Woman
7 – Lee Daniels’ The Butler
8 – The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

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BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

Safe Bets:
1 – Frozen
2 – The Wind Rises
3 – Monsters University
4 – The Croods
5 – Ernest & Celestine

Possible Spoilers:
6 – Epic
7 – A Letter to Momo

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BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE

Safe Bets:
1 – The Act of Killing
2 – 20 Feet from Stardom
3 – Stories We Tell

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – The Square
5 – Blackfish
6 – Tim’s Vermeer
7 – The Armstrong Lie

Longer Shots, But Possible Spoilers:
8 – Cutie and the Boxer
9 – God Loves Uganda

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BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

Safe Bets:
1 – The Hunt – Denmark
2 – The Broken Circle Breakdown – Belgium
3 – The Great Beauty – Italy

Fighting for the Slots:
4 – The Grandmaster – Hong Kong
5 – The Notebook – Hungary
6 – Two Lives – Germany
7 – Omar – Palestime
8 – The Missing Picture – Cambodia

Long Shot:
9 – An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker – Bosnia & Herzegovina

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