Quentin Tarantino is an Oscar® winner, having taken home screenwriting trophies for PULP FICTION and DJANGO UNCHAINED. He has been nominated for other films, but has a full slate of possible wins coming up on Sunday, February 9, when ONCE UPON A TIME… IN HOLLYWOOD contends at the Academy Awards®.
But this year’s slate of films also happens to be one of the most competitive in recent memory, with no less than five movies having the ability to claim that they are the front-runner in the top categories. This means there will be a lot of suspense on Oscar Sunday, leading into the late-evening categories. So, what are the odds that Quentin Tarantino can walk away with some major wins at the upcoming ceremony?
Right now, the Best Picture race seems to be boiling down to three movies, and Quentin Tarantino’s movie is one of them. That’s the good news. However, the movie’s competition is strong, with both 1917 and PARASITE having legitimate momentum thanks to crucial wins from the Directors Guild and the Producers Guild Awards, as well as PARASITE's Best Ensemble win from the Screen Actors Guid Awards. If Tarantino’s movie had picked up even one of those, we’d feel more confident about its Best Picture chances, but since those guilds went with either 1917 or PARASITE, it could boil down to those two.
Here is where we are holding out hope for a possible split between Best Director and Best Picture. If it is predestined that Picture is going to go to 1917 or PARASITE, we’d love to ultimately live in a world where Quentin Tarantino has a Best Director Oscar. That’s not a slight at Sam Mendes or Bong Joon-ho in the slightest. They’re both Oscar-caliber talent. But Mendes has one (for AMERICAN BEAUTY), and Joon-ho will have more chances to get back to the stage. Tarantino might only make one more movie before retiring, so why not honor him now for a movie many people love?
Best Supporting Actor
This one is a lock in our opinion — it's on our ballot, in marker. Brad Pitt is almost certainly winning Best Supporting Actor for playing Cliff Booth in ONCE UPON A TIME… IN HOLLYWOOD. He has won every major award up to this point, and the Oscars likely won’t detour.
Best Original Screenplay
Quentin Tarantino also has an excellent shot at winning his third Best Original Screenplay Oscar, which would elevate him to rarefied air that’s only shared by Woody Allen at the moment. It would be a historic win (for that reason), and the Academy tends to love Tarantino’s abilities as a wordsmith. ONCE UPON A TIME… IN HOLLYWOOD has vintage Tarantino dialog and unexpected humor, and that foundation likely will score him a coveted win in this category.
Outside of these major categories, we still think that ONCE UPON A TIME… IN HOLLYWOOD will find stiff competition from PARASITE, THE IRISHMAN and 1917, especially in the Best Cinematography and Best Costume Design categories. Tune in to the Oscars on Sunday, February 9, to see how Tarantino and the rest of his Hollywood colleagues do on the industry’s biggest night.