2024 Oscars: Best Original Screenplay Predictions

The Best Original Screenplay race weirdly goes all the way back to the Gotham Awards, which get plenty of credit as the ceremony that most often kicks off awards season, but is not the most accurate in predicting what players will be winning Academy Awards come Oscar night. But the reason to mention its 2023 iteration specifically is that it was the first place where “Anatomy of a Fall” won the Best Screenplay category, but “Past Lives” won Best Film.

Throughout the season, “Past Lives” has managed to win some huge awards, most recently receiving Best Feature, Best Director, and Best First Feature at the 2024 Independent Spirit Awards, which occurred during final Oscar voting this year.

But none of those are Best Screenplay awards. The script for “Anatomy of a Fall” was honored by the Golden Globes and the BAFTAs. When it’s lost, it’s gone to a film like “Barbie” or “American Fiction,” which are in the Best Adapted Screenplay category at the Oscars this year. Plus, the Palme d’Or winner has five Oscar nominations, while “Past Lives” only has two.

Given how stacked a list there was of Best Director contenders this year, Best Original Screenplay is almost certainly going to one of the filmmakers nominated, as is pretty standard when there’s a more established filmmaker finally getting their due in the former category (this will likely be the year Christopher Nolan wins his first Oscar.) Again, “Anatomy of a Fall” screenwriters Justine Triet and Arthur Harari are most likely to win because they have the best track record with screenplay awards specifically. Celine Song is the longshot, as there is still plenty of passion around “Past Lives” as the best debut film of the season (sadly an award the Oscars do not give out.) “Maestro” helmer Bradley Cooper also fits this type, but runs into the issue of his personal campaign being more focused on his directing and performance as Leonard Bernstein; meanwhile, his co-writer Josh Singer is weighed down by having an Oscar already.

The scripts for “The Holdovers” and “May December” from film newcomers David Hemingson and Samy Burch and Alex Mechanik, respectively, are beloved, and have each accepted more screenplay awards than “Maestro,” but this is one category voters consistently use to spread the wealth, in terms of making sure more directors behind Best Picture nominees walk away with an Academy Award year-to-year.

Nominees are listed below in order of likelihood they will win.

Contenders:
Arthur Harari and Justine Triet (“Anatomy of a Fall”)
Celine Song (“Past Lives”)
David Hemingson (“The Holdovers”)
Samy Burch and Alex Mechanik (“May December”)
Bradley Cooper and Josh Singer (“Maestro”)

SOURCE: IndieWire

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