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2020 Oscars Best Picture Odds; The Irishman Opens as SBD’s Favorite

Martin Scorsese
Martin Scorsese's The Irishman is expected to generate plenty of Oscar buzz in 2020. Photo by Siebbi (Wikimedia Commons) [CC License].
  • The Oscars are still on people’s minds as 2019 films are being groomed for next year’s awards
  • Netflix may have its first Best Picture lined up
  • We have the best early Oscar bets for films starring Tom Hanks and Leonardo DiCaprio

We’re still making our way through this year’s Oscar winners, but the focus is already on next year’s Oscars. Who are the early odds of winning Best Picture?

It might seem too early, but this upcoming film year looks like an extremely exciting one. We will see return performances by Tom Hanks, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Meryl Streep.

It makes sense then, with upcoming anticipated films by directors like Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese, and Greta Gerwig, why early bets are taking place.

Recent Best Picture winners have been all over the map, from Green Book, to The Shape of Water, to Moonlight. It’s becoming apparent that voters are looking for that special something rather than routine.

Odds For Best Picture at the 2020 Oscars

2020 Film SBD’s Odds
The Irishman 4/1
A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood 17/3
Once Upon A Time In Hollywood 9/1
Little Women 9/1
1917 19/1
Us 19/1

The Favorite

The buzz surrounding Martin Scorsese’s upcoming The Irishman is undeniable as the leader of the pack. With leading performances by Oscar favorites Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Harvey Keitel, this one reeks of Academy attention.

Interestingly, The Irishman is being produced by Netflix. After the company’s near miss of winning Best Picture for Roma last time, it seems they’re coming back with a punch in hopes of scoring that trophy this time around.

Shockingly, Scorsese has never seen one of his films win Best Picture.

Shockingly, Scorsese has never seen one of his films win Best Picture – he won Best Director for The Departed in 2007. Even though he probably deserved it more for classics like Taxi Driver or Goodfellas, it’s likely the Academy will give it to him this time, even if it’s an unspoken honorarium.

Biopics and Tinseltown

The Academy seems to flip from genre to genre or theme to theme, rarely rewarding similar films two years in a row.

So we have some luck for Marielle Heller, director of the upcoming Mr. Fred Rogers biopic A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. Heller was nominated last year for her impressive Can You Ever Forgive Me?

It’s been a few years since a biopic won Best Picture. The last was in 2015 when Spotlight took home the award.

There’s appetite in order, meaning that the Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers in Neighborhood is a good contender.

Given that last year’s Mr. Rogers documentary Won’t You Be My Neighbor? came up short in the best doc category, there’s still room for Neighborhood to shine.

On the flipside, we have Tarantino’s drama/thriller Once Upon A Time in Hollywood, with a winning cast starring DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, and Margot Robbie.

With Robbie playing ill-fated murder victim Sharon Tate, this film is a juicy one to look forward to and likely to strike interest with Academy voters and fans alike.

It’s been a few years since a biopic won Best Picture. The last was in 2015 when Spotlight took home the award.

When you have names like Hanks, Tarantino, or DiCaprio involved, it’s going to be an exciting Oscars race no matter which way you look at it.

Dark Horses

Having reached amazing success for her last outing on Ladybird, Greta Gerwig is one to watch. Her upcoming Christmas release Little Women may just land her an Oscar this time around.

Little Women is likely to be more serious than Ladybird, and having that cutting edge may help get Gerwig ahead of a few of her fellow contenders.

With a cast including Saoirse Ronan, Meryl Streep, and Emma Watson, Gerwig has packed Women with many fan favorites, and critical darlings.

Having reached amazing success for her last outing on Ladybird, Greta Gerwig is one to watch.

But given that Little Women is a remake, it may be a tougher sell. There was also a version of Women released just last year, and even though it wasn’t nearly an Oscar contender, it may leave a black spot on Gerwig’s version.

Another one to watch for is 1917, directed by American Beauty director Sam Mendes. Not much is known about this December release aside from the fact that it’s a 1917 war film.

With no major stars attached, 1917 is a long shot at this point. Though Mendes did score big for Beauty during its release, winning five awards for the film including Best Picture and Best Director.

The last time we saw Jordan Peele at the director’s chair, his 2017 psychological horror film Get Out earned him four nominations including Best Picture.

Peele won for Best Original Screenplay but was shut out of the biggest honor. This year, he returns with Us, another eerie shot at the prize.

Us looks a bit too traditional in its horror makeup to win Best Picture. But, given some of the Academy’s recent selections, anything’s possible.

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As an active entertainment aficionado, the former Editor-in-Chief for the Capilano Courier, JJ also co-founded Lords of Dogwood, a Vancouver-based entertainment site in 2013. His writing has been found in ION Magazine, the North Shore News, and The Strand.