September 28, 2023

After a year of spectacular and memorable cinematic masterpieces, the 86th Academy Awards will take place Sunday, March 2, at 4 p.m.

Popular television host Ellen DeGeneres will return to host the event.

With so many films nominated, predicting a winner can be difficult. “American Hustle” and “Gravity” both grabbed 10 nominations each and “12 Years a Slave” is right behind with nine.

While the competition is tight, California Baptist University’s Banner staff used their expertise on the subject to reveal their picks for the 2014 Oscars.

Best Picture is the most anticipated award of the evening, and Rebekah Wahlberg, editor in chief, expects “The Wolf of Wall Street” will take home the grand prize.

“I haven’t actually seen it, but half my friends hated it and the other half loved it, which means it’s controversial enough to deserve the award,” Wahlberg said. “Plus, Leo.”

Matthew Swope, online managing editor, said he believes this is the year for Leonardo DiCaprio and picks him to win Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role.

“Leo is a great guy,” Swope said. “I feel really bad for him not winning an Oscar yet, so he should just win.”

Sticking with “The Wolf of Wall Street” theme, Laura Quach, copy chief, used a strategic process to determine her pick for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role.

“I am assuming Jonah Hill (“The Wolf of Wall Street”) will win because he did a fantastic job,” she said. “It is also the only movie I have seen out of the nominees.”

Going for her second Oscar win, Sandra Bullock (“Gravity”) is spread editor Maribel Ramirez’s pick for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role.

“I haven’t watched any of the nominated movies, but I do like Sandra because of ‘The Blind Side,’” Ramirez said. “She’s a pretty wgood actress.”

News editors Catrina Head and Whitney Waters agree that “their girl” Jennifer Lawrence should win the Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role for her performance in “American Hustle.”

“I’ve never seen the movie, but judging from prior performances, J-Law should take that cake,” Head said.

After stumbling up the stairs when she received her first Oscar last year, Waters said she believes this is Lawrence’s chance for redemption.

“She’s a winner,” Waters said. “I’m not even tripping. Hopefully, neither will she.”

While the actors and actresses of these films take them to a new level, there are many behind the scenes who make these movies possible.

Best Director is an award that recognizes the man behind the camera with the vision.

Joshua Salazar, business and tech editor, said Alfonso Cuaron should win Best Director for his work in “Gravity.” Salazar got scientific with his rationale as to why this film should win.

“I choose this director because his name is fun to say,” Salazar said. “Plus, he directed a movie called ‘Gravity.’ It is a natural law that always wins.”

Destinee McCulley, print managing editor, said “Gravity” should win  Achievement in Cinematography.

“If George Clooney and Sandra Bullock floating through space for two hours doesn’t make for an aesthetic masterpiece, then I don’t know what does,” she said.

Achievement in Visual Effects is a category that has seen remarkable advancements over the past decade, making this an award with growing importance.

“Hands down, no questions asked, ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’ should win the Oscar,” said Raine Paul, arts and entertainment editor. “Anything related to ‘Lord of the Rings’ is amazing and deserves an Oscar. If you haven’t seen these movies you need to go right now and watch them.”

Achievement in Costume Design is another award that celebrates the behind-the-scenes work of artists who bring the film together.

“I pick ‘The Great Gatsby’ because (the costumes) were so flashy,” Monica Solano, lifestyle editor, said. “Who doesn’t like seeing Leonardo DiCaprio in a fancy tuxedo?”

For Best Original Song, Lauren Fox, health editor, chose “Happy” from “Despicable Me 2.”

“It always puts me in a good mood,” Fox said.

Rounding out the CBU picks was Jillian Johnson, sports editor, with her selection for Best Animated Film.

“I went to see “Frozen” with my three older siblings and my three-year-old niece, and we all loved it,”
Johnson said.

There were many choices for each category to be considered. With a slim chance of actually being right, these are the well thought-out predictions of the CBU Banner staff for the upcoming 86th Academy Awards.

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