In Part Two, The Friendly Film Fan breaks down the WGA, ASC, and ACE nominations, and how they could impact the Oscar race as voting continues.
Hello, all, and welcome back to The Friendly Film Fan! I already explained the basics of what this piece covers, so let’s not waste any time getting right into it. Here is Part Two of my 2022 Guild Award Nominees Breakdown!
Aaron Sorkin, Being the Ricardos
Adam McKay, Don’t Look Up
Wes Anderson, The French Dispatch of the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun
Zach Baylin, King Richard
Paul Thomas Anderson, Licorice Pizza
Siân Heder, CODA
Jon Spaihts and Denis Villeneuve and Eric Roth, Dune
Guillermo del Toro & Kim Morgan, Nightmare Alley
Steven Levenson, Tick, Tick…Boom!
Tony Kushner, West Side Story
Mark Monroe & Pax Wasserman, Being Cousteau
Marc Shaffer, Exposing Muybridge
Suzanne Joe Kai, Like a Rolling Stone: The Life & Times of Ben Fong-Torres
As far as the Documentary Screenplay category goes, nothing in it really matters all that much. None of them will land an Oscar nomination since they were not included on the Oscars shortlist for Documentary Feature released late last year, but for completions sake, I felt I should include them here. Still, the real conversation is focused on the Best Original and Best Adapted screenplay nominees, in which there are few surprises, even if they may not get all the way into the Oscar race.
Nightmare Alley makes a strong showing here, given its presence in most guild awards nominations falls under the technical categories, but its inclusion is not entirely shocking, given that the WGA does have strict rules for qualification which the Academy does not have (meaning some of the other candidates for this category at the WGA specifically may not have been eligible for competition. Or, in the case of The Tragedy of Macbeth, may not have been changed enough to ultimately make the list.). Dune also making it in bodes well for the sci-fi epic in the Adapted Screenplay category, and could knock The Tragedy of Macbeth out of competition there.
The real surprises for this group are the nominations for Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch in the Original category and the inclusion of Tick, Tick…Boom! in the Adapted category. Neither of these have been any sort of front-runner for those races, and both could still easily be overtaken by films like Belfast or The Lost Daughter now that voting is underway, but keep an eye out for them as voting continues – they may yet have a shot.
Bruno Delbonnel, The Tragedy of Macbeth
Greig Fraser, Dune
Dan Laustsen, Nightmare Alley
Ari Wegner, The Power of the Dog
Haris Zambarloukos, Belfast
Ruben Impens, Titane
Pat Scola, Pig
Adolpho Veloso, Jockey
Jessica Beshir, Faya Dayi
Isabel Bethencourt and Parker Hill, Cusp
Daniel Schönauer, The Hidden Life of Trees
Most of these nominations are largely expected to crossover to the Oscars, at least in the Feature Film category, but an absolutely unforgivable omission here is Janusz Kaminski’s work on West Side Story, not just one of the best-shot films of 2021, but of Steven Spielberg’s entire career. Spielberg and Kaminski have a storied history of working together, usually resulting in Oscar nominations for both. Granted, West Side Story could still pull off a nomination if Disney and 20th Century Studios play their cards right (although I have less faith in Disney’s marketing/promotional management than ever right now), but it may well be that Dan Lausten’s admirable if unremarkable work on Nightmare Alley takes that fifth spot. Oh, well; at least it’s nice to see Pig in the Spotlight section.
Best Edited Feature Film (Dramatic):
Úna Ní Dhonghaíle, Belfast
Joe Walker, Dune
Pamela Martin, King Richard
Tom Cross and Elliot Graham, No Time to Die
Peter Sciberras, The Power of the Dog
Best Edited Feature Film (Comedy):
Tatiana S. Riegel, Cruella
Hank Corwin, Don’t Look Up
Andrew Weisblum, The French Dispatch of the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun
Andy Jurgensen, Licorice Pizza
Myron Kerstein and Andrew Weisblum, Tick, Tick…Boom!
Best Edited Animated Feature Film:
Jeremy Milton, Encanto
Catherine Apple and Jason Hudak, Luca
Greg Levitan, The Mitchells vs. the Machines
Fabienne Rawley and Shannon Stein, Raya and the Last Dragon
Gregory Perler, Sing 2
Best Edited Documentary (Feature):
Janus Billeskov Jansen, Flee
Bob Eisenhardt, The Rescue
Joshua L. Pearson, Summer of Soul (…or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised)
Ting Poo and Leo Scott, Val
Affonso Gonçalves and Adam Kurnitz, The Velvet Underground
The final guild committee under consideration is the ACE Eddie Awards voting body, which – you guessed it – specialize in the Editing category. Between the Dramatic and Comedy Feature Film categories, your Oscar five are pretty much right there: Belfast, Dune, and The Power of the Dog go in for Dramatic, while Don’t Look Up and Licorice Pizza appear in the Comedy section. Don’t underestimate King Richard, however; it could still swoop in and pick up a spot last-minute. This is also the second time we’ve seen that exact lineup for Animated Feature, as we did with the PGA nominees earlier, which means that Flee is in serious trouble of not making it in that category.
The real snub here, though, is the absence of West Side Story; films competing for a Best Picture win are almost always nominated for Best Editing as well, and if they don’t land an ACE nomination, it’s incredibly hard to land an Editing nomination from the Academy – not unheard of, but extremely rare. To get one, the film would have to go through No Time to Die and The French Dispatch, the latter of which is most lauded specifically for its stylistic editing choices. Perhaps it could best Bond after all, but with such limited availability for people to watch at home right now, and with Bond already on home release, it could be a significant uphill battle for the musical.
And that’s all I have to say on the various Guild Award Nominees for 2022 and how they might shape what the Oscar nominations look like. This Oscar race has been taking shape for quite some time, even before most of these films came out, and while it has largely stuck to what was widely believed about most of the categories for which the guilds vote, there’s still some room left for surprises as Oscar nomination voting continues. Hopefully those surprises will be all good, but there will almost certainly be some egregious snubs as well (yes, I’m still bitter than C’mon C’mon has basically gotten no major attention from guilds or voting bodies apart from the Indie Spirits). Whatever the case, I’m looking forward to continuing to cover the Oscar race for this site, and for you, dear readers, all awards season long.
The Oscar nominations will be announced on February 8.
- The Friendly Film Fan
Film critic in my free time. Film enthusiast in my down time. Writer for Bitesize Breakdown.