What better way to kick off my 2008 Academy Award prediction series? Let's have a look at these talented Directors. Sadly I haven't seen all of these wonderful films but I'll do the best I can based on what I do know.
And the nominees are...
Paul Thomas Anderson - There Will Be Blood
You've seen his work on Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Punch Drunk Love, the former two for which he has also been nominated for an Academy Award. The 37 year old Director can count his latest film as a his masterpiece, according to many. This movie drags Daniel Day Lewis into his first role in years and apparently Anderson gets a lot out of the stoic actor. I think this movie and its director are very serious competitors this year.
The Cohen Brothers - No Country for Old Men
These boys are no strangers to the Oscars, though its usually their writing that gets them all the attention. Sadly, Fargo is their only win so far. No Country for Old Men is a strong contender for Best Picture with its sweeping landscapes, tension building and rich characters. It's a unique film and the finished product might sweep these awards. The fact No Country is still so haunting months after viewing it, is what will win these brothers the statuette.
Tony Gilroy - Michael Clayton
There are a lot of movies like this out there, yet I hear the execution is brilliant. Gilroy's directorial debut garners him an Oscar nomination, which will secure his immediate future in Hollywood. However, I believe the competition from others will see rookie Gilroy miss out this year.
Jason Reitman - Juno
Jason Reitman once again proves he can step out of his father's shadow. Though he's had moderate success and has garnered critics respect with movies such as Thank You for Smoking and In God We Trust, he has yet to 'make it big'. Reitman is my dark horse favourite this year, and I think he has a real chance of bringing this one home.
Julian Schnabel - The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
A foreign director in a major category for a foreign film? That says enough on its own. Everything I read or hear about this stirring film sends chills through my body. Can such a compelling story equate to an Academy Award for its director? I wish I had seen this one so I could say more, but I think Schnabel is sitting comfortably with Tony Gilroy in the honourable mention area.
So who do I think will win best director? I'm going with the Cohen Brothers. The Academy really loves to give the nod to whoever's "time" it is. I believe it's really between them and Paul Thomas Anderson.
Who's your pick? Comment below!