Oscars 2018: Film expert offers his top picks on who will win

Travers breaks down the top Oscars categories and makes his predictions for who will ultimately come out on top.
19:13 | 03/01/18

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Transcript for Oscars 2018: Film expert offers his top picks on who will win
Hi everybody I'm Peter Travers and this is popcorn we would tell you what's happening at the movies but there's nothing happened in this weekend. Except the ninetieth. Think of that number the ninetieth Academy Awards. And it's shaping up I think as probably the most exciting and competitive. Academy Awards that we've had in years there's a lot going on. Not just the movies. Fighting for. Winning over there were contenders that they don't think has a chance. But. It's a world out there has to be reflected in what went in other words if we're in the hat and me too hectic times up. Living in a political. Area where there's so much controversy. Expect to feed that reflect. So why am I here to do I'm here to go over some of the major categories with him. Tell you who the favorites are and then tell you who belongs. One. Don't you feel good when you're betting on something. Not that we hear popcorn aren't anyway saying money should be involved in any of these wages. Only that you could be smarter than everybody out that predicting. What these 7800. Optical voters are actually predicting. I was loved and I love the ban on launch because so much better when you go to a racetrack he always wanna bet on the favorite now. But we're gonna discuss that. Again when I mention things going on in the world this is any Oscar ceremony where women are going to figure very prominently. I think if you are a movie competing out there and you don't have. A strong woman involved in the character it's going to be tougher for you to do it and this is a good thing because you could feel this kind of thing in the air. So remember the movies that really give us this spy. To win. In a Hollywood that's now crawling with sexual misconduct. They might have the edge so okay he Leah I'm gonna start I'm in his start by reading the nominees for best actress. And they are Sally Hawkins in the shape of water Frances McDormand in three billboards outside ebbing Missouri. Margot Robbie in Tanya searcher Ronan in lady bird and Merrill Streep in the post now. This is broad street 21. Oscar nomination after she's won three times I think that can happen again. It's just. You know it seems too much sorry I can't do this but who is the favorite. Who's the strongest woman out there in movies this year it got to be France's dormant. In three billboards at me here she is a mother. Who is basically giving hell to the police in her town because they have not solved the murder of her daughter. And he's not gonna take you. She mad as hell he's gonna come out and do. Frances McDormand does almost no self promotion for herself. But anyone who sees three billboards is going to say I don't like car and light her fire I like what he's doing so the favorite definitely. But who's the other woman and if you were gonna play alongside. I would think that is Sally Hawkins in the shape of water he or she is playing and mute cleaning woman who. Falls in love with a creature that the government has capture this. Person if he's even that. Who everybody else rejects. And the government wants to kill that creature or use them for experiments instead she wants to understand. And love them and be tough. So wanna do belong shots I would go without hot pants plus. The academy loves it when you have to do all that acting without being able to speak. I gave you that. I'm gonna jump to. Best actress in a supporting role if I'm starting with the women tell you it's a big year. Here we go Allison Janney and I Tonya. Lesley Manville and phantom thread. Laurie Metcalf in lady bird Octavia Spencer in the shape of water and Mary. You know there's a tough woman this year that I thought should have been in this category and her name is Tiffany had it and two I think girls trip. And she just blew everyone away and but. Academy voters tend not go for comedy they say. It's just. We want something to pursue years. And I want to mention Mary. Sings a song the mighty river that also nominated in this so it's a good year for her but I think. This is going to be between two other actresses who played mothers really tough oh. The favorite in this category is Allison Jen and I thought she. The mother from now as Tonya Harding mop. Who has given this child nothing but of youths through earn higher child. And it fit her out there into the world Allison Janney does nothing. Absolutely nothing to make this character sympathetic. But there's no moment where you don't understand where you don't see where her frustration comes. Allison Janney has never won an Academy Award before. He's won Emmys. But this is her first time up there and well she terrific. Who's a long shot. I think that would be Laurie Metcalf in the eighty for playing. A mom again super strong. And there Kiki is her daughter played by searchers on it. Doesn't understand her she doesn't understand but there's law there's love between all of this victory. And Laurie Metcalf is any could come back in rose and the here. She just won a Tony on Broadway for a doll's house too she is. One of the consummate actress is that we have out there so Allison Janney has competition again super strong when. OK let's move lets you want to the man the man needs some attention from us. So I'm gonna go best actor in the leading role and the nominees are Timothy shall remain in call me by name. Daniel Day-Lewis and phantom thread. Daniel Cooley and get out Gary Oldman in darkest hour and Denzel Washington in Rome and Jay Israel Esquire. What does. How can I bring up women in terms of the category of men in doing that will who's missing. The person missing here that was expected to be nominated is James Franco. And his performance in the disaster artist has won him a Golden Globe. But what happened was he had to face accusations of sexual misconduct. And this is the year where anybody here is that. The idea is ansari next time if you have a next time. It's a very tough code of ethics that's going on out there and I think Franco. Fell prey to that. And so is not in this category. But the favorite in this category for best actor is definitely Gary Oldman playing Winston Churchill and darkest hour. Gary Oldman began one of the great actors or part time. Has never won an Oscar has only been nominated once before for tinker tailor soldier spy. And who in this. Performance where Heath. Not even recognizable. Knees covered up he's gotten me. Yet he meets every living breathing moment that he's not screen. Amazed. And people say well how is that in the city anything about the politics work today. All I think there's a lot it says that what we're watching it with Winston Churchill is a true leader. Somebody who knows how to respect what government. And he knows how to put it into effect. And also knows how to make government work. And how to be person of the people. If that's not speaking to you I don't know what it. I'm going to be personally very upset at this doesn't happen for him but of course. You can't predict the Oscars at the moment of fun wagering about it. Still the long shot but longshot is to impeach name call me by name issues this story. Teenager. Who falls in love for the first time whipped a graduate student played by army hammered that he is. Dad has working for its first love for him. And it kills them. The idea of feeling for the first time. This is. A 22 year old actor one of the youngest ever be nominated for best actor the Oscars and everything about that performance. Works because it touches you. It speaks to you and it says something important about who we ours people. So this is a contest out there we don't want I don't know that I'm going now to best supporting actor. And the nominees here are whilom to follow in the Florida project Woody Harrelson in three billboards. Richard Jenkins in the shape of water Christopher Plummer and all the money in the world. Sam Rockwell in three billboards. Two from rebuild ports. Again how the nominees reflecting the time well let's look at Christopher Palmer's nomination. Four all the money in the world he placed a Paul gay. Who is basically not wanting to spend any money to get to kidnappers who have kidnapped his grandson. Christopher Plummer came in to replace Kevin Spacey. Who had all ready. Played its part the whole movie with finished with Spacey as Eddie. And the director Ridley Scott's. I can't do I need somebody to come in and re shoot this entire part to do. Christopher Plummer did brilliantly. As he doesn't everything but death. Is another example of the time that we limit that movie couldn't come out with Kevin Spacey in it because it would be really so her commercially. Phil Palmer has a lot of heat going on him for doing that for being brave enough to do it and for doing it so superbly. But the favorite here as got to be Sam Rockwell and three billboards. Lot of controversy about this because he plays a racist cop. But he plays a racist cop in the wave it makes us understand where the races and comScore. I really can't stand the criticism that says because he's playing next actor he must be one himself which is such an armed. Here is Anthony Hopkins Hannibal Lecter I don't really think so he may something human out of somebody so deeply flawed. And again Sam Rockwell. No academy nominations no award before this would be a first. You can't see that movie without feeling for a long shot in that category. Who used to be the favorite. Is Willem Dafoe in part of project because it always known for playing villains he's tough guy. But here he Jay a hotel manager someplace near Disney World. Who's taking care of the children and the single parents that live in its place. It's really really a great performance by great actor again. Never won an Oscar before so it's pretty tight. But I'm gonna go with Sam Rockwell there. So let's kick all I know best director because this. This is a year where something special was happening the nominees are Christopher Nolan for Dunkirk. Jordan peeled for get out critic girl wig for lady bird Paul Thomas Anderson for phantom threat. And Guillermo del Toro for the shape of war. Everybody is saying that this past the it must deal four and whose partners and this is a guy from pan am. Anything. Has a visual majesty to it. He was to get here and popcorn. And everybody that this year or that watch that interview can't help but all of them he counted and the true human being and that. But. But when where's the energy in this. I'm going to Jordan PO only in the nine years about there a black man ever been nominated at this. Jordan Pugh this. It wouldn't be that load. I mean eight on race it has gone without provocation. That. Op Ed page is couldn't come close to what it's with great. The other one and there is credit girl because pretty girl in directing bird becomes only the fifth women in 93. Years. Ever been nominated that direct all the academy have a lot. And these two. Rain eighth Barca he you have never seen before. There is something integrated girl which work she also wrote the screenplay as the Jordan he'll forget. That we're saying they think the two people who. The academy head sideline before in terms of being won or been partners in this world that we don't want it. And now this it. But I have to say the favorite here is definitely definitely you know tour he used. To do it who. Means the long shot that. Isn't a part of the conversation about what's new because he's been around and doing terrific work. In his rear doing the Dark Knight meant. War. Infection I keep going on net stricter for an all. It Don Kerr did something nobody has ever done before. Practicing. Schilling used. That. They think the next week and heated air with the plan would feel empathy. Really need by director who that he not. Done. So Chris Nolan. If if you are about half the loose even one use the word lose that he would be my choice for doing. Okay. The big award everybody. Talks about it and argued about the most is best pictures so I'm gonna read the nominees. Call me by your name darkest hour Dunkirk. Get out lady bird. And some thread. Post the shape of water and three billboards outside ebbing. The shape of water has to be the paper it has thirteen nominations. The closest ones that that has eight is done Kirk. Something about the shape of Warner and it's very strong woman. That you could be made by. Is saying something battle large. About immigration about what barred about what scares. Directed by masked fair. Four who should be joining news but. They called on the creamy until coral. You know who went out of gravity and Alejandro I'm Q who won two Oscars already for the rabbinate and from bird. And this is his plan three amigos. I think shape of Warner will win. I used that thing and I was gonna main assessment launch. That three billboards. With going to be one activities because again strong woman again. By read billboards did not get a nomination sports director Martin McDonough. Here it is with seven nominations. And nothing to go sport. It's not like he can win Ben Affleck would not nominated for directing Argo and are still won best pictures so this is kind of idea. But my lungs and the one. I'd root for. Is Christopher know and Dunn Dunn Kirk again. Before when it was summer and this came out huge hit nobody but it would be nobody but people with the was just academies technical achievement. And also about people about people coming to rescue not depending on government but getting small boat coming. The old man be. It's with everything. That I think the academy. Should celebrate. So whether or not he wins or not and there's always some wonderful Weiler the you know what that toros ward yes but it Dunkirk ones not. So OK I think we've done like the major categories but I have to bring up one because on the show. I don't make people thing. And there is best original song so I'm going to read what these are one of them is called mighty river. Which Mary. Mystery of love from calling by remember me from cocoa. Stand up for something from Marshall and this is me from the Greek is shown. Art that is wrong here as in remember me cocoa I think we don't even have discussed that can win enemy right. Remember me was the song every really Battenberg the it just seeing it couldn't and then something. On a movie called greed shown in which is barred from being the greatest movie. But nonetheless has its award by it and pass just that Paul did. And a broadly here and and they wrote a song for this movie called me. If there's ever saw that's reflecting this year the there's that the one. This is me some by years. Part. Our show called reach out. And just years. Keyless adults in the movie it you know look at world with a year. Thing. Bases. Where she's saying I make no apology. This is me. This is true of all. These people this year that are going to win or be this close to winning. Gold for the person who stands strong. In this year look for those winners get up and say. This is me this year we going to be all of that Hannity and oh that fit you can make me there.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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