Oscar predictions and miscellany

It’s Oscar season, and there’s lots to talk about!

First, check out my exclusive Cinematical piece on the changes they’ve made for this year’s show.

If you’re in the mood for company, you can join me at Cinematical during the show, the first hour of which (5:30-6:30 Pacific Time) I’ll be live-blogging. It should be fun! Maybe! I’ve never live-blogged before!

Finally, here are my predictions. I’m on a streak here, having correctly predicted 13 out of 24 categories last year and the year before. I want that number to go up, though. I’m pretty sure my ESP is more in tune with Academy thinking this time around. No time to get into the details of why I think these will be the winners — just mark ’em down, because THESE ARE GOLD! (A complete list of nominees can be found here.)

Best Picture: “Slumdog Millionaire”
Director: Danny Boyle, “Slumdog Millionaire”
Actor: Sean Penn, “Milk”
Actress: Kate Winslet, “The Reader”
Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger, “The Dark Knight”
Supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz, “Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
Original Screenplay: Dustin Lance Black, “Milk”
Adapted Screenplay: Simon Beaufoy, “Slumdog Millionaire”
Animated Feature: “WALL-E”
Documentary Feature: “Man on Wire”
Foreign-Language Film: “The Class”
Cinematography: “Slumdog Millionaire”
Art Direction: “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Costume Design: “The Duchess”
Film Editing: “Slumdog Millionaire”
Makeup: “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Original Score: “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Original Song: “Down to Earth,” from “WALL-E”
Sound Mixing: “WALL-E”
Sound Editing: “The Dark Knight”
Visual Effects: “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Animated Short: “Presto” (it played in front of “WALL-E,” and you loved it)
Live-Action Short: “Toyland (Spielzeugland)”
Documentary Short: “The Witness”

The Oscars are Sunday at 5:30 p.m. (PST) on ABC.