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Oscar Analysis: Why 'Argo' Beat 'Lincoln' and More on Oscar's Winners and Losers

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood February 25, 2013 at 1:30PM

A month ago, Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln," the highest-grossing film of the Oscar nominees ($178 million and counting) with the most nominations (12), was the frontrunner in the Oscar race. But dynamics can change. When Ben Affleck did not earn an Oscar nomination for directing "Argo," he became the underdog and that turned the tide.
Silver Linings Playbook

Best motion picture of the year

     "Argo" Grant Heslov, Ben Affleck and George Clooney, Producers
Performance by an actor in a leading role

    Daniel Day-Lewis in "Lincoln"
Performance by an actor in a supporting role

    Christoph Waltz in "Django Unchained"

Performance by an actress in a leading role

    Jennifer Lawrence in "Silver Linings Playbook"

Performance by an actress in a supporting role

    Anne Hathaway in "Les Misérables"

Best animated feature film of the year

     "Brave" Mark Andrews and Brenda Chapman
    Achievement in cinematography

    "Life of Pi" Claudio Miranda
Achievement in costume design

     "Anna Karenina" Jacqueline Durran
Achievement in directing

     "Life of Pi" Ang Lee
Best documentary feature

    "Searching for Sugar Man"
Best documentary short subject

    "Inocente" Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine
Achievement in film editing

    "Argo" William Goldenberg

Best foreign language film of the year

     "Amour" Austria
Achievement in makeup and hairstyling

     "Les Misérables" Lisa Westcott and Julie Dartnell
Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)

    "Life of Pi" Mychael Danna
Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)

    "Skyfall" from "Skyfall"  Music and Lyric by Adele Adkins and Paul Epworth
Achievement in production design

    "Lincoln" Production Design: Rick Carter; Set Decoration: Jim Erickson

Best animated short film

    "Paperman" John Kahrs
Best live action short film

    "Curfew" Shawn Christensen
Achievement in sound editing

    "Skyfall" Per Hallberg and Karen Baker Landers
     "Zero Dark Thirty" Paul N.J. Ottosson
Achievement in sound mixing

      "Les Misérables" Andy Nelson, Mark Paterson and Simon Hayes
Achievement in visual effects

      "Life of Pi"  Bill Westenhofer, Guillaume Rocheron, Erik-Jan De Boer and Donald R. Elliott
Adapted screenplay

    Argo" Screenplay by Chris Terrio
Original screenplay

   "Django Unchained" Written by Quentin Tarantino

This article is related to: Awards, Awards, Academy Awards, Oscars

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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.