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Oscar predictions: 10 days to go

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We’re less than a week from the Oscar-ballot deadline, and not much has changed with my Oscar predictions. Best Actor remains the tightest of the four acting races, and I could equally see it going to George Clooney or Jean Dujardin. (Many people have asked me recently whether those two guys could split, resulting in a Brad Pitt win. I don’t really understand their question: What vote would Clooney and Dujardin split? Anyway, it’s not going to happen.) Meanwhile, my only predicted-winner change is in the Best Adapted Screenplay category. Although single-credited screenplays usually win, I feel like most voters will consider The Descendants (for right or wrong) basically the work of Alexander Payne. Here are my current predictions in the eight major races.

Best Picture

1. The Artist (last week: 1)

2. Hugo (last week: 2)

3. The Help (last week: 3)

4. The Descendants (last week: 4)

5. Midnight in Paris (last week: 5)

6. Moneyball (last week: 6)

7. The Tree of Life (last week: 7)

8. War Horse (last week: 8 )

9. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (last week: 9)

Best Director

1. Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist (last week: 1)

2. Martin Scorsese, Hugo (last week: 2)

3. Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris (last week: 3)

4. Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life (last week: 4)

5. Alexander Payne, The Descendants (last week: 5)

Best Actor

1. George Clooney, The Descendants (last week: 1)

2. Jean Dujardin, The Artist (last week: 2)

3. Brad Pitt, Moneyball (last week: 3)

4. Demián Bichir, A Better Life (last week: 4)

5. Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (last week: 5)

Best Actress

1. Viola Davis, The Help (last week: 1)

2. Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady (last week: 2)

3. Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn (last week: 3)

4. Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs (last week: 4)

5. Rooney Mara, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (last week: 5)

Best Supporting Actor 

1. Christopher Plummer, Beginners (last week: 1)

2. Max von Sydow, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (last week: 2)

3. Kenneth Branagh, My Week With Marilyn (last week: 3)

4. Jonah Hill, Moneyball (last week: 4)

5. Nick Nolte, Warrior (last week: 5)

Best Supporting Actress

1. Octavia Spencer, The Help (last week: 1)

2. Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids (last week: 2)

3. Bérénice Bejo, The Artist (last week: 3)

4. Jessica Chastain, The Help (last week: 5)

5. Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs (last week: 4)

Best Original Screenplay

1. Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris (last week: 1)

2. Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist (last week: 2)

3. Annie Mumolo and Kristen Wiig, Bridesmaids (last week: 3)

4. Asghar Farhadi, A Separation (last week: 4)

5. J.C. Chandor, Margin Call (last week: 5)

Best Adapted Screenplay

1. Alexander Payne, Jim Rash, and Nat Faxon, The Descendants (last week: 3)

2. John Logan, Hugo (last week: 1)

3. Aaron Sorkin, Steven Zaillian, and Stan Chervin, Moneyball (last week: 2)

4. Peter Straughan and Bridget O’Connor, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (last week: 5)

5. George Clooney, Grant Heslov, and Beau Willimon, The Ides of March (last week: 4)

Dave on Twitter: @davekarger

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EW Special Coverage: Oscars 2012