On 8 February, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) will be handing out their Orange British Academy Film Awards. More so now (and last year) than ever before, these awards have a lot of significance in determining how the Academy Awards will be playing out a few weeks after. Last year, the British support for Atonement, whose support for Oscar play was waning before the BAFTA rally, translated into a nod for Best Picture. The winners of the four acting awards repeated in the Oscars; this was especially significant for La Vie en Rose's Marion Cotillard, who beat British favorite Julie Christie (then already the SAG winner), and Michael Clayton's Tilda Swinton, who beat favored Cate Blanchett. This year, the Brits propelled The Reader, its director Stephen Daldry, and its lead actress Kate Winslet--who they nom'd in the right category--to [slightly] unexpected Oscar noms. What will the actual BAFTA results on 8 February say about those of the Oscars on the 22nd?
Slumdog Millionaire will win the Best Film award. After that, nothing can beat it for the Oscar gold.
Sean Penn will likely win, but Mickey Rourke can never be fully counted out.
Whoever wins Best Actress will be the likely Oscar winner of the same award. It's Kate Winslet (for The Reader) or Meryl Streep. My bet is Kate.
Heath Ledger will win. The Oscar is his.
Penelope Cruz will win and go on to claim the Oscar, too. But Viola Davis remains a serious threat.