Ben Zauzmer is a Harvard freshman interested in movies and math, and the creator of Oscarforecast, which presents Oscar predictions based solely on rigorous and dispassionate mathematical analysis. Ben’s calculations include “previous Oscar results, other awards shows, current nominations, critic scores, and guild awards,” he explains. “All of these numbers — over 5,000 data points! — were plugged into a bit of matrix algebra.”
And his system is predicting a Meryl Streep win for Best Actress. By a nosehair (0.7%), but still…Viola Davis gets the shaft? Everyone was sensing the closeness of this race, but I thought everything shifted in Davis’s favor two or three weeks ago. I’m not sure I buy it (or if anyone will), but Davis’s supporters now have a little something to fret about.
Ben ducked out of four categories (Best Makeup, Best Doc Short Subject, Best Animated Short, Best Live Action Short), because, he says, “there wasn’t enough data or indicators to create a reliable percentage score for each movie.”
In any event, here’s his rundown.