In Contention‘s Guy Lodge believes right now that The Artist, The Descendants, The Ides of March, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, The Tree of Life and War Horse are the most likely 2011 Best Picture nominees. Yes, six.

Nobody knows anything but I say “no” to The Artist (too French) and The Tree of Life (too Malicky). My Best Picture guesstimates: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (highly affecting emotional current), The Descendants (quality death-in-a-family film), The Iron Lady (obligatory British-ruling-class entry), Moneyball (professional baseball meets Social Network-like approach), War Horse (poor sad traumatized horse), We Bought A Zoo (another family film) and possibly The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo…depending how extreme Fincher goes and what kind of a hit it becomes. Yes, seven nominations. Or six.

Having seen Farragut North, I know it’s possible that The Ides of March might qualify, but it’s mainly about a younger opportunist getting punished for being disloyal and I’m not sure how much that will resonate with Academy blue-hairs. I suspect that Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is going to register as too cerebral and subdued and intellectually labrynthian to penetrate as a Best Picture pick. Maybe. I don’t know anything, but I know the Le Carre book and the British miniseries.