To movie fans, the Academy Awards ceremony is their version of the Super Bowl: a major event that is not only appointment viewing but a special occasion where everybody has an opinion. Among those who will be watching and guessing about the Oscars include Duran Duran keyboardist Nick Rhodes. Amid recording and touring with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame band, Rhodes is a film connoisseur, which is not all that surprising since Duran Duran's iconic videos are cinematic in scope. “I love watching things at the cinema,” Rhodes says. “I still don't think any kind of fabulous home system ever replaces the joy of going to the cinema and having that full wide-screen experience. So I try and see as many things as I can.”
Each year ahead of Hollywood's big night, Rhodes and longtime band associate/fellow movie fan Katy Krassner make their Oscar predictions, which are shared as a special feature on the Duran Duran website in two formats—as an hour-long audio version for VIP members and a shorter written version for everyone to read. The two have been making their predictions together now for about 15 years. “We always used to do Oscar predictions,” he says. “I used to do it with friends where we have an Oscar pool and everybody would bet on what they thought was going to win and what should win. And Katy and I said, ‘Well, why don't we do one for fun for the website?’ We did do it, and it forced me to actually watch more of the movies and to really go a little more in-depth, instead of seeing two or three of the Best Picture nominations.”
“We've always had something called Katy's Kafes, which are for members of the VIP community,” says Krassner. “They’re monthly chats with a different band member. And around February or March, Nick and I just started talking about the Oscars and I think that's how it developed from there. And then we became a real deal.”
Leading up to this year's ceremony Sunday, Rhodes (whose band will continue to tour this year) and Krassner (who co-hosts the SiriusXM radio program WHOOOSH! with Duran Duran singer Simon Le Bon) recently offered their predictions on some of the major Oscar categories. Their comments on who they think will grab the prized statuettes and those who should win have been edited here for length and clarity.
Best Supporting Actress
Angela Bassett, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Hong Chau, The Whale
Kerry Condon, The Banshees of Inisherin
Jamie Lee Curtis, Everything Everywhere All at Once
Stephanie Hsu, Everything Everywhere All at Once
Katy Krassner: Jamie Lee Curtis–that's who I think will win.
Nick Rhodes: With this one, I'm in agreement. I actually loved the movie Everything Everywhere All at Once, even though it was the most confusing thing I've ever seen. But I also really loved The Banshees of Inisherin, and I would be thrilled if Kerry Condon did sneak in and win. You never know with these things, but I would say the clear favorite is going to be Jamie Lee Curtis, isn’t it?
Krassner: [Angela Bassett in Black Panther] was great. I see why she was nominated. But I think Jamie Lee was in a better and buzzier movie. It seems to me she'll get the award.
Best Supporting Actor
Brendan Gleeson, The Banshees of Inisherin
Brian Tyree Henry, Causeway
Judd Hirsch, The Fabelmans
Barry Keoghan, The Banshees of Inisherin
Ke Huy Quan, Everything Everywhere All at Once
Rhodes: Again, it's a tricky one. I like Barry Keoghan to win for The Banshees of Inisherin. Brendan Gleeson was great, too. The movie did very well at the BAFTAs here in London. Between that and All Quiet on the Western Front, those two movies pretty much cleaned up. If I was going to put my bet on it, I'd say Barry Keoghan.
Krassner: I think this is the first year where Nick and I were really divided. In most years, we pretty much feel the same way. This is the only 100% shoo-in category, and Ke Huy Quan's got it [for Everything Everywhere All at Once]. I feel like he's got a great story and a buzzy movie. It would be surprising to me if he didn't get it.
Cate Blanchett, TÁR
Ana de Armas, Blonde
Andrea Riseborough, To Leslie
Michelle Williams, The Fabelmans
Michelle Yeoh, Everything Everywhere All at Once
Rhodes: I would be very disappointed if Cate Blanchett does not win [for TÁR]. I couldn't be a greater admirer. I love her in virtually everything she's ever done. I think she chooses her roles impeccably and she becomes those characters. I loved Michelle Yeoh in Everything Everywhere All at Once, too, but it's just a different kind of part that requires a different discipline, and Cate Blanchett just wins on every level with everything to me. One thing I would say: Although I didn't love the movie Blonde, I did think Ana de Armas was fantastic as Marilyn Monroe. I've got a slight belief that Michelle Yeoh might win because that movie [Everything Everywhere All at Once] seems to be the one that's rising to the top at the moment. But yeah, Cate Blanchett for me.
Krassner: You know the year that it was Sean Penn for Milk and Mickey Rourke for The Wrestler [in 2009]? I feel it's the same for this year: Sean Penn is Cate Blanchett or vice versa, and Michelle is Mickey Rourke. Michelle Yeoh is like the underdog: you're rooting for her. She's in this cool movie that I was not crazy about. And she was great. It's an incredible role. But to me, there's no comparison that Cate Blanchett should win.
Austin Butler, Elvis
Colin Farrell, The Banshees of Inisherin
Brendan Fraser, The Whale
Paul Mescal, Aftersun
Bill Nighy, Living
Rhodes: There were some amazing performances. Austin Butler was as good as you could have been for Elvis. Colin Farrell has always been a great actor. He was so consistent with the role [in Banshees]—subtle is what I loved about that. But I thought Brendan Fraser was great in The Whale. I'm a big fan of [The Whale director] Darren Aronofsky. He's made some of the best movies of the last couple of decades. But I can't say that I loved The Whale anywhere near as much as I loved Black Swan or The Wrestler. I think the edge goes to Austin Butler, and he’ll probably win. But I'd be very happy to see Colin Farrell win.
Krassner: This is such a hard category. Austin Butler was amazing in Elvis. If you're going to award someone [based] on their career, you could make an argument for both Colin and Brendan. And as Nick said, Colin's performance was super-understated and there's an art in that. But when you talk about a Best Actor performance, you talk about the performance of their career, and I think that's what Brendan gave. So even though I didn't think The Whale was any good at all, Brendan Fraser is going to win Best Actor
Best International Feature Film
All Quiet on the Western Front (Germany)
Argentina, 1985 (Argentina)
The Quiet Girl (Ireland)
Rhodes: They were super good this year. The only one I haven't seen is EO, which I will see. There are three that really stand out. I liked Argentina, 1985. But All Quite on the Western Front was by far and away the most outstanding movie of the year on every possible level. There's nothing about it that didn't take my breath away. It showed you the mindlessness and utter destruction and horror of war; you actually felt how visceral each frame was, and beautifully shot. So I cannot see a way that it's not going to win the Best International Film. Close was heartbreaking, beautiful, great performances, tender, sad.
The Quiet Girl was a real underdog. It wouldn't have been something that I would have normally watched had it just come out in the middle of the year and it wasn't an Oscar contender. But I'm so pleased that I spent a couple of hours. It's sensitive, intelligent, a remarkable character study. It’s a beautiful movie I would recommend to anyone.
Krassner: I cried so hard watching the movie Close. That was far and away one of the best movies I've seen this year, as was The Quiet Girl. All Quiet on the Western Front–I know intrinsically it was a great film. I spent the whole movie with my fingers over my eyes and in my ears–it was too awful for me. That being said, it probably will win Best International Film and it probably does deserve to win. But if I had to pick, I would actually go with The Quiet Girl.
All Quiet on the Western Front
Avatar: The Way of Water
The Banshees of Inisherin
Everything Everywhere All at Once
Top Gun: Maverick
Triangle of Sadness
Rhodes: All Quiet on the Western Front deserves to win. It is everything that Hollywood Oscar loves. It's big, wide-screen, high drama, a cast of thousands. It's beautifully shot, and the acting is flawless, the directing is flawless. I really can't say enough good things about it. I loved The Banshees of Inisherin. Avatar—I'm a fan of that kind of movie. I think that James Cameron is super clever at doing those big extravaganza family movies. I loved the look of Elvis. The Fablemans was worth it for David Lynch [for his cameo as director John Ford) alone. Triangle of Sadness, I wasn't a big fan of that; I liked bits of the first act. And Women Talking—with Frances McDormand, you can never go wrong. So it's a great set of movies. Everything Everywhere All at Once is likely to win—All Quiet on The Western Front should win.
Krassner: I said to someone the other day: “For me, this is the most lackluster Best Picture selection I've had to work with in a long time.” Nick is right that Everything Everywhere All at Once is everywhere. I feel like it's going to win and the Daniels [directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert] will probably win Best Director. I just don't see All Quiet on the Western Front winning. The Banshees of Inisherin was a wonderful movie, but was it a Best Picture? Elvis, I don't know. If there was a big push for Elvis, I could see that having all the checkmarks for what a Best Picture might be. The Fablemans—Nick and I parted on that one. Women Talking was great—it's just not a Best Picture. So with all of that, I'll go with Everything Everywhere All at Once.