2023 Oscar Predictions, Picks: Bets On All Quiet on the Western Front, Austin Butler

2023 Oscar Predictions, Picks: Bets On All Quiet on the Western Front, Austin Butler article feature image

Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage. Pictured: Austin Butler.

Here’s how I’m betting each category of the 95th Academy Awards, which airs live on Sunday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

To derive true odds in each category, I use prediction data from GoldDerby.com, which is essentially the “sharp money” of awards shows. I take the percentage of editors and experts that are picking each film to win and convert it into odds, then compare those projected odds to the actual odds at sportsbooks.

Gold Derby has tracked its prediction accuracy since 2011, and its experts and editors both get over 75% of picks correct on average. Last season, they got over 90% of the categories correct.

I have previewed all 23 categories, but divided them into four sections based on whether I have a bet, and type of bet.

  • Best bets: The top values on the board.
  • Longshots:  Big underdogs that are undervalued.
  • Parlay only: Virtual locks that are too juiced up to bet outside of a parlay.
  • No bet: Categories with no edge to exploit.

All odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

Best Bets

Best Actor

Sportsbooks are listing Brendan Fraser (-175) as the favorite, but over 60% of Gold Derby experts and editors are on Austin Butler (+125).

Butler won at the Golden Globes and BAFTAs, which have each predicted the Oscar winner in 10 of the past 11 years and carry more weight than wins by Fraser at the SAG Awards and Critics Choice Awards, which have hit rates of 9-of-11 and 7-of-11, respectively, over that span.

The betting market appears to be overrating Fraser's odds due to recency bias stemming from his SAG win, which took place the latest of the four major acting precursors.

Pick: Austin Butler +125 (to -155).

Best Costume Design

The Gold Derby expert consensus has been right 91% of the time — including correctly predicting an upset win for the first "Black Panther" film four years ago — and this year, 75% of them are backing Elvis (-165) over Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (+185; 21%) and Babylon (+2800; 4%).

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever won the Critics Choice, and Elvis won the BAFTA. Both of those awards have correctly predicted the Oscar in nine of the past 11 years. The two films were in different categories at the Costume Designers Guild Awards, with Elvis winning for Excellence in a Period Film while Black Panther: Wakanda Forever lost to fellow nominee Everything Everywhere All At Once (+500).

Pick: Elvis -190 (to -300).

Best Original Score

Gold Derby editors are 11-for-11 in predicting Best Score, and 69% of them are picking All Quiet on the Western Front (+175) to upset frontrunner Babylon (-225).

BAFTA has been the most predictive precursor and also happens to be the only major precursor that saw All Quiet on the Western Front and Babylon go head-to-head, with the former coming out on top.

Pick: All Quiet on the Western Front +175 (to +100).

Best Documentary Short

Fifty-five percent of Gold Derby experts and editors who have updated their picks since March 2 are going with Stranger at the Gate (+200) to upset frontrunner, The Elephant Whisperers (-165).

Pick: Stranger at the Gate +200 (to +100).

Best Live-Action Short

Gold Derby editors have been right 73% of the time in this category — far more often than experts (55%), top-24 users (44%) and all-star users (43%).

The editors are by far the most bullish on An Irish Goodbye (+100), with 83% of them picking the film to add an Oscar to its BAFTA win.

Pick: An Irish Goodbye +100 (to -127).

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Best Song

Lift Me Up (+400) from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever has only 10% of the Gold Derby vote, and it lost to RRR's Naatu Naatu (-500) at the Golden Globes and Critics Choice Awards, but this is a high-variance category ripe for an upset.

Two of the past seven winners failed to garner more than 10% of the Gold Derby vote, including Fight For You from Judas and the Black Messiah in 2021, which also failed to win its nominations at the Globes and Critics Choice.

A 4-to-1 bet on Rihanna is too good to pass up.

Pick: Lift Me Up +400 (to +300).


Best Picture

Gold Derby gives Everything Everywhere All At Once (-1400) a 93% chance to win, but the value has already been bet out of it. The only other film receiving votes is BAFTA winner All Quiet on the Western Front (+1100), but the Academy and BAFTA have disagreed on Best Picture in seven of the past eight years, with the only exception being Nomadland in 2021.

Best Director

Gold Derby gives Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert's Everything Everywhere All At Once (-1200) a 93% chance to win, but there's nothing to do with a -1200 except parlay.

Best Supporting Actor

Ke-Huy Quan (-5000) has 100% Gold Derby support but is unbettable at -5000.

Best Visual Effects

Avatar: The Way of Water (-2500) has 100% of the Gold Derby votes in this category.

Best Animated Feature

Gold Derby gives Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio (-3500) a 95% chance to win.

Best International Film

All Quiet on the Western Front (-2000) has 100% Gold Derby support. It's the lock of all locks after winning Best Film at the BAFTAs.

No Bet

Best Actress

Nearly 80% of Gold Derby experts and editors are picking Michelle Yeoh (-175), but they've been wrong more than 25% of the time in this category, including two big misses in the past four years (Frances McDormand for Nomadland in 2021, Olivia Colman for The Favourite in 2019). I suspect Gold Derby is underestimating Cate Blanchett (+125) and this race is a lot closer to a coin flip.

Best Supporting Actress

Gold Derby's consensus top pick has never been wrong in this category, but they've never predicted this tight of a race. Excluding predictions that haven't been updated since before the SAG awards, Angela Bassett (+125) leads the way with 37% of the Gold Derby vote, followed by Jamie Lee Curtis (+150) at 34% and Kerry Condon (+225) at 29%.

Best Adapted Screenplay

Frontrunner Women Talking (-250) has 71% of the Gold Derby vote and is priced fairly. Top upset candidate All Quiet on the Western Front (+160) is overpriced and should be closer to +250.

Best Original Screenplay

Everything Everywhere All At Once (-150) is a slight favorite over The Banshees of Inisherin (+110), which is in line with Gold Derby's projections.

Best Cinematography

All Quiet on the Western Front (-550) is backed by 85% of Gold Derby experts and editors, which is in line with his listed odds. Elvis (+320) has a 10-15% chance to win as well, but isn't worth playing unless listed at +700 or better.

Best Film Editing

Everything Everywhere All At Once (-225) is priced nearly identically to its 71% Gold Derby projection, but upset candidate Top Gun: Maverick (+160) is overpriced; the 30% win probability implies odds closer to +245.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

Frontrunner Elvis (-225) is getting 66% of Gold Derby votes while top upset candidate The Whale (+150) is getting 29%. Both are overpriced and should be closer to -195 and +245, respectively. The Batman (+2500) and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (+2800) are each getting just over 2% of votes and would only be playable at +4000 or better.

Best Production Design

Frontrunner Babylon (-250) was chosen over top upset candidate Elvis (+330) at Critics Choice, BAFTA and the Art Directors Guild, but Babylon should be priced closer to -195 based on Gold Derby's projections.

Best Sound

Frontrunner Top Gun: Maverick (-750) is priced correctly. No. 1 upset contender, All Quiet on the Western Front (+400), should be closer to +700.

Best Documentary Feature

Navalny (-250) opened as high as +550 atop some books, but is now priced correctly relative to its 73% Gold Derby odds.

Best Animated Short

Despite being a category that features cartoons and has four films with at least one Gold Derby vote, this is the least-fun short film category. Frontrunner The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse (-300) is priced fairly, but the longshots are all overpriced. Ice Merchants (+350) should be closer +1200, My Year of Dicks (+450) should be closer to +870, and An Ostrich Told Me the World Is Fake and I Think I Believe It (+1600) should be closer to +1900.

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