Best Production Design Winner, Nominees & 2021 Oscar Odds

Best Production Design Winner, Nominees & 2021 Oscar Odds article feature image
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Bing Guan/Bloomberg via Getty Images. Pictured: A poster for Mank hangs outside a parking garage in Los Angeles.

Update: Mank won the Academy Award for Best Production Design.


Best Production Design Nominees & Odds

Nominee Odds Implied Prob.
Mank -560 84.9%
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom +650 13.3%
Tenet +800 11.1%
News of the World +2000 4.8%
The Father +2000 4.8%
Odds as of April 24 and via DraftKings.

Best Production Design Predictions

Tenet +800

Collin WhitchurchThis category is noteworthy primarily over my annoyance that Mank is likely to beat Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, which should win. The Art Directors Guild actually splits its feature film awards into a number of categories: Period, Fantasy, Contemporary and Animated (the latter only for the last four years and everything but Contemporary only since 2006).

That Contemporary category was actually terrible at predicting Academy Awards success even when it was a standalone category. Going back to 2000, the only time the ADG Contemporary prize went to the film that won Best Production Design was in 2016, when La La Land won. In all, though, one of the ADP categories has gone to the ultimate Oscar winner 11 out of the last 14 years. The BAFTAs, by comparison, have matched up seven times during that span and eight times in the last 20 years.

Mank was the winner in this category at the ADG for period pieces as well as the BAFTAs, which is why this category has little drama. Da 5 Bloods (not nominated) won in the Contemporary category, and Tenet won in Fantasy. Since Da 5 Bloods was not nominated and Tenet is tracking behind both Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and Mank, a small wager could be justified as long as it stays in the +800 range. This award is likely going to Mank, however.

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