How reader predictions stacked up against 2020 Oscars wins

You passed, just barely.

Bong Joon-ho holds the Oscars for best original screenplay, best international feature film, best directing, and best picture for "Parasite" at the Governors Ball after the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

Predictions came in, ballots were cast, and the presumed Best Picture frontrunner did not win. Last night’s 92nd Academy Awards had more than a few memorable moments and upsets: Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite” became the first non-English language film to win Best Picture and “Joker” won only two of the 11 awards for which it was nominated (Best Actor and Best Original Music Score). Did you think Brad Pitt would take home his first Oscar in an acting category? How about guessing Renée Zellweger would win her first Best Actress award? Last week, we asked readers for their 2020 Oscars predictions and you showed more than 60 percent accuracy in the major categories. Here’s exactly how you stacked up against the results. 

Best Actor


Winner: Joaquin Phoenix, “Joker”

Your prediction: Joaquin Phoenix, “Joker” readers and the Academy were in resounding agreement on Joaquin Phoenix’s performance in “Joker,” with 82 percent of you favoring him for the Best Actor award. Phoenix’s impassioned acceptance speech touched on everything from human greed to his late brother River Phoenix to artificial bovine insemination. 

Best Actress

Winner: Renée Zellweger, “Judy”

Your prediction: Renée Zellweger, “Judy”

Another consensus between readers and the Academy was Renée Zellweger as Best Actress for her performance in “Judy”: 50 percent of reader submissions selected her for the award. Cynthia Erivo, the only Black actor (and the only actor of color) to be nominated this year, received eight percent of readers’ votes.

Best Supporting Actor

Winner: Brad Pitt, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”

Your prediction: Brad Pitt, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”

In one of the less surprising announcements of the evening, Brad Pitt won the Best Supporting Actor category, as 63 percent of readers thought he would. Pitt used his acceptance speech to call out Senate republicans over their treatment of the impeachment trial, as well as to thank his co-star Leonardo DeCaprio and director Quentin Tarantino. 

Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Laura Dern, “Marriage Story”


Your prediction: Laura Dern, “Marriage Story”

Laura Dern’s performance as a divorce lawyer snagged “Marriage Story” its only Oscar win of the night. In a decisive vote, 45 percent of readers accurately predicted this outcome in the Best Supporting Actress category, with the remaining nominees evenly spread among readers’ picks. 

Best Director

Winner: Bong Joon-ho, “Parasite”

Your prediction: Sam Mendes, “1917”

“Parasite” had a stellar evening. Bong Joon-ho snagged the award for Best Director, an upset for the 41 percent of readers who predicted Sam Mendes for “1917.” Joon-ho became the first South Korean filmmaker to win an Oscar for Best Director. 

Best Original Screenplay

Winner: “Parasite,” Bong Joon-ho, Han Jin Won

Your prediction: “Parasite,” Bong Joon-ho, Han Jin Won

Best Original Screenplay was hotly contested among readers. Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” came in at 29 percent, but was edged out of readers’ top choice by just three votes in favor of “Parasite,” which was also the Academy’s choice. 

Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner: “Jojo Rabbit,” Taika Waititi

Your prediction: “Little Women,” Greta Gerwig

The 2020 Oscars snubbed Greta Gerwig, who readers (29 percent) believed the director deserved the Best Adapted Screenplay award for “Little Women.” However, the ultimate Academy pick was Taika Waititi’s “Jojo Rabbit,” as 19 percent of you predicted it would be. 

Best Picture

Winner: “Parasite”

Your prediction: “1917”

A majority of readers (35 percent) predicted “1917” as the winner for Best Picture, with “Parasite” a distant second at 26 percent. As we now know, the unexpected win for “Parasite” made Oscar history. The least popular pick was “Marriage Story”: Only one person thought it would snag Best Picture. 


Take a look at all the winners from the 92nd Academy Awards. 

Were you disappointed by this year’s Academy Awards? Did the winners deserve their Oscars trophies? Tell us about it in the comments below. 

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