2024 Oscars: Best Original Screenplay Predictions

Final Oscars voting is February 22-27, 2024. The 96th Oscars telecast will be broadcast on Sunday, March 10 and air live on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT. We update predictions through awards season, so keep checking IndieWire for all our 2024 Oscar picks.

The State of the Race

While they normally occur far too early in the season to be seen as predictive, the Gotham Awards were onto something when they awarded Best Screenplay to “Anatomy of a Fall” writers Justine Triet and Arthur Harari. A little over a month later, the Golden Globes would do the same thing, which is especially notable since that awards body also has all its screenplay contenders, whether they are original or adapted, compete in the same category.

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Now, with Oscar nominations announced, and “Anatomy of a Fall” earning more nods than expected, including one for Best Director, it seems all but certain that Best Original Screenplay is writer-director Justine Triet’s best shot at winning an Oscar this year.

It was previously thought that “The Holdovers,” which also had a strong showing on nominations day, would be the screenplay frontrunner, especially given how its helmer Alexander Payne is a favorite of the Writers branch, but his new collaborator David Hemingson has not been collecting trophies the same way some of his fellow nominees have.

That said, most of the awards “Past Lives” writer-director Celine Song has been receiving are honoring her first go at directing, rather than her script. She has won a few screenplay awards from regional guilds, but some of the bigger ones like New York Film Critics Circle and the National Society of Film Critics went to Samy Burch and Alex Mechanik for “May December” instead.

It may seem a little wild to count out Bradley Cooper and Josh Singer, the only Oscar returning nominees, but similar to the snubbed “Killers of the Flower Moon” script, many of the “Maestro” naysayers take issue with how the pair approached telling Leonard Bernstein’s story.

Nominees are listed below in order of likelihood they will win.

Arthur Harari and Justine Triet (“Anatomy of a Fall”)
David Hemingson (“The Holdovers”)
Celine Song (“Past Lives”)
Samy Burch and Alex Mechanik (“May December”)
Bradley Cooper and Josh Singer (“Maestro”)

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