Best Picture: Amour, Argo, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Les Misérables, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook, Zero Dark Thirty
It will be a tight race between Argo, Life of Pi, Lincoln and Zero Dark Thirty. Amour would have been in the running but it's almost a shoo-in for Best Foreign Film so it's unlikely to pick up two similar prizes. Argo has swept numerous awards so it's a favourite at the moment (that plus Ben Affleck missed out on Best Director for the great job he's done on the real-life thriller); Lincoln has pedigree in Steven Spielberg and history going for it; the visual feast that is Life of Pi is this year's Avatar with the way its ground-breaking 3D has redefined the big-screen-experience; while Kathryn Bigelow might get a "consolation" prize with Zero Dark Thirty for similarly missing out on a Best Director nomination like Affleck.
Will win: Lincoln
Should win: Argo
Won't win: Django Unchained
Best Actor in a Leading Role: Bradley Cooper (Silver Linings Playbook), Daniel Day-Lewis (Lincoln), Hugh Jackman (Les Miserables), Joaquin Phoenix (The Master), Denzel Washington (Flight)
Poor Hugh Jackman; he's great in Les Miserables but he faces stiff competition from both Denzel Washington and Daniel Day-Lewis - two actors who are no strangers to sweeping awards for their acting chops. There's very little to separate the pair except for Joaquin Phoenix who could emerge as the dark horse in this race. Bradley Cooper will be better off quietly enjoying the free champagne (and avoiding a hangover) with those guys in the running.
Will win: Denzel Washington
Should win: Daniel Day-Lewis
Won't win: Bradley Cooper
Best Actress in a Leading Role: Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty), Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook), Emmanuelle Riva (Amour), Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild), Naomi Watts (The Impossible)
If Emmanuelle Riva wins, she will not only make Oscar history by being the oldest actress to receive the honour in that category but it could also be her best birthday present as the French actress will turn 86 that night.
On the other hand, if it goes to frizzy-haired Quvenzhané Wallis, the nine-year-old will be the youngest ever to win. Naomi Watts has more of an outside chance but it's going to be tough especially with Jessica Chastain and Jennifer Lawrence - both are favourites next to Riva - also in the running.
Will win: Emmanuelle Riva
Should win: Emmanuelle Riva
Won't win: Quvenzhané Wallis
Best Director: Amour (Michael Haneke), Beasts of the Southern Wild (Benh Zeitlin), Life of Pi (Ang Lee), Silver Linings Playbook (David O Russell), Lincoln (Steven Spielberg)
Ang Lee has done some fantastic work in bringing Life of Pi to the big screen but Steven Spielberg has chosen the right historic material that might sit better with older voters. Michael Haneke is a dark horse because Amour is a European production that's made outside of Hollywood. But if Michel Hazanavicius can win it for The Artist last year, who knows. Benh Zeitlin and David O Russell - both surprise nominees - face an uphill task against everyone else in this category.
Will win: Steven Spielberg
Should win: Ang Lee
Won't win: David O Russell