Famous and rich, give them an award!

Holy crap, kiddies, it’s Oscar time!

Well, not exactly, but it’s never too early to start wagering on whose going to walk home with a little golden statue of a naked man. I mean, I haven’t seen idolatry this bad since the Book of Corinthians (pause for stomach-clenching laughter). But seriously, folks, Oscars is that special time of year when a bunch of rich, overpaid and overprivileged people get together and give each other awards for working two months out of the year.

And you know what? They deserve it.

It’s hard growing up wealthy and not really having to work and having a family that’s already well established in the business so you can avoid those pesky “auditions.” Then somebody pays you a million dollars to be good looking and say a few lines, preferably with your shirt off. It’s a tough row to hoe.

So, let’s all take a break from our studies and our jobs that dominate our unimportant lives and spend three hours celebrating the rich and spoiled. Get out your scorecards and follow me along on the roller coaster ride that is Oscar predictions!

Best supporting actress will go to Kathy Bates for “About Schmidt.” Here’s why: She’s old and she takes her clothes off. That’s it. Yes, she’s a great actress and all that, but people love it when old people do weird things. Think “The Full Monty” or “Saving Grace.” You see, when a young model takes her clothes off and gets into a hot tub, it is considered sexy and enticing and doesn’t really reflect on the actress’ performance. Now a woman who is in her late fifties and out of shape doing the exact same thing? Why, that’s brilliant, daring, risk-taking acting, my friend. Winner: Kathy Bates.

Now, the category of best supporting actor is a little harder to call. Personally, this writer thinks they should hand the award to the great Sean Astin for his performance as Samwise Gamgee in “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.” Of course, this writer thinks Astin is brilliant in anything. However, the little naked man will most likely go to Paul Newman for his performance in “Road to Perdition.” I don’t know why, but it just will. Other than Astin, who I already mentioned, I think that the precious Academy shouldn’t overlook Willem DaFoe for his really creepy role as a home porn producer in “Auto Focus.” The man was creepy. Given the choice between a hobbit, an amateur pornographer and Paul Newman, however, I’m sure you can figure out whose going to come out ahead. Winner: Paul Newman.

Alright, on to best actress. Now this one is tough because as of right now it appears to be a dead heat between Julianne Moore for “Far From Heaven” and Nicole Kidman for “The Hours.” Traditionally, voters just can’t get enough of women who are trapped in bad marriages, which would give Moore the upper hand. On the other side of the fence, you’ve got Nicole Kidman, who pulled the Oscar shark-jumping move of putting on a funny nose to more accurately portray Virginia Woolf. Voters love when beautiful women make themselves less beautiful for a role. It’s the same idea as the Kathy Bates thing above. However, the real dark horse could be Nia Vardalos from the world’s favorite movie ever, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.” While people would love the Rocky-esque story of a fairly unknown actress winning the award, I think the academy will go with Kidman for two reasons: They love the whole nose thing and they love the two-peat. Winner: Nicole Kidman by a nose. Get it?! Oh my God, I just thought of that one. Seriously. They just come to me like divine intervention.

The award for best actor will go to Jack Nicholson for “About Schmidt.” No one stands a chance this year against this guy. Sure, Nicholas Cage is just begging on his hands and knees for an award with that whole dual-role-look-at-my-receding-hairline thing that he’s doing in “Adaptation,” but come on Nick, that pouty thing is so 1996. That getting married to Lisa Marie Presley thing is so 1994. Oh, and what about Adam Sandler for “Punch Drunk Love”? No, because he was undone by his own frozen poopie jokes in “Eight Crazy Nights.” Nicholson is doing what most aging actors never do, which is play a man his own age with a wife his own age. Critics love the crap out of a move like that. Winner: Jack Nicholson.

It’s a crime that the Academy is not going to give the best director award to Peter Jackson for “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.” They shouldn’t even bother nominating anyone else, they should just acknowledge the fact the “The Two Towers” was an incredible and groundbreaking undertaking. Instead, they’ll give him a bunch of consolation prizes masked as special effects awards and give best director to George Clooney. Just kidding. No, it will probably go to Spike Jonze for “Adaptation.” Martin Scorsese’s “Gangs of New York” was too notoriously delayed to grab an award, and they would never give an award to Roman Polanski (for “The Pianist”), due to his past, which involves Manson family murders and statutory rape. Winner: Spike Jonze, by default.

Last but not least, the grand doozie of them all, the best picture award. My feelings on this category can best be found in my previous rant about the best director award. “The Two Towers” was too action oriented, “Gangs of New York” was too bloody, “The Pianist” involved Roman Polanski, you get the picture. That leaves a dead heat between “About Schmidt” and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.” This reporter’s theory is this: Since Nicholson will win for best actor, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” will win best picture. It’s the Academy’s way of covering all their bases. Remember, these are the people that voted “Titanic” the best picture of 1997. Winner: “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.”

Well, I’ve got my scorecard all filled out, how about you? Let’s all wait until March 23 to watch a whole bunch of rich people flaunting jewelry and awarding each other for really not doing that much. What a magical evening it will be.