All bets are off at this year's Oscars, thanks to host Chris Rock who might prompt more bleeps than a broken smoke alarm. But if you had to make some bets, say, in an Oscar pool, wouldn't you want a little help? TIP SHEET tracks the top races. As for what to wear, you're on your own.

CATEGORY: Best Picture
OUT IN FRONT: "Million Dollar Baby" has all the momentum.
ON ITS HEELS: "The Aviator" losing steam, but it grabbed more nominations.
TRIVIA TIME: Scorsese's "Taxi Driver" lost to a boxing movie, too. It was "Rocky."

CATEGORY: Best Director
OUT IN FRONT: Clint Eastwood. The DGA winner almost always takes home the gold.
ON HIS HEELS: Marty. Go with him if you think this will split with best picture.
TRIVIA TIME: But neither Kubrick nor Hitchcock ever won in this category either.

CATEGORY: Best Actor
OUT IN FRONT: Jamie Foxx. Now guess how long his speech will go over.
ON HIS HEELS: Nobody else really stands a chance. So don't flub this one.
TRIVIA TIME: The last time Leo was nominated was 11 years ago, for "Gilbert Grape."

CATEGORY: Best Actress
OUT IN FRONT: Hilary Swank will add another to her mantel after "Boys Don't Cry."
ON HER HEELS: Imelda Staunton, they say. But she's too far behind to actually win.
TRIVIA TIME: Bening already lost to Swank once, in 2000.

CATEGORY: Best Supporting Actor
OUT IN FRONT: Morgan Freeman. This is his fourth nomination, with no win yet.
ON HIS HEELS: Hello, stranger. For a big gamble, go with "Closer's" Clive.
TRIVIA TIME: T. H. Church's credits: "Monkeybone" and "George of the Jungle."

CATEGORY: Best Supporting Actress
OUT IN FRONT: A tight race. But Cate, for playing Kate, in "The Aviator."
ON HER HEELS: In the upset category, Okonedo qualifies.
TRIVIA TIME: Natalie slept with Jude in "Cold Mountain," too. Will she get lucky this time?

Join the Discussion