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Tom Ford, "A Single Man"
Previous nominations or wins: None
Pros: The legendary fashion designer has made an impressive transition to film director by successfully adapting Christopher Isherwood's novel. Ford may also see stars Colin Firth and Julianne Moore receive their own Oscar nods. Not bad for his first film.
Cons: Is the film good because of Ford's vision or because of the talents of his more experienced actors? Until Ford makes another film voters really won't know and that may hinder his support.
[Left, Ford, Moore, Firth, Nicholas Hoult and Matthew Goode at the 2009 Venice Film Festival.]