For those that aren’t already aware, the competition includes the Israeli documentary on the country’s security officials "The Gatekeepers", and Palestinian film "5 Broken Cameras", which hit headlines this week when director Emad Burnat was detained by immigration officers on his arrival in LA. The two big American titles in the category are "How to Survive a Plague", about the history of AIDS activism and treatment, and "The Invisible War", which explores the epidemic of sexual violence within the American military. The bookies' frontrunner at this point seems to be "Searching for Sugar Man", which tells the story of a popular folk singer who mysteriously disappeared. “Sugar Man” is the biggest box office hit in the category, and has already won awards at BAFTA, PGA, WGA and DGA.
New voting regulations for the documentary category have considerably expanded the voting pool. Some commentators expect that these changes make “Sugar Man” more of a shoe-in as more of a light hearted film that will appeal to people who might not be fans of traditional docs. Others feel that these new regulations make the whole category much harder to predict.
Elsewhere in the ceremony, we’ll be keeping our eyes and ears on Dogwoof title Chasing Ice, nominated for Best Original Song for "Before My Time", written and produced by J. Ralph. Chasing Ice is the only documentary to be nominated in this category. The song is performed by Scarlett Johansson and Joshua Bell. We're looking forward to a "sing-off" between Hollywood darling Scarlett Johansson and the Grammy-winning Adele, who is nominated for the theme tune of "Skyfall". Other contenders in the category include "Everybody Needs a Friend" from Ted; "Pi's Lullaby" from Life of Pi; and "Suddenly" from Les Miserables sung by Hugh Jackman. Will Scarlett be able to hold her own? Find out on Sunday night...
Chasing Ice is still in cinemas, so check the website to find your local screening, or you can follow the film on Twitter and Facebook: