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Oscars 2015: Who Will Show, What Might Win, and When to Watch

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Getty Images

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This Sunday evening, ABC will host what is arguably America's most prestigious awards show, the 87th Academy Awards. Last year, Oscar host Ellen Degeneres entertained 43.7 million viewers. According to The Hollywood Reporter, it was the most-watched Oscars of the past 10 years. To put that into perspective: Super Bowl 2015 drew 114.4 million viewers. But hey, progress! For those of you who will be dressing up and digging into themed popcorn bowls, here's a complete cheat sheet for Sunday night.

The Host

Neil Patrick Harris is this year's host (after Ellen Degeneres reportedly refused an encore performance) and people are generally pretty optimistic about it. Harris hasn't been shy about the fact that an Oscars hosting gig is on his bucket list; he's generally considered a safe choice given his success at hosting multiple Emmy and Tony Award shows. He's an old hand at this. As Harris told the AP, he's hoping for a Kanye moment and/or scandal of some other sort to liven up what Vanity Fair predicts will be a boring show.

The Red Carpet

The festivities officially kick off at 7pm ET on ABC and the actual show is slated to run from 8:30pm to 11:30, although Harris told the Associated Press that he'll be happy if the entire thing wraps in under five hours. For red carpet enthusiasts, E! will start its own coverage at 1:30pm ET, giving pre-red-carpet hosts Giuliana Rancic, Kelly Osbourne, Ross Mathews, Jason Kennedy, Terrence Jenkins, Brad Goreski, Catt Sadler, Maria Menounos, and Orly Shani plenty of air time for awkward banter. Ryan Seacrest, A-team player, won't join the festivities until actual celebrities begin walking the carpet at 5:30pm. Look forward to forced mani cam action and some additional commentary from special guest host Khloé Kardashian.

Who's Favored to Win

As far as the nominations go, there are no huge Leonardo DiCaprio-like upsets expected. Forbes has a complete rundown of the nominees professional gamblers are betting on, because of course there's a massive gambling market for the Oscars. In case you're unfamiliar with any of the nominated actors or actresses, The Daily Beast pulled together a compilation of each nominee's most embarrassing role ever. But for serious Oscar watchers, we listed all of the nominees from the top categories below, complete with links to the films on Amazon Instant Video. You've got roughly 58 hours to get acquainted with every single nominated movie... or just watch the trailers.

The Nominees

Best Picture:

American Sniper

The Imitation Game

Birdman

Selma

Boyhood

The Theory of Everything

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Whiplash

Best Director:

Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Birdman

Richard Linklater, Boyhood

Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher

Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel

Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game

Best Actor:

Steve Carell, Foxcatcher

Michael Keaton, Birdman

Bradley Cooper, American Sniper

Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game

Best Actress:

Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night

Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl

Felicity Jones, The Theory of Everything

Reese Witherspoon, Wild

Julianne Moore, Still Alice

Best Supporting Actor:

Robert Duvall, The Judge

Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher

Ethan Hawke, Boyhood

J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

Edward Norton, Birdman

Best Supporting Actress:

Patricia Arquette, Boyhood

Emma Stone, Birdman

Laura Dern, Wild

Meryl Streep, Into The Woods

Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game