And the nominees are:
American Gangster- Arthur Max, Beth A. Rubino
Atonement- Sarah Greenwood, Katie Spencer
The Golden Compass- Dannis Gassner, Anna Pinnock
Sweeney Todd- Dante Ferretti, Francesca Lo Schiavo
There Will Be Blood- Jack Fisk, Jim Erickson
The recent art directors guild award went to There Will Be Blood (period film), The Golden Compass (fantasy film) and No Country For Old Men (contemporary film), so it proved unhelpful. My pick would go to Blood for it bare boned depiction of early-California-- it was subtle, but perfect in it's unshowiness, but I think it will come down to Sweeney Todd and Atonement. I'm deeply saddened that Across the Universe (especially for the freakily amazing circus scene) and The Assassination of Jesse James (for everything) are sadly missing from the list.