Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Oscar Winner Predictions: Best Actress in a Leading Role

The competition: Annette Bening’s high-strung life partner (The Kids Are All Right), Nicole Kidman’s grieving mother (Rabbit Hole), Jennifer Lawrence’s tough young caretaker (Winter’s Bone), Natalie Portman’s overworked ballerina (Black Swan), and Michelle Williams’ long-suffering wife (Blue Valentine).

Previous winners: Sandra Bullock, Kate Winslet, Marion Cotillard, Helen Mirren, Reese Witherspoon, Hilary Swank
My winner: Lesley Manville (Another Year)
Who should win: Lawrence, Bening, or Kidman
Who will win: The clear frontrunner is Portman. Bening would have been a superb challenger given her overdue status if “Black Swan” wasn’t so popular. She’s still a possibility given the fact that she’s never won, and if there’s a Portman backlash, she’s in. Lawrence would win a breakout category if there was won, and Kidman has already won her Oscar. It seems that Williams just made it in, and the lack of enthusiasm for other aspects of her film should effectively discount her. One of the most important factors in Portman’s favor is that her film probably won’t win any other awards, meaning all the love for the film will go to her. It doesn’t hurt anything that she’s so well-liked.

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