Monday, December 30, 2013

Oscar Predictions: Best Supporting Actress

This year, Oscar nominations will be announced on Thursday, January 16th. I’ll be offering detailed predictions in most of the major categories, saving some of the biggest categories for last.

Last year’s nominees: Amy Adams, Sally Field, Anne Hathaway, Helen Hunt, Jacki Weaver

This year’s locks: Jennifer Lawrence, Lupita Nyongo

Very likely: June Squibb, Oprah Winfrey

Possible: Sally Hawkins, Julia Roberts, Léa Seydoux, Margo Martindale

Unlikely: Octavia Spencer

The rundown: This category seemed like it was completely locked up before Oprah Winfrey (The Butler) got snubbed by the Golden Globes, an organization that was expected to adore her. She’ll still likely get in, but that might also be true of her Globe replacement, Sally Hawkins (Blue Jasmine). Much of this category can be looked at in comparison to its films’ leading actors. Jennifer Lawrence (American Hustle) is safe even if none of her costars get nominated, while Lupita Nyongo (12 Years a Slave) and all her costars are sure things. June Squibb (Nebraska) is likelier than costar Bruce Dern, since he could get squeezed out of a tight field. Ditto Winfrey and Forest Whitaker, whose SAG nomination won’t likely translate to an Oscar nom. Unless voters really like “Blue Jasmine,” Cate Blanchett and Hawkins will be the only ones representing it. That leaves a few others whose chances are highly dependent on their costars. I’m not so sure that Meryl Streep will make the cut, which dampens the chances of Julia Roberts (August: Osage County) and her less famous but showier costar Margo Martindale (August: Osage County). If only Octavia Spencer (Fruitvale Station), a winner in this race three years ago, was nominated, it would be a shame, considering how excellent Michael B. Jordan was and how good the film was. I’m pulling for someone else, Léa Seydoux (Blue is the Warmest Color), who I can’t imagine would be nominated without her costar Adèle Exarchupoulos, but unfortunately I don’t think either of them will make it. Last year, this race got rid of bizarre contender Nicole Kidman and the esteemed Maggie Smith to bring in a great actress in a nothing role, Jacki Weaver, so let’s hope this year does the exact opposite and brings someone truly interesting to the table.

One possible crazy scenario: Both Roberts and Martindale get nominated, proving that someone loves that movie.

Forecasted winner: If she’s nominated, Winfrey.

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