Sunday, February 23, 2014

Oscar Winner Predictions: Best Actor in a Supporting Role

The competition: Barkhad Abdi’s determined pirate (Captain Phillips), Bradley Cooper’s eccentric FBI agent (American Hustle), Michael Fassbender’s Bible-thumping slave owner (12 Years a Slave), Jonah Hill’s drug-popping moneyman (The Wolf of Wall Street), and Jared Leto’s kindhearted transvestite (Dallas Buyers Club).

Previous winners: Christoph Waltz, Christopher Plummer, Christian Bale, Christoph Waltz, Heath Ledger, Javier Bardem
My winner: Benedict Cumberbatch
The facts: This is an easy one to analyze. Cooper was nominated for the first time last year, and Hill the year before that. The other three are freshman Oscar nominees. All of their films are nominated for Best Picture.

Who should win: Fassbender, though Abdi or Leto are great too
Who will win: There’s a clear frontrunner here, and there’s nothing to suggest Leto won’t take it home. It’s mostly about the role, and he’s been winning so much on his path here that it would be crazy for him not to take home this prize. He wasn’t nominated at the BAFTAs (presumably because of eligibility), where Abdi prevailed. Though it would be awesome to see the young Somalian actor win, it’s unlikely. Hill wouldn’t be able to manage a win, and Cooper is least likely of his cast to be rewarded. Fassbender will definitely be an Oscar nominee again, and he’ll win for a performance more central to his film and not as overshadowed by his costars. This is Leto’s to lose.

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