Saturday, February 5, 2022

Oscar Predictions: Best Supporting Actress

This year, Oscar nominations will be announced on Tuesday, February 8th. I’ll be offering detailed predictions in all categories.

Last year’s nominees: Maria Bakalova, Glenn Close, Olivia Colman, Amanda Seyfried, Yuh-Jung Youn

This year’s locks: Kirsten Dunst, Caitriona Balfe, Ariana DeBose

Very likely: Aunjanue Ellis

Possible: Ruth Negga, Ann Dowd, Cate Blanchett, Marlee Matlin, Rita Moreno, Judi Dench

The rundown: I predicted this category entirely correctly last year, but I’m not quite as confident this time around. Kirsten Dunst (The Power of the Dog), Caitriona Balfe (Belfast), and Ariana DeBose (West Side Story) seem like sure things, though you never know. Dunst’s miss with BAFTA might be cause for concern, but their rules are very different and her omission would be very shocking. Ruth Negga (Passing) scored with both the Golden Globes and SAG, but the lack of attention for her film in other categories means she could be easily left off. Aunjanue Ellis (King Richard) missed out on a SAG nomination but should be okay getting in (she also scored at BAFTA, which wasn’t a guarantee). Cate Blanchett (Nightmare Alley) got her spot, and I’d be thrilled if she managed to get in, though it’s hard to know how her film is going to do. On the note of films with likely mild receptions, Ann Dowd (Mass) will have some difficulty on that front, with bids from only the Critics Choice Association and BAFTA, while other options, like Marlee Matlin (CODA), Rita Moreno (West Side Story), who won this prize for the original film sixty years ago, and Judi Dench (Belfast), might get a boost from their films doing well in other categories. Jessie Buckley (The Lost Daughter), a BAFTA nominee, could crash this party, but that seems unlikely, especially since her previous BAFTA bid, for “Wild Rose,” didn’t lead to any attention for that film.

For your consideration: If voters really embrace her film, Rebecca Ferguson (Dune) might earn a deserved nomination for a standout performance.

Forecasted winner: It looks like DeBose is the frontrunner, though it could also be Dunst.

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