The 2013 Oscar Preview: Acting Categories

Acting!  Now, for our four acting categories.

Best Supporting Actress

Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
Sally Field, Lincoln
Helen Hunt, The Sessions
Amy Adams, The Master
Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook

There really is no discussion here.  Anne Hathaway is going to win Best Supporting Actress.  She steals the film and she will still this win, as almost no other actress will come close.  Performance wise though, I Sally Field in Lincoln matches Hathaway’s vibrato and intensity.  Her crucial part as Mary Todd Lincoln is crucial for the film, and her astonishing work would’ve been recognized in almost any other year.  I will say this.  If for some reason Hathaway doesn’t win and either Weaver or Field shock the world in a huge upset, their win would be a foreshadow for both Director and Picture.  But I’d bet my left arm on Anne Hathaway.  In other news…Russell Crowe is performing at the Oscars.  Shoot.  Me.  Now.

Best Supporting Actor

Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Phillip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
Alan Arkin, Argo
Robert De Niro, Silver Linings Playbook

This is most likely the closest race out of any category this year at the Academy Awards.  There is no lead, no favorite and more advantage.  Technically, Waltz should be the favorite considering he has received the most guild awards including the BAFTA and Golden Globe, but he just recently won for Inglourious Basterds which usually is an automatic no win.  But his role in Django is so fascinating that many seem to think that just can’t ignore his performance.  But I’m still sticking with the assumption that most voters will realize that they can’t give him two Oscars in the same category with less than 2-3 years apart.  That moves on to Tommy Lee Jones in Lincoln.  His win at the SAG and Critic’s Choice is very important, considering the acting branch in the Academy has the most amount of members.  But winning the SAG does not always equate to winning the Oscar.  My guess is that if Tommy Lee Jones win Supporting Actor, then you can safely assume that Spielberg will win Directing, but then again, I’m betting on myself to look like a complete fool come Oscar night.  That’s why my pick will most likely be Robert De Niro in Silver Linings Playbook.  I think people love Silver Linings, but I also think people love De Niro even more.  Though he’s already received two Oscars before, it’s been 21 years since his last NOMINATION.  And considering how my picks are going, I think the Academy will feel it necessary to reward Silver Linings for its achievement in some category.  Though most people will bet on either Waltz or Jones (which is the smartest and safest thing to do), I wouldn’t be too shocked if De Niro’s name is inside that envelope.  And you can make sure I’ll be bragging all night on this blog.

Best Actress

Emannuelle Riva, Amour
Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
Quvenzhane Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild
Naomi Watts, The Impossible

This is also another category that’s almost impossible to predict.  The race for Best Actress has changed constantly over that last few months, with a new leader taking the top spot every week or so.  After Zero Dark Thirty was released, it was almost certain that Jessica Chastain would receive her first Oscar, establishing the start of a marvelous career we are about to witness.  But when that shit storm hit of ZDT’s pro-torture nonsense, it took down any chance for ZDT to dominate, let alone win one Oscar on Sunday.  I do hope ZDT wins at least one, but I don’t think it’ll be in this category, which is a shame.  Chastain turns in an amazing performance, as does Wallis and Watts.  Both are amazing works of art, and their respective film truly rests on their shoulders, supplying the emotional and psychological toll of their situations.  But the favorite here is Lawrence mainly because Silver Linings Playbook is a film that the Academy eats up, a la Argo.  Her performance is great, and just like Chastain, will have an amazing career with future nominations and win(s).  And because of this huge potential and promise from both Chastain and Lawrence, I believe they will cancel each other out and make room for 82-year old Emannuelle Riva, the oldest actress to ever be nominated.  Amour is adored, and she pulls in one of the most harrowing performances of the year.  Amour will win at least 1-2 Oscars, and Best Actress is a strong possibility.

Best Actor

Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables
Denzel Washington, Flight
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
Joaquin Phoenix, The Master

Again, another category filled with great performances.  This is definitely a strong year for Best Actor, and anyone of these actors not named Daniel Day-Lewis had a legitimate chance of winning if not for, well, Daniel Day-Lewis.  There really is no need for discussion here because just like Anne Hathaway, Lewis is running away with this award ever since people first flocked to see Lincoln.  If there’s any chance of an upset, which then I will throw my remote at my television set and then cry, is Hugh Jackman.  The Academy is raving over his performance, and just like Lewis, rests on his abilities to carry the film.  I don’t see it happening, but if there was any possible chance that another name could be called, it’d be him.  Even smaller chance for Bradley Cooper, but there’s no reason for anyone to think this is going to anyone else except Daniel Day-Lewis.

Tomorrow we will dive into the Directing category.

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