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91st Oscars. Oscar Contenders of 2018 (for the 2019 Ceremony) - For prediction, discussion, entertainment purposes only

 discuss on the blog

UPDATED CHART
NOVEMBER 1ST PREDICTIONS

Ranked by likelihood of nomination in the categories (these charts are not about wins - that comes after nominations). Arrows indicate movement since last chart. "Lock" images are only possible once a film has opened in theaters and met eligibility requirements.

Tier 1 - Prediction

This category remains an insane embarrasment of riches. Hollywood will have to whittle it down to five that that whittling will be painful.

Glenn Close
71 yrs old | 40 films | 6 nominations
THE WIFE
SPC
August 3rd

Noms: Gotham
Wins: n/a

Sony Pictures Classics played their cards exactly right releasing this early as the slow burn performance needed time to settle in as a contender before the onslaught of showier films. It's a hit in arthouses so all she needs is the precursors to cement this 'finally give her the Oscar' bid.

Reviewed

Lady Gaga
32 yrs old | 4 films | never nominated *in acting*
A STAR IS BORN
Warner Bros
Oct 5th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

Her red carpet glamour, superstar status, and rapport with Bradley Cooper onscreen will be catnip to voters. The big question is can she win? We think it depends on whether the film is a regular sized hit or a phenomenon.

Reviewed

Olivia Colman

44 yrs old | 17 films | never nominated
THE FAVOURITE
Nov 23rd

Noms: n/a
Wins: Gotham Ensemble, Venice

All three actresses are wonderful in this triangular drama with Colman reigning as the queen. She's opted to go leading (appropriate but a bit surprising) with Stone opting to go supporting (totally inappropriate since she's essentially the protagonist who movies the plot and has the biggest arc)

Reviewed 

Melissa McCarthy

47 yrs old | 27 films | 1 nomination
CAN YOU EVER FORGIVE ME?
Fox Searchlight
Oct 19th


Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

The mellow trailer undersold this performance which has the kind of inner rage fueled dramedy that is surprisingly moving. If the film is at least a minor success with audiences, count her in. It's the performance we've been waiting for from her to expand her range. What's more she gets a courtroom monologue Oscar clip scene that's a total knockout.

Reviewed 

 

Viola Davis
52 yrs old | 37 films | 3 noms | 1 win
WIDOWS 
Fox
Nov 16th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

In a weaker year she'd be more of a slam dunk but though she's as potent as usual she doesn't have much of an arc in this film about a desperate widow turned criminal. That said in a competitive year the box office heat the film is likely to generate the month before voting is probably a good sign.

Reviewed 

 
Tier 2 - Or Maybe One or Two of These Five

 Yalitza Aparicio
??? yrs old | debut film
ROMA
Netflix
Dec 14th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

Critics are besotted with the film and her leading role - the media pulling for her will mean a lot given that she's an unknown. But Oscar has a long history of not really responding to auteurist vessel performances and the film is very much about the direction.

Reviewed

Nicole Kidman
51 yrs old | 56 films | 4 noms | 1 win
DESTROYER
Annapurna
Dec 25th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

 The release date and reviews dont inspire confidence, but Kidman's transformation does. It's the kind of visual gimmick that gets people talking and the film will be fresh in the memory come balloting time. An unlikeable character in a competitive year is a problem though.

Reviewed

 Toni Collette

45 yrs old | 1 nomination
HEREDITARY
A24
June 8th

Noms: Gotham
Wins: n/a

Bri
 Though she's obviously giving one of the year's most exciting performances in this tour de force she's doing it within the horror genre which makes it a harder sell for voters.

Reviewed

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Reviewed

Emily Blunt
35 yrs old | 28 films | never nominated
MARY POPPINS RETURNS
Disney
Dec 25th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

With Gaga out of the Golden Globe musical race, Blunt's campaign just got quite a boost. But what a tough Best Actress field to break into for a 'light/fun' performance in a box office aimed movie.

Trailer Discussion

 Carey Mulligan
33 yrs old | 17 films | 1 nomination
WILDLIFE
IFC
Oct 19th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

This angry funny suddenly single mother is a juicy role and Mulligan attacks it doing her best work yet. But can IFC get the film enough attention? At the moment it feels like she won't get the push that she deserves which is a pity because WOW she's good in this one

 
Tier 3 - Long Shots

Julia Roberts
50 yrs old | 4 noms | 1 win
BEN IS BACK
Roadside Attractions
Dec 7th

Yes, she's the lead in this drama about a mother whose addict son (Ben) shows up unexpectedly at her doorstep. She does strong work but this field sure is stacked.

Saoirse Ronan

24 yrs old | 21 films | 3 nominations
MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS
Focus
Dec 7th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

Oscar is definitely into her but will they respond to a costume drama that's been told several times onscreen. We won't know until the reviews are out... if not later than that.

Trailer Discussion

Amandla Stenberg
20 yrs old | never nominated
THE HATE U GIVE
20th Century Fox
Oct 5th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

This rising star led three films this year, and The Hate U Give gave her her best showcase yet. That the film was well received by critics and audiences should make her a "breakthrough" award possibility during award season. We'll see.

Review

Maggie Gyllenhaal
40 yrs old | 1 nomination
THE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER
Netflix
Oct 12th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

Brilliant as usual though Oscar has so far only responded to her in one of her least impressive performances. A difficult character... the kind you could get nominated for in the 1970s but now... ? Hmmm.

Capsule Review

Felicity Jones
34 yrs old | 21 films | 1 nomination
ON THE BASIS OF SEX
Focus
Dec 25th

Noms: n/a
Wins: n/a

Buzz is not strong thus far and the Christmas release doesn't bode well since it doesn't seem like a flashy enough performance to shake up the race (which is what last week of year releases need unless you're a huge star or in a huge film)

 
Tier 4a - Longshots

Emily Blunt - A Quiet Place
Elsie Fisher -
Eighth Grade
Keira Knightley
-Colette
Regina Hall -Support the Girls (Gotham nom)
Kathryn Hahn - Private Life (Gotham nom)
Joanna Kulig - Cold War
Kiki Lane
- If Beale Street
Thomasin McKenzie - Leave No Trace
Chloe Moretz - The Miseducation of Cameron Post
Michelle Pfeiffer - Where is Kyra? (Gotham nom)
Hilary Swank - What They Had
Charlize Theron - Tully
Rachel Weisz - Disobedience
Mary Elizabeth Winstead - All About Nina
Constance Wu - Crazy Rich Asians

NOT ELIGIBLE BUT ALSO AWARD WINNERS THIS YEAR

Ana Burn - The Heiresses (Berlnale)
Samal Yeslyamova - Ayka (Cannes)