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88th Oscars. Oscar Contenders of 2015 - For prediction, discussion, entertainment purposes only

 discuss on the blog


July 1st - Predicted Five
There may be some leading candidates hiding in this chart or some fraudulent classifications.

Rooney Mara
1 nomination
(Weinstein Co)
Dec 18th

Ellen Page
1 nomination

Elizabeth Olsen
never nominated
I Saw the Light

Julie Walters
2 nominations
(Fox Searchlight)
Nov 6th
Jennifer Jason Leigh
never nominated
The Hateful Eight
(Weinstein Co)
 She was the surprise Best Actress winner at Cannes but since the movie is named for Cate's character, and it's the larger of the two parts, we're sure they'll attempt category fraud here with her co-lead  With two lead films, category fraud is always a threat. But either way Ellen Page seems like a contender for this true LGBT story both because she's a fine actress and because she willed this project into being - yes even if the movie overall doesn't succeed Oscar is a groupie for musician biopics and Olsen will be playing the musician Audrey Williams (Hank's wife). Will Hiddleston & Olsen get their own "Walk the Line" Oscar play?  She's an absolute delight as a bossy landlady in this immigrant drama. If the film goes over big in other categories, expect traction. If anyone can do the impossible (get Jennifer Jason Leigh her first Oscar nomination) it's Quentin Tarantino who has a habit of resuscitating careers of familiar but no longer in demand stars

Tier 2 - Also Look Like Good Bets This (Too) Early

Meryl Streep
19 noms | 3 wins
Oct 23rd

Helena Bonham Carter
2 nominations
Oct 23rd
Anne Marie Duff
never nominated
Oct 23rd
Kate Winslet
6 noms | 1 win
Steve Jobs
Oct 9th
Kristen Stewart
never nominated
Clouds of Sils Maria
(Sundance Selects)
April 10th

   In the modern era of excessive Oscar campaigning I doubt we'll ever see a Tom Jones or Godfather situation where 3 actors of either gender hog a whole category for one film. But at this point isn't it hard to tell which of these women might win favor for this civil rights drama. Meryl has a super showy role but we know it's a very small one. Helena and Anne Marie appear to have large roles but which will win MVP awards... or will this just become the Mulligan coronation. Stay tuned...



 She's playing one of the founders of Apple, a woman who was famous for being able to speak her mind to Steve Jobs. She's practically unrecognizable in the trailer
She's already won the Cesar and abundant raves for this 'yep, she's a real actress!' revelation. But can this tiny picture actually mount a successful Oscar campaign a year after buzz first began


Tier 3 - or maybe

Jessica Chastain
2 nominations
Crimson Peak
Oct 16th

Helen Mirren
4 noms | 1 win
(Bleeker Street)
Nov 6th

Elizabeth Banks
never nominated
Love & Mercy
(Roadside Attractions)
June 19th
Phylicia Rashad
never nominated
Nov 25th
Amber Heard
never nominated
The Danish Girl
Nov 27th
 Academy voters are sometimes immune to actorly triumphs in heightened genres like this... but Chastain's fame and obvious talent could help erode those barriers. Plus she deserved a nomination that she didn't get just last year 
Hedda Hopper, the infamous Golden Age gossip columnist, could be a realy scene-stealing role for this Oscar favorite in a Hollywood blacklist drama if she has enough screentime
 Co-lead roles often help in supporting and with the parallel storytelilng Banks leads half the picture and impresses despite a very sketchily written perfect girlfriend part. Can the movie hold on til January?
 She's playing the mother of Michael B Jordan and if the part isn't teeny-tiny who knows. She's such a good actress but hasn't ever had a meaty film role to compare to her stage and tv triumphs

 She's playing Oola a ballet dancer. While the character is not usually referenced in reviews of the book, original casting reports claimed it a "meaty" role so we'll see how much of the movie looks beyond the central marriage
Tier 4 - anything is possible this early. Imagine the scenarios
Jane Fonda
7 noms | 2 wins
(Fox Searchlight)
Dec 4th
Rose Byrne
never nominated
June 5th
Amy Ryan
1 nomination
Bridge of Spies
Oct 16th 
Nicole Kidman
3 noms | 1 win
Secret in Their Eyes
(STX Entertainment)
Oct 23rd
Kirsten Dunst
never nominated
Midnight Special
(Warner Bros)
Nov 25th

 She's been slowly creeping back into the industry on film, stage, and television and there was a lot of buzz about her explosive cameo in this picture. Cameos are rarely enough but it has happened before.
 Oh shut up. It's very early. We can still pretend that Academy voters will learn to prize silly when it's genius silly. It's a blind spot for them but once in a blue moon they see it
Concerned wife alert. Hey it worked for Kathleen Quinlan, the worrying about screen hubby Tom Hanks. Maybe it'll work for Ryan if she has enough key scenes
 If she's great and the movie is a critical and box office success this is theoretically possible. But Julia seems to have the showiest role and more screentime... possibly unto lead?
Concerned wife alert? Sadly Kirsten Dunst has never been nominated for an Oscar. We keep hoping the right role in the right picture will happen. What if this sci-fi tinged drama is strong?
Tier 5 - Everyone Else

Laura Linney - Mr Holmes; Parker Posey - Irrational Man; Judi Dench - Tulip Fever; Romola Garai, Natalie Press -Suffragette; Elisabeth Röhm, Diane Ladd - Joy; Rachel McAdams - Spotlight;  Kirsten Dunst - Midnight Special; Olivia Cooke - Me and Earl and the Dying Girl; Mamie Gummer  Ricki & The Flash; Cate Blanchett Cinderella; Dakota Fanning, Julianne Nicholson Black Mass; Julia Roberts, Caitriona Balfe -Money Monster; Nicole Kidman, Laura Linney - Genius; Elisabeth Moss - Truth; Dakota Johnson A Bigger Splash;  Sarah Snook - Steve Jobs; Emayatzy Corinealdi Miles Ahead; Melissa Leo, Shailene Woodley - Snowden; Sarah Paulson - Carol; Gugu Mbatha-Raw - Concussion

2016 ??? or will they make it in time?
Rachel Weisz - The Light Between Oceans Judy Davis - The Dressmaker; Annette Bening - Untitled Howard Hughes; Naomi Watts - Demolition