Nathaniel Rogers from The Film Experience knows what he’s saying when he says Oscar Nominations Morning is his Christmas morning. In little over a week, we’ll all wake up to a bunch of nice presents and (hopefully not many) useless pieces of coal. This also mans it’s time to start doing some predictions.
The field of Best Supporting Actress seems like it has two young women that are sure to be nominated. The first is Lupita Nyong’o, who gives an outstanding breakthrough performance in 12 Years a Slave as Patsey, a young slave who must suffer from the deep desires her cruel master feels for her. The other is Jennifer Lawrence, who just won the Oscar last year, but stands out in American Hustle with a scene-stealing, fire-mouthed performance. I personally don’t know what to make of the performance, as it is constantly dangling between the line of good or bad. What I can say, is that it is never boring, and so I’ll gladly accept her being nominated again.
As kind of a spiritual companion to Lawrence’s performance, we have June Squibb. She benefits from the scene-stealing role in Alexander Payne’s Nebraska, only instead of being a hot young woman, she’s a foul-mouthed old lady. There seems to be a lot of love going around for the movie and Squibb’s performance, so she shouldn’t have a problem getting nominated. Then, we have Oprah Winfrey who was perceived as the front-runner to win for the longest time. She plays the supporting wife to the main character in Lee Daniels’ The Butler, and even if she just failed to get a Golden Globe nomination, she will probably make the Academy’s list.
The fight for the fifth spot in the nominee list features what has become one of the most constant and recurring problems in the supporting acting categories, and that is lead actors campaigning in this category if they think that will give them a better chance to get the nomination. This year, the Supporting Actor category features more cases of this kind of “category fraud”, but Supporting Actress does have Julia Roberts competing her when she is clearly the lead of August: Osage County, maybe even more so than Meryl Streep, who will probably get the Lead Actress nomination.
So, if the Academy doesn’t agree to play with Julia’s campaign (and they have done that kind of thing in the past, like when they rightfully nominated Kate Winslet in Lead Actress despite her campaign saying she was a supporting actress in The Reader), then who gets nominated? The Golden Globes did give a nomination to Sally Hawkins in Blue Jasmine, so that’s possible. It could also be an opportunity for one of the actual supporting actresses in August: Osage County, of which Julianne Nicholson is my favorite, but the best chance probably belongs to Margo Martindale.
Will Be Nominated: Jennifer Lawrence (American Hustle), Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave), Julia Roberts (August: Osage County), June Squibb (Nebraska), Oprah Winfrey (Lee Daniels’ The Butler)
Should Be Nominated: Kaitlyn Dever (Short Term 12), Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave), Lea Seydoux (Blue is the Warmest Color), Shailene Woodley (The Spectacular Now), Ziyi Zhang (The Grandmaster)