Now the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild have unveiled their nominations and Bafta has revealed its long-lists, this year’s delayed awards season is well under way. Oscar voting begins a month from now and here is a list of some probable nominations.
It tells the story of a woman who loses her job in a small town and decides to become a van-dwelling nomad in the American west. Since it became the first film ever to win top prize at both the Venice and Toronto film festivals, it has been seen as one of the front-runners for best picture. Two-time Oscar-winner Frances McDormand is definitely in the race to equal Meryl Streep’s three-time best-actress haul. Chloe Zhao’s beautiful and elegant handling of the wide expanses of America and the intimate lives of the film’s characters puts her in a strong position to become only the second woman ever to win best director at the Oscars.
The Trial of the Chicago 7
A group of anti-Vietnam war protesters are put on trial after a demonstration turns violent. Excellent reviews of this historical movie have pushed it towards the top of the best-picture leader-board. Baron Cohen is perhaps the performer with the best chance of being recognised in the supporting-actor category as perhaps the most prominent character in the ensemble cast. Oscar favourite Aaron Sorkin is almost certain to get a screenplay nod, and he’s also highly likely to feature on the best-director shortlist.
Sound of Metal
It is about a drummer and those around him deal with the impact when he loses his hearing. Riz Ahmed looks a certainty to be nominated for best actor as he already has Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild nominations under his belt. His co-performers, Cooke and Raci are slightly less certain to feature in the supporting categories but do still stand a chance. Darius Marder is a very strong possibility for a best-director nomination and it will be a big surprise if the film doesn’t end up on the list of best-picture nominees.
One Night in Miami
It is a fictionalised account of a night in the 1960s imagining a gathering of Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, singer-songwriter Sam Cooke and NFL player Jim Brown in Miami. Its director, Regina King, could join the handful of women who’ve been nominated for best director. The film should also end up on the best-picture nominations list. Of its strong ensemble of performers, Leslie Odom Jr stands the best chance of a nomination in the best-supporting-actor category for his portrayal of Sam Cooke. Yet Kingsley Ben-Adir’s Malcolm X shouldn’t be ruled out as a best-actor contender.
News of the World
A Civil War veteran who travels from town to town relaying the news of the day agrees to take an orphaned young girl to her only remaining family. The Academy has great affection for six-time nominee and two-time winner Hanks. But the best actor race is particularly competitive this year and he looks like being squeezed out by other performances. Director Paul Greengrass is an outside possibility for a best director nomination, but the film will have a fight to make it onto the best picture shortlist. With the acting branch being a significant presence at the Oscars, Helena Zengel’s Screen Actors Guild nomination improves her chances of a best supporting actress nomination. At 12 she wouldn’t be the youngest supporting actress nominee though. Six others, including Tatum O’Neal and Anna Paquin, were nominated at younger ages.
The film describes the impact on an 80-year-old man and his family when he begins to experience progressive memory loss. Both Hopkins and Colman are previous winners and Academy favourites, so both stand a good chance of being nominated again this year for best actor and best supporting actress respectively. If Hopkins does land a nomination it will make the 83-year-old the oldest best actor nominee in history, overtaking Richard Farnsworth who was nominated in 2000 for The Straight Story at the age of 79. TW