2013 Oscar Predictions: Best Actress and Supporting Actress - First Look at Two Small Fields

2013 Oscar Predictions: Best Actress and Supporting ActressAnother day and another batch of newly minted predictions hit the shelves. If you didn't notice, I already had to update the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor predictions after overlooking the End of Watch boys yesterday, but today it's all about the ladies.

Between my two lists of Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress contenders I have 23 women. There are others I could have added to pad each list and make it a little bigger, but I just don't see most of the fringe candidates having much of a chance at all so is it really worth adding them?

I'll let you decide. I'll mention a few of the outsiders in my comments for each category below and you tell me if I'm naively leaving someone off the list or if you agree and it's rather obvious who really has the best shot in these races.


Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings PlaybookI really don't think there is much question as to who is going to win the Oscar for Best Actress this year. Yes, it's too early to call, but at this time I feel quite certain especially considering of the 11 contenders on my list, there is only one performance I have yet to see -- Helen Mirren (Hitchcock).

There will certainly be some competition for the last two spots, as there seems to be every year in every category, but at this time I don't see how Jennifer Lawrence doesn't win the Oscar for Silver Linings Playbook unless Mirren delivers a performance that steals all of Lawrence's thunder.

Below Lawrence I begin with Mary Elizabeth Winstead's career-turning performance in Smashed as an alcoholic on the mend. I saw the film in Toronto and while I tend to have a problem with films dealing with substance abuse in general, it still worked for me and Winstead certainly stands out. This is the type of performance that puts an actress on the awards circuit map, similar to how Winter's Bone elevated Lawrence's profile, which means Winstead's career choices going forward may find her in the winner's circle soon.

Next we find the one certain nomination for Beasts of the Southern Wild in the young Quvenzhané Wallis. No matter what you take away from the film, Wallis' performance will certainly stand out.

Emmanuelle Riva in AmourMy fourth and fifth selections right now are tentative as I think one of them will certainly find their way in, but with Mirren's performance in Hitchcock unseen and the rest of the critical society yet to weigh in on Anna Karenina it's tough to tell.

I also can't figure out just how much of an effect Emmanuelle Riva's performance in Amour will have. Could the Academy find a way to nominate two foreign language performances in the same year? It would be great to see because both her and Marion Cotillard (Rust and Bone) are certainly deserving and two of the greatest performances I've seen this year.

Looking down the list I don't see any other names that have an overwhelming shot at making the top five. Sure, there are names such as Meryl Streep (Hope Springs) and Viola Davis (Won't Back Down), but having seen both films and performances I just don't see how they find their way in over the competition ahead of them.

Just below is my top five at the moment and you can browse my full field of eleven contenders here.

  1. Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook)
  2. Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Smashed)
  3. Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild)
  4. Marion Cotillard (Rust and Bone)
  5. Keira Knightley (Anna Karenina)

On Page 2 is a look at Best Supporting Actress, click through for the analysis...

  • Winchester

    At the moment I think that Best Actress list is a good place to start. I haven't seen Ann though so I can't say why but my gut would be to swap out Knightley. I'm just not sure who for yet.

    For Best Supporting Actress I'm still tempted to involve Sally Field (if only for the female equivalent of 'old timer' nomination and she that she does already have two Best Actress statues at home) for 'Lincoln' but if Hunt does end up in Supporting then I think she and Adams will be the two main contenders.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Cordia/ Cordia

    supporting actress is such a hard category at the moment..Think i am on the same five names for best actress.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

    Brad, I'm glad you included Samantha-she has a very good shot.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

      Forgot to mention-our Best Actress predictions are exactly the same, and our top 3 Supporting Actresses are the same, although I have Sally Field in for sure, and I have Kerry Washington holding a spot until someone better comes along.

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

        Shoot. Not Kerry Washington. I forgot Helen Hunt was supporting now. I put her in two weeks ago.

  • Matree

    I am still hoping that "Hitchcock" will be the one to beat and so that Helen Mirren as Best Actress and Scarlett Johansson as Best Supporting Actress will be nominated.

    I loved the book the movie is based on and Hollywood loves "Hollywood-on-Hollywood"-movies so I wouldn't count that one out.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Cordia/ Cordia

    i think Naomi Watts has a shot for a nomination for the impossible,and Riva and Mirren are contenders as well.

  • Paul

    Supporting Actress seems to have a solid trend going where two actresses from the same film are nominated, so I always have a gut feeling it will happen again. The Les Miserable ladies seem like the most viable options, and Barks definitely has a strong chance.

    But any thoughts on Seyfried? Every Oscar site I've seen all seem to leave her off entirely. Is it just not a meaty role or what?

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/SomersetMills/ SomersetMills

      I don't think it's that it isn't a meaty role, it's probably more centered on doubt that Seyfried will do anything interesting with it.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

      It's a hard role to do. It's important, and "meaty" to the story, but it's one that is hard to get nominated for

      • Paul

        Understandable. I'm one of the few people not terribly familiar with Les Miserables, so I was just curious why every actor in the ensemble are listed somewhere as contenders with the exception of her. Always been a fan of Seyfried, despite some lackluster work lately, so I'm a little biased.

        But definitely Hathaway and Barks I can see getting in.

        • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

          Don't worry-her role should be enough to impress, just not the Academy.

        • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

          Yeah i'm a fan of Seyfried's too, she's been in forgettable movies (Red Riding Hood, Mamma Mia, Letters To Juliet & In Time). She was great in Gone which I thought was a surprisingly decent movie. I have her in my number #13 on my prediction list but that's by default so we'll have to wait Christmas Day.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/SomersetMills/ SomersetMills

    I think you're underestimating the Academies love for Meryl Streep, Brad. After all, it was just last year that she went from barely getting nominated to winning Best Actress, so I wouldn't be surprised if she got nominated.

  • Andy

    Given the heaping praise (and recent Hollywood Film Award) for Marion Cotillard, can you really say that Jennifer Lawrence is nearly untouchable in the Best Actress race? I was also shocked that you only have Cotillard at #4, as it seems like it's going to be those two duking it out for the award. Cotillard's character seems to have a meatier role than Lawrence's too. For me, the only thing I see keeping Cotillard from winning is that she's in a foreign language film (but that didn't prevent her from winning her first Oscar). Though I may be biased since, in my opinion, she is far and away the best younger actress in the profession right now.

    • Lawrence J

      Your are totally right! Te men must be so into hunger games that all he sees is Jennifer Lawrence.

  • https://cinemaconfessions.com Gautam

    I guess, you have pretty much nailed Supporting Actress category. Anne Hathaway from the looks of it (Short featurette) is going to sweep everything next year.

    Though, your Actress prediction looks pretty off-target. I know it's completely your perception of things but it's so way off from what I have seen everywhere else. Especially, including Mary Elizabeth at 2, and excluding Naomi from Top 5-6.

  • Jack

    1. Jennifer Lawrence
    2. Quvenzhane Wallis
    3. Marion Cotillard
    4. Emmanuelle Riva
    5. Maggie Smith- Quartet

    This, of course, if the Academy wants to nominate 2 foreign language performances.

    1. Anne Hathaway
    2. Helen Hunt
    3. Sally Field
    4. Samantha Barks
    5. Pauline Collins

  • emma

    I've seen Rust & Bone, Marion Cotillard is amazing, she trully deserve a nomination. But Keira in Anna Karenina was ok, she was much better in Pride and Prejudice. Lawrence, Cotillard and Wallis are in my top 3

  • Lawrence J

    Marion Cotillard will receive The "Hollywood actress award", it has been announced last week, so that puts her as the real front runner right now. The academy totally ignored her by the past for her work on "Nine", "Inception" and "Midnight in Paris". I really liked Jennifer Lawrence's performance on "Silver Linings Playbook" but compare to what Marion delivers in "Rust and Bone" it's just undeniably more profound, real, with an amazing genuine performance. But most of all, Marion is on screen at least one hour and a half, but Jennifer less than an hour. I still need to see Helen Mirren but for me Marion is gonna get her second statue.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Ian/ Ian

    This would be the youngest Best Actress field in years if it plays out this way. I think it's far more likely that old guard members Mirren, Streep, and Dench (who isn't even on this list for Best Exotic) get in, along with Lawrence. That leaves Cotillard, Knightley, Davis, and Wallis to fight it out for the last spot. I don't know who to pick as a favorite though; Lawrence feels a bit too young for the lead award, so maybe Mirren gets #2? Or Dench gets her leading award that she's never won? Supporting Actress is a total crapshoot after Hathaway and Adams, but they both already seem like locks. Something tells me that will be a showdown all the way through awards season.

  • Casper12

    Jennifer Lawrence for Best Actress win. She deserves it.

  • Mary

    You are the only ones not including Keira on their top spots I havent seen AK yet but I read every review and at least 70% were positive and predicted her being a lock.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Keira is #5 on the list, I'm not sure what you are talking about. Oh, and I have seen the movie and trust me, she isn't a lock.

  • Lara

    Marion Cotillard is breathtaking in "Rust and Bone". Jennifer Lawrence is brilliant in "Silver Linings playbook" (It's true we see her a little less than an hour) and Emmanuel Riva is beautiful in "Amour". In a perfect world Marion would win.

    • http://www.twitter.com/GregDinskisk GregDinskisk

      The amount of time on screen does not mean a thing... Marlon Brando won Best Actor for The Godfather, and he had less screen time than Al Pacino, who won Best Supporting Actor...

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

        Same with Anthony Hopkins and he won Best Actor with 16 minutes of screen time. Also, worth throwing out there Viola Davis deservingly got nominated for Best Supporting Actress for Doubt, she didn't appear until probably an hour and 15 minutes into the movie with a 8-minute screentime.

        Judi Dench won for Best Supporting Actress for Shakespeare In Love with 6 minutes of screentime. So yeah, screentime doesn't mean a dang thing.

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

        Um, Pacino never won for a Godfather film. He lost that year to Joel Grey for Cabaret

        • Kevin

          You're correct. Pacino won Best Supporting Actor for Godfather 2, Plus Anthony Hopkins was MOST DEFINITELY on screen more than 16 minutes in his Lead Actor Oscar win for Silence of the Lambs.

          • Kevin

            So sorry. You were right. Pacino never won for a Godfather film, Robert DiNiro did.

  • rogerio Silvestre

    Keira Knightley is a lousy actress! She sucks!

    • camila

      she is a very bad actress

  • andi

    the should nominat Carmen Ejogo for Sparkle, she was stunning, I dont think she would win, but its worth a nomination

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

    I haven't seen any of the actresses both lead & supporting performances. Though I will see Amy Adams in The Master this weekend.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

      But i'll just put my default predictions in the mean time:

      Best Actress:
      1. Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook)
      2. Marion Cotillard (Rust & Bone)
      3. Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Smashed)
      4. Naomi Watts (The Impossible)
      5. Helen Mirren (Hitchcock)
      6. Quvenzhane Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild)
      7. Keira Knightley (Anna Karenina)
      8. Kristen Wiig (Imogene)
      9. Michelle Williams (Take This Waltz)

      Best Supporting Actress:

      1. Amy Adams (The Master)
      2. Anne Hathaway (Les Miserables)
      3. Helen Hunt (The Sessions)
      4. Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook)
      5. Maggie Smith (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel)
      6. Jessica Chastain (Zero Dark Thirty)
      7. Frances McDormand (Promised Land)
      8. Samantha Barks (Les Miserables)
      9. Sally Field (Lincoln)
      10. Amanda Seyfried (Les Miserables)
      11. Annette Benning (Imogene)
      12. Kerry Washington (Django Unchained)

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

        I forgot to mention Hathaway for TDKR, going to move Seyfried down to 13 & Hathaway to 10.

        10. Anne Hathaway (The Dark Knight Rises)
        13. Amanda Seyfried (Les Miserables)

  • me

    Streep actually gives a top 5 performance in Hope Springs this year but the academy will most likely give her a rest knowing she will be a definite nominee and possible winner with August Osage County next year.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/DArtagnan/ DArtagnan

    I have a feeling they might push Hathaway for best actress instead of supporting. I guess that depends on how the studio feels about her chances.

    • Ano

      However good she is, that just wouldn't cut it - do you know the musical? She's got one great song, but extremely limited stage-time. The writer William Nicholson said they were sticking very closely to the original, so she simply won't be on screen long enough
      for Leading...

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/DArtagnan/ DArtagnan

        I haven't seen the musical, but I have read the book, and I agree that she is supporting.
        But sometimes you have supporting actors nominated for lead (like Morgan Freeman in Invictus) or vice versa (Matt Damon in Invictus). So, I'm not sure screen time matters as much as how the studios want to play it.

        • Xas

          In these cases, it depends a lot for the type of role. Maybe Morgan Freeman and Nicole Kidman are supporting performances by leight, but they're relevant to the story.

          In Les Misérables, Jean Valjean and Janvert are mostly the co-leads, Fantine is a good role, but she didn't have a great impact far from the first act. Maybe with Epónine we can make a case, but yes, Fantine is a clear supporting character

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

    God, how boring is this line up?

  • marion



  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Travis/ Travis

    Does the fact no actress has been nominated that many times at such a young age work against Jennifer at all? She's already in the top 5 youngest nominees for Best Actress, and this second nomination would still put her up there

  • aza124

    Top 5 Actress:
    1. Jennifer Lawrence (lock, my current pick for the win)
    2. Keira Knightley (lock)
    3. Marion Cotillard (lock)
    4. Quvenzhane Wallis (I’m not sure about this but that mostly because I don’t like ‘Beast’ all that much)
    5. Emmanuelle Riva (could be)

    Dark Horses:
    Naomi Watts, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and Greta Gerwig (if IFC release Frances Ha this year).

    Top 5 Supporting Actress:
    1. Anne Hathaway (lock, pretty much your winner right now)
    2. Helen Hunt (lock)
    3. Amy Adams (mostly a lock, but seriously the role is pretty thin in my opinion)
    4. Sally Field (could be completely wrong here)
    5. Samantha Barks (safe bet)

    Dark Horses:
    Jacki Weaver, Helen Mirren, and Kerry Washington.

  • Leonardo

    A Personal choice for best supporting actress is Jessica Chastain for Lawless

  • REL

    Certainly, if 'Winnie' gets picked up, then Jennifer Hudson will win Best Actress. End of discussion. I mean have you seen that trailer?

    • Lara

      The trailer is good but Terrance seems to steal the show. Marion Cotillard is just unbelievable in "Rust & Bone" you should see it first before closing a discussion on a movie which isn't even out yet!

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Akd/ Akd

    Incredible, Jennifer Lawrence may very well be nominated for a second time in her short and very young career.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

    Guys, I have Mary Elizabeth Winstead (good for her btw as she's finally starting to figure it out in her acting career) in my #3 spot for Best Lead Actress but as I was doing my predictions at Gold Derby, why do they not have her listed there? Hmmm...

    • http://cinemaconfessions.blogspot.com Gautam

      Because no one except Brad thinks that she is a strong contender for the Oscars. She will be in contention for independent awards but definitely not for Oscars.

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

        She should/needs to get recognition from the Oscars. Granted, I haven't seen the movie but reviews & even the trailer, she hooked me in.

        • http://cinemmaconfessions.blogspot.com Gautam

          She is still young so there is question of should.

          And if you follow the Oscar race closely, do you really believe it's performance driven ? There are so many great performances that get neglected every year specially in indie movies. It all boils down to the "wow" effect a performance creates, the universality of the actor himself/herself and obviously the Big Studio push. And sadly Winstead doesn't tick any of the above boxes.

          [PS: "wow" doesn't necessarily mean greatest, rather buzz generating like Lawrence act has done. I haven't seen the film but Winstead might infact be better than Lawrence but is her performance capable of lasting the 5 month long Oscar season ??

          • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

            Hmm..fair points there. We shall see come award season.

  • Mart

    I think Jennifer Lawrence has it in a race with Anne Hathaway. The only problem is the curse of winning it early in a career. Supporting is okay but lead has in the last decade almost doomed every young actress in subsequent roles. I can't wait to see "Playbook".

    And again, sure she'd be at the very bottom of any list, but watch for the boxoffice receipts for "The Guilt Trip" and Streisand. Golden Globe is already in the bag.........yeah I know they don't count for anything, I'm the first to admit that but this movie will put her up there again with actresses of a certain age group. As I've said, I've heard about the screenings and Paramount moved to Christmas from Spring because they anticipate a blockbuster........winning? Doubt it for sure.........but back in the film firmament for sure. That teaser clip does not show anything of how good the performance she gives and have heard this many times already....from non-fans, which guessing there are many non-fans here.
    I'm rooting for Lawrence but afraid of that winning young curse.

    • heshi

      I really don't understand the begrudging, yeah-she-sucks-but-she-might-be-nominated attitude when it comes to Streisand. You may disagree with her politics or dislike her personality, but she is a marvelous comedienne, and a fine actress, and from all accounts, gives a wonderful performance in The Guilt Trip. Stop the hate.

  • camila

    I guess this is ridiculous, I have heard this with "Walk the line" about Reese Witherspoon, also she won the Oscar and her work was mediocre, also the movie was bad

  • camila

    I have seen the trailer of "Playbook" and Lawrence looks boring using her husky voice to make believable a mature woman with a cynical air, a total clishe, Bradley Cooper looks much better

  • camila

    Keira Knightly is a very bad actress, with Cate Blanchett are the most overacted actresses around the world

  • camila

    Cotillard did not get any award in Cannes so that is a less

  • baumbach

    My bet :
    Lead :
    1. Marion Cottilard
    2. Jennifer Lawrence
    3. Emmanuelle Riva
    4. Mary Elizabeth Winsted
    5. Hellen Mirren

    Supporting :
    1. Helen Hunt
    2. Amy adams
    3. Anne Hathaway
    4. Elizabeth Barks
    5. Sally Field

    So all i can see is Cottilard & Hunt for Oscar!

  • Jacob

    Screen time doesn't mean anything for academy voters. Nicole Kidman won Best Actress having appeared less than 30 minutes in "The Hours". Anthony Hopkins won Best Actor for less than 20-25 minutes in "Silence of the Lambs". Same for the nature of the character. Louise Fletcher, Reese Witherspoon and Kate Winslet weren't really the leads in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest", "Walk the Line" and "The Reader" respectively, their roles were clearly pretended to support the stories of the real leads, but they still went on to win the big prize.

    The only thing that matters when deciding if a performance is lead or supporting is how relevant the character is in the film for the main character or if the character itself is the "subject matter" of the film, like Peter Finch in "Network", Meryl Streep in "The Devil Wears Prada" (anyone who has seen this one knows the story is centered around Anne Hathaway's character, not Streep's one), Witherspoon in "Walk the Line", Winslet in "The Reader", etc, except when we are treating with kids (Linda Blair, Tatum O'Neal, Haley Joel Osment, Abigail Breslin and Hailee Steinfeld, were all leads in their respective movies and were all thrown to the supporting category for having "better chances" there since it's less competitive than the lead one).

    This is why I think Jennifer Lawrence is being considered and promoted as leading, when (even though I haven't seen the movie yet you can still notice from the trailer) her character is not really a lead one but a supporting one. Her character "means a lot" to Bradley Cooper's one. Anyway, personally I think that Lawrence, being so young, doesn't have many chances, unless she's campaigned as supporting like Jennifer Conelly in "A Beautiful Mind". And, nevertheless, if she does win in the leading caterogy I would be really dissapointed, because having only seen the trailer you can see that her performance isn't really that overwhelming, doesn't really makes a "wow" impression, is just a regular one, nothing to be recognized. I didn't anything outstanding in her character to be the frontrunner for the lead race, as I did for for example, Marion Cotillard in "Rust and Bone" or even Quvenzhané Wallis in "Beasts of the Souther Wild". I just think Lawrence is not the actress who has delivered the best female performance of the year (so far).

    • Lara

      I agree with you, but honestly it's not really fair! Berenice Bejo got more screen-time in "The Artist" than Lawrence in "Silver linings playbook". Quvenzhané Wallis gave me a big impression and a nomination would be very well deserved! I saw "Silver Linings playbook" and honestly the movie itself is really good. But Jennifer Lawrence is far from delivering a real oscar-caliber performance !! The real actors delivering some very good impressions are De Niro and Cooper! Marion Cotillard is the real contender for me this year, i saw "Rust and Bone" twice in Cannes and TIFF and it's her best performance so far!! I've simply never been touched like that by a foreign performance in my entire life! Powerful, visceral and real. The cgi is breathtaking.
      No makeup + strong sex-scenes + anger + no legs + lot of crying = Dream-role !

  • camila

    In the trailer you can see a very good work of Cooper (very organic and natural), Lawrence looks affected with that husky voice and a cynical air, I guess her succeed in The hunger games is buzzing her performance, the same with Natalie Portman in The Black Swan, trying to impose a new face
    I do not know Lawrence, seems a solid actress after all... but Knightley (Helloooooooo)

  • Rocks

    I love Mary, i hope she gets at least a nomination because she killed in Smashed

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/Mv11391/ Michael

    Finally saw The Master and short review: While not PTA's best, it was still a well-made film, very interesting story, great cinematography, Oscar-worthy score from Greenwood with excellent performances from Phoenix, Hoffman & Adams. Magnolia's still is Anderson best flick. So since I praised Amy Adams, she's still my front-runner for Best Supporting Actress. So, I still have my Best Supporting Actress lineup the same.

  • Chad

    COMPLETELY agree about Samantha Barks getting a nomination for supporting actress. Holy God. Watch her performance of On My Own from the 25th Anniversary concert of Les Mis. I think she solidifies her nomination if her performance in the film is as heart wrenching as it is in the concert.

  • Gemini71

    I am disappointed not to see Holliday Grainger on the list. Playing Estella in 'Great Expectations' surely has to place her in this list as a serious contender.