Following the screening of Lincoln at the New York Film Festival, I updated Best Picture, Actor, Supporting Actor, Director and Adapted Screenplay and now it's time to take a look at the female performances for the first time since revealing my initial batch of predictions.
In both categories my #1 has remained the same, but there are three new names in total to the respective top fives in each category. I've had to bounce out a name I would have preferred to see in and move in a name I would have preferred to see out. Such is the nature of predicting, as I remind you, this has nothing to do with personal opinion, but simply a matter of trying to figure out how the Academy will vote.
Let's take a look...
We'll begin with Best Actress where things have been shaken up the most. Unfortunately, Smashed arrived in theaters over the weekend and while you could find interviews with star Mary Elizabeth Winstead all over the Internet, the film doesn't feel as if it has made much of an impact and I fear her chances have slipped dramatically. I originally placed her as high as #2, but with the majority of the attention remaining on the likely suspects I feel as if Winstead is just going to have to wait a little longer.
Along with those two, I'm now, more or less, convinced both Marion Cotillard (Rust and Bone) and Emmanuelle Riva (Amour) can rest easy as can their fans... Looking at the field I have a hard time the Academy can keep out what are clearly two of the best female performances of the year. They may be able to find a way not to give them the big prize, but looking over the field of nine actresses I don't see how they can be deprived of a nomination.
The fifth slot is a tricky one, I've moved Naomi Watts (The Impossible) into the top five, though I'm not all that confident in it. I've seen the film and Watts spends the majority of time in and out of consciousness... that is, when she's not screaming in pain at the top of her lungs for about 15 straight minutes. It should be noted, however, that the film recorded the biggest four-day opening ever in Spain, hauling in Euros 10.3 million ($13.3 million).
Watts' strongest competition at this point, I imagine is Helen Mirren in Hitchcock (though no one has seen it yet) and Keira Knightley in Anna Karenina, a film I feel slipping more and more each day and it hasn't even hit theaters yet.
I have included my current top five directly below and you can click here to see where they ranked previously compared to where they rank now as well as see my four other contenders. I did drop both Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal from the list as Won't Back Down has already been forgotten, despite the fact both actresses gave knock-out performances in an otherwise terrible film.
- Jennifer Lawrence, (Silver Linings Playbook)
- Quvenzhané Wallis, (Beasts of the Southern Wild)
- Marion Cotillard, (Rust and Bone)
- Emmanuelle Riva, (Amour)
- Naomi Watts, (The Impossible)
Best Supporting Actress
The field in the Best Supporting Actress category isn't much bigger than Best Actress, but the competition is much higher. At this point I have kept Anne Hathaway (Les Miserables) at the top of the chart, but the names behind her are quite strong.
I have reversed the positions of Helen Hunt (The Sessions) and Amy Adams (The Master) as The Sessions will get a slight edge as it hits limited theaters this weekend and so much of the attention for The Master has been aimed at the men, though Adams can hopefully break through that chatter as the season wears on.
I've kept Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook) in my top five for now and have moved Sally Field (Lincoln) in. Reviews of Lincoln didn't exactly dote on Field, but they were good enough to give her a large enough edge to place her over contenders whose films have yet to be seen by anyone.
One name on the rise is Jessica Chastain, who had everyone talking after the premiere of the theatrical trailer for Zero Dark Thirty and I have moved Samantha Barks down a bit as she is more-or-less an unknown in the feature film realm and Les Mis has yet to be seen.
I have included my top five predictions in this category below and you can check out the full field of twelve right here as well as see how they changed in ranking.
- Anne Hathaway, (Les Miserables)
- Helen Hunt, (The Sessions)
- Amy Adams, (The Master)
- Jacki Weaver, (Silver Linings Playbook)
- Sally Field, (Lincoln)
That does it for this update, for all of my current Oscar predictions click here.