2016 Early Oscar Predictions: Best Supporting Actress

The summer movie season has wound to a close and we can feel the autumn season just around the corner. That means football, leaves changing, and back to school. It also means the 2016 fall movie season is about to begin and that means – early Oscar speculation!!

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it may seem a bit too early for that, but it isn’t. The film festival season will be starting before we know it with Venice, Toronto, Telluride and New York on deck. A host of Oscar hopefuls will receive their first screenings and generate their first buzz. So this week – as I have in years past – I roll out my first round of Oscar predictions. This will be done in six installments beginning with Supporting Actress today and continuing daily with Supporting Actor, Actress, Actor, Director, and the big dog – Picture. Each post will predict the five nominees (or in the case of Picture – five to ten). As the week wear on, I’ll be increasing my predictions to a weekly feature on the blog.

For Supporting Actress, let’s take a little trip down memory lane with my predictions in 2014 and 2015. Two years back, my earliest predictions yielded two out of the eventual five nominated performers (including winner Patricia Arquette for Boyhood). Last year, these initial predictions gave us three of the five and, in a way, four. At the time, there was uncertainty as to whether Alicia Vikander would be campaigned for in lead or supporting for The Danish Girl and I predicted her at the time for Actress. The campaign went with supporting and she was the winner. Let’s get to it!

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

At this juncture, I’d say there’s no shoo-in nominees but Michelle Williams in this fall’s Manchester by the Sea is about as close as it gets. The pic has already screened at festivals to raves with many critics singling out her work.

Ang Lee’s November war drama Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk looks to be a player in many categories and that could certainly trickle down to Kristen Stewart. The trailer for Moonlight seems to indicate a very meaty and Oscar-baity type role for Naomie Harris. There are questions surrounding how many nominations the acclaimed slavery pic The Birth of a Nation will receive (more on that in future posts), but Aja Naomi King has gotten acclaim for her role already.

As for a fifth, I’m just going to go with a total and complete wild card: Bryce Dallas Howard in December’s Gold, which not much is known about at the moment (no trailer even). Why? Well, this category is quite unformed at the moment, so why not? If it pans out, I’ll look really smart!

There’s a slew of others as possibilities, including multiple possibilities for 20th Century Women, American Pastoral and The Girl on the Train (with both Fanning sisters no less) and we shall see how it plays out in the coming weeks and months. For now…

TODD’S FIRST PREDICTIONS – BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Naomie Harris, Moonlight

Bryce Dallas Howard, Gold

Aja Naomi King, The Birth of a Nation

Kristen Stewart, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk

Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea

Other Possibilities:

Haley Bennett, The Girl on the Train

Jennifer Connelly, American Pastoral

Laura Dern, The Founder

Rosemarie DeWitt, La La Land

Dakota Fanning, American Pastoral

Elle Fanning, 20th Century Women

Rebecca Ferguson, The Girl on the Train

Greta Gerwig, 20th Century Women

Nicole Kidman, Lion

Jennifer Jason Leigh, LBJ

Julianne Moore, Maggie’s Plan

Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Miss Sloane

Zoe Saldana, Live by Night

Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures

Rachel Weisz, The Light Between Oceans

Kate Winslet, Collateral Beauty

We’ll get to Supporting Actor tomorrow!

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