Day 3 of my early Oscar predictions arrives with Best Actress. These late August/early September guesstimates yielded two of the eventual nominees in 2014 and three last year.
Looking over the field of possibilities for Best Actress in 2016, one thing seems clear. More than most years, this particular race seems loaded with legitimate contenders and it could be one of the more competitive categories of the year.
Let’s start with three actresses who have received nominations but never won: four-time nominee and never winner Annette Bening is headlining this fall’s 20th Century Women. She was a strong contender for wins in both 1999 and 2004 (for American Beauty and Being Julia), but lost out in both cases to Hilary Swank.
There’s five-time nominee and never winner Amy Adams, who has two pictures in which she could be recognized: Arrival and Nocturnal Animals.
We have Viola Davis in this December’s Denzel Washington directed Fences. She was nominated for 2011’s The Help but lost to Meryl Streep in her role as The Iron Lady.
Speaking of Meryl Streep… there’s Meryl Streep going for her 20th nomination as Florence Foster Jenkins. Its potential drawback could be muted box office numbers this summer, but you can never count her out.
Emma Stone will likely draw attention for her work in the musical drama La La Land. Ruth Negga has received early raves costarring in the interracial romance Loving. Then there’s the biopic Jackie (as in Kennedy), which casts 2010 winner Natalie Portman in the title role. She could be a major contender, yet there’s some uncertainty as to when it’ll come out.
Oh there’s more! Jennifer Lawrence will go for her fifth nomination in seven years with sci-fi drama Passengers. Emily Blunt could be a player with The Girl on the Train, as could previous nominees Jessica Chastain (Miss Sloane), Rosamund Pike (A United Kingdom), and Rooney Mara (Lion). Not to mention previous winners like Sally Field (My Name is Doris), Helen Mirren (Eye in the Sky) and Marion Cotillard (Allied).
Bottom line: this race looks packed and we’ll see how it develops in the coming weeks. For now…
TODD’S EARLY OSCAR PREDICTIONS – BEST ACTRESS
Amy Adams, Arrival
Annette Bening, 20th Century Women
Viola Davis, Fences
Ruth Negga, Loving
Emma Stone, La La Land
Amy Adams, Nocturnal Animals
Emily Blunt, The Girl on the Train
Jessica Chastain, Miss Sloane
Marion Cotillard, Allied
Sally Field, My Name is Doris
Rebecca Hall, Christine
Taraji P. Henson, Hidden Figures
Isabelle Huppert, Elle
Jennifer Lawrence, Passengers
Rooney Mara, Lion
Helen Mirren, Eye in the Sky
Rosamund Pike, A United Kingdom
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Hailee Steinfeld, The Edge of Seventeen
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins
Alicia Vikander, The Light Between Oceans
Rachel Weisz, Denial
Best Actor tomorrow!