Oscar Watch: Phantom Thread

Daniel Day-Lewis could be the only performer other than Meryl Streep whose automatic participation in a project warrants Oscar buzz. It’s not hard to figure out why. He’s the only male to win three Best Actor awards – for 1989’s My Left Foot, 2007’s There Will Be Blood, and 2012’s Lincoln.

Therefore, it was no surprise that his latest picture Phantom Thread garnered immediate awards chatter. The dramatic thriller in which he plays an obsessive London designer in the 1950s reunites the actor with his Blood director Paul Thomas Anderson. Reviews are now out prior to its end of year release and they suggest Day-Lewis should easily nab yet another nomination for what he claims is his last acting role. Winning his fourth statue could be another story.

The front-runner appears to be Gary Oldman in Darkest Hour, even though Mr. Oldman curiously has been left out of many precursor awards. That could certainly change, however. As I see it, Day-Lewis is right behind him.

When it comes to the picture itself, that’s a bit more unclear. Thread stands at a solid 88% on Rotten Tomatoes and some reviews have praised it as one of the year’s finest. Others have been more mixed. I have had the film just getting in and just being outside of my predicted nine features to be nominated. At press time, I consider Thread, Darkest Hour, and Mudbound to be strong possibilities for inclusion, but certainly not automatic.

Thread‘s other performances include Vicky Krieps, who will be campaigned for in Lead Actress. That category appears too crowded for her to get in. In Supporting Actress, the possibility of Lesley Manville having her name called is more likely, but also not assured.

Writer/director Anderson probably won’t get in for Director, though his Original Screenplay has already won some precursors. Yet there’s no guarantee there because that particular race is also jam-packed.

Down the line, Thread appears to be a shoo-in for Costume Design (it’ll probably win) and the acclaimed Original Score. Production Design and Makeup and Hairstyling nominations are also feasible.

My Oscar Watch posts will continue…

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