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"They're saying this is for Adam Driver what Kramer vs Kramer was for Dustin Hoffman. More about him than about her.  Scarlett, to me, is the open question. By now it's Driver vs Phoenix for best actor." - Melchiades - Andrew

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Directors (For Sama)
Lulu Wang (The Farewell)
Ritesh Batra (Photograph)
Schmidt & Abrantes (Diamantino)
Jia Zhang-ke (Ash is Purest White)

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91st Oscars. Oscar Contenders of 2018 (for the 2019 Ceremony) - For prediction, discussion, entertainment purposes only

 discuss on the blog

Olivia Colman

Yalitza Aparicio
25 yrs old | debut film 
first nomination!


Dec 14th
Box Office: N/A -- Netflix refuses to report.

Role: Cleo, a nanny/maid experiencing an unexpected pregnancy just as the well to do family she's employed by falls into their own crisis

Awards won: Santa Barbra tribute, and 2 regional or specialty critics org, plus 2 "Breakthrough" style awards

Reviewed | Meeting Yalitza | More Yalitza

Glenn Close
71 yrs old | 40 films | 7th nomination

August 3rd
Box Office: $8.9


Role: Joan Castleman, the wife of a famous novelist who is about to win the Nobel. Exactly how much of that does he owe to his wife's influence?

Awards won: Globe, SAG, Critics Choice, Palm Springs tribute, Women Film Critics special award, and 2 regional or specialty critics orgs, 

Reviewed | More Close

★ Olivia Colman

45 yrs old | 17 films | first nomination & win!

Nov 23rd
Box Office: $28.5

Role: Queen Anne, an ailing childless monarch torn between her friendship with her longtime companion and her lust for a dazzling new servant girl

Awards won: Globe, AACTA, BIFA, Critics Choice (Comedy), CFCA, Gijon festival, Gotham (special), London, LAFCA, NSFC, Palm Springs Tribute, Satellite, Venice Volpi Cup, and 12 regional or specialty critics orgs


Reviewed | More Colman | Our 2011 Interview

Lady Gaga
32 yrs old | 4 films | first nomination in acting!

Warner Bros
Oct 5th
Box Office: $207.8

Role: Ally, a singer/songwriter experience sudden fame when she is discovered by the rock star Jackson Maine. They fall in love.

Awards won: NBR, Critics Choice, 5 regional or specialty critics orgs, plus 1 "Breakthrough" style award

Reviewed | More Gaga

Melissa McCarthy

48 yrs old | 27 films | 2nd nomination

Fox Searchlight
Oct 19th
Box Office: $8.1

Role: Lee Israel, a biographer suffering a bout of unemployment, begins to forge literary letters for her income.

Awards won: BSFC, Palm Springs & Santa Barbara Tributes, 5 regional or specialty critics orgs

Review | Podcast | More McCarthy

How'd She Get Nominated?
41Best Picture heat. Oscar loves a frontrunner
23% Campaign. All those times Cuarón praised her and Netflix's big push. Yalitza worked for it.
20% Role. Highly sympathetic character in crisis. 
10% Performance With a non-famous first time actor the authenticy really comes through
5% The hospital scene
1% Oscar's international and ethnic diversifying 
50% Role/Actress/ Narrative Mega-fusion. Her character is a genius who has gone unrecognized (sort of). Not unlike Glenn throughout Oscar history
20% Performance. Her best work in 30 years
19% Smart release date got her established early. Smart campaign kept The Wife on slow simmer until the precursor boil. 
10% Precursor love - especially that Globe win.
1% Timely themes.
41Performance. A total delight. She was going to be a lock in whichever category she campaigned
25% Role. Oscar loves a queen.
11% Best Picture heat paired with...
10% Momentum of career. Her reputation has been building for years.
9% Her bitches Emma & Rachel
4% "Did you just look at me? Look at me! How dare you?"
30% "Shallow," a pop culture bullseye
20% Role/Celebrity. An electric fusion. 
17% The way Bradley Cooper looks at her. Who wouldn't want to take another look at her?
13% Breathless media coverage of her entire campaign including precursor love
12% Performance. 
5% Best Picture heat
3% That Ally billboard + so many other memes
36Performance surprise. Everyone knew she was talented but this was a very welcome stretch and she nailed it.
25% Role. Oscar loves  both lonely gays and writers w/ drinking problems.
20% That wonderful supporting cast to bounce off of and recoil from -- what a curmudgeon Lee was.
13% Precursor support
6% That soulful courtroom monologue
survey solutions


Who Will Win?

As we've been telling you for a full year, that this is Glenn Close's to lose. Many didn't believe us but here we are. She could still lose of course but we hope she doesn't. Only Olivia Colman looks like a possible spoiler this late in the game. 


Who Should Win?

Opinions will vary, as they well should, in acting categories if you nominated great people (and this is a very strong category). I'm still undecided: Melissa, Olivia, or Glenn? But I would vote for Glenn due to her Oscar history AND the quality of this performance. 


Who Was Left Out?

We weep for Toni Collette though a nomination for Hereditary was always a longshot given the horror genre. The dread sixth spot likely fell to Emily Blunt (Mary Poppins Returns) who has been there many times before. When will she finally get in?


Trivia on the Nominees !

• Zodiac sign: Saggitarius

• She's the youngest of all 20 acting nominees -- the only nominee in their 20s this year

• She's the first indigenous woman ever nominated for Best Actress and the second Mexican actress in this category (the first was Salma Hayek)

• She was nominated for her debut film, which is also true of her fellow nominee Glenn Close way back in 1982 for The World According to Garp

• Were she to win best actress she would be only the fifth woman to ever win for her debut. The four who've done that are Shirley Booth, Julie Andrews, Barbra Streisand, and Marlee Matlin.

• Zodiac sign: Pisces

• With 7 nominations for acting, she's now the most nominated actress who has never won, surpassing Deborah Kerr and Thelma Ritter (who she'd been tied with), and the most nominated living actor, male or female who has never won. The record for all time nominations without a competitive win among actors, male or female, living or dead, is Peter O'Toole (8 nominations).

• Her daughter plays the younger version of her character in The Wife

• She's the oldest woman nominated this year. But some men older than her are nominated in other categories

• If she wins the Oscar, she'll join the very exclusive Triple Crown club, having already won multiple Tonys and Emmys

• Has starred in three  Best Picture nominees: Fatal Attraction, The Big Chill, and Dangerous Liaisons

• Zodiac sign Aquarius

• She's the only actor in this category nominated for working with a director she'd previously worked with (She co-starred in The Lobster for Yorgos Lanthimos) 

• This is her second onscreen Queen of England, having previously played Queen Elizabeth in Hyde Park on the Hudson (2012). Here's a fun through line: she will be playing that previous queen's daughter Queen Elizabeth II in the next season of The Crown.

She has the most kids of any of this year's acting nominees: 3

• Zodiac sign: Aries

• She's the third actress nominated for starring in film versions of A Star is Born. The others were Janet Gaynor and Judy Garland, who both lost.

• She's the second consecutive person nominated for Best Song and Acting in the same year (the first was Mary J Blige just last year for Mudbound). The only person whose won prizes in both fields (though not in the same year) is Barbra Streisand, who won her songwriting Oscar for her version of A Star is Born

• Zodiac sign: Virgo

• Her husband, the director Ben Falcone, often co-stars in her movies. In this one he has two scenes as a shady shop owner selling forged memorabilia.  

• She's  up for a Razzie (Life of the Party/ Happytime Murders)  in the same year that she's up for Oscars... which is not actually a new phenomenon