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AND THE NOMINEES ARE...
 
... for entertainment and speculation purposes only. Read and discuss 

85th Oscars. 
In a strange coincidence the three initial perceived leaders (aka the young to early middle age movie stars) were all on their second nominations.

WHO WON: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
NATHANIEL'S VOTE: Emmauelle Riva, Amour
READER'S CHOICE: Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty

Split opinions this year though my choice (Riva) was a close second in the balloting of Film Experience readers. Your votes: Chastain 34% of vote; Riva 32%; Lawrence 19%; Naomi and Quvenzhané brought up the rear with 9% and 5% respectively from your ballots 

statistics cited involve acting & feature films only

JESSICA CHASTAIN
35 years old | 12 films | 2 noms
ZERO DARK THIRTY
JENNIFER LAWRENCE
22 years old
11 films | 2 noms | 1 win
SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK

EMMANUELLE RIVA
85 years old | 54 films | 1st nomination!
AMOUR

QUVENZHANE WALLIS
9 years old | 1st film!
1st nomination!
BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD
NAOMI WATTS
44 years old | 36 films | 2 noms
THE IMPOSSIBLE

It's not a "character" role per se but she packs a cumulative one-track-mind punch. Bonus points: her 'Oscar clips' are killer even out of context. It seems weird to say this given that she's a new star but Oscar is weird about actresses preferring them when they're brand new and in their early 30s. She needs to win soon.

 

WINNER

To deliver a dazzling flashy comic turn just as you've ascended as the #1 drama star of your age group? That's impeccable timing... that's what Oscar dreams are made of.

TRIVIA: Though she's not the youngest actress to win two nominations (Angela Lansbury still holds that record doing it by 20) she's working fast

This legendary Hiroshima Mon Amour actress's brave and technically skillfull turn as a dying woman haunts you for weeks after seeing it

TRIVIA: The oldest lead actress ever nominated. She's five years old than "Miss Daisy" was. 

"Hushpuppy" is easily one of the year's most memorable and movie characters. But a win would be tough. With new and young actors, sometimes the directors are credited for their naturalism?

TRIVIA: The youngest lead actress ever nominated (but not the youngest acting)

Her trademark intensity is a good fit for a disaster epic -- lots of anguish and catharsis. But will voters care that there's actually a character arc per se?
 

 

Snubbed? This category was a wild ride this year leading up to nominations and Marion Cotillard (Rust & Bone), Helen Mirren (Hitchcock) and Rachel Weisz (The Deep Blue Sea) all certainly had cause to hope to hear their name read out.