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Thursday, April 17, 2014



2012 Awards Season: Oscar Highlight: Best Actress

With our annual Oscar Prediction contest underway, now is the best time to look at the nominees and try and figure out who the favorites are and which films should just feel honored to be nominated. This week we will look at the four acting categories, finishing with Best Actress. This category is a little tricky, as there are two actresses that can both be seen as the favorite for different reasons. I'm not sure who will win.

(Note: All previous awards listed are only for acting and not other categories. However, they are for supporting and lead acting.)

Best Actress

Glenn Close for Albert Nobbs
Tomatometer Score: 53% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: SAG and Golden Globe
Movie's Previous Major Wins: None
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: Five Oscars and Three Golden Globes
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Notes: Glenn Close is due for a win after five previous nominations, all of which came in the 1980s. This is her first nomination in more than than 20 years and there is a small chance she could win a Lifetime Achievement award, but I wouldn't bet on it. Albert Nobbs just isn't a great movie.

Viola Davis for The Help
Tomatometer Score: 76% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: Two SAG and One Golden Globe
Movie's Previous Major Wins: Two SAG
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: One Oscar, One Golden Globe, Two SAGs, One Independent Spirit Awards
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Notes: One of two actresses with a serious shot at taking home the award. She did win two SAGs for her performance (once as Best Cast), but lost out to Meryl Streep at the Golden Globes. The SAGs are a better indicator than Golden Globes, so she's likely a small favorite. Also, The Help is a better movie than Iron Lady is.

Rooney Mara for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Tomatometer Score: 87% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: Golden Globe
Movie's Previous Major Wins: None
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: None
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Notes: Rooney Mara missed out on a SAG nomination for her performance and overall The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo has underwhelmed during Awards Season. On the other hand, this film did earn the best reviews of the five films on this list. Overall, she is still a long shot to win.

Meryl Streep for Iron Lady
Tomatometer Score: 54% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: SAG and Golden Globe
Movie's Previous Major Wins: Golden Globe
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: SIXTEEN OSCARS!, TWENTY THREE GOLDEN GLOBES!, and ELEVEN SAGs!
Actress's Previous Major Wins: Two Oscars, Six Golden Globes, and One SAG
Notes: This is Meryl Streep's seventeenth Oscar nomination, which is a record. At this point, they might as well give her the nomination as soon as she signs on to play a part. She has two wins, which means the Oscars voters don't have to give her a Lifetime Achievement Award. However, her most recent was in 1983 for Sophie's Choice and at this point the number of nominations since her last win make earning an Oscar more and more likely. More and more voters will say to themselves, 'She should have won for Doubt or Adaptation or A Cry in the Dark or ...' On the other hand, while her performance is spot on, overall Iron Lady was only okay and not really Oscar-worthy. Meryl Streep still has a real shot at winning, but she's a slight underdog.

Michelle Williams for My Week With Marilyn
Tomatometer Score: 84% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: SAG, Golden Globe, and Independent Spirit Awards
Movie's Previous Major Wins: Golden Globe and One Pending
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: Two Oscars, Two Golden Globes, Three SAGs, and Five Independent Spirit Awards
Actress's Previous Major Wins: One Independent Spirit Awards
Notes: Michelle Williams is only 31 years old and this is her third Oscar nomination. Two nominations without a win works in her favor, but she's young enough that Oscar voters might think they will have plenty more chances to give her an Oscar in her career.

Conclusion: This is a race between Viola Davis for The Help and Meryl Streep for Iron Lady. They've both won a major awards for their performances this year, so that doesn't help too much. Meryl Streep does have a longer history with Oscar voters, which might help her over the top, but Viola Davis is probably the slight favorite.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2012-02-16

Movies 
 Albert Nobbs
 The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
 The Help
 The Iron Lady
 My Week with Marilyn