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Oscar Contest: Category Highlight: Best Supporting Actress

March 5th, 2010

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. Today we look at Best Supporting Actress, which is not a very competitive category.

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

Best Supporting Actress

Penelope Cruz for Nine
Tomatometer Score: 37% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: Golden Globe and Two SAGs
Movie's Previous Major Wins: None
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: One Independent Spirit Award, Two SAGs, Two Golden Globes, and Two Oscars
Actress's Previous Major Wins: One Independent Spirit Award and One Oscar
Prediction Contest Vote Share: 15 (2nd)
Notes: No. While Penelope Cruz has earned praise and some nominations for her performance in this movie, its overall reviews are far too weak to consider it a serious Oscar contender. And since she's already won an Oscar, you won't see Oscar voters giving her this award to make up for past mistakes.

Vera Farmiga for Up in the Air
Tomatometer Score: 90% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: Golden Globe and Two SAGs
Movie's Previous Major Wins: None
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: One Independent Spirit Award and One SAG
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Prediction Contest Vote Share: 12 (T-3rd)
Notes: A great movie with plenty of strong performances by a number of great actors, including Anna Kendrick, who is also nominated in this category. This vote splitting will likely kill whatever chance she would otherwise have had of winning this award.

Maggie Gyllenhaal for Crazy Heart
Tomatometer Score: 92% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: None
Movie's Previous Major Wins: None
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: Two Independent Spirit Awards and Two Golden Globes
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Prediction Contest Vote Share: 10 (5th)
Notes: While this movie is getting a lot of Oscar buzz, almost all of it is going to Jeff Bridges. Since he is overshadowing every other part of the movie, and since Maggie Gyllenhaal didn't earn a single major nomination for her performance outside of the Oscar, she has to be seen as a serious underdog.

Anna Kendrick for Up in the Air
Tomatometer Score: 90% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: Golden Globe and Two SAGs
Movie's Previous Major Wins: None
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: Two Independent Spirit Awards
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Prediction Contest Vote Share: 12 (T-3rd)
Notes: A great movie with plenty of strong performances by a number of great actors, including Vera Farmiga, who is also nominated in this category. This vote splitting will likely kill whatever chance she would otherwise have of winning this award. Also, she's young, so Oscar voters will think she has her whole career ahead of her to win an award.

Mo'Nique for Precious
Tomatometer Score: 91% Positive
Movie's Previous Major Nominations: Independent Spirit Awards, Golden Globe and Two SAGs
Movie's Previous Major Wins: Golden Globe and SAG
Actress's Previous Major Nominations: None
Actress's Previous Major Wins: None
Prediction Contest Vote Share: 238 (1rst)
Notes: Before this year, Mo'Nique was never a serious awards contender for any of her film roles (she has won a few awards for her TV work). However, so far she's been unstoppable during Awards Season, and not just the major awards. She's won nearly two-dozen Film Critic awards from around the country, as well as other award committees. Right now more than 80% of respondents in our contest predict she will win, and it is hard to argue against that.

Conclusion: This is not the least competitive category in this year's Oscar race, but there appears to be little doubt who will win. Mo'Nique has won both a Golden Globe and a SAG award so far, and it looks like she will add an Oscar to her collection.


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Filed under: Up in the Air, Precious (Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire), Nine, Crazy Heart