First 2019 Predictions
Amy Adams "Backseat"
Vera Farmiga "The Front Runner"
Claire Foy "First Man"
Regina King "If Beale Street Could Talk"
Margot Robbie "Mary, Queen of Scots"
Other Contenders - Nicole Kidman "Boy Erased", Julia Roberts "Ben is Back", Kristen Wiig "Where'd You Go Bernadette?", Judy Greer "Where'd You Go Bernadette?", Katherine Waterston "Mid '90s", Leslie Mann "The Women of Marwen", Janelle Monae "The Women of Marwen", Gwendoline Christine "The Women of Marwen", Meryl Streep "Mary Poppins Returns", Angela Lansbury "Mary Poppins Returns", Emily Mortimer "Mary Poppins Returns", Anna Deveare Smith "Can You Ever Forgive Me?", Laura Dern "JT Leroy", Amy Ryan "Beautiful Boy", Annette Bening "Life Itself", Uma Thurman "The House that Jack Built", Natalie Portman "The Life and Death of John F. Donovan", Rachel Weisz "The Favourite", Danai Gurira "Black Panther", Lupita Nyong'o "Black Panther", Michelle Rodriguez "Windows", Elizabeth Debicki "Widows", Kathy Bates "On the Basis of Sex", Sissy Spacek "Old Man and the Gun", Tatiana Maslany "Destroyer", Jennifer Ehle "The Miseducation of Cameron Post", Riley Keough "Under the Silver Lake", Elizabeth Marvel "The Last of Steady Habits", Edie Falco "The Land of Steady Habits", Emilia Clarke "Solo: A Star Wars Story", Maya Rudolph "Life of the Party", Catherine Keener "Sicario: Day of the Soldado", Diane Lane "Serenity"
Commentary - Is this the year that Amy Adams finally wins an Oscar? This race doesn't feel particularly strong this year when looking at the totality of the contenders, and she is way overdue for a gold statue. She is playing Lynne Cheney in Adam McKay's first film since he won an Oscar for The Big Short. On paper, this looks like a perfect Oscar role. Margot Robbie could return to this race as she faces off against her competitor last year, Saoirse Ronan, in Mary, Queen of Scots. Barry Jenkins is returning after his Oscar-winning Moonlight with the adaptation of Baldwin's If Beale Street Could Talk. Regina King looks to have a prominent role. Now that the Emmys have finally recognized her after years of quality television work, she might be in the perfect moment to capture the film industry's attention as well. Claire Foy has become an overnight sensation with her Emmy-nominated role in Netflix's The Crown. This time she will play the wife of Neil Armstrong, Janet, in Damien Chazelle's La La Land follow-up First Man, opposite Ryan Gosling. Like King, she might make the jump from Emmy favorite to Oscar favorite. Finally, it has been almost a decade since Vera Farmiga earned her first Oscar nomination. Since then, she has largely been off of the Oscar circuit playing more genre fair, and earning praise for her television series Bates Motel. Now that the show is off the air, she looks to rejoin the Oscar conversation re-teaming with Jason Reitman to play Gary Hart's wife Lee Hart opposite Hugh Jackman. These five though are all big question marks, which leaves plenty of room for other contenders. Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts are Oscar winners playing mom roles, which often do well in this race. Kristen Wiig and Judy Greer are hoping to bring humor to this category with their roles in Linklater's adaptation of Where'd You Go Bernadette. Robert Zemeckis The Women of Marwen brings Janelle Monae, Leslie Man, and Gwendoline Christie into the fold. Mary Poppins returns could add to Meryl Streep's nomination total, or voters could go for Angela Lansbury or Emily Mortimer instead. Plenty of former winners and nominees are joining the mix including Laura Dern, Natalie Portman, Rachel Weisz, Kathy Bates, Diane Lane, Annette Bening, Uma Thurman, and Amy Ryan. I think Katherine Waterston could be this year's Laurie Metcalf, as Mid '90s is going to be Jonah Hill's version of Lady Bird with A24, Anna Deveare Smith could shine against Melissa McCarthy, and the dynamic duos in Widows and Black Panther could break through.