Best Supporting Actor
Willem Dafoe "The Lighthouse"
Tom Hanks "A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood"
Al Pacino "The Irishman"
Joe Pesci "The Irishman"
Brad Pitt "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood"
Other Contenders - Jamie Foxx "Just Mercy", Anthony Hopkins "The Two Popes", Song Kang Ho "Parasite", John Lithgow "Bombshell", Shia LeBeouf "Honey Boy"
Commentary - There are four contenders who have made it into SAG, the Globes, and the Critics Choice. There is only BAFTA left, but I think that all four could make it in there as well. The two Irishman guys looks solid, and Joe Pesci is a contender for the win. Brad Pitt looks like the front runner as he doing so well on the critical circuit (without campaigning). Finally, while A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood has been absent from a lot of these awards, the one constant is Hanks, who might finally have enough to make it into the top five for the first time since 2000. It's the last slot that's tricky. Jamie Foxx entered this race with a surprise SAG nod, and his performance is apparently an incredibly emotional performance, which registers with voters. Anthony Hopkins has the Globe and Critics Choice nod, and is a legend. I also still think that Song Kang Ho could pull a Marina de Tavira and get in without any major precursors. I am sticking with Willem Dafoe, who got a Critics Choice nod, and managed to slip into Best Actor last year with zero major precursors. He is on a high right now with voters, and could easily surprise again. This race is still far from over. Hopefully BAFTA will give us some more clarity.
Best Supporting Actress
Scarlett Johansson "Jojo Rabbit"
Laura Dern "Marriage Story"
Jennifer Lopez "Hustlers"
Margot Robbie "Bombshell"
Zhao Shuzhen "The Farewell"
Other Contenders - Kathy Bates "Richard Jewell", Nicole Kidman "Bombshell", Annette Bening "The Report", Florence Pugh "Little Women", Maggie Smith "Downton Abbey"
Commentary - This race has even less clarity at the moment. Three women have the trifecta at this point: Laura Dern, Margot Robbie, and Jennifer Lopez, and all look strong heading into the rest of the precursor awards. Scarlett Johansson got SAG and Critics Choice, and right now looks like a solid fourth place. The Globes opted for Annette Bening, who is great, but that movie's buzz is dead and Kathy Bates, who might suffer because Richard Jewell's backlash and box office numbers have silenced the film's chances. Also, she missed out at SAG because they submitted her in lead by mistake. It would have been interesting to see if she would have beaten out Nicole Kidman, who rode the Bombshell wave into the fifth slot. I still that BAFTA could lift Maggie Smith and Florence Pugh as well. But my last slot is still Zhao Shuzhen. There is no clear front runner for that fifth slot, and I think that The Farewell is a film that could still do better than expected. If voters watch the film, it will be hard to ignore Shuzhen who is just remarkable.