For the past few years, the clear future winners at the Oscars jumped out far ahead of the pack long before the actual Academy Awards. This year, however, just about every category is packed with nominees that make a case to win. Still, there are a few likely contenders to take home the gold statue at the end of the night. We take a look at the frontrunners for acting, directing, and the biggest prize of the night, Best Picture.
Best Supporting Actor
Frontrunner: Ke Huy Quan
Ke Huy Quan has become a darling of the awards season – Hollywood loves a good underdog story, after all. But even if it weren’t for his emotional, exuberant speeches on this season’s awards circuit, his work in Everything Everywhere All At Once speaks for itself. He’s the beating heart of the movie and it’s hard to imagine anyone else knocking him out of the top spot now.
Best Supporting Actress
Frontrunner: Angela Bassett
Other actresses, like Jamie Lee Curtis and Kerry Condon, have in recent weeks taken some of the buzz off Bassett for this category. In fact, there’s a very real chance that Curtis will take home the trophy. However, we’re rooting for Angela Bassett. Her work in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever as Queen Ramonda was powerful and compelling. Bassett so clearly commanded every scene in her best performance in years.
Frontrunner: Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert
There were a handful of directors offering excellent work this year, and any single one of them might have had a shot at taking the category in any other year. But Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, collectively known as the Daniels, have pulled off a near-impossible feat with Everything Everywhere All At Once. From the technical complexity to the incredible performances, the Daniels put something on screen that, by rights, simply shouldn’t exist.
Frontrunner: Austin Butler
One of the most inspiring Hollywood moments is when an actor breaks out big with a performance, making everyone ask, “Wow, where has this guy been?” This year, that actor is Austin Butler, whose work as Elvis is astonishingly good. While Colin Farrell is right on his heels for The Banshees of Inisherin, Butler is fresh and new and offered a performance that was a tour de force. Expect the Academy to go with the new(er) kid.
Frontrunner: Cate Blanchett
While the heart may want Michelle Yeoh for Everything Everywhere All At Once, the brain knows this category will almost certainly go to Cate Blanchett for Tár. Sure, she’s already won a few Oscars, but it’s hard to argue – perhaps impossible – that her turn as manipulative composer Lydia Tár is her finest work yet. And this is the Academy, after all. It will inevitably want a safer, traditional pick after all the hardware EEAAO has been picking up.
Frontrunner: Everything Everywhere All At Once
It has to be Everything Everywhere All At Once taking home the top prize at the end of the night. It’s the little movie that could, and that’s not a knock on it. If the Academy awards it Best Picture – and it should – it will be sort of amazing that such a daring, bonkers, mind-bending film took it all this year. It just proves that some things in Hollywood still have the power to surprise us.