Best actor and actress the most intriguing Oscar battles
The consensus is the Oscar winners in all the major categories are a foregone conclusion, except two: best actor and best actress.Silent French movie The Artist appears to be a lock for both best film ($1.08) and best director (Michel Hazanavicius, $1.12), while Christopher Plummer (Beginners) is paying just $1.02 for best supporting actor and Octavia Spencer (The Help) is $1.05 for best supporting actress.
The Academy has been known to throw up a surprise or two in the past so there is plenty of value out there if you’re willing to take a risk. For example, The Descendants ($10, best film) won the Golden Globe for best motion picture – drama, which gives you some indication of its calibre.
Realistically, though, George Clooney’s portrayal of Matt King, a Honolulu-based lawyer and struggling single dad, is The Descendant’s best hope of scooping one of the top honours come Monday (Aussie time). Clooney ($2.10) has already picked up Golden Globe and Critics’ Choice awards for the performance, but he still is not the favourite. That tag goes to Frenchman Jean Dujardin ($1.70), who has already won a swag of awards – including a BAFTA, Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe – for his role as movie star George Valentin in The Artist.
Sports fans may be tempted to throw a sentimental tenner on Brad Pitt ($19) for his performance as Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane in Moneyball but all signs point to a race in two.
As for best actress, that will be fought out between Meryl Streep (who has been nominated for an Oscar a record 17 times) and Viola Davis (who has received her second career Academy Award nomination).
Despite their contrasting CVs, it is Davis who is the $1.80 favourite for her role as Aibileen Clark, a nanny and maid in 1960s Mississippi in The Help.
Streep ($2), who has won just two Oscars despite her multitude of nominations, is up for a third gong for her portrayal of former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady. Streep won the Golden Globe and BAFTA for the performance, while Davis took out the SAG. Who’ll win the big one?809 views