Sasha Stone has been around the Oscar scene since 1999. Almost everything on this website is her fault.
It’s so weird, I’m afraid to even make any predictions anymore. Oscar morning threw me the biggest loop in my life. It’s like Inception, I don’t know what’s real anymore! Someone give me my dradle…
Something more annoying than Jennifer Lawrence being nominated is Jennifer Lawrence herself. I understand she is this year’s “it girl” but nominating her performance over Marion AND Rachel? Please.
Chastain is the only one that really deserves it, not only did she give the best performance of the year, but she gave us one of the strongest female characters in a very long time.
However, the controversy isn’t going away and it’s starting to hurt the film and perceptions about it.
In the end, I get the feeling Lawrence and Chastain will split the vote making way for either Riva or Wallis. (My money’s on Riva.)
It’s a tough year for predicting, that’s for sure. I can’t think of a single category that’s locked except Life of Pi for visual effects. Same place I was at the start of the race.
I’m sorry, but how has Jessica Chastian “paid her dues”? She’s an incredible actress and her 2011-2012 was one of the most incredible career explosions in history. But two years’ worth of strong performances doesn’t make you Glenn Close.
Anne Hathaway is locked for me. Sadly, though.
If I were voting, I would go with Chastain. She carried that movie. Without her, the movie falls apart.
But, I don’t think she will win it. I think Jennifer Lawrence will win it. Oscars are all about momentum and ZDT definitely has lost its momentum. I think the “controversy” will hurt Chastain too much.
“I’m sorry, but how has Jessica Chastian “paid her dues”? She’s an incredible actress and her 2011-2012 was one of the most incredible career explosions in history. But two years’ worth of strong performances doesn’t make you Glenn Close.”
I think, at least in my mind, what Sasha means is that Chastain has paid her dues by slogging it in guest spot after guest spot. She’s been active in the film and tv community for over a decade and noone really noticed until last year. I think that had it not been for last year’s impressive body of work that spilled over into 2012, she probably would have been one of those actresses who falls through the cracks into obscurity.
Ah don’t make me choose! I want Emmanuelle Riva to win because she gave last year’s most gut-wrenching, sensitive performance, but I also want Jessica Chastain to win because her performance is a professional and finely tuned as they come, she’s been doing excellent and varied work as far back as 2008, and a win for her would be a win for the best film of 2012. Eegad!
“But two years’ worth of strong performances doesn’t make you Glenn Close.”
You’re right – but those 2 years included half a dozen varied performances, the equivalent of which, by comparison, Glenn Close turned in over the past 6 – 7 years. Of course, both remain oscarless, and that may not change anytime soon.
Recently saw zero 30. Chastain’s performance was gripping. I, however, must have missed what makes her the only actress to really deserve it. She was quite good, and the movie helped her performance; it was also quite good. I really hate it when I miss something. Please explain.
All the performances were excellent. I actually feel a couple elevated their films, such as wallis and watts. Lawrence’s left me smiling, and wanting to see more of her.
This is such a tough call. I’ve changed my mind four times in two weeks.
I’ll say Chastain in a pinch. She benefits from the Oscar hangover phenomenon (not winning last year in “The Help”).
But the same rule could apply to Watts (not winning for “21 Grams”) and Lawrence (not winning for “Winter’s Bone”).
This category will be a nail-bitter. Don’t you just love it?
One of the toughest indeed. I agree with Eric. Jennifer Lawrence gave a great performance but not Oscar-worthy. On the other hand, Chastain’s performance is way worthier, but her character lacks Oscar-appeal, sort to say, and the movie is controversial.
Lawrence vs Chastain: Chastain deserves it, but right now Lawrence is a ‘safer’ bet.
Anyway, I wouldn’t ignore Riva.
Chastain is the best thing that happened in Hollywood in a long time. I think that she’s going to have plenty of Oscar nominations in her cereer, but it’s going to be a shame if she doesn’t win for the role in ZD30. This role and this movie will be more remembered and talked about in the future than Silver Linings Playbook. Although I really loved SLP, and Jennifer Lawrence in it, I think that the magnitude of Lawrence’s and Chastain’s roles couldn’t be more different. If Lawrence wins for SLP it’s just gonna be a forgetable win for a fine performance in a fine rom com, and I want Lawrence to win for a better role, cause she certanly can pull it off.
Sorry but someone who knows and teaches survey research, measurement, analysis etc. this scale is very skewed and biased. I hope noone will read too much into its results. Lets say, this is good entertainment for a friday!
Aragorn how is it biased?
representDLV says :
“If I were voting, I would go with Chastain. She carried that movie. Without her, the movie falls apart. ”
I think we should not confuse the character with the actress and her performance. I love Jessica Chastain and still believe she should have won last year. But what carries ZDT is Maya, the character. Yes without her the movie falls apart. Jessica Ch. does a very good job in her performance but that does not mean that there are NO other actresses around that would give a similarly good performance (Charlize Theron?, Amy Adams? Cate Blanchett? ). Of course, you can say the same thing for almost every performance and actress but saying that without Jessica the movie falls apart is unfair to the writer and director who both did quite good job in creating that character.
in the first answer option if you use “best performance” next to her name then it becomes loaded and biased. I will not go into details, but if you only gave names without any note next to them, it would have been fine. But here you almost prime respondents saying that’s the best performance.
I want Emmanuelle Riva to win!
Sasha, you should write an analysis on Naomi Watts. Robert Downey Jr used his PCA speech to state that she gives THE BEST PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR, Reese Whiterspoon wrote a heartfelt open letter, Angelina is supporting the film. Does it need more proof that Noami has a lot of support? Just think about it, if you get RDJ you get all his friends: you get Jodi, Mel Gibson, Gwyneth. If you get Gwyneth, you get Cameron (is she a member of the Academy?). If you get Reese, you probably get a bunch of supporting actors that worked with her. If you get Angelina, you can get A LOT OF PEOPLE BEHIND. What else? Naomi is winning. Actors LOVE Jessica Chastain but I don’t know if the eldest part of the Academy will connect with her character as much as they will connect with a mother who has lost everything.
Can it be a three-way tie between Chastain, Lawrence, and Riva, please??!! All three are so lovely, gave such wonderful and different performances. I wouldn’t know which way to vote. I finally saw “The Impossible,” and am very confused how Watts got through but McGregor got no love. She’s fine in the film but nothing too extraordinary for me. Wallis, I still chuckle is even mentioned with these actors and knocked out Cotillard. Shameful …
as much as I love The Impossible and I sure hope Naomi wins the Oscar, the celebrity endorsements (A. Jolie, R. Witherspoon, M. Ruffalo) didn’t do much to help the movie reap the nominations it deserved (BP, Holland and McGregor for acting, VFX, Production Design, Sound, Makeup) so I remain dubious as to how much support from Hollywood heavyweights can help Watts take the prize home.
but those endorsements were more about Naomi’s performance than Design, Sound or Makeup of that movie. We dont know. Maybe because of those endorsements she got the nomination at the 11th hour, instead of Marion Cotillard..
We dont know how important those endorsements were/will be for her so we cannot take them granted or ignore them at this point.
There’s an argument for every one of those five. Like several other categories this year, this one is wide open.
I so love this year! We’ll all be looking back on it every year from now on, when all the categories are already settled by this stage, recalling 2012-2013, when we were all having so much more fun.
So it’s biased against Naomi Watts? Okay I’ll see if I can fix it.
Surprised that the plurality of people predict it will be Chastain. I think she’s #3 most likely after Lawrence and Riva, for many reasons. The Academy is not behind ZDT. Her performance is one of those understated ones that might win if the movie is universally adored. It is a very tough year for competition.
But who the hell knows anything this year
After the SAG and BAFTA awards we will most likely know who the frontrunners are for most of the major categories. Let’s just see how they pan out.
I voted Lawrence, but not because she knocked me out.
I can’t board the Chastain train knowing they love SLP, snubbed Bigelow for Russell, and even nominated Weaver. I’m sure they *respect* Chastain a bit more because she’s older, more serious, has been in so many movies, and is playing a real “strong woman” role. But there isn’t enough to this character to make her a conventional acting winner.
This is why Riva seems like a good choice for a winner, but she’s SAG-less (I’m assuming eligible, though foreign). I think she’ll take BAFTA (or Chastain), but that doesn’t mean everything.
Amour’s several nominations could be putting Riva above Chastain, at least. Riva wouldn’t deserve a win in an ordinary year, but her toughest competition seem so overrated for these particular roles.
Then again, Amour could be this year’s Away from Her, surprisingly nominated in another above-the-line category (Polley’s screenplay), but La Vie En Rose still wins both its nominations (Makeup) for the more challenging performance by a younger-but-the-right-age actress who was making a big splash in Hollywood, versus a subdued if age-appropriate performance by an actress who had already won. Then again, no one here is Marion, and there is more support for Amour than there was for Away from Her. Riva doesn’t have the albatross of having won before, but she’s not exactly overdue either.
I want it to be Naomi, but that would take her winning the SAG over Lawrence and Riva winning the BAFTA over Chastain. Nobody cares about Naomi.
My silly rationale is this. In general, how good the performance is is mediated by how much the Academy likes the movie and wants to show support for the movie/people involved. Vice versa: How much the Academy likes the movie/people involved is moderated a bit by just how “wow” the performance is.
Jessica Chastain — The tepid support for ZDT in the Academy is clear, reducing Chastain’s chances.
Jennifer Lawrence — Big Academy support for SLP, and for Lawrence as a person, but is her performance really “wow” enough? Is there really enough there? (As a huge supporter of this wonderful movie, I still would not vote for Lawrence for the win–it’s not enough of a performance.) I realize this is probably the key point to debate, and many will disagree with me.
So I settle on Riva for a cool surprise few can disagree with — Clearly, the Academy is behind this movie. Surprise nominations indicated that. And how can you not admire the performance?
I also think there’s this perception that Best Actress should go to a big-enough star or a star-in-the-making. Chastain may be seen as having paid her dues more than Lawrence, but Lawrence has honestly done more high-profile, if mainstream, film work than Chastain for an extra year or so, plus Winter’s Bone. So she may give off ambivalent vibes whereas Chastain really wants the Oscar, but I’m not sure Jessica Chastain has done enough to be Best Lead Actress material unless she starts going the route of Jane Fonda or Meryl Streep. Sorry, she’s not there yet.
Plus, if voters cared about people who really wanted to win, Ann Dowd, Marion Cotillard, and Leonardo DiCaprio would be nominated, and Joaquin Phoenix would not.
in my humble opinion, it is riva’s year. they loved amour much more than Z30.
One last comparison: the criticism of Jennifer Lawrence possibly winning reminds me of Kate Hudson’s Oscar season. Even though I was too young to be following the race as thoroughly as I do now, I remember Kate being the belle of the ball, blessed with beauty, charm, a loveable character, a nepotistic in to the business, and mostly good fashion. But the Academy didn’t love Almost Famous as much as they should have, despite the screenplay win, and when Marcia Gay Harden’s clip rolled on the actual night (I hadn’t yet seen Pollock), and then she won, my reaction was, she looked like she actually deserved it! And she did.
Long story short, Jennifer Lawrence may be seen as too young and too slight to win, particularly in lead. The difference here is that she has Harvey Weinstein behind her and they love her movie, she’s already been nominated, and her career is already clearly better and more diverse than Kate Hudson’s at the time or ever since.
There’s also no Marcia Gay Harden in the mix. To me, Naomi Watts’s performance is the one that, “if they actually saw the movie, they’d vote for her,” a la Harden, but knowing the character’s limitations and how much the voters like Amour, Riva could be this performance.
Chastain and Watts are two of my top 5 or 6 actresses but I personally wouldn’t vote for either one this year. I preferred Chastain much more in Tree of Life, Take Shelter and heck, even The Help. Zero Dark Thirty is my favourite movie of 2012 but I think that was more to do with the filmmaking than the acting. Chastain was solid but nothing truly exceptional. And that probably had more to do with the limitations of the character than the performances. But that’s just my opinion. She can wait. Ditto Watts. She was much better in Mulholland Drive, Mother and Child, King Kong and 21 Grams. And with a few high-profile roles in her near future, she’ll be back soon. She shouldn’t win for this.
I think Lawrence was easily the best thing about Silver Linings Playbook. She made that movie bearable. Wallis blew me away but I’m skeptical about awarding someone so young. But Riva is in a completely different category. Hands-down the performance of the year. Lawrence probably has it in the bag though.
Pretty sure Lawrence has it too. But Riva, sigh. She’s the one who probably deserves it. This poll is for who WILL win, not who should win.
Will win, in order of likelihood:
They have to award Silver Linings Playbook something, right?
In 1998 at age 21, Jessica Chastain played Juliet to great critical acclaim in a production of Romeo and Juliet staged by TheatreWorks, a professional theater company in the San Francisco Bay Area.
In 1999 she started her professional training at Juilliard which she completed in 2003, while there she was an active participant in the drama department and starred in several theatrical productions and student film projects.
Then for the next 5 (!) years (2003-2008) she only got one-episode guest spots in TV shows like ER, Veronica Mars, Close to Home, Law & Order: Trial By Jury. By this time she was a 31-year-old Juilliard alumna, a decade had passed since her acting debut and 5 years since her graduation.
Then she made her first feature, Jolene, in which she played the title role, but after a semi-succesful festival run in 2008, it only received a VERY limited US-release two years later in 2010.
And THEN, 13 years after her critically acclaimed Juliet, 8 years after she graduated from Juilliard, at age 34 (!!!) came her big break when she starred to great critical acclaim in 5 (!) well-received films in 2011 (The Tree of Life, The Help, The Debt, Take Shelter, Coriolanus) and two more in 2012 (Lawless, Zero Dark Thirty).
Had her 7 brilliant turns been released over a longer time period, say 7 years, nobody would have a problem with her potentially taking Best Actress this year, she would be considered someone who paid her dues. Well, guess what…SHE DID ! She delivered more critically acclaimed performances within a year or two than several Best Actress WINNERS over decade(s)-long careers, or at least I would have a hard time finding 7 brilliant performances when looking through the filmographies of actresses like Sandra Bullock, Reese Witherspoon, Hilary Swank, Charlize Theron, Julia Roberts, Helen Hunt or even Gwyneth Paltrow and Natalie Portman. And I am not even saying they aren’t good/great/fantastic actresses, I’m saying if they could win, so could Chastain.
Having said that, I think the Best Actress race will be shaken up AGAIN when Naomi Watts wins the SAG (incredible support from her high-profile peers who VOTE for SAG) and Emmanuelle Riva wins BAFTA (the viable European choice against the strong American contenders) and then the Oscar.
Sure, it’s more likely it will be down to potential SAG-winner Jennifer Lawrence (they loved SLP, they didn’t love ZD30) and potential BAFTA-winner Jessica Chastain (they loved ZD30, they didn’t love SLP), but for now my money is on a Watts/Riva finale.
Sasha, don’t you think chances are good many voters will be like, “Well I loved SLP, but … best female performance of the year?… It’s gotta be that woman Riva”. I do. The voting bloc that supports “Amour” is clearly there. Best Picture AND Best Director noms! An 83-year-old. She looks like the stronger candidate on paper, is the better candidate on the screen, and I’m sticking with her for the prediction.
@Jerry, she’s 85. Turning 86 on Oscar day. That could help her or hurt her.
But these aren’t people who vote smart. They vote with their hearts. If they really love the movie, and it seems that way, given its love across the board (Russell, Weaver, editing), they could easily go with Lawrence in what is frankly a weak year for the category. These are the people who voted for Jessica Lange in Tootsie (so glad she has 2 Oscars, though!). If anything, Riva steals votes from Chastain, making it easier for Lawrence to triumph.
“It’s so weird, I’m afraid to even make any predictions anymore. Oscar morning threw me the biggest loop in my life. It’s like Inception, I don’t know what’s real anymore! Someone give me my dradle…”
Kane, you said everything…
I think we’ll need years and years to believe in our rules and Academy rules again…
In this weirdo year, everything can happen…
Riva is great, but would be a shock. I like Lawrence. But I preffer Watts.
But I think, in the end, it’s going to Lawrence…
This year’s race reminds me a lot of the Paltrow vs Blanchett year.
Paltrow/Lawrence: young, charming, bubbly ingenue playing a character mainly there to inspire the male lead in a movie loved across the board by the Academy.
Blanchett/Chastain: strong, stoic female character, probably the better performance but too cold and severe for most voters to embrace.
Blanchett won BAFTA as I expect Chastain will. Paltrow won SAG as I expect Lawrence will. In the end, Paltrow takes the Oscar as I expect Lawrence will.
I can put all the worried people to rest- I had a strong dream last night and this is who is winning the Academy Awards. The dream clearly revealed.
Best Picture: Lincoln
Best Director: Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Best Actress: Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
Adapted Screenplay: Tony Kushner, Lincoln
Original Screenplay: Michael Haneke, Amour
I awoke just as the tech categories were becoming visible, I guess my sixth sense wanted me to know the major ones first…I think Life of Pi was winning a lot of them though…
I’m rooting for Riva, but she has no chance. Lawrence will win, she has the most showy role. Chastain in ZDT was more of a great casting choice than she gave the great performance. she didn’t really do anything; she raised her voice once or twice and dropped a few tears at the end. but she is always great to look at and she was believable as Maya. I wouldn’t really mind if any of those actresses win,because they are all good and most importantly for me none of them won before. I’m not fan of multiple winnings unless someone is really really amazing or competition is really really weak.
@knee_play, such a good comparison. With Riva as Fernanda Montenegro, perhaps?
It’s easy to hate on Gwyneth (I do it all the time), but hers was much more of a Best Actress performance than Lawrence’s, even if the same can be said and then some about Cate Blanchett compared to Chastain.
Jessica Chastain had very little idea on how to tackle the complex character that was Maya. What was potentially an enigmatic role: her thin voice, frail physique, and conservative sensibilities in stark contrast to the enormous, near-impossible task of hunting Bin Laden, turned out into a lifeless, by-the-numbers, ultimately forgettable portrayal.
Of course Riva has a chance. She’s winning the BAFTA award, and she’s winning the Oscar. I told you, my dreams never lie to me. She’s in a Best Picture frontrunner and has the kind of performance voters will mark number 1. Whose going to mark Jennifer Lawrence number one over Riva? HUH? WHO? No one, that’s who. Riva is a lock on Oscar night. And it’s her 86th birthday- when she gets to the podium, she’ll proclaim “What a lovely birthday present!” I’m telling you, I know the future! She’s winning.
I think RIva will win . I’d vote for watts but anyone of the 5 would be great . MUch better than Sandra Bullocks win. 3 years ago.
thx for the exclusive info!! I’m a little surprised by the riva and waltz wins but theirs are the most open categories so it might make sense.
Just got word from my sixth sense- here are the Tech Winners:
Animated Feature: Wreck-It Ralph (surprise!)
Cinematography: Life of Pi
Art Direction: Life of Pi
Costumes: Anna Karenina
Film Editing: Argo
Foreign Film: Amour
Makeup: The Hobbit
Original Score: Lincoln (it will be John Williams’ 6th Oscar and he’ll get a standing ovation, and thank Spielberg- there will be tears shed)
Song: Pi’s Lullaby, Life of Pi (get ready Adele fans, major upset)
Sound: Life of Pi
Sound-Editing: Zero Dark Thirty
Visual Effects: Life of Pi
Lincoln winning Best Picture- NO
Spielberg winning Best Director – NO
Daniel Day-Lewis: YES
Emmannuelle Riva: YES (biggest of the night)
Christoph Waltz: NO
Anne Hathaway: NO (and the clapping stops before she gets to the stage)
John Williams: YES
your dreams don’t tell you everything voters don’t rank contenders for best actress (only for bp), they just choose their favorite actress/performance and that’s it… so in a tight race the 5 of them could end up with around 20% of the votes.
Apparently you didn’t get what I meant. It should have been me.
You shouldn’t have put ” gave the best performance” next to J.C or anyone else for that matter. Now it is too late. As I said this is for FUN. Nothing else. No one should read the results too much so it is totally biased. lets all have fun looking at these results.
Well, I wouldn’t mind if these results came out true. Jessica Chastain DID gave the best performance.
@ Jason Travis
I hope your dreams come true when it comes to Riva, but Waltz winning for the second time for doing basically the same thing he did the first time ( he was fantastic both times though)- don’t think so. also besides those two Tarantino movies (plus Carnage and Water For Elephants) he doesn’t have much in his resume (well, he did a lot of tv work in Germany) unlike other nominees who are all legends or will be (Hoffman is too young to be called that)
I think Chastain will win. I remember watching in the theater when her character delivers a monologue to Kyle chandler about why she needs surveillance teams to track the courier. The audience gave a collective gasp and it was one of those moments where the performance connects on a broad level. Also watching Chastain and Lawrence win at the globes I was reminded of what sasha says about whether a win “feels” right. Chastain gave a dignified and heartfelt acceptance and Lawrence seemed awkward and entitled. The same was true at the horrible critic’s choice awards.
You shouldn’t have put ” gave the best performance” next to J.C or anyone else for that matter. Now it is too late.
If you had spoken up sooner, Aragon, thousands of us might have tried to put your concerns at ease. But now it is too late. Our minds and actions are now controlled by the brute force of Sasha’s words.
and knowing most AD readers are actually Academy members, it becomes clear Sasha is rigging the game to benefit her own favorites…
Christoph Waltz plays two entirely different characters. Just because he speaks German in both movies doesn’t mean he’s doing the same thing. He’s way more loud in Inglorious Basterds- in Django, he’s understated and quiet.
And winning the Globe in a race this tight is nothing to snear at- my dreams never lie, Waltz is winning.
Will Win: Jennifer Lawrence
Should Win: Jessica Chastain
Though I genuinely wouldn’t be upset with any of these women winning. Jennifer Lawrence is endlessly charming in interviews and a talented star onscreen, Jessica Chastain put every ounce of her soul into that achingly beautiful performance, Emmanuelle Riva is marvelous and one for the record books, Naomi Watts has delivered excellent work time and again (though this particular role is not among my favorite performances from her), and Quvenzhané Wallis carries that tiny film on her tiny gifted shoulders. I suspect that J Law may have it more tied up than this poll or these comments suggest, but if she doesn’t, that’s just fine with me (as opposed to Best Actor, where I’d much prefer to see Jackman take home the statue over DDL, and Best Supporting Actor, which is a fairly humdrum lineup, when all is said and done).
actually now that I thought about it maybe Chastain deserve it more than others, because as she pointed out she played the role that doesn’t serve her male couterpart. and she’s the only one in a lineup.
Mark my words…Jessica and Jennifer will split the vote and Riva shall win the Oscar
I think the Academy is just itching to give Chastain an Oscar.
She’s beautiful. She’s talented. She’s stylish. She’s unsmirchable.
She’s the total Oscar package.
And it doesn’t hurt that she can act her head off in every movie she’s made and makes an indelible impression in each film.
I loved her supporting turns last year in “Take Shelter” (it’s a shame she overshadowed herself in “The Help” as she was outstanding in this movie) and this year in “Lawless” (her love scenes with hunkerilla Tom Hardy were HOT).
I’m not worried about her, though. If she doesn’t win this year, her time will come. She’s just such a hot commodity in film these days.
What director WOULDN’T want to work with her. The actress is amazing.
I’ve seen all the performances and the ranking of beat performance of the 5 seems very easy to me:
1. Emmanuelle Riva
2. Quavanzhane Wallis
3. Jessica Chastain
4. Jennifer Lawrence
5. Naomi Watts
All are FANTASTIC, that being said.
I feel watts was great but should be nominated for supporting.
Lawrence was wonderful in a film I didn’t like with a character that was poorly written.
Chastain was amazing
Wallis was a revelation
But no one can touch Riva. Truly the eat performance of the bunch… Of the year
I’m telling you, Emmanuelle Riva is winning best actress. Why is this even a discussion? My dreams tell the truth! On top of that, clear logic would tell you that Lawrence and Chastain will split votes, giving Riva the award. This isn’t Fernana in Central Station type of nomination- this is a TRUE goddess of the screen, and the film is up for major accolades outside of actress. Riva is going to win. It will be touted the greatest Best Actress decision since Holly Hunter’s win for The Piano, and Meryl Streep winning for the Iron Lady- which was, incidentally, just last year- thank you!!!!!
Waltz definitely played different characters, but in a kind of similar manner. Academy may think his performance is not much of a stretch comparing to the first time. but he stole the show in both movies – that’s true.
Just as a side note, for anyone who might be interested:
Cloud Atlas just received the Bavarian Film Award for Best Picture, whilst Michael Haneke was awarded Best Director.
Jennifer Lawrence: fuckable vote, it girl status, charming, funny, talented, 2nd best actress nomination, box office princess, weekest role in the bunch, some say miscast, GG comedy win, SAG nom, BAFTA nom, Silver Linings Playbook 8 Oscar noms, great critical response, directed by on demand Russell, Best Picture nom
Jessica Chastain: fuckable vote, on demand actress, 2nd Oscar nomination in a row, charming, sweet, very talented, versatile, strong original female role directed by a female director, controversial film, GG drama win, SAG nom, BAFTA nom, working the red carpet, Zero Dark Thirty 5 Oscar noms, great critical response, Best Picture nom
Emmanuelle Riva: oldy connecting with the older voters, charming, French, Hiroshima Mon Amour, long career, directed by Haneke, movie about love loneliness and death that can connect with all kinds of voters, incredible critical response, Amour 5 Oscar noms, difficult and complex role, BAFTA nom, Amour Palm d´Or winner, Best Picture nom
Naomi Watts: fuckable, 2nd Oscar nom, overdue King Kong/Mulholland Drive/ The Painted Veil/ Fair Game, charming, glamoures, great actress, Australian, endorsed/campaigned by Jolie, Witherspoon, Downey Jr, Ruffalo, difficult both emtionally and psyshically role, GG nom, SAG nom, future strong roles may work against her, campaigned hard for her 2nd Oscar nom, well liked and respected actress, close friend of Kidman
Quvenzhané Wallis: child actor factor, sweet, charming, impressive performance in an original movie, black, performance with strong critical response, great future, incredible debut by her director, touching/ heartfelt movie, Beasts of the Southern Wild 4 Oscar noms, Best Picture nom
No Chance: Wallis
Will Win: Watts
Should Win: Riva/ Watts
Should be replaced: Lawrence with Cotillard
I think Lawrence wins and is the favorite because she does the one thing that all the rest of the noms, for the most part, lack. She explodes off the screen in every scene. It’s not quiet. She doesn’t stare off the outer space or is confined to a bed. She doesn’t just scream in anguish or mumble unintelligibly. She takes on Robert DeNiro and Bradley Cooper wins. Tiffany is the most alive character in the field.
I’d suspect Lawrence is still the favourite, though it’s not nearly as clear-cut as it seemed just a couple of months ago. If not Lawrence, then Riva has the best chance at the upset, rather than Chastain or Watts. Wallis is the only one whose victory would be a legitimate shocker.
If I had a vote, I’d vote for Lawrence. (Though if I could vote for anyone, it would’ve been Marion Cotillard, who I can’t believe didn’t get a nomination for that wonderful performance.)
Manuel: I was so relieved when I scrolled down and you didn’t describe Wallis in the “fuckable” quotient. WHew!
And in the supporting actress category? Jst my two cents here because you started it, Manuel: Field (unfuckable); Hathaway (fuckable), Hunt (unfuckable), Weaver (unfuckable) and Adams (fuckable).
Now isn’t THAT a quotient absolutely irrelevant to acting? ? ? ?
So, the poll is actually for who WILL win, but all the texts next to the names make it look more like who SHOULD win.
Would have been better without.
Lawrence is the frontrunner, but with Chastain close behind. SAG will be telling the most, if either Lawrence or Chastain wins it.
Game changers could be Watts (IF she wins the SAG) or Riva (IF she wins BAFTA-but that’s very likely imo).
Wallis, although won the Breaktrough awards at the BFCA, is happy with her nom, I think. I’d be surprised if she’d take the Oscar. I don’t mind it at all, I just doubt it.
I voted Chastain but to tell you the truth, I’m kinda divided between her and Riva. I’ll be fine if any of those damn great ladies go home with an Oscar.
Wallis is way to young and let’s face it, she’s just in for sympathy with the film and her. Not deserving of a win for me, sorry.
Watts has paid her dues so if she gets it, I’m fine. Not gonna celebrate it, but not even close to hate it.
Now, Lawrence is interesting. I’m afraid (for the lack of a better word) that if she gets it, its the end of her career. I can see her winning and then doing action crap after action crap with the eventual horror film in between. Not gonna care about her winning.
Maya might be a “strong female icon” but she is a very one-dimensional character that didn’t require anything of Jessica Chastain than to be either angry or look focused/determined for 2 hours 30 minutes then 1 minute to let eye drops roll down her cheeks. Chastain is so much better than that as seen in her great performances from 2011, any of which were 100 times better than in ZD30. That is why she is not running away with the win, not because her film is controversial. It’s just not an Oscar worthy performance or character with an emotional range, it’s a director’s showcase. Bigelow/Boal are the master performers of ZD30. Chastain will win if that is the only way to honor ZD30 or from goodwill for her 2011 performances.
Jennifer Lawrences’ is much more layered and real of a character. She touches you on a visceral emotional plane that Maya just doesn’t. If we are giving awards for who is “over-due” or who has spent more time working to get where they are Naomi Watts wins that award in a heart beat not Chastain.
In terms of pure performance Riva is Lawrences’ best competition. If more Academy voters watch Amour she could win otherwise it’s Lawrence’s to lose followed by Chastain as a prize for the entire ZD30 crew. Wallis was too young when filming Beasts to be considered for the win.
Jessica Chastain is very talented and I think she did great in Zero Dark Thirty but the reason the film was so great was because of Katherine Bigelow and an amazing script. The film was masterful and suspenseful and intense however did Jessica really carry the film? I have to say no. Sorry but her role was very plain and dull. I wish she was given more. I’ve seen Claire Danes gave a better performance in Homeland than Jessica did in ZD30. If she wins an Oscar for a role that required her to do nothing but sit in front of a computer and stand in the background while all the men did the interrogation, torture, and hunt scenes for her… what a shame. I’m all for feminism but seriously? This is not a female lead role. As for Jennifer Lawrence. Yes she wasn’t the main lead but she gave a much more interesting moviestar ala performance in Silver Linings that left you breathless.
If you want to see Jessica Chastain play a kickass strong female intelligence officer who has a layered personality and feelings besides just angry please, please, please rent or buy The Debt. You will forget her performance in Zero Dark Thirty as Maya the one-dimensional CIA robot once you see her play the young Mossad agent Rachel Singer.
Jessica Chastain deserved the Oscar for The Help
Naomi Watts deserved the Oscar for Mulholland Drive
Jennifer Lawrence deserves it for Silver Linings Playbook
Riva deserves it for being old
Wallis deserves it for being young
Okay, so according to that breakdown, it’s Lawrence for the true best performance.
How is Helen Hunt unfuckable, and she plays a ROLE that requires her to be the opposite? Just saying
I can see anyone playing Maya in ZDT but I can’t see anyone but Jennifer Lawrence playing Tiffany in SLP. She was phenomenal. She gave more to her character even though it was written very vaguely and had nothing for her to do. I can’t say the same about Jessica Chastain. She gave a performance that I can see anyone giving. Nothing unique or extraordinary. I was very excited to see ZDT last week because of all the praise and hype but was the most disappointed with Chastain because she did nothing special in the film. Honestly, I’m shocked she was even nominated. I personally think she was better in The Help and Tree of Life and Lawless.
@JJ: Riva deserves it for being old? Watch Amour- she does more then just look like an old bag in a chair. She emotes every physical aspect of pain there is to describe, and she is naturally inhibited in her character.
It comes down to politics. I’m still going with Jessica Chastain based on the fact that the Academy will want to award Zero Dark Thirty in a big category. Jessica Chastain had an AMAZING debut last year, with 7 awesome performances last year, and in a way, they are awarding her for everything she’s done in the past 2 years (a la Nicole Kidman when she won after an “awesome” previous year). This win could also make up for the fact that Bigelow didn’t get the Director nod, and Chastain is about the right age/average age to win in Best Actress. Also, it’s the character that Chastain is portraying that is 1: based on a real human being 2: the character is a hero of sorts. In terms of her performance, I felt Chastain did it wonderfully, but the character isn’t an actor’s showcase so she did the most she could with that type of story and character arc. She’s also in one of the stand out films of the year. With Lawrence, she’s just too young to win it, and she has more options to get there (though I would honestly give it to her based on performance alone). Emmanuella Riva could be a surprise based on her performance reviews and the fact that she would make history being the oldest acting oscar winner, and the fact that this may literally be her last chance at winning an Oscar. However, I’m going with Chastain, she kind of reminds me of Streep because her range of work and how good she is. And she’s beautiful and would look great with Anne Hathaway in the pictures and what no
I can’t decide. I fell in love with Jennifer Lawrence’s character in Silver Linings but I think she’s too young and this might end up killing her career. Too many expectations, hype, etc. I also think Jessica Chastain’s performance was overrated. Naomi Watts did a far better job in The Impossible but that’s just me. I’m saying who should win based on their “dues” or how long they’ve been working for but based on performances. I haven’t seen Amour so I can’t say if Emanuelle Riva should win but out of Jennifer Lawrence, Jessica Chastain, and Naomi Watts, I think Lawrence and Watts gave far supperior performances and either should take home the Oscar.
@pink: While I agree Jennifer Lawrence is the clear favorite right now (even if my “dream” has Riva winning), she is not the only actress that could have played Tiffany. The role isn’t that much of a stretch. Natalie Portman, Thora Birch (both of whom she reminded me of), Ellen Page, Emma Stone, Rachel McAdams- any of the young dewy young things of today could have pulled that role off fine. I don’t know if you’ve noticed yet, but Jennifer Lawrence is kind of blah in her demenour. She often comes off bland and unemotional, lacks energy or vibrative spunk like other actors. She’s very intelligent, but nothing remotely special. The role of Tiffany requires what exactly, that other females her age couldn’t do? Getting “crazy” in a restaurant? Admitting you’ve slept with all your coworkers? Warming up on a ballet bar to do a dance just passable enough to earn a 5 from judges? Come on now.
Jennifer Lawrence is getting the hype for this role because of who she is, and because of The Hunger Games. She’s nothing more then Kristen Stewart in a different wig, playing to a crowd that has standards higher then Twilight.
She’s not winning the Oscar. It’s clearly between Chastain and Riva.
I’m afraid that Jessica Chastain will walk away with the Oscar because of her performances for the past 2 years and not really for her performance in Zero Dark 30. I was let down after I saw the film. I think she was in 2/4 of the film and wasn’t given anything substantial to do but that’s just me. Maybe women are supposed to stay in the background and do the work for the men while they go out and fight to find Osama…
“She’s nothing more then Kristen Stewart in a different wig, playing to a crowd that has standards higher then Twilight. ”
Please do not compare a talented actress like Jennifer Lawrence with the worst actress of our generation. Not cool. What an insult.
Yes Jessica Chastain played a hero who sat in front of a computer with a frown throughout the whole movie. She was in half of the movie. The hunt scene, the car chasing scenes, the interrogation scenes, the torture scenes, all were done by other actors and not by the ~hero~ of the movie.
I have a feeling everyone in the industry is going to vote for Naomi Watts. She’s been acting for decades and never recieved any recognition for her work. Or maybe I’m wrong. If so, hopefully it’s Jennifer Lawrence then.
True Maya never got her hands dirty. She got the men to do all the hitting, torturing, go out on the dangerous missions. Having the security guard beat up her suspect for you while she just stands there asking questions was eye-rollingly weak. She has fists didn’t the CIA show her how to use them? I guess yelling at people and not dating is the new definition of strong female character. Well at least she was shown as the smartest in the room.
Jennifer Lawrence was supposed to be a mere accessory to the film. A small supporting role who came out of nowhere to make Bradley Cooper’s life better but Jen gave her role so much more. Her character had no background, no storyline, nothing but Jen made it more than that. She gave a lot more to her role than the script demanded which impressed me. I walked away from the film falling in love with her character. She was just that damn cool and likeable even thought she wasn’t supposed to be.
my super objective rank of the five nominated ones:
You missed Ellie Parker, Mother and Child, Funny Games, Eastern Promises, I Heart Huckabees. But I’ll let you off. Just cos of this:
Naomi Watts: fuckable
That’s the one!
Funny you say that, because she’s won HOW many MTV Movie awards for best female performance? I don’t care for her either, but why else do so many people vote for her? She’s doing something right to get them to mark her name down over and over again.
Admit it- Jennifer Lawrence wouldn’t have near the fanbase had it not been for The Hunger Games. No one was blogging about her in Winter’s Bone- it was all about Natalie Portman and Black Swan in 2010- Lawrence was a pale figure in the background (much like she is now, only she’s in the foreground, thank you!!!)
Outstanding direction, editing and screenplay are at the core of ZD30. Maya’s character was artistically selfless, hence the difficulty to relate to it and to single Chastain’s performance out for an Oscar nod. Her performance was flawless and powerful, but in such an unconventional way, for the Oscar race.
Riva would be the classic perfect fit, but Lawrence has Weinstein…
Also will people STOP giving away spoilers for Zero Dark Thirty?! I’ve read through so many comments where peoople are giving away key plot points and describing Chastain’s character issues- some of us have not seen the film.
“I can’t see anyone but Jennifer Lawrence playing Tiffany in SLP.”
Geraldine Page – too bad she wasn’t available. Now try and get that image our of your heads.
Yes because MTV Movie Awards are given based on talent and peformance and credibility. Nice. That is why Twilight has won best movie ever year…
Comparing Danes’ performances from Homeland to Chastain’s in ZD30 is unfair: utterly different characters and story lines.
@ Jason Travis:
Totally agree on Lawrence. She’s smart and talented, but an Oscar would be out of place.
The best scene in Zero Dark Thirty was when Jessica Chastain had to do this one interrogation scene and she taps on her bodyguard to hit the suspect lol. I lost my shit. I can’t believe people think this is a strong female character? A strong female character who can’t even hold her own or do any of the dirty work except for sitting in a CIA office doing nothing but making worried facial expressions. I think the reason people have been hyping up her performance is because she’s been struggling for a long time and had a great 2 years. If there is a performance that is overrated, it’s Jessica Chastain’s.
I’m thinking Jessica Chastain will be the only win for Zero Dark Thirty, like Natalie Portman was for Black Swan a few years back. I’m not really a fan of all the “she’s worked so hard and long for this” arguments, including her own comment at the Globes (and this isn’t directed toward Sasha or anyone here). Most good actors and actresses do work for a long time before landing their first big roles.
I don’t think SLP will go away empty handed in the acting categories though either. Their best shots, IMO, are J-Law and De Niro, so who knows.
The big problem here is that a lot of people who haven’t seen ZD30 keep saying that Jessica Chastain should win. I finally got to see the movie this week and Jessica is barely the lead in the movie. All the exciting scenes were done by other actors. I was on the edge of my seat by the end during the hunt scene for Osama but Jessica was nowhere in that hunt scene. Or the mission scenes. Or the torture scenes. Or the interrogation scenes. Or anything else that was remotely exciting. I would advise everyone to watch the film first then decide on who should win the best actress Oscar.
I agree. Zero Dark Thirty was a great film. A genius film made by Katherin Bigelow but Jessica Chastain doesn’t deserve an Oscar for her role in the film. I mean she did NOTHING. I can’t believe people think she should win or will win. I say Naomi Watts or Jennifer Lawrence.
IMO Emmanuelle Riva is fuckable too… plus you can always count on Polanski and friends to stand for Wallis!
@ Blane, NatNat:
Jessica Chastain did what her character demanded. Maya’s character is an unconventional lead, because ZD30 is a complex movie.
Interesting just how very close Lawrence and Chastain are on this site’s poll. (a whisker separates them). SAG and BAFTA still to go,to really get a sense of how this specific contest is shaping up.
Haven’t seen either of the two frontrunner’s performances… but my prediction is for Chastain to win based on the following reasons –
* Chastain is of age.
* Chastain plays a more iconic character.
Those are pretty much the only 2 reasons. And the thing is, everyone knows Lawrence is a brilliant actress, and she will get her “role of a lifetime” soon enough. And when she does, she’ll win by a landslide.
I’m actually really happy with this race. All four ladies are amazing & deserving. Riva, Chastain, Watts and even Lawrence. The only one I can’t stand is Q-should-not-be-named. She stole the nomination from the best performer of the year, Marion Cotillard. Seriously, the kid was good but come on now.
Oh, well. You know, when two people quarrel, usually a third rejoices. Due to the recent controversy regarding ZDT I highly doubt that the film will win anything at all. And regarding JLaw (no matter how much I liked her) I just believe her to be too young to receive the award. And because the other two possibilities are way too unlikely I bet my money on Naomi Watts.
About Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty I keep reading things like “I mean she did NOTHING.” or “If she wins an Oscar for a role that required her to do nothing but sit in front of a computer and stand in the background while all the men did the interrogation, torture, and hunt scenes for her… what a shame. ”
Opinions are opinions but those comments sound to my mind as insane as: “that tree is majestic and beautiful but what the f… it doesn’t move, it’s not that good of a tree” OR “It’s a shame that La Gioconda is considered a masterpiece, come on, she is just sittin’ there.”
And one question: if Maya had been a male character would we have been reading those kind of comments?
Jessica Chastain should win and I think the controversy over the film could actually help her. The Academy may reward her to show they are above such judgments. They did so for vastly different reasons when they awarded Jane Fonda her Oscar for Klute.
I strongly believe that Lawrence will walk away with this one, and she deserves to win as much as Riva, Watts or Chastain. Yes it could be argued that she did not give the “best” performance of the year but she gave probably the most loveable and to the academy that is what matters. If we’re talking about the “best” then, Cate Blanchet should have won of Gywenth Paltrow , Felicity Huffman should have won over Reese Whiterspoon, and Meryl Streep should have won over Sandrah Bullock b/c all of these ladies arguably gave the “best” performances of their year. But the academy sides with a character that is easy to love and Lawrence’s character of Tiffany is much more easy to love than the more serious role of Maya that Chastain has remarkably portrayed. Emmanuelle Riva should also not be counted out of the race just yet.
Jason Robards won back to back supporting Oscars playing characters that were not too far removed from each other, an editor and a writer, so there’s no reason Cristoph Waltz can’t win again whether anyone thinks his roles similar or not. He was the standout in two best picture nominees and that’s pretty big.
I wouldn’t call Jessica Chastain the lead of Zero Dark Thirty. More of an accessory. Jessica did all the work in the background but who ended up doing the real dirty work of catching Osama Bin Laden and taking credit for it were the men. I was expecting a little more from Jessica since people were raving about her performance. I still don’t understand how anyone thinks she deserves to win for such a plain boring role that required her to not even give an interesting performance.
Good, by that kind of thinking I should assume that President Obama or any other President has been doing nothing all day long as well. The same goes for each and every work of intelligence, supervision, planning, etc… So it is basically this: You don’t do the action work but just the thinking one? You are a boring credit stealer!
In Zero Dark Thirty “the accessory” as you call Maya’s role (and Chastain performance) was the one who do the puzzle work – a very difficult puzzle – and sees the picture while the puzzle is not even half done. I ask you: where the hell would the men that do “the real dirty work of catching Osama Bin Laden” go without Maya finding and pointing the direction and the place?
“And one question: if Maya had been a male character would we have been reading those kind of comments?”
If Maya were a male character the actor wouldn’t even get an Oscar nomination. The strong male character with the attitude problem who goes against his bosses and turns out to be right in the end is a dime a dozen in cinema. You can find that character on almost every network t.v. cop show. The reason the Maya character is seen as a feminist hero is because it’s now a woman playing that stereotypical hardass protagonist with the bad attitude but for males it’s a cliche.
>Additional if you had a male protagonist like Maya who needs another man to hit and punish his detainees, waterboard them and stays back while other guys risk their lives in the field they would be viewed as weak or unmanly. He wouldn’t get any respect from male audiences. Boal would re-write the script to fit him in the Bin Laden compound raid at least or to go track down suspects.
@Kannada: I wouldn’t call Chastain’s Maya just an accessory. She was the one who kept the CIA working on the Bin Laden case when they wanted to focus on the homeland, she put the resources in tracking down the courier. It was a team effort with the men serving as the muscle, putting their lives on the line in the field however Maya was the brains and motivator-a key part. It’s not right to understate her importance in finding Osma Bin Laden. It just happens that the actual role of Maya is not difficult for an actor since she has a limited personality.
I don’t agree on anything you just wrote.
Can you mention one male character out of the many you imply populate tv who carries the story doing intelligence work and who doesn’t have his backstory told in the show? I’m curious…
I agree with PJ. Jennifer Lawrence is the sparkly one. It was the scenes with DeNiro that impressed me. She went toe to toe and came out a winner. I’m sure that will impress actors. This newbie forcing you to concentrate on her instead of a living legend when they share the screen. That’s really something.
@Antoinette that is something that any current young actress in Hollywood can do. Personality is NOT acting. Jennifer is not dead inside and that is why she comes across as a “good actress” but, can she act? No, she cannot. At least, not the way she is said to act. After all, she is not the second coming of Jesus like a lot of people say she is. She is a good young actress that has a bright future ahead. Acting wise, she is not Saorise Ronan who is a chameleon: nor is she Mia Wasikowska who has more of a classic leading lady thing on her. She is the girl that uses her body to gain attention but because she is harmless people like her. And because she has Weinstein. That’s it.
that is something that any current young actress in Hollywood can do.
No really, it’s not. She carried the entirety of HUNGER GAMES on her shoulders, not to mention WINTER’S BONE. And now she’s stood out in scenes with the most highly respected of actors. Most actresses can’t do that. I’ll also compare Chastain in this way, since it seems like most people see the race between them. I don’t think Chastain was a success in carrying ZDT. I said previously that I thought she was too delicate at times in ZDT and this was her film. Has she carried another film entirely? I like her very much but thinking about it now she’s either been a supporting character in an ensemble or female lead to a much stronger male lead from what I can remember.
She is the girl that uses her body to gain attention but because she is harmless people like her. And because she has Weinstein. That’s it.
Well you obviously think very little of her. But she’s a lot more than a body. And I do believe I’ve seen more of Chastain’s body than Lawrence’s.
Ronan and Wasikowska seem like nice people but they’re not in this race.
“Jennifer Lawrence is getting the hype for this role because of who she is, and because of The Hunger Games. She’s nothing more then Kristen Stewart in a different wig, playing to a crowd that has standards higher then Twilight.” , by Jason Travis – the dreamer
It’s so ridicule and offensive that I couldn’t ignore.
Just a little bit of sense. Lawrence is a great young actress, so don’t compare her to that Stewart.
Forget your booooooooooring dreams and wake up to real life!!!!!!
The Reuters/Ipsos polls:
Jan 16, 2013
BEST LEADING ACTRESS
Naomi Watts 12%
Jennifer Lawrence 10%
Jessica Chastain 9%
Quvenzhané Wallis 4%
Emmanuelle Riva 3%
Jennifer Lawrence gave by far the BEST performance. Jessica Chastain was largely forgettable in ZD30. Absolutely nothing remarkable. Jennifer all the way.
There is no standout performance with this year’s Best Actress race. I miss the day when a strong performance such as Hilary Swank’s Million Dollar Baby and Boys Don’t Cry gets rewarded. Frances McDormand for Fargo is also a great one. They’re just average performances this year.
“Who Will Win Best Actress”
Here I voted for Emmanuelle Riva.
Still love JLaw but as I’ve said before, the win by Riva would be a lovely birthday gift to her as well, plus my instinct — for now — I pick Emmanuelle Riva. Again, for now….
(Still, Emmanuelle Riva or Jennifer Lawrence, then I am happy.)
“At least, not the way she is said to act. After all, she is not the second coming of Jesus like a lot of people say she is.”
Funny, I thought it was Jessica Chastain who’s being touted as the second coming of the Messiah. Whoever said she gave 7 awesome performances last year obviously didn’t see Coriolanus. Jennifer Lawrence was a doozy in SLP. Didn’t like the film, but liked her a lot. In contrast, I thought ZD30 was great, but Chastain was meh.
Haven’t seen Amour, I really hope Riva is fantastic.
I just saw SLP and I really can’t get behind Jennifer Lawrence for Best Actress. First, it’s a supporting role IMO. Second, there were some scenes where I felt I was watching Jennifer acting (her tics and mannerisms the same in her interviews). Third, I prefer the winner in this category to be the one actually “carrying” her film… Much like Natalie Portman for Black Swan,Hilary for Boys Don’t Cry or Helen and Meryl for their recent wins. I don’t want another win ala Reese Witherspoon… Accessory role winning best actress.
Will win: Jennifer Lawrence, “Silver Linings Playbook” (Harvey + immense nominations support from the AMPAS + “popularity” + residual votes from her 2010 performance in “Winter’s Bone” + “It” Girl status in Hollywood + audience appeal)
Should win: Emmanuelle Riva, “Amour” (the fourth French actress to win the Oscar after Simone Signoret, Juliette Binoche, and Marion Cotillard, and the second to be honored for a French-language picture after Marion in 2007)
Critics’ choice (based on “major” critics’ groups, i.e. Los Angeles, New York,
National Society, Broadcast Film Critics, and National Board of Review and support from the guilds, i.e. HPFA, SAG, and BAFTA): Jessica Chastain, “Zero Dark Thirty” and Emmanuelle Riva, “Amour”
Bridgie’s choice: Emmanuelle Riva
Realistic pick: Jennifer Lawrence
Safe choice: Jennifer Lawrence
Lawrence has never taken any drama classes or lessons for acting.
@Archie: I have no idea who I would’ve voted for when Frances McDormand won. She’s so great in that but Emily Watson and BRenda Blethyn are sooooo amazing too.
I want to be surprised, so I’m gonna be pessimistic for now. Weirdly, even thought there were surprises in the Oscar nominations for this category, I always think Lawrence has this in the bag. For some reason I think she has the momentum (SLP is well-loved by the Oscar voters, and it is probably the best category to award that movie), the face, the youth, the likability, the box-office hit (the *yuck* Hunger Games), the future. Her performance was better than the movie, but is it Oscar worthy? The only possibility for an upset is the Oscar voters decide to award her later because she’s still young and there’s a bright future ahead of her, so they might make her wait.
If Riva or Watts win, I’ll be ecstatic. If Chastain wins, I’ll be happy. If Lawrence wins, I’ll be ok. (Haven’t seen Wallis’ yet)
Yes kasper, now that I’ve watched Fargo again, I think McDormand is amazing. But Watson’s raw power totally blew me away. Blethyn’s pain is so alive. That was indeed an abundant year of great performances.
Jason Travis, to quote my 2nd least favorite president, is so far to the left he’s left America:
“Jennifer Lawrence is getting the hype for this role because of who she is, and because of The Hunger Games. She’s nothing more then Kristen Stewart in a different wig, playing to a crowd that has standards higher then Twilight.”
[Keanu in The Matrix voice] Whoa. [/Keanu in The Matrix voice]
They haven’t yet invented the integer that goes high enough to describe how many levels of WRONG the above quote is. Lawrence has more acting skillz in her little pinky than Kristen Stewart ever had, will, or in the future, even if she approaches Riva-age. I hope Oscar does not fall into the trap of giving a career achievement Oscar to an unknown Euro, which is what Riva is to 99.99999% of this country’s moviegoers. It will be as equal What. The. Frak? moment to the assembled viewers as The Hurt Locker over Avatar or Shakespeare in Love over Saving Private Ryan.
And is Chastain’s role based on a real-life character or a *composite* of several different ones blended together to give ZD30 its primary acting focus?
I’m pulling for Chastain simply because by the day its increasingly looking like Zero Dark Thirty is going to go home empty-handed, which is a BIG shame if that happens. I thought that it had a great shot at Original Screenplay and Film Editing but it looks like that the Academy will go reactionary and give them to other films. Lawrence will no doubt be there again sometime soon.
This race is mainly between Jessica Chastain and Jennifer Lawrence so I’ll put my 2 cents. I think that Jennifer is a far better lead than Jessica. She can carry a movie on her shoulders like no other. She did it so incredibly with Hunger Games, Winter’s Bone, and now she stole the show away from the other cast members in Silver Linings. She’s that good. What I had a problem with Jessica in Zero Dark Thirty was that her voice was too squeaky and she seemed to fragile and delicat ein the film. I don’t think she’s leading material and that’s why I would call ZDT a masterful film because of Katherine’s amazing directing and not because of Jessica’s dull performance
What’s with this “either or” shit? Chastain rules. Lawrence rules. K-Stew rules. I’d give best actress to Chastain no problem but I’m picking ice cream flavors here.
@mel: You’ve been knocking Lawrence at every turn and it’s strange because NO ONE with any logic is calling her the second coming, nor does Lawrence’s success hinder Ronan in any way. Besides, Ronan (who also RULES) has a Stephanie Meyer movie coming out. It could be terrific but it’s certainly a commercially-minded choice.
Also, anyone who’s seen enough Entourage or Larry Sanders knows that “playing yourself” isn’t exactly foolproof. And Lawrence comes across as goofy in interviews; as Tiffany, she’s pretty hard-edged and plays a good 6-8 years older than she did in Hunger Games or Winter’s Bone. It’s impressive. Again, Chastain’s my favorite, SLP’s maybe my #5 this year so I’m not in the tank for Jennifer. It just knocks me out when a young woman who has TWO OSCAR NOMINATIONS AND A HUGE FRANCHISE at the same age as college seniors gets taken down. Pick better targets, kiddies.
I think is disingenuous of you or anyone to say Quvenzhane Wallis (a 9 years old by the way) ‘stole’ a spot from Marion Cotillard, or any other actress you deemed worthy in your own subjective opinion. Wallis did not nominate herself in the Best Actress category, she was voted in by the actors branch of the Academy who loved her performance in BOTSW enough to deemed it worthy of a nomination. And your statements also assumed that she’s ranked 5th in the pecking order, and thereby, barely made the line-up in the first place. You don’t know that. She could’ve received the most number of votes, 2nd most, or 3rd most. We really don’t know quantitatively who received the most votes among all five ladies, and we may never know. What we do know is that her film received 4 nominations, and were listed in the major categories including best picture. She, along with three other actresses in her category have their respective films recognized in multiple categories. The only one whose film failed to garner any other nomination is Naomi Watts.
One thing people need to understand is that BOTSW has strong support among some members of the Academy. BOTSW came out sometime in the Summer, and miraculously stayed in the consciousness of academy members long enough to recognize it. That in on itself is an extraordinary accomplishment for a little film that some predicted had lost steam due to its lack of noms at the Golden Globes and BAFTA. People are underestimating this film chances at the Oscars next month. I will not be shock if it ends up winning for Adapted Screenplay or Directing.
As for who will win best actress, I think Jessica Chastain will win. She will get both the SAG and the OSCARS. I don’t know who will win BAFTA though.
Chastain was the early favorite but after ZDT failed to get the crucial nods (BD) and Amour scoring big, Emmanuelle Riva became the frontrunner in this category and she should win the BAFTA and Oscar next month easily. Lawrence was never an option in this category as her film is not at the level of ZDT and Amour.
Someone mentioned before that JLaw has never taken acting classes. I don’t know if that is something to be truly proud about. I mean, if you think as an actor you could go two ways: “she just wants to be famous but is talented enough so I’ll vote for her” or for those that are proud of their craft, “she doesn’t care about the craft and bla bla bla”. I really don’t know if she is going to win but I think Naomi is NOT an underdog in this race. I think the Academy will make Jennifer wait until next year for Serena (if she knocks everyone out of the park as she did in SLP). Even though her movie is beloved, I cannot see her winning just because she is SO young and her performance is not as strong as Hilary’s but undoubtly, Jennifer has the support of some BIG players in Hollywood to be the only one of the crop of “it girls” who will survive her hype. I wish we could see more young actresses being pushed this hard because there are very good ones out there.
Naomi Watts is remarkable in her film – and easily deserves to win as much as anyone. But I think there’s a chance people will let it go this year and think along the lines of… “Hey, isn’t she playing Princess Di next year in that bio pic? Surely she’ll be amazing in that, so we can always give her the Oscar next year instead?” Thoughts?
Sherlock Holmes has already leaked it out.
Jane Fonda had very little competition in 1971 when she won for “Klute”. It would have been a glaring omission and one of the biggest Oscar blunders if they had not given her the Oscar that year. And they knew it. It was and is a performance that still stands as one of the very best by a female actor.
This year? I’m not sure if any of the five performances stand out. They are all so different. And the usual Oscar formula prognostication techniques can (and probably should) be thrown out the window when we have such a wide-open race this year.
I’ve changed my mind four times in two weeks. First I thought Lawrence had it in the bag, then Riva, then Watts. But my suspicion is that Chastain will sneak through (my the skin of her very pretty white teeth).
I love this race. It’s one of the best in years.
I think people are really undervaluing Chastain’s performance and the comparisons to (the wonderful) Claire Danes are unfair. No, Chastain’s performance is not flashy or histrionic but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great performance.
One line that stuck out to me was “They say she’s a killer.” But, of course Maya is not a killer in the conventional sense. She is frail looking and has a pretty high pitched voice that doesn’t especially spell killer. But, she is a killer in the sense that she is PERSISTENT. That is what Chastain exudes so well–the persistence behind this mission. She is especially persistent after her friend (played by Ehle) is killed.
I hate the comments that talk about the character not really being “feminist” because she doesn’t do enough. No, she doesn’t go to Bin Laden’s compound but a character doesn’t necessarily have to take on an active role in war to be considered “feminist” (if we even want to think about the character in these terms).
I guess my question is whether Chastain needed one or two more screaming scenes to win the Oscar? Did she have to slap around a terrorist herself to earn it? No–that is not the point of her character. The film is so strong because it is about a woman who develops at the same time as her hunt for Osama. By the end of the film, we start to see the “killer” in Maya: she is pissed off that they aren’t pursuing her lead. And that partly is part of Bigelow’s point: being a “killer” isn’t about physique or voice or whatever. It is about having the balls to do your job no matter the barriers in your way or the consequences.
Wish we wouldn’t have to count the number of screams, slaps, gasps, and other emotional outbursts when deciding on Oscar. Have we lost the ability to read human facial expressions and body language? The two best performances this year had virtually no scenery-chewing – Riva and Chastain.
If Lawrence wins an Oscar for this seen it before performance in an over rated romantic comedy…I’m done.
I saw ZD30 and Silver Linings Playbook back to back yesterday to compare the performances of Chastain and Lawrence. Lawrence takes it by a landslide; she was free and took the movie go’er in with her compelling performance. Chastain was too wooden and the character was poorly developed. You would think a movie that lenghty would provide us with some of the character’s back story. If Chastain wins, it is to make up for last year, so get it right Academy members and vote for Jennifer.
….its fascinating to read all these comments and all the passion that everyone of us put in support of our favorite candidate..personaly i think and hope that when that envelope its open the name of …EMANUELLE RIVA its there and to see the academy honor such performance and class act of Riva ,everybody will be clapping and shouting our hearts out!!! She Truly deserves it!..on the other hand both Chastain and Lawrence,they are still young and they can Wait..and yes ,its true ,if Riva wins BAFTA -and i think they will go for her-its Over,..why?..Because 30percent of the members of the academy its British and they will go for the european and will vote in Block…and the more seniors members of the academy will vote for her..whatever happens at SAG will only add suspense..
Agreed. Jessica Chastain has NOT paid her dues. As well as Jennifer Lawrence she also has an Oscar Nomination. Best Actress over Best Supporting Actress. Naomi Watts is due and has been far overlooked. Naomi Watts has been in far too many critically acclaimed films. The race is between Chastain and Lawrence but Chastain seems to be getting more critical acclaim. However, would be very happy if Naomi Watts steals it.
Keifer I agree with you that Jane Fonda in Klute gave one of the best performances ever and thankfully the Academy had the smarts to recognize it. Knowing that she created her therapy sessions in the film mainly through improv makes the work in that role even more impressive.
Reminder: Jennifer Lawrence hosting SNL in like 5 minutes.
Oh, man, that opening monologue for JLaw definitely belongs on this site:
Some gems (paraphrased from memory):
“Jessica Chast-ain’t winning an Oscar over me!”
“Quvenzhane Wallis. What you talkin’ about, Wallis? The alphabet called. They want their letters back.”
I don’t know if this helps her or hurts her. Probably hurts her, but I don’t know if the people who matter care.
There’s also an amusing spoof of how tedious The Hobbit was.
J-Law is Buffy; she’s slaying it out there. And if AMPAS has a problem with it, it’s on them.
I just checked the list for actress nominees in 1971 and I don’t think Jane Fonda had little competition. Julie Christie, Glenda Jackson and Vanessa Redgrave? That is pretty stellar and formidable company.
I do see them as possibly canceling each other out in favor of the American.
By the way, McCabe and Mrs. Miller is a brilliant film.
Zach‘: Some gems (paraphrased from memory):
“Jessica Chast-ain’t winning an Oscar over me!”
“Quvenzhane Wallis. What you talkin’ about, Wallis? The alphabet called. They want their letters back.”
Thanks for sharing, Zach. True gems, indeed (well, unless you are one of the those three ladies). : ) Where did you find that? Did JLaw really say something like that (paraphrased remarks aside)?
I love it. But I don’t think it’s gonna help her (much or at all). I mean, if any, it’s gonna hurt her more or less.
I totally dig it but I’m not sure about the Academy. Seriously.
Oddly enough, I’m starting to see Riva as the real frontrunner, too!
Chastain’s character is a far too unconventional lead: her performance is masterly calibrated, don’t get me wrong, but less appealing than Riva’s, Oscar-wise. As for Lawrence, don’t believe all the hype: the Globe was well-deserved, but – and I’m quoting Tarik Khan – “Is this really an Oscar-caliber performance? Couldn’t a number of other actresses have played the part just as well?”
I am not going to state the obviously, but all these were great performances by five gifted ladies. I must say I’ve never seen a more difficult but exciting category in all my years of watching the Oscar telecast. Tonight I just watched The Impossible and Naomi Watts gave a stunning surreal performance as a mom trying to survive with her son in a horrific catastrophic event that occurred. It was so good, I cried through out the whole film. The Impossible itself should have been nominated for best picture I don’t know how anyone didn’t vote for that film to be in. It was surely gut wrenching experience and worth watching. If you don’t cry, your definitely from another planet.
My opinions for best actress, I really would like to see Watts win, but I’d like to see all of those actresses win. However, there can be only one and really I am afraid that all of those woman who’ve been nominated twice already will be cancelled out. It might actually go to Emmanuelle Riva, from where it stands, but I can’t say that because I haven’t seen Amour yet. I’ve only see the trailer and I can say it looks pretty surreal feel as what was similarly shown from The Impossible, except The Impossible is for sure an intense film. Amour looks more a little more believable. So my pick is very difficult because I’ve seen all of the performances except Amour and I can say I love all of them. Its so close that there’s a good chance there might be a tie. We haven’t seen that in over 45 years not since Barbara Streisand and Katherine Hepburn won. So it is going to be a very interesting best actress race this year!
sorry, saw Ms. Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty and was completely unmoved by her performance save for a few scenes ….
Lawrence takes home Oscar easily … either her or Watts … definitely not Chastain
Jennifer Lawrence’s “meant-to-be” (I doubt it) jokes at the SNL against every other contenders were cheap, bad-taste and sheer disgusting. Do not run while you are just learning to walk.
I’m SICK of people calling this year weak for actresses. Last year the only amazing leading female performance was Viola Davis and maybe unnominated Tilda Swinton. This year we have Riva & Watts giving all they got, they are both incredible. I also found Chastain to be quite sublime so there 3 amazing performances for you. I don’t get this weak deal.
The Academy loves to keep people guessing on who is going to win, particularly when we are coming off of a year with a large amount of amazing movies. In terms of the acting categories I am 98% sure that Hugh Jackman will get Best Actor, Jennifer Lawrence, Best Actress, Tommy Lee Jones, Supporting Actor and Anne Hathaway, Supporting Actress. Best Director will go to Steven Spielberg, and Picture will go to Lincoln.
I really hope Naomi Watts wins,she gave the best female performance of the year,a real tour de force,much more better than Jessica,Jennifer or even Riva.
Naomi Watts made me cry with a so beautiful performance,no doubt she is the most underrated actress working in the movies know a days but also the best actress working in the movie know a days.She shines.
Peers support continues for Naomi Watts:
Bruce Davidson adds his support of Naomi Watts for the Oscar Best Acting Award, and Daniel Day-Lewis.
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