Oscars 2019: The field for the Oscar race so far

A Star is Born, photo credit: Neal Preston via WB Media Pass
A Star is Born, photo credit: Neal Preston via WB Media Pass /
4 of 9

Best Supporting Actor

Likely nominees:

  • Adam Driver – BlacKkKlansman
  • Stephan James – If Beale Street Could Talk
  • Russell Crowe – Boy Erased
  • Timothee Chalamet –  Beautiful Boy
  • Sam Elliot – A Star is Born

The supporting fields at the Oscars are always the most interesting ones, for me personally. It’s the field where surprises tend to occur the most, whether it be surprise nominations and wins. For now, the field appears to be fairly cut-and-dry, crowded with potential nominees in films already designated as heavy Oscar favorites.

For starters, we have Adam Driver hoping to capitalize on his fame from the new Star Wars trilogy with a nomination for BlacKkKlansman. Despite the film’s heavy subject, Driver’s character and performance are endearing enough to appeal to a wider selection of voters, who both recognize his talents and appreciate the supportive role he plays in the story. Endearing in his own way is the young and charismatic Timothee Chalamet, who will use his drama skills to conjure up sympathy for his performance as a young man battling meth addiction in Beautiful Boy. The trailer and even the title itself suggest that there is a large heart to his cold exterior, which could be instrumental in winning over voters come Oscar season.

BOY ERASED from Focus Features — Acquired via Focus Features Press Room
BOY ERASED from Focus Features — Acquired via Focus Features Press Room /

On the opposite side of endearing, we have Russell Crowe vying for a spot on the list with his performance as a conservative father with conflicted feelings over his son’s sexuality in Boy Erased. Crowe’s performance has been considered one of the highlights of the film, which gives Crowe and company a stronger incentive to push for Oscar gold. Although, the hype for Bradley Cooper’s adaptation of A Star is Born could trickle into the supporting actor category with Sam Elliot’s performance as the disgruntled older brother to Cooper’s character. Elliot’s status as an acting legend alone could propel him into strong consideration and if the hype behind the film is not a joke, Elliot seems almost guaranteed to get a supporting nomination.

As for the freshest face out of the bunch, If Beale Street Could Talk‘s Stephan James could win the hearts of Oscar voters if his prominent role in the Barry Jenkins drama exposes a potentially high-quality actor in James. He is undoubtedly the least familiar face in the bunch, which doesn’t help his chances, but don’t count him out just yet. As of now, Chalamet has the strongest buzz around his performance and while that could change, it’s easy to see this award being a consolation prize for Chalament after his unsuccessful journey towards Best Actor last year.

Strongest frontrunner: Timothee Chalamet for Beautiful Boy