A terrible year for mankind, a brutal year for our industry, and a weird year for nominations within our Union’s Award process, means my predictions are sure to be the worst of my career writing about such things. I still can’t get over certain shocking anomalies that defy our Union’s acumen for recognizing actual performance…and the list is long:
- no Andra Day (GG winner, Oscar nom)
- no Paul Raci (Oscar nom)
- no “The Sound of Metal” for ensemble
- the incoherent inclusion of Jared Leto
- no Amanda Seyfried (GG nom, Oscar nom)
- no John Boyega (GG winner)
- no Jonathon Majors for “Lovecraft Country”
- no Issa Rae (or ensemble) for “Insecure”…again…AGAIN!
- no Jodie Comer (“Killing Eve”)…I mean…THIS was her best year – watch episode 5 and tell me I’m wrong
- I know I’m on an island here, but “Bridgerton”…really? <sigh>
Also, would it be so terrible to combine Drama, Comedy and Limited Series supporting awards in to two, like the Golden Globes do? It would add a whole three minutes to the telecast and would take away the possibility of the brilliant Bill Camp, who is in two episodes of “Queen’s Gambit” from stealing a spot from someone like Hugh Jackman in “Bad Education”. It would also mitigate the yearly bundle of performers from one show hogging the room. I mean, why not create room for some of the brilliant supporting characters in “Lovecraft Country”, “Ted Lasso”, “The Flight Attendant”, or “Normal People”. Or, more specifically, Erin Doherty (whose Princess Anne pretty much steals the scenes from everyone in “The Crown”), or the ‘other guy’ from “The Crown”, Tobias Menzies or Donald Sutherland (the only good thing about the dreadfully dull and predictable “Undoing”), and on and on. But whatever…it is what it is.
So, nominees in ITALICS are who I think will win. Nominees in PLAIN BOLD are who I think should win (ie. who I voted for).
PART 1: FILM
So…in spite of the above list, this feels like a pretty accurate group of nominees (besides the Raci/Leto debacle). And, almost in direct opposition to the Golden Globes, the nomination of four POC-centric ensembles, speaks to the NomComm evolving in beautiful ways. Here they are…
LEAD PERFORMANCE IN A FILM
I’m going to assume that Hulu just never got out the screeners for “The United States vs. Billie Holiday” in time. How else to explain the absence of Andra Day. Who would I leave out? Amy Adams. Great actor. Very good performance. Not a great film. Not good enough to warrant the nod over Ms. Day. In any universe. Anyhoo…in Day’s absence, Kirby gave the most complete and tough performance, so she got my vote, but toss a coin between her, Mulligan and McDormand. I’ll predict McDormand because she’s so beloved amongst actors.
Amy Adams (“Hillbilly Elegy”)
Viola Davis (“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”)
Vanessa Kirby (“Pieces of A Woman”) – My vote
Frances McDormand (“Nomadland”) – Will win
Carey Mulligan (“Promising Young Woman”)
Well, we know Bozeman is going to win and he’s certainly deserving. So is Ahmed, who is simply sensational and is in every frame of the film. However, as an actor, I thought Hopkins was the best of the best. Can not stop thinking about his performance.
Riz Ahmed (“Sound of Metal”) (he gets my vote)
Chadwick Bozeman (“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”) – Will win
Anthony Hopkins (“The Father”) – My vote
Gary Oldman (“Mank”)
Steve Yeun (“Minari”)
SUPPORTING PERFORMANCE IN A FILM
This might be the biggest toss-up of the night with only Zengel really having no shot. I really wish we had recognized Seyfried. I thought she gave a simply brilliant character performance that was truly three-dimensional. Don’t think she was the best, but she belonged in the five. Also deserving is Yeri Han, the troubled, understanding and fish-out-of-water wife of Yeun in “Minari”. I voted for Yuh-Jung. But I think Close might JUST get past her….
Maria Bakalova (“Borat Subsequent Movie Film”) – Will win
Glenn Close (“Hillbilly Elegy”)
Olivia Colman (“The Father”)
Youn Yuh-Jung (“Minari”) – My vote
Helena Zengel (“News of the World”)
I still have NOOOOOOO idea how Raci was left out and Leto was allowed in. Other than being lazy, or Leto going door-to-door and talking to each NomComm member, I’m simply baffled. Raci gives the performance of a lifetime. Leto is simply spooooky. Please. The other four were fantastic. Also deserving, but maybe just outside the top five, is Aldis Hodge, whose Jim Brown in “One Night In Miami” has one of the best delivered speeches this year. So…Kaluuya will win, and he was great. For me? Odom was the best.
Chadwick Bozeman (“Da 5 Bloods)”
Sasha Baron Cohen (“Borat Subsequent Movie Film”)
Daniel Kaluuya (“Judas and the Black Messiah”) – Will win
Jared Leto (“The Little Things”)
Leslie Odom, Jr. (“One Night In Miami”) – My vote
This was a lovely middle finger to the Golden Globes. Four films revolving around the experience of people of color and the fifth showcasing a moment in history that was a part and parcel of the civil rights struggle. That said…not sure what “Da 5 Bloods” is doing on this list. It’s simply not a great film. And if it can’t be elevated even without the performances of Lindo and the brilliant Jonathon Majors (how did we not give him a nod for last year’s stellar indie, “Last Black Man In San Francisco”?!?!). But for all our success in nominating so many films about people of color, it’s likely we’ll give it to the film with all the most actors and words that come from a master writer. Me? I voted for “Minari”. A coin toss between that and “One Night in Miami” for me…but “Minari” felt more real…possibly because it wasn’t a play first.
“Da 5 Bloods”
“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom”
“Minari” – My vote
“One Night In Miami”
“The Trial of the Chicago 7″ – Will win
PART 2: TELEVISION DRAMA
You already know my displeasure with Jodie Comer not being recognized in this category. But, whatever. I voted for Gillian Anderson. I think the rank and file will, as well. But, seriously, there are enough moments in all these performances to deserve the nod.
Gillian Anderson (“The Crown”) – Will win and got my vote
Olivia Colman (“The Crown”)
Emma Corrin (“The Crown”)
Julia Garner (“Ozark”)
Laura Linney (“Ozark”)
I’d have absolutely replaced Page with Major (“Lovecraft”). I mean, it’s not really even close. Ah well. It’s O’Connor’s night and I voted for him as well. An amazing performance.
Jason Bateman (“Ozark”)
Sterling K. Brown (“This Is Us”)
Josh O’Connor (“The Crown”) – Will win and got my vote
Bob Odenkirk (“Better Call Saul”)
Rege-Jean Page (“Bridgerton”)
Credit where credit is due. Thanks to the committee for recognizing “Lovecraft Country”. But, I mean…we know who is going to win and who I voted for…
“Better Call Saul”
“The Crown” – WIll win and got my vote
PART 3: TELEVISION COMEDY
Is it me or did “Schitt’s Creek” have its final performance in 1983? More importantly, how can we be so forward thinking in the movie world and yet ignore Issa Rae here year after year. I also have a slight problem calling “The Flight Attendant” a comedy. Cuocco, who got my vote, spends at least half the show crying. But O’Hara will win.
Christina Applegate (“Dead to Me”)
Kaley Cuoco (“The Flight Attendant”) – My vote
Linda Cardellini (“Dead To Me”)
Annie Murphy (“Schitt’s Creek”)
Catherine O’Hara (“Schitt’s Creek”) – Will win
So grateful for the inclusion of the enormously committed and hilarious Nicholas Hoult. “The Great” was my favorite comedy of the year. But I eventually voted for Sudekis, who is engenders enormous empathy from his “awww, shucks” persona. If he loses to a Levy, I’ll lose it.
Nicholas Hoult (“The Great”)
Dan Levy (“Schitt’s Creek”)
Eugene Levy (“Schitt’s Creek”)
Jason Sudekis (“Ted Lasso”) – Will win and gets my vote
Ramy Youssef, “Ramy”
So the characters on “Ted Lasso” deserve the award. It’s a terrific collection of characters and has the greatest number of characters of import to the story. That doesn’t mean a certain Creek will win. I have faith in the rank and file that they’ll do the right thing.
“Dead To Me”
“The Flight Attendant”
“Ted Lasso” – Will win and gets my vote
Part 4: TV MOVIE OR LIMITED SERIES
So I have no idea what Kidman is doing here. I mean, she’s more than fine, but that show. Oy. Alright, seriously…it’s between Taylor-Joy and Coel. I think Taylor-Joy will win due to the show’s ENORMOUS popularity. I flipped a coin and voted for Taylor-Joy, but I thought Coel was terrific.
Cate Blanchett (“Mrs. America”)
Michaela Coel (“I May Destroy You”)
Nicole Kidman (“The Undoing”)
Anya Taylor-Joy (“The Queen’s Gambit”) – Will win and got my vote
Kerry Washington (“Little Fires Everywhere”)
Camp is incredible, but it’s a supporting performance. Diggs is terrific. Hugh Grant is Hugh Grant in a terrible show – always fun to watch. And Hawke burns down scenery deliciously. But seriously, Ruffalo gives one of the greatest performances in the history of the medium, I don’t care how relentlessly bleak the show is. Please, oh please, tell me you all voted for him, too!
Bill Camp (“Queen’s Gambit”)
Daveed Diggs (“Hamilton”)
Hugh Grant (“The Undoing”)
Ethan Hawke (“The Good Lord Bird”)
Mark Ruffalo (“I Know This Much Is True”) – Will win and got my vote