2014 Oscar Predictions – Best Supporting Actor Updated!


labordayThe Oscar Predictions update week continues with Best Supporting Actor.

Like always, the category has unlimited possibilities from the veterans to the newcomers.  The word on the street is Bruce Dern will be looking for a Lead Actor citation for his role in Alexander Payne’s “Nebraska.”  That opens up the category significantly.  There are some that we already know are half-way decent and can catch fire early on like John Goodman in “Inside Llewyn Davis” and Dane DeHaan in “Kill Your Darlings.”  Goodman has had roles in the last two Best Picture winners and the narrative is beginning to write itself.  It’s time to reward this man after years of stellar work in countless films.  In years past, he’s had too many films out that prohibited voters from committing.  I’m sure he received a great number of votes last year for both “Argo” and “Flight.”  I think its time for him to make the play.

Ben Foster seems to be a dark horse and getting a big push for his performance in David Lowery’s “Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.”  A performer who missed out on recognition in James Mangold’s “3:10 to Yuma.”  I’m keeping a close eye on him.

Matthew McConaughey, who looks to be campaigned Supporting for Jeff Nichols’ “Mud” is one of the best things to come out of the first half of the year.  Co-star Tye Sheridan will try his chances in the Lead category.  Of the all the actors will multiple roles this year, he stands the best chance at double citation with this and “Dallas Buyers Club.”  His co-star from Denis Villenueve’s film Jared Leto is the wildcard of the season.  As I pointed out in a piece from earlier in the week, big, loud performances that are destined for citation usually bring along an actor or two.  Philip Seymour Hoffman and Jeff Bridges are examples.  Leto or co-star Jennifer Garner could be that filler this year.

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Michael Fassbender is also a possible double candidate with his villain role in Steve McQueen’s “12 Years a Slave” and his charming lawyer looks in Ridley Scott’s “The Counselor.”  Playing the bad guy works in Supporting as we’ve seen with Christoph Waltz in “Inglourious Basterds” and Javier Bardem in “No Country for Old Men” but those had charismatic elements to them.  A trait that says, “I’m the bad guy, but you hate that you like me.”  I don’t know how much we’re going to “like” Fassbender.  Ralph Fiennes had the same problem in 1994 for “Schindler’s List” and lost to the comedic veteran, Tommy Lee Jones.

SavingMrBanksWalt Disney will put all they got behind “Saving Mr. Banks” and the prospect of Tom Hanks scoring his first supporting mention remains high.  They’re still unsure whether he’ll be campaigned there but as of now, supporting looks like the plan.  Josh Brolin is also another actor unsure of where he fits in the awards race.  Kris Tapley of HitFix suggested a supporting plan for him from Paramount, which probably bodes well for his chances.

Universal Pictures will have two ponies to run this season.  “Lone Survivor” may or may not be what it looked like in the trailer and I don’t imagine there’s any real standout based on what we saw.  Ron Howard, who is an Academy favorite, has the elements in place to do the right thing this season.  “Rush,” which has screened in England, had lots of unofficial praise for Daniel Bruhl, who also has “The Fifth Estate” with Benedict Cumberbatch.

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Speaking of Cumberbatch, I have a lot of money riding on him to be the standout male of the female-centric “August: Osage County.”  He’s slowly becoming a one of our finest character actors and along with his Julian Assange and his role in “Star Trek Into Darkness” earlier in May, he may find some good graces with voters.

I also don’t know what to make of any of the guys from “The Monuments Men” which according to Tom O’Neill of Gold Derby, will not be getting an awards push from Sony Pictures.  Not sure if that is in fact true or will come to fruition, but if they have an Oscar-winning star like George Clooney that is directing, producing, and starring in a December release, might as well make a play for it.  Just my opinion.  Bad or not.

Check out the updated Supporting Actor predictions.  Make sure to include your own thoughts on the race in the comment section.  

Tomorrow, we dive deep into Supporting Actress.

About Clayton Davis

Clayton Davis is the esteemed Editor and Owner of AwardsCircuit.com. Born in Bronx, NY to a Puerto Rican mother and Black father, he’s been criticizing film and television for over a decade. Clayton is a proud member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association where he votes and attends the kick off to the awards season, the Critics Choice Awards. He's also an active member of New York Film Critics Online, the International Press Academy, and the Broadcast Television Journalists Association. He has been quoted and appeared in various outlets that include the New York Times, CNN.com, Bloomberg Television, AOL, Huffington Post, Bloomberg Radio, The Wrap, Slash Film, and the Hollywood Reporter.
  • UBourgeois

    My least sure category. What I’m seeing is…


    Leto, Hill, and Brolin all rolling around ready to snatch that last spot.

    Goodman’s got a good shot at a nomination, but I doubt a win comes his way. Isn’t his part in ILD kind of small? Dunno what you’re going on with Bruhl though. Anything can happen, of course, but I don’t see Rush being much of a contender at all.

  • Ryan

    1. John Goodman
    2. Michael Fassbender
    3. Benedict Cumberbatch
    4. Jonah Hill
    5. Jeremy Renner

    I think that we have known for a while now that John Goodman is one of those actors that Oscar will persistently try to ignore, despite his best efforts. I’m thinking that as long as the Coens give him enough to do in the part, then he will live up to what I have heard about him so far. Even if he does have a small part, he can still be pushed through if enough voters agree with his performance (Think Anne Hathaway).

  • Definitely expecting a Cumberbatch nomination. One thing for sure is that Cumberbatch will help guarantee a large watching contingent that might not otherwise view the show. With Sherlock, three major movies this year, the Star Trek groupies and the adoring Cumberbitches (yes that’s what they call themselves), he will bring his own millions to the event.

  • pj

    Well, my supporting actor predicts are as follows
    Tom Hanks – Saving Mr Banks
    Michael Fassbender – 12 Years a Slave
    Matthew McCounaghey – Wolf of Wall Street
    Chris Cooper – American Hustle
    Bradley Cooper – American Hustle

    Pretty much everybody not named Hanks is in question. This category is wide open. Never understood Goodman love. Plays same character in every film.

  • rlk

    Re: Brolin: Tapley’s article from a few days ago says Brolin is NOT leaning towards a supporting campaign:

    ‘Also at Paramount is Jason Reitman’s “Labor Day,” a Joyce Maynard adaptation in the vein of Clint Eastwood’s “A Perfect World.” The film stars Josh Brolin as an escaped convict who takes a woman and her son hostage one weekend, but isn’t everything he appears to be. It’s the kind of work that could, like the others on this list, be argued as a supporting performance, particularly for a film with a young actor in the true leading role. But, while not set in stone quite yet, it’s mostly settled at this juncture that Brolin will be campaigned as a lead.’

  • Ok, Tom Hanks in category actor in a supporting role. He is an possible winner, very great. I remember Jack Nicholson: two Oscar in a leading role and one in a supporting role.

  • Excuse me. I sayd more: if Hanks in nomination, also Thompson goes in nomination actress in a leading role. They form an convincing couple of actors. I remember Hopkins and Thompson in The Remains of the Day, or Day Lewis and Thompson In the Name of the Father.
    The remains of the Day: nomination Hopkins actor in a leading role and Thompson actress in a leading role. In the Name of the Father: nomination Day Lewis actor in a leading role and Thompson actress in a supporting role.

  • Tyler

    Steve Carell should be pushed to supporting. He is borderline lead, but Tatum’s character drives the story. Think of Carell as Williams in Good Will Hunting or Hoffman in The Master

  • Steve Glansberg

    I agree with Tyler on the category placement for Carell. Besides the question of his presence in the script that has been floating around for a while, I think Carell has a significantly better shot in supporting. If they decide to push him lead, I don’t think he’ll make the five, but if they go supporting, I’d put him at the top of my supporting players.

    Steve Carell (Foxcatcher)
    Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)
    Jeremy Renner (American Hustle)
    Benedict Cumberbatch (August: Osage County)
    Colin Farrell (Saving Mr. Banks)or Ben Foster (Bodies)

    Colin Farrell and Ben Foster are my two favorite contemporary actors, so that’s my wishful thinking spot.

    • Also Colin Farrell is supporting role in Saving Mr Banks. If only it were true Farrel in nomination. But there is Hanks. I don’t believe both in nomination. Unless Hanks/Disney in category actor in a leading role.

  • Steve

    As of now, I predict:

    Josh Brolin: Labor Day
    Daniel Bruhl: Rush
    John Goodman: Inside Llewyn Davis
    Woody Harrelson: Out of the Furnace
    Jeremy Renner: American Hustle