And we’re off!

The National Board of Review and the New York Film Critics Circle announced their winners on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively, starting the progressive shape of the awards season.

The talk of the past two days has been Martin Scorsese‘s “The Irishman” that took the top award at both NBR and NYFCC. This puts all eyes on the upcoming Los Angeles Film Critics Association announcement, scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 8 beginning at 1:00 pm EST. The reason is “The Irishman” could join a very short list of movies that have won what we have dubbed around here as “the trifecta.” Wins from all three major awards: NBR, NYFCC, LAFCA.

The last film to win the trifecta was David Fincher’s “The Social Network” back in 2010. Other trifecta winners include “L.A. Confidential” (1997), “Schindler’s List” (1993), and “Terms of Endearment” (1983).  Can “The Irishman” join the shortlist?

Earlier today, jaws and gasps were audibly heard around the awards pundit world when Lupita Nyong’o took home the Best Actress prize for the horror film “Us” from Academy Award winner Jordan Peele. Very early to feel like you have to say “she really needed this” but it’s safe to say that Nyong’o needed this make the awards community believers in her ability to be nominated for her outstanding portrayal of two women, with different sets of agendas.

That didn’t end the gasps as Josh and Benny Safdie, the filmmaking brothers who gained prominence in 2017 for “Good Time,” managed to leapfrog some big-name directors to take the Best Directing award for “Uncut Gems.” The A24 hit has been gaining massive momentum, following its two surprise wins at NBR in Best Actor for star Adam Sandler, Original Screenplay, and a Top 10 mention. Could the film be more of a player for the studio than “The Farewell” or “Waves?”

Antonio Banderas lives to fight another day in a very fluid Best Actor race, as he took home the category for his work in Pedro Almodóvar‘s “Pain and Glory.” Banderas seems to be building an alliance of supporters that are not just rewarding his stunning portrayal of a film director who reflects on his choices, but a career that has spanned many memorable turns including “The Mask of Zorro,” “Desperado,” and “Shrek 2.”

The supporting categories seem to be filling themselves out accordingly as Joe Pesci won Supporting Actor for his work as an aging mobster in “The Irishman” while Laura Dern triumphed in Supporting Actress for two films, “Little Women” from Greta Gerwig and “Marriage Story” from Noah Baumbach.

So what’s next? The Golden Globes voting period concludes on Friday at 3:00 pm EST, which will offer lots of interesting tidbits to the race when they announce nominations on  The aforementioned LAFCA is on Sunday, just after the New York Film Critics Online weighs on Saturday.  Critics Choice ballots are due this upcoming Friday, while SAG voting closes at 8:00 pm EST, following the LAFCA announcement.

The final predictions for the Golden Globes won’t be reflected in #TheCircuitHub until midnight on Sunday, as news broke after the update that “Uncut Gems” had been classified as a Drama, and not Comedy/Musical as A24 intended.

Look for new prediction articles this week.

Share your thoughts on NBR and NYFCC in the comments below!