It’s hard to believe the 2017 Academy Awards are all ready here. They mark the end of the Winter and the start of the Spring, and by the end of Sunday a new slew of movies, actors, actresses, and industry professionals will be walking away with their very own Oscar Statuette. Unlike a lot of years, this year’s show may not hold a whole lot of surprises when it comes to who will win, but there will be some, and it is always fun to see the speeches and overall spectacle of the night. Regardless, here are our thoughts on who we think will win on this big night.
Best Picture / Best Director: These two categories are pretty predictable this year. We can’t see anything topping La La Land, or its director Damien Chazelle. The movie has been a critical and theatrical success. We probably could have predicted this win way back in September when Tom Hanks praised the film during the Telluride Festival. It then went on to win TIFF’s People’s Choice Award. Sure, Moonlight has made a lot of noise, but it just doesn’t have the same buzz as La La Land.
Best Actor: At any given time in the last few months Casey Affleck, Ryan Gosling and Denzel Washington were the favourites to win this award. Affleck is by far the best, but the sexual harassment allegations against him in the past seem to be hurting his chances at winning. Gosling’s performance was really good as well, but like everything he does he makes it look easy, which makes it easy to overlook. That leaves Washington, who will most likely win his third Oscar for his incredible job in Fences.
Best Actress: Of all the big categories, this one might be the hardest to predict. On one hand you’ve got Emma Stone in La La Land, who is the favourite to win, but on the other you have Isabelle Huppert from Elle who shocked everyone at the Golden Globes by taking Best Actress in a Drama. You’ve also got Meryl Streep, who you can never count out, and Natalie Portman who played Jackie Kennedy so well that you had a hard time believing it wasn’t actually the former first lady on the big screen. And of course Ruth Negga simply can’t be ignored, because her performance was clearly one of the best of the year. As much as we want to say Stone will win, we think Isabelle Huppert may just surprise once again.
Best Supporting Actress: This is by far the easiest award to predict of the night. Viola Davis is due for an Oscar, and an Oscar she shall get. She might have even taken home the Best Actress Oscar if the film’s producers had decided to try to get her nominated for it instead. She’s that good.
Best Supporting Actor: Moonlight is one of the most nominated films this year, and part of the reason it is so good is because of Mahershala Ali’s performance. He’s by far the leader in the category, and should win the award. We’re not predicting that he wins it however. We loved Michael Shannon in Nocturnal Animals, and we think he deserves the award more. If he doesn’t win this year, he will win eventually. We’ve loved his work for a long time now, and want to see him get his due.
The 2017 Academy Awards air live this Sunday evening, starting at 8:30 PM with host Jimmy Kimmel.