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Frontrunner Friday: Who’s On Top in the 2018 Oscar Race?

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Kathryn Bigelow’s Untitled Detroit Riots Projects remains on top this week, as does her pole position in Best Director.

Release date announcements from The Weinstein Company on The Current War (Dec. 22) and Mary Magdalene (Nov. 24) spurred some change and movement for the two films and their acting prospects (Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Shannon, Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix). TWC is notorious for flip-flopping dates until it figures out what it’s #1 of the year will be (see Gold and The Founder last season).

The red-band trailer for Martin McDonagh’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri inspired laughing fits over McDonagh’s deeply profane dialogue and Frances McDormand’s perfect, deadpan delivery but is it going to Oscar material? (Whatever that even is anymore…) At the moment, it’s McDonagh’s screenplay and Oscar-winner McDormand who gain the most as each land in the top 5 of their respective categories.

Meryl Streep (The Post) unseats Judi Dench (Victoria and Abdul) in Best Actress. It’s only March but at the moment there aren’t many narratives to upset Streep so expect her to reign for quite some time. Oscar winners Kate Winslet (Wonder Wheel), Jennifer Lawrence (mother!), Helen Mirren (The Leisure Seeker), and Frances McDormand will give chase, though. Another Oscar winner, Halle Berry, could be a major player depending on who picks up and distributes her L.A. riots film, Kings. Berry is still the only black Best Actress winner in the Academy’s 89-year history and has yet to be nominated again since her win over 15 years ago.

Gary Oldman (Darkest War) is even stronger, earning the first perfect score (100) and so early in the season. His closest competitor, three-time Best Actor winner Daniel Day-Lewis (Untitled Paul Thomas Anderson Fashion Project) could be facing a 2018 release. That would be great news for Oldman, especially since both films are being distributed by Focus Features.

Best Picture

 
BEST PICTURE
Erik
Anderson
Bryan Bonafede
Greg Howard
Evan
Kost
Jason Osiason
Kenneth
Polishchuk
Denizcan Sürücü
Richard
Anthony
Şükrü Söğüt
Matt Dinn
TOTAL
POINTS
1Detroit (Annapurna - 8/4)1112102122187
2Wonderstruck (Amazon)222311281286
3Untitled Steven Spielberg Pentagon Papers Project (20th Century Fox - 12/22)335163314576
4Darkest Hour (Focus Features - 11/24)683424445466
5Dunkirk (Warner Bros - 7/21)944587878347
6Lean on Pete (A24)769676756744
7Downsizing (Paramount - 12/22)88993326
8Inner City (Sony) (possibly 2018)536624
8Mudbound (Netflix)4785724
10Call Me By Your Name (Sony Pictures Classics - 11/24)75969921
11Blade Runner 2049 (Warner Bros - 10/6)4513
12Suburbicon (Paramount 11/3)51010811
13mother! (Paramount - 10/13)679
14Last Flag Flying (Amazon)910988
15Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Fox Searchlight - 10/13)9103
16Breathe (Bleecker Street - 10/13)101
16Current War, The (The Weinstein Company - 12/22)101
16Get Out (Universal - 2/24)101
16Greatest Showman, The (20th Century Fox - 12/25)101
16Happy End (Sony Pictures Classics)101
OTHER CONTENDERS
Aftermath, The (Fox Searchlight)
Beguiled, The (Focus Features - 6/23)
Disobedience (TBD)
Glass Castle, The (Lionsgate)
Goodbye Christopher Robin (Fox Searchlight - 11/10)
Hostiles (TBD)
Killing of a Sacred Deer, The (A24 - 11/3)
Kings (TBD)
Leisure Seeker, The (Sony Pictures Classics)
Lost City of Z (Amazon - 4/14)
Marshall (Open Road Films - 10/13)
Mary Magdalene (The Weinstein Company - 11/24)
Molly's Game (STX Entertainment)
Mountain Between Us, The (20th Century Fox - 10/20)
Murder on the Orient Express (20th Century Fox - 11/10)
Shape of Water, The (Fox Searchlight - 12/8)
Snowman, The (Universal - 10/13)
Stronger (Lionsgate/Roadside Attractions - 9/22)
Thank You For Your Service (Universal - 10/27)
Under the Silver Lake (A24)
Untitled Paul Thomas Anderson Fashion Project (Focus Features - 12/25)
Untouchable (The Weinstein Company)
Victoria and Abdul (Focus Features - 9/22)
Wind River (The Weinstein Company - 8/4)
Wonder Wheel (Amazon)
Wonder (Lionsgate - 11/17)

Best Director

 
BEST DIRECTOR
Erik
Anderson
Bryan Bonafede
Greg Howard
Evan
Kost
Jason Osiason
Kenneth
Polishchuk
Denizcan Sürücü
Richard
Anthony
Şükrü Söğüt
Matt Dinn
TOTAL
POINTS
1Kathryn Bigelow - Detroit121272121190
2Todd Haynes - Wonderstruck214311283283
3Steven Spielberg - Untitled Pentagon Papers Project343183312478
4Joe Wright - Darkest Hour62525455560
5Christopher Nolan - Dunkirk835438577357
6Andrew Haigh - Lean on Pete7510996846838
7Alexander Payne - Downsizing1081073424
7Denis Villeneuve - Blade Runner 204997944924
9Luca Guadagnino - Call Me By Your Name6596623
10Dee Rees - Mudbound4787821
11Dan Gilroy - Inner City (possibly 2018)866717
12Darren Aronofsky - mother!67101011
13Michael Haneke - Happy End9699
14George Clooney - Suburbicon5107
15Richard Linklater - Last Flag Flying1091096
16Paul Thomas Anderson - Untitled Fashion Project10102
OTHER CONTENDERS
Aaron Sorkin - Molly's Game
Alfonso Gómez-Rejón - The Current War
Andy Serkis - Breathe
David Gordon Green - Stronger
Garth Davis - Mary Magdalene
Guillermo Del Toro - The Shape of Water
Jordan Peele - Get Out
Martin McDonaugh - Three Bilboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Michael Gracey - The Greatest Showman
Reginald Hudlin - Marshall
Sebastián Lelio - Disobedience
Stephen Frears - Victoria and Abdul
Woody Allen - Wonder Wheel
Yorgos Lanthimos - The Killing of a Sacred Deer

Next: Actor and Actress

About Erik Anderson

Erik blames his mother for his love of all things Oscar, having watched them together since he opened his eyes. They also watched Miss Universe religiously every year (the pageantry!) and Erik came to the conclusion that the combination of these two things ultimately led him down the path to obsessing about awards and ACTRESSING. He began at GoldDerby, led by Tom O’Neill and then migrated over to Oscarwatch (now AwardsDaily), headed up by Sasha Stone before breaking off to create AwardsWatch. He is a member of the International Cinephile Society, GALECA (Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association), the International Press Academy and is the founder/editor of AwardsWatch.

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