Best Actor has more movement than any performer category this month, even if some moves are incremental. The biggest goes to Antonio Banderas in Pedro Almodóvar’s Pain and Glory. Banderas triumphed at Cannes, winning the Best Actor prize for his performance based on Almodóvar’s own life. Banderas, a long-respected actor, and returning to work with the director who gave him his first break, has never been an Oscar contention actor before but aligned with Sony Classics and with an October 4th release date, he is now a very formidable contender.
The Netflix pair of Robert De Niro (The Irishman) and Adam Driver (Untitled Noah Baumbach) switch spots this month but it’s kind of arbitrary. They still sit 2nd and 3rd behind another Netflix film star, Jonathan Pryce in The Pope, who retains power for another month.
The emergence of a poster and trailer for the November release Ford v Ferrari from 20th Century Fox says to me that they’re putting pedal to the metal on the film and its campaign but it’s still a bit of a mystery on the category placements for Matt Damon and Christian Bale. It’s a risky move trying to get them both in lead (it hasn’t happened since 1984’s Amadeus). The same fate befalls Sony’s Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood, where Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt could both be positioned lead. Same goes for the studio’s other major actor contender, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood with Tom Hanks and Matthew Rhys. I have put Pitt in now as a possible contender here but my betting money would say that Fox puts Damon lead and Bale supporting and Sony puts DiCaprio and Rhys in lead and Pitt and Hanks in supporting.
Taron Egerton also moves up on his excellent reviews for Rocketman, at least for this month. But those rises mean falls for others, including Michael B. Jordan (Just Mercy), Daniel Kaluuya (Queen & Slim), Ian McKellen (The Good Liar) and Dev Patel (The Personal History of David Copperfield). Any of them can bounce back at any time, especially once the lead/supporting placements of others are settled, it’s only June after all.
Here are my 2020 Oscar Nomination Predictions in Best Actor for June 13, 2019.
Green – moves up Red – moves down Blue – new/re-entry
1. Jonathan Pryce – The Pope (Netflix)
2. Robert De Niro – The Irishman (Netflix)
3. Adam Driver – Untitled Noah Baumbach (Netflix)
4. Leonardo DiCaprio – Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood (Sony/Columbia)
5. Antonio Banderas – Pain and Glory (Sony Classics)
NEXT UP (alphabetical)
Matt Damon – Ford v Ferrari (20th Century Fox)
Taron Egerton – Rocketman (Paramount)
Eddie Murphy – Dolemite Is My Name (Netflix)
Brad Pitt – Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood (Sony/Columbia)
Matthew Rhys – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (Sony/Columbia)
OTHER CONTENDERS (alphabetical)
Christian Bale – Ford v Ferrari (20th Century Fox)
Timothée Chalamet – The King (Netflix)
Ansel Elgort – The Goldfinch (Amazon/Warner Bros)
Tom Hanks – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (Sony/Columbia)
Tom Hardy – Fonzo (TBD)
Anthony Hopkins – The Pope (Netflix)
Hugh Jackman – Bad Education (TBD)
Michael B. Jordan – Just Mercy (Warner Bros)
Daniel Kaluuya – Queen & Slim (Universal)
Ian McKellen – The Good Liar (Warner Bros)
Edward Norton – Motherless Brooklyn (Warner Bros)
Dev Patel – The Personal History of David Copperfield (TBD)
Joaquin Phoenix – Joker (Warner Bros)
Brad Pitt – Ad Astra (20th Century Fox)
Eddie Redmayne – The Aeronauts (Amazon)
Mark Ruffalo – Untitled Todd Haynes aka Dry Run (TBD)
Adam Sandler – Uncut Gems (A24)