Like with Supporting Actress, category placement could swing a lot of ways with any number of films and performances that could be in contention this year. Are Christian Bale and Matt Damon co-leads in Ford v Ferrari? Probably, but I’m going to hedge my bets and have them in here, too.
The Irishman, from Martin Scorsese and Netflix, is going to put two Oscar winners head-to-head with each other in Al Pacino and Joe Pesci, the latter’s win from Scorsese’s Goodfellas, of course. While I hear that Pacino’s is the bigger role (he also has a small part in Tarantino’s OUATIH) and might be the wiser push, this could be a really big comeback for Pesci, who’s been out of the limelight for quite some time. In fact, this is his first feature film appearance since 2010’s Love Ranch.
Two-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks has had a tough time earning even another nomination recently, with narrow misses in Best Picture nominees like Bridge of Spies (that won Mark Rylance the Supporting Actor Oscar) and most notably, his snub for Captain Phillips after securing every precursor (SAG, Golden Globe, Critics’ Choice, BAFTA) along the way. Playing the iconic Mr. Rogers in Marielle Heller’s A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood could be his ticket but then, we said that when he played Walt Disney in a supporting role in Saving Mr. Banks.
Willem Dafoe missed out on a Supporting Actor Oscar win two years ago despite winning the critics’ prizes with the NYFCC, LAFCA, NBR and NSFC for The Florida Project – making him the only supporting actor contender in history to get those and lose the Oscar – and then returned last season with a Best Actor nomination for At Eternity’s Gate. It’s clear the Academy likes him (but maybe doesn’t love him) and he could very well come back again this year with The Last Thing He Wanted from Dee Rees. The film is also a Netflix property, so it will be interesting to see where they prioritize their contenders here.
Moving down, any number of guys could find themselves in the top 5 depending on how their studios treat their films, what festivals they can generate buzz from and again, category placement. Anthony Hopkins (The Pope) is probably going supporting; I imagine Brad Pitt (OUATIH) would too. But what about Taika Waititi? He seems more likely here but then so does most of his cast (including another supporting actor contender, Oscar winner Sam Rockwell). It’s April, who knows.
If Wes Anderson’s new film, The French Dispatch, makes the 2019 cut (he says he thinks it might) that opens the door for a wealth of contenders including Dafoe, Oscar winners Benicio del Toro and Christoph Waltz plus Oscar nominees Timothée Chalamet and Bill Murray.
What about James Gray’s Ad Astra? Is that even coming out this year? This loooong in development and production is still slated for a May 24th release but there is nary a poster, teaser or word to its existence. Tommy Lee Jones and Donald Sutherland are possibilities but very long shots at best until something changes.
Here are my unranked 2020 Oscar Nomination predictions in Supporting Actor for April.
|Willem Dafoe – The Last Thing He Wanted (Netflix)|
|Tom Hanks – A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (Sony/Columbia)|
|John Lithgow – Untitled Roger Ailes aka Fair and Balanced (Lionsgate)|
|Al Pacino – The Irishman (Netflix)|
|Joe Pesci – The Irishman (Netflix)|
|Sterling K. Brown – Waves (A24)|
|Jamie Foxx – Just Mercy (Warner Bros)|
|Anthony Hopkins – The Pope (Netflix)|
|Brad Pitt – Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood (Sony/Columbia)|
|Taika Waititi – Jojo Rabbit (Fox Searchlight)|
|Christian Bale – Ford v Ferrari (20th Century Fox)|
|Antonio Banderas – The Laundromat (Netflix)|
|Jamie Bell – Rocketman (Paramount)|
|Peter Capaldi – The Personal History of David Copperfield (TBD)|
|Timothée Chalamet – The French Dispatch (TBD)|
|Timothée Chalamet – Little Women (Sony/Columbia)|
|Willem Dafoe – The French Dispatch (TBD)|
|Matt Damon – Ford v Ferrari (20th Century Fox)|
|Benicio del Toro – The French Dispatch (TBD)|
|Brendan Gleeson – Frankie (TBD)|
|Tommy Lee Jones – Ad Astra (20th Century Fox)|
|Hugh Laurie – The Personal History of David Copperfield (TBD)|
|Ray Liotta – Untitled Noah Baumbach (Netflix)|
|Anthony Mackie – Against All Enemies (amazon)|
|Richard Madden – Rocketman (Paramount)|
|Jonathan Majors – The Last Black Man in San Francisco (A24)|
|Ian McKellen – Cats (Universal)|
|Bill Murray – The French Dispatch (TBD)|
|Gary Oldman – The Laundromat (Netflix)|
|Timothy Olyphant – Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood (Sony/Columbia)|
|Al Pacino – Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood (Sony/Columbia)|
|Sam Rockwell – Jojo Rabbit (Fox Searchlight)|
|Lakeith Stanfield – Uncut Gems (TBD)|
|David Strathairn – Nomadland (Fox Searchlight)|
|Donald Sutherland – Ad Astra (20th Century Fox)|
|Christoph Waltz – The French Dispatch (TBD)|
|Ben Whishaw – The Personal History of David Copperfield (TBD)|