This month has given us a lot of first looks with trailers for The Holdovers with Paul Giamatti, Napoleon with Joaquin Phoenix and Bob Marley: One Love with Kingsley Ben-Adir to give us a taste of what’s to come in this category. Add Killers of the Flower Moon (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Oppenheimer (Cillian Murphy) having been seen, along with A Little Prayer (David Strathairn), and we have quite a few insights as to how Best Actor could play out even though we’re only in the middle of summer. However it ultimately shakes down, it’s once again going to be very biopic heavy.
Ryan Gosling in Barbie feels very unlikely to be campaigned here other than maybe at the Golden Globes, where he’d probably quite handily win lead in the comedy/musical category, but several dude duos in other films have one foot in lead and supporting until we have a bit more detail on their potential placement.
As the WGA strike is ongoing and the SAG-AFTRA strike is now in place since last month’s predictions, from an awards standpoint it’s going to be difficult to know how this season will truly play out. It seems unlikely the strikes will find proper resolution by the time Venice and Telluride kick off at the end of next month, what those festivals will look like in terms of films outside of what’s been announced so far, or if studios will start pulling some of their intended 2023 fall and winter releases and hold them for 2024, much like during the height of theater closures during the pandemic where several film moved into the next year.
With that, predictions will have a semblance of ‘normalcy,’ with existing dates and details until changes are revealed, but the main hope from me and everyone at AwardsWatch is unequivocally that writers and actors are able to secure contracts that value their work both artistically and financially to them, full stop.
Here are my 2024 Oscar predictions in Best Actor for July 2023.
- Colman Domingo – Rustin (Netflix)
- Bradley Cooper – Maestro (Netflix)
- Cillian Murphy – Oppenheimer (Universal Pictures)
- Leonardo DiCaprio – Killers of the Flower Moon (Apple Original Films/Paramount Pictures)
- Paul Giamatti – The Holdovers (Focus Features)
- David Strathairn – A Little Prayer (Sony Pictures Classics)
- Anthony Hopkins – Freud’s Last Session (Sony Pictures Classics)
- Joaquin Phoenix – Napoleon (Apple Original Films/Sony Pictures)
- Barry Keoghan – Saltburn (Amazon Studios)
- Kingsley Ben-Adir – Bob Marley: One Love (Paramount Pictures)
Other top contenders: Matt Damon – Air (Amazon Studios), Zac Efron – The Iron Claw (A24), Jamie Foxx – The Burial (Amazon Studios), Christian Friedel – The Zone of Interest (A24), André Holland – The Actor (NEON), Wagner Moura – Civil War (A24), LaKeith Stanfield – The Book of Clarence (Sony Pictures), Kôji Yakusho – Perfect Days (NEON)
Other contenders and/or possible 2024 releases:
- Jay Baruchel – BlackBerry (IFC Films)
- Gael García Bernal – Cassandro (Amazon Studios)
- Demián Bichir – Without Blood (Fremantle)
- Austin Butler – The Bikeriders (20th Century Studios) – lead or supporting?
- Timothée Chalamet – Dune Part Two (Warner Bros)
- Timothée Chalamet – Wonka (Warner Bros)
- Paul Dano – Dumb Money (Sony Pictures)
- Adam Driver – Ferrari (STX Entertainment)
- Alden Ehrenreich – Fair Play (Netflix)
- Jacob Elordi – Priscilla (A24) – lead or supporting?
- Mike Faist – Challengers (MGM) – moved to 2024
- Michael Fassbender – The Killer (Netflix)
- Michael Fassbender – Next Goal Wins (Searchlight Pictures)
- Rafael Federman – Society of the Snow (Netflix)
- Tom Hardy – The Bikeriders (20th Century Studios) – lead or supporting?
- Ed Harris – Long’s Day Journey Into Night (MGM)
- Kelvin Harrison Jr. – Chevalier (Searchlight Pictures)
- Paul Mescal – Foe (Amazon Studios)
- Josh O’Connor – Challengers (MGM) – moved to 2024
- Josh O’Connor – La Chimera (NEON)
- Ben Platt – Theater Camp (Searchlight Pictures)
- Mark Ruffalo – Poor Things (Searchlight Pictures) – lead or supporting?
- Adam Sandler – Spaceman (Netflix)
- Sebastian Stan – A Different Man (A24)
- Callum Turner – The Boys in the Boat (MGM)
- John David Washington – The Piano Lesson (Netflix)
- Teo Yoo – Past Lives (A24) – lead or supporting?
- Ramy Youssef – Poor Things (Searchlight Pictures) – lead or supporting?
Without U.S. distribution: Paul Bettany – The Collaboration (TBD), Ralph Fiennes – Conclave (TBD), Anthony Hopkins – One Life (TBD), Benoît Magimel – The Pot au Feu (TBD), Pierre Niney – The Book of Solutions (TBD), Jeremy Pope – The Collaboration (TBD), Aswan Reid – The New Boy (TBD), Peter Sarsgaard – Memory (TBD), Ben Whishaw – Limonov: The Ballad of Eddie (TBD)