Michael Keaton vs. Eddie Redmayne and the 2015 Oscar Predictions for Acting
Lets face it, the acting categories are easily the sexiest part of all awards shows. While critics and crew may disagree with that sentiment, the acting category is the one area where everyone has an opinion. Even if you haven’t seen the movies, you usually know who the actors are and are excited to see them, hear what they might say, and to a lesser extent, see what they might be wearing. For the most part, I believe the Academy Award winners are a near lock. All except for one. Here are my thoughts and predictions on the acting categories for the 2015 Academy Awards.
Actress in a Supporting Role
Patricia Arquette, “Boyhood”
Emma Stone, “Birdman”
Keira Knightley, “The Imitation Game”
Meryl Streep, “Into the Woods”
Laura Dern, “Wild”
I think Meryl Streep is amazing, but in no way should she have been nominated for INTO THE WOODS. I believe any actress could have given the same big performance in the role and perhaps, in some Broadway cases, better. I think Tilda Swinton for SNOWPIERCER would have been a much more interesting choice. Although, I really enjoyed Emma Stone’s performance, my favorite should win this category.
Winner: Patricia Arquette – BOYHOOD
My Choice: Patricia Arquette – BOYHOOD
Actor in a Supporting Role
J.K. Simmons, “Whiplash”
Edward Norton, “Birdman”
Ethan Hawke, “Boyhood”
Mark Ruffalo, “Foxcatcher”
Robert Duvall, “The Judge”
Robert Duvall did a fine job, but much like Streep, this is more of a respect the talented career nomination and with a weaker film, does not come close to the other nominees. The other four did phenomenal jobs and are all well-deserved. This is definitely an interesting category as I believe any one of them could win in a different year. I originally was partial to Edward Norton, then I switched to J.K. Simmons. But I recently watched BOYHOOD again and am kind of pulling for Ethan Hawke. I love Ruffalo and thought he was the standout in FOXCATCHER, but I also believe he will have a more deserving win in the future. Simmons has been fairly dominate in this category and I couldn’t be happier for him and the film.
Winner: J.K. Simmons – WHIPLASH
My Choice: Ethan Hawke – BOYHOOD (although I’ll be happy with anyway it turns out).
Actress in a Leading Role
Julianne Moore, “Still Alice”
Felicity Jones, “The Theory of Everything”
Rosamund Pike, “Gone Girl”
Reese Witherspoon, “Wild”
Marion Cotillard, “Two Days One Night”
These five women were all fantatstic. But one in particular clearly rose above the rest. Julianne Moore is synonymous with great acting, delivering phenomenal performances in everything she touches. From the start of STILL ALICE, we realize we are witnessing greatness. As Alice descends from bright, clear intelligence, into foggy, helplessness through Alzheimer’s disease, Moore gives an authentic emotional portrayal. This reaches the audiences, and never steps into the dangerous realm of melodramatic, to which so many others would fall prey.
Winner: Julianne Moore
My Choice: Julianne Moore
Actor in a Leading Role
Michael Keaton, “Birdman”
Eddie Redmayne, “The Theory of Everything”
Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Imitation Game”
Steve Carell, “Foxcatcher”
Bradley Cooper, “American Sniper”
While I think everyone here did terrific work, only two really stand out – Michael Keaton and Bradley Cooper. Many will have you believe that Redmayne and Cumberbatch were the standouts but I think they are hindered by weaker films and pretty straight forward ways to deliver big roles. I’m happy for Carell’s nomination, but I’m not sure it was one of the top five of the year. With only five spots to fill, it’s inevitable that at least five other deserving candidates will always be left off. And if any of those would have been there instead then people would be upset with the absence of one of the current nominees. I would have preferred to seen Jake Gyllenhaal for NIGHTWATCHER, Miles Teller for WHIPLASH and Ralph Fiennes for GRAND BUDAPEST filling those three spots. For the record, my sixth nominee would be David Oyelowo for SELMA. While my personal favorite choice in Michael Keaton has won almost every award, I fear Eddie Redmayne will come away with the generic ‘play someone with a disability’ win after his SAG upset. I hope I’m wrong, and the Academy honors the guy who has been a talented force in Hollywood for many years, but more than that, because he gave the best performance.
Winner: Eddie Redmayne
My Choice: Michael Keaton (I seriously want him to win so badly that I might just cry if he doesn’t… or if he does).
Check out the rest of my predictions: