J.K. Simmons leads the race for now, but other respected actors like Edward Norton, Mark Ruffalo, and Tom Wilkinson are also in the fray. Takamasa Ishihara, a.k.a. Miyavi might have a breakthrough with Unbroken.
PREDICTIONS (as of Nov. 25)
My “official” top five includes only films/performances that already have distributors for release in the United States. I also hope to write/post pages for each contender in the near future. The process of guessing who’ll get in and who won’t always seems to be collaborative, so feel free to leave a comment – here or on Twitter – that addresses any relevant information you don’t see on the page and/or any corrections I need to make.
J.K. Simmons for Whiplash (more)
Takamasa Ishihara, a.k.a. Miyavi, for Unbroken (more)
Mark Ruffalo for Foxcatcher (more)
Edward Norton for Birdman (more)
Tom Wilkinson for Selma (more)
Next in line?
- Ethan Hawke for Boyhood (more)
- Tim Roth for Selma (more)
- Christoph Waltz for Big Eyes (more)
- Josh Brolin for Inherent Vice (more)
- Chris Pine for Into the Woods (more)
- Robert Duvall for The Judge (more)
- Johnny Depp for Into the Woods (more)
- John Goodman for The Gambler (more)
- Michael Caine for Interstellar (more)
- David Oyelowo for A Most Violent Year (more)
- Martin Short for Inherent Vice (more)
- Domnhall Gleeson for Unbroken (more)
- Albert Brooks for A Most Violent Year (more)
- Alec Baldwin for Still Alice (more)
- Michael Kenneth Williams for The Gambler (more)
- Garrett Hedlund for Unbroken (more)
- Jaeden Lieberher for St. Vincent (more)
- Matthew Goode for The Imitation Game (more)
- Charlie Cox for The Theory of Everything (more)
- Logan Lerman for Fury (more)
Other Potential Contenders
- Neil Patrick Harris for Gone Girl (more)
- Michael Peña for Fury (more)
- Tyler Perry for Gone Girl (more)
- Paul Jesson for Mr. Turner (more)
- Jamie Foxx for Annie (more)
A photo of Ethan Hawke in Boyhood (via Collider).
RELEVANT NEWS (July 31 – needs to be refreshed, I know)
Boyhood pulled in more than $1.7 million from 107 locations this weekend, according to Box Office Mojo, bringing the film’s stateside cume to about $4.1 million. Ethan Hawke scored screenplay nominations for Before Sunset (2004) and Before Midnight (2013) alongside Linklater and Julie Delpy, but can Boyhood get him a second acting nod?
Can Edward Norton score a comeback alongside Birdman co-star Michael Keaton? The film will open the Venice Film Festival, close the New York Film Festival, and play at the Toronto International Film Festival. Harris might impress us in David Fincher’s Gone Girl, which opens NYFF this year, while Josh Brolin might snag some buzz for his work in centerpiece selection Inherent Vice.
Robert Duvall lit up the awards-season radar in 2009 for Get Low, but TIFF opener The Judge – in which he plays a possible murderer and Hank Palmer’s (Robert Downey Jr.) father – might get him his first nomination since A Civil Action (1998). Paul Jesson might get some Oscar love for his father role in Cannes hit Mr. Turner, which is also making its way to Toronto. Matthew Goode might ride the coattails of TIFF entry (and BFI London Film Festival closer) The Imitation Game to his first nomination – it might be The Weinstein Company’s big Oscar player.