The Best Actress race is stuffed with contenders this year.
Emma Stone, La La Land
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Ruth Negga, Loving
Amy Adams, Arrival
Annette Bening, 20th Century Women
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins 
Kate Beckinsale, Love & Friendship

Because there can be only five, studios often submit their actress or actor for supporting , where they know they have a better chance. Viola Davis is now officially running in the Best Supporting Actress category for the 2017 SAG Awards for her role in Fences. With Davis out of the Best Actress race, we are looking at a showdown between Emma Stone and Natalie Portman for Best Actress. 

Davis will have some competition of her own in the Supporting category.

Michelle Williams, Manchester By The Sea
Lupita Nyong’o, Queen of Katwe 
Nicole Kidman, Lion
Greta Gerwig, 20th Century Women

Fences has not been seen yet. Based on her performance in the stage version, Davis is a lock for a SAG and Oscar nomination.

BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR won the big prize at Cannes this year. A french film tells the story of a young lesbian couple’s beginning, middle and possible end (IMDB).

It is getting a lot of attention due to the graphic lesbian sex scenes the performances of  Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux. They both recently claimed that director  Abdellatif Kechiche put them through hell during the filming of movies most pivotal scenes. Apparently it paid off. There is no way to tell how an NC-17 French film will do in the US, but some Oscar bloggers are campaigning for a Best Supporting actress nomination for Exarchopoulos.  We will see how the horny old men in the Academy react to this movies.

It is expected to be released October 25th in the US. The newest US trailer is below :

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GoldDerby.com is reporting that Meryl Streep will be eligible for Best Supporting Actress for AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY.  That would put Streep in direct competition with Oprah Winfrey, who could get a Best Supporting Actress nom for LEE DANIELS, THE BUTLER.  Streeps role in OSAGE COUNTY is a leading role, but that would put her in competition with Julia Roberts, who they are also pushing for a lead actress nomination.  It is unlikely that both Steep and Roberts would get nominated for the same category.  Splitting them gives each one a better chance.  Both movies are from the Weinstein Company and they know how to win Oscars.

This is done all of the time. Last year Philip Seymour Hoffman was changed to Best Supporting Actor for THE MASTER.  Even though him and  Joaquin Phoenix were the leads.  Both of them received nominations.  Phoenix for Best Actor, Hoffman for Best Supporting Actor.

This is bad news for Winfrey. Its tough to compete against Meryl Streep in a role that many predicted would get her another Best Actress win.  Great news fro Julia Roberts.

According to TMZ, Abigail Breslin has some motivation to campaign for an Oscar:

Most 17-year-olds feel pressure to get into a good college, but not Abigail Breslin … the teenage A-lister has $100,000 riding on whether or not she can nab an Academy Award from her upcoming flick.According to Abigail’s minor’s contract — recently obtained by TMZ — the lil star was paid $75,000 for two weeks worth of work on a film called “August: Osage County” shot last fall. It also stars Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts.Now here’s the interesting part … in AB’s contract a special clause was added just for awards … which states if Abigail wins the Golden Globe for best supporting actress she nabs a $50,000 bonus.There’s more … if Abigail wins an Oscar she gets ANOTHER $50,000. And if she wins both, they throw her the whole shebang. Plus all that other stuff like: respect, honor, esteem, … yadda, yadda.Of course with moves like these, it’s in the bag …

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Tina Fey and Amy Poehler should host every awards show. Seth MacFarlane has even more pressure to deliver on Oscar night.

The Golden Globes tend to not agree with the Oscars, but they do offer an idea about what movies are liked and being talked about. Sometimes a good speech at the Globes can get you some Oscar votes. Unfortunately it is too late for Ben Affleck, but not too late got ARGO. LINCOLN did not win everything. It is losing some steam heading in February.

Best Picture: Argo
Best Director: Ben Affleck, Argo
Best Actress: Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Best Picture, Musical/Comedy: Les Miserables
Best Foreign Language Film: Amour, Michael Haneke!
Best Actress Comedy: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Best Actor Musical: Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables
Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Best Original Score: Mychael Danna, Life of Pi
Best Song: Adele, Skyfall
Best Animated Feature: Brave

Gold Derby is a great site where critics, bloggers and readers can give their odds on Oscar predictions. While the list will undoubtedly change many times before February, they have a pretty good list going.

They also have:

Best Actor: Daniel Day Lewis (LINCOLN)

Best Actress: Laura Linney (HYDE PARK ON HUDSON)

Best Director: Paul Thomas Anderson (THE MASTER)

Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway (LES MISERABLES)

Best Supporting Actor: Joaquin Phoenix (THE MASTER)