Best Actress

Awards Nominations

Gotham Award Winner
* Independent Spirit Award Nomination
National Board of Review Nominee 

New York Film Critics Circle Award Nominee
Los Angeles Film Critics Association Nominee
* Broadcast Film Critics Association Nominee
Golden Globe Nominee
Screen Actors Guild Nominee
National Society of Film Critics Nominee 

The Low Down:

Fox Searchlight has officially announced that The Favourite‘s Olivia Colman will be running as Lead Actress after confusion about how the three actresses would be campaigned. That leaves her co-stars, Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz, over in the Supporting category. This complicates her chances of winning, however, as this still feels like a race between Lady Gaga and Glenn Close. Though the former has started the season off with a nice head start thanks to a nomination for Best Actress from the Gothams. And while they’re very far removed from groups like the Screen Actors Guild and the BAFTA’s, they certainly don’t hurt. Just ask Julianne Moore, who started her incredible awards run in 2014 for Still Alice (also distributed by Sony Pictures Classics) with a win from the Gothams. 

Melissa McCarthy has continued to win raves for Can You Ever Forgive Me? as it starts to open, but that leaves one slot for a slew of actresses in the thick of the race. Viola Davis seems like a no brainer, but it remains to be seen if the Academy will take Widows seriously as an awards contender given its more commercial roots. Meanwhile, the trailers for both Destroyer and Ben is Back have dropped. While the films left little to be desired to critics, their lead actresses won some of the best reviews of their career. But will it be Nicole Kidman’s transformative performance, or Julia Roberts’ portrayal of a mother trying to help her addict son, that wins that coveted fifth slot? And what about Toni Collette? A24’s awards slate is a bit thin this year, but we know they have a campaign planned around Hereditary. Will the critics beat the drum for the overdue actress? Will the Academy look past their horror bias? 

The Frontrunners

  1. Glenn Close, The Wife*
  2. Lady Gaga, A Star is Born 
  3. Olivia Coleman, The Favourite 
  4. Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me? 

Coming on Strong:

  1. Viola Davis, Widows 
  2. Nicole Kidman, Destroyer
  3. Julia Roberts, Ben is Back

Question Marks:

  1. Toni Collette, Hereditary+* 
  2. Kiki Layne, If Beale Street Could Talk 
  3. Emily Blunt, Mary Poppins Returns
  4. Saoirse Ronan, Mary Queen of Scotts