Oscar Predictions 2012: Best Actor

Last Updated: January 22, 2012 (FINAL PREDICTIONS)

Red = virtually guaranteed a nomination

Orange = good chance of nomination

Yellow = a strong contender

Green = in the mix

Blue = don’t count them out yet

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1. George Clooney (The Descendants)

Pros: People love a good Clooney performance, and he’s receiving raves for this film. Locked.

Cons: None.

2. Brad Pitt (Moneyball)

Pros: His movie is a big hit with audiences and critics, and everyone seems to love his performance. Pitt’s never won before and some think this could be his year.

Cons: None, really.

3. Jean DuJardin (The Artist)

Pros: The Artist is a pretty much a lock for Best Picture at this point, and DuJardin is hogging a lot of the film’s praise. Buzz is only growing for his apparently hugely charismatic performance.

Cons: DuJardin is not well known in America, and he has a lot of big competition in this category.

4. Leonardo DiCaprio (J. Edgar)

Pros: Many think that DiCaprio is “overdue” to win an Oscar. Despite poor reviews for the film, people liked his performance. Got a BFCA, SAG, and Globe nom, which almost always equals an Oscar nom.

Cons: The poor reception of the film is definitely a setback for his campaign.

5. Michael Fassbender (Shame)

Pros: Fassbender is one of the biggest breakout stars of the year, and he’s earned raves for his performance in the harrowing, NC-17-rated Shame. He’s already received a BFCA and Globe nom.

Cons: Shame seems like the type of movie that critics love (and lots of them have been very vocal in their support of Fassbender), but that could be a tougher sell with the Academy. Fassbender missed out on the SAG nom (but so did Michelle Williams last year, in a similarly bleak film).


Other Possibilities

6. Gary Oldman (Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy)

7. Ryan Gosling (Drive)

8. Michael Shannon (Take Shelter)

9. Demian Bichir (A Better Life)


Awards Tracker

HFPA = Golden Globes | SAG = Screen Actors Guild | BFCA = Critics’ Choice Awards | ISA = Independent Spirit Awards | IPA = International Press Academy (Satellite Awards) | NBR = National Board of Review | HFA = Hollywood Film Awards | NSFC = National Society of Film Critics | BAFTA = British Academy of Film and Television Arts

(Red asterisk denotes win)

+ denotes nomination/win for another performance or combination of performances


Past Predictions

December: 1. Clooney, 2. DuJardin, 3. Pitt, 4. DiCaprio, 5. Fassbender

November: 1. Clooney, 2. DuJardin, 3. Pitt, 4. DiCaprio, 5. Oldman

October: 1. Clooney, 2. DuJardin, 3. Pitt, 4. Pitt, 5. Oldman

September: 1. Clooney, 2. DiCaprio, 3. Oldman, 4. Pitt, 5. DuJardin

August: Clooney, DiCaprio, Fassbender (A Dangerous Method), Gosling (The Ides of March), Oldman

July: Clooney, DiCaprio, Fassbender (A Dangerous Method), Gosling (The Ides of March), Oldman

June: Clooney, DiCaprio, Fassbender (A Dangerous Method), Gosling (The Ides of March), Oldman

May: Clooney, DiCaprio, Fassbender (A Dangerous Method), Gosling (The Ides of March), Oldman

March: Banderas (The Skin That I Inhabit), Clooney, Gosling (The Ides of March), Oldman, Pitt (The Tree of Life)


Back to 2012 Oscar Predictions page


3 responses to “Oscar Predictions 2012: Best Actor

  1. Fienes was indeed excellent in Coriolanus. What about JGL for 50/50 or either of the two kids (from War Horse and ELAIC)? Unlikely, but possibilities no?

  2. I’d say all three are longshots, but possible, sure. JGL is respected and getting good reviews, but I don’t know if this is the right type of movie to get him nominated. I’d say Jeremy Irvine is more likely than the ELAIC kid (judging from the bits in the trailer, ELAIC kid seemed affected at times, but if it plays out better in context and the film really hits, I guess he could be a contender). But this category seems to favour established actors, so I don’t see either young actor getting in. (Though there’s always the possibility that the voters could pull a Hailee Steinfeld and stick them into Supporting)

  3. best actor:

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