While, the Oscar 2019 season, with all its twists and turn, has finally come to an end, it is time now to look ahead. And trust me, it is never too early to start speculating about the next Oscar. After all, it helps us keep track of the movies and performances that at least on paper look promising. As with any other year, next year’s Oscar candidates are looking like an interesting mix of past winners and newbies (remember Rami Malek?). Malek’s win has proved one thing: even male actors with not much acting experience under the belt, relatively speaking, can also win the top prize just like their female counterparts. Granted Rami Malek had done some credible work before Bohemian Rhapsody, but who are we kidding? The greatest actor of this generation, Joaquin Phoenix, is still winless. Will that change this year? Let’s find out.
The below list consists of all the actors who I think have the potential to get nominated for, if not win, Best Actor. Obviously, considering we are still months away from the ceremony, the below list is more of an intelligent guess — based on my past experience, actor’s credibility and film’s potential — than anything else.
9. Timothée Chalamet, ‘The King’
8. Eddie Redmayne, ‘The Aeronauts’
7. Ansel Elgort ‘The Goldfinch’
6. Christian Bale, ‘Ford v Ferrari’
5. Joaquin Phoenix, ‘Joker’
Well, why not start with a name that is obviously a controversial choice. I know, Heath Ledger has already won for playing Joker. So, on the face of it, it is improbable that the Academy will award two actors for virtually the same role. Also, this is purely a comic book film that again makes things very difficult. Well, let me present two counter arguments. First, there have been instances in the past where actors have won Oscar for the same characters. Most famously, Robert De Niro won the Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role as Vito Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974), the role for which Marlon Brando had previously won Best Actor in The Godfather. Second, if there is one actor who can achieve this insurmountable feat, he is Joaquin Phoenix. At the bare minimum, I think he can certainly pull off a nomination.
4. Tom Hanks, ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood’