And the nominees are…
Like everyone else, we won’t know the official answers until Tuesday morning, when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences reveals the results of the member voting that took place from Jan. 27 through Feb. 1. But judging from TheWrap’s own survey of Academy members, we’re expecting it to be a pretty good day for Andrew Garfield and Olivia Colman — and maybe a surprising one for Maggie Gyllenhaal.
Over the last couple of weeks, TheWrap has been conducting an anonymous poll of more than 300 industry players — AMPAS voters and other guild members — asking them which films, performers and directors were most deserving of awards love this year. In a season with few clear front runners — and no Golden Globes to speak of to throw off some hints — the race has been unusually wide open. But based on these poll results, some potential patterns are perhaps emerging, including the probability that Kenneth Branagh’s “Belfast” will be the picture to beat on Oscar night in March.
“Belfast” was the clear winner of TheWrap poll’s Best Picture category, garnering 20% more votes than survey-takers’ second pick, Steven Spielberg’s update of “West Side Story.” Those films were followed by “CODA,” “Dune,” “tick, tick… BOOM!,” “Don’t Look Up,” “Licorice Pizza,” “Drive My Car,” “The Lost Daughter” and “House of Gucci.”
Missing from the poll’s top 10 were such Best Picture contenders as “King Richard,” “Nightmare Alley,” “No Time to Die” and “Spider-Man: No Way Out.”
Not surprisingly, Branagh was also a popular choice in the poll’s Best Director category, although not quite as popular as Jane Campion for “The Power of the Dog.” Campion came in first, followed closely by Branagh, Spielberg, Pedro Almodóvar for “Parallel Mothers” and finally — in a choice that caught most pundits, including TheWrap’s Steve Pond, napping — Maggie Gyllenhaal for “The Lost Daughter.” Pond left both Gyllenhaal and Spielberg out of his predictions, figuring Denis Villeneuve for “Dune” and Paul Thomas Anderson for “Licorice Pizza” have better shots.
“The Lost Daughter” had some fans in the Best Actress category as well; Olivia Colman, winner in 2018 for The Favourite, was the poll’s No. 1 choice for her role as a college professor on holiday in Greece in Gyllenhaal’s film. Nicole Kidman’s portrayal of Lucille Ball in Aaron Sorkin’s “Being the Ricardos” came second, followed by Lady Gaga for “House of Gucci,” Kristen Stewart for her portrayal of the People’s Princess in “Spencer” and Penélope Cruz for “Parallel Mothers.”
Finally, one-time Spider-Man Andrew Garfield was first choice as Best Actor for his turn as late “Rent” composer-playwright Jonathan Larson in “tick, tick… BOOM!” Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance in “The Power of the Dog” trailed very close behind, followed by Will Smith in “King Richard,” Denzel Washington in “The Tragedy of Macbeth” and Javier Bardem for his rendering of Desi Arnaz in “Being the Ricardos.”