Oscar Predictions: A 'Dark Knight' rises for best supporting actor
The ballots for this year's Oscars are all in and being counted which means that after a long awards season its time to begin a rundown of final predictions. First up is the best supporting actor category and a showdown that should bit "The Fighter's" Christian Bale versus "The King's Speech's" Geoffrey Rush. That being said, let's take a quick look at all of this year's nominees, shall we?
[Note: You can also find watch a rundown of all the nominees with predictions and upsets in the video embedded at the top of this post.]
Jeremy Renner's performance as a hotheaded thief is the sole nomination for Ben Affleck's hit thriller "The Town," a film that many expected to land a best picture nod, but couldn't make the cut. This is Renner's second Oscar nomination after being honored in the best actor category last year for "The Hurt Locker." The third time is going to have to be the charm for Renner.
After a long under the radar career in films such as "The Perfect Storm," "Me and You and Everyone You Know" and TV’s "Deadwood," John Hawkes landed his first nomination for his work in the indie hit "Winter's Bone." Like Renner, he's going to have to try and win his first Oscar statue down the road.
Another veteran finally getting some awards recognition this year is Mark Ruffalo. It's amazing that before his role in "The Kids Are All Right," Ruffalo had received only one significant acting honor, an indie spirit nomination a decade ago for "You Can Count On Me." Ruffalo has many friends in the Academy, but this isn't a powerful enough performance for him to top the remaining two contenders: Geoffrey Rush and Christian Bale.
Geoffrey Rush is no stranger to Oscar having won best actor for his breakthrough performance in "Shine" way back in 1997. That was followed by subsequent nominations for "Shakespeare in Love" and "Quills." Many would argue that Rush's charismatic turn in "The King's Speech" is actually a leading role, but hardly anyone will debate it's not worthy of critical acclaim or an Academy Award.
The final nominee is, of course, Christian Bale. Like Ruffalo and Hawkes, this is the actor's first go around at the big dance, but he's already won the Golden Globe and SAG Award for his impressive turn in David O. Russell's drama. The Los Angeles area resident also refused to campaign during this awards season except to appear at ceremonies where he was nominated. In some cases, that could seriously hinder an actors chances at winning, as a late start might affect Annette Bening's chances in best actress, but Bale was so quiet and nonchalant about not playing the game it might have actually solidified his win. Most importantly, however, Bale underwent a significant physical transformation for his role in "The Fighter" and that always gets the Academy's attention.
Winner: It's got to be Bale for "The Fighter." He's the most celebrated portrayal in a movie the industry adores and it's hard to see him losing in the final round. And yes, it also means director Christopher Nolan will have four Oscar winners to work with on "The Dark Knight Rises" this summer (Bale, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Marion Cotillard).
Upset Contender: If you believe in surprises, however, place your money on Geoffrey Rush. The love for "The King's Speech" is also strong in the Academy and, in a surprise, the Aussie already upset the British born Bale the same honor earlier this month at the BAFTA’S letting everyone know the title for best supporting actor could still be up for grabs.
We'll find out the results when the 83rd Academy Awards are announced this Sunday at 8 PM ET/ 5 PM PT on ABC.
Look for more predictions every day this week from Awards Campaign.