Oscars 2017 predictions for Best Actor: Casey Affleck or Denzel Washington, who will win?
The winners in the Oscars' acting categories tend to match the winners of the Screen Actors Guild Awards, which took place last month — which means these categories generally don’t offer too many Oscar surprises.
So while the acting Oscars can seem a little anticlimactic after so many months of awards season buildup, there’s still some potential this year for surprising results.
Here are the Oscar nominees 2017 for Best Actor in a Leading Role category:
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Haunted by tragedies old and new, a depressed handyman played by Casey Affleck reluctantly returns to the seaside town he once called home. He’s been made legal guardian of his teenage nephew, played by Lucas Hedges.
Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
The 33-year-old actor plays American army medic Desmond Doss in the Mel Gibson-directed Hacksaw Ridge, which tells the true story of how Doss served on the front lines in Japan during the Second World War without carrying a gun and saved 75 lives.
Ryan Gosling, La La Land
Sebastian (Gosling), a dedicated jazz musician, struggles to make ends meet while pursuing his dreams in a city known for destroying hopes and breaking hearts. Watch Ryan Gosling sing and dance while trying to woo Mia (Emma Stone), with the romanticism of Los Angeles serving as a backdrop.
Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
The underdog in the race, Mortensen plays Ben Cash, who along with his wife Leslie and six children live deep in the wilderness of Washington state. Isolated from society, Ben and Leslie devote their existence to raising their kids in a very different way. But how will their sheltered existance hold up in the outside world?
Denzel Washington, Fences
The adaptation of August Wilson's acclaimed stage play of the same name, the film is about a middle-aged African American man who tries to pursue his dream of baseball, but will it tear his family apart?
Casey Affleck's portrayal of a working class handyman who is forced to take care of his nephew might have been a lock for this category all the way back to Manchester’s premiere at Sundance in January 2016. But controversial complaints of sexual harassment later, one wonders if the Academy voters might turn against him because of the allegations. He did win the Golden Globe for his performance, so Sunday's award show might surprise us.
Then there’s the matter of Denzel Washington in Fences: not only has Washington won a Tony for the same role on Broadway; he also directed the film, and his performance in it is one for the ages. Denzel last won an Oscar in 2001 for Training Day and has already won this year's SAG awards with the exact slate of nominees, which is a strong predictor for the Oscars.
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