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Alicia Vikander is a Supporting frontrunner for “The Danish Girl”

Alicia Vikander The Danish Girl
Earlier this week, I got a chance to check out The Danish Girl, which is sure to be an Academy Award player. I’ll save my thoughts on the film itself for another time, but I wanted to talk a little bit about Alicia Vikander and her performance. She was always seemingly a strong contender in my eyes, even if I hadn’t necessarily predicted her. Now though, having watched her tremendous work, I feel fairly confident in calling her one of the frontrunners for Best Supporting Actress. High praise, yes, especially this early, but it’s hard to see her not being nominated and being heavily in play for a win. She’s that good…

Quickly, a bit about the film itself. The Danish Girl is a dramatized look at artist Einar Wegener, who would better be known later on as Lili Elbe after becoming a transgender pioneer by going through the first ever male to female sex reassignment surgery. Eddie Redmayne plays that role, while Vikander is Gerda Wegener, his wife and fellow artist who was there every step of the way. Tom Hooper directs, Lucinda Coxon adapted the book, and the cast in addition to Redmayne and Vikander includes Amber Heard, Matthias Schoenaerts, Ben Whishaw, and more. Alexandre Desplat contributes the score and the cinematography is by Danny Cohen. Redmayne is excellent, I’ll say that, nearly as good as his award winning role last year, but the true star here is Vikander.

Initially, it seemed like Vikander would simply be in contention for a nomination for The Danish Girl, much like Felicity Jones was last year with her teaming with Redmayne in The Theory of Everything. Some might have even assumed that her focus would be on her similarly excellent role in Ex Machina, but this is where her bread and butter will be. Best Supporting Actress seems like a category ripe for the taking, assuming a few things go her way. As such, it’s fairly easy to say that she’s just as likely a victor here than anyone else in the running. There are no guarantees, of course, but if The Danish Girl is competing heavily all over the map, she could certainly ride a wave to the win.

Who is her competition for a statue, you might wonder? Well, most pundits, myself included, have long been predicting either Jennifer Jason Leigh for The Hateful Eight or Rooney Mara for Carol to take home the gold, but Vikander is definitely on equal footing with them right now. There are plenty of other candidates in the running, but none of the other ones seem to be likely winners, to me at least. Vikander will have to compete with the likes of Joan Allen for Room, Elizabeth Banks for Love & Mercy, Jessica Chastain for The Martian, Rachel McAdams for Spotlight, Ellen Page for Freeheld, Sarah Paulson for Carol, Kristen Stewart for Clouds of Sils Maria, and Kate Winslet for Steve Jobs, just to name a few. Some solid competition, but again…none seem like likely winners to me. That opens the door for Vikander to swoop in, especially if Leigh isn’t a frontrunner once her film screens and/or Mara doesn’t see her buzz last all season long.

In the end, we’re still in the early days of the Oscar season, so now is the time for campaigns to really be nailed down in advance of things. This can be fluid, for sure, and a lot will depend on how The Danish Girl actually fares with voters. I have a hunch that members of the Academy will be big on it, but it’s just that for now. A hunch can go either way, of course, so we’ll see. In the meantime, this is a movie that we’ll be talking about plenty in the coming weeks and months, so sit tight there. Vikander is just starting down the awards season path, but now we know she’ll be competing big time. Expect my next predictions update to reflect that fact. Until then folks…

the danish girl eddie redmayne alicia vikander

Stay tuned for lots more on Vikander and her Best Supporting Actress hopes this year for The Danish Girl!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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