Hollywood Contenders – Which films could have multiple nominees in the same category?

hateful eight Kurt and Samuel
It doesn’t often happen, but every so often a category in the Oscar race will have multiple contenders from the same feel competing for nominations. Ironically, this year seems to have an abundance of them, making for a potentially interesting Academy Awards race when all is said and done. In fact, a number of these players actually have realistic chances as well, with Carol, The Hateful Eight, and Spotlight chief among them. I figured that today was a good time to take a look at these contenders and see just who could potentially go ump against each other in the various acting categories…

Right now, the one to place a bet on for this particular situation is Spotlight. It seems that both Michael Keaton and Mark Ruffalo are sitting in excellent spots to be not only nominated in Best Supporting Actor, but the main players to win the Oscar there as well. That doesn’t even take into consideration the rest of their male cast, which is all going Supporting as well. It’s likely that Keaton and Ruffalo are it in Supporting Actor, but you could at least make the claim that Billy Crudup, Liev Schreiber, and Stanley Tucci are somewhat in the mix as well. It’s almost an embarrassment of riches for Spotlight, and rightly so. If there’s one close to sure thing in regard to this situation,it’s this film getting two nominees in Supporting Actor. Right now, I’d all but bank on it happening.

spotlight michael keaton mark ruffalo

The other potential big chance for this to happen is if Carol does indeed end up seeing Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara go Lead for their performances. Right now, that’s only happening at the Golden Globes, but the Oscar could wind up following. Currently, Blanchett is in Best Actress and Mara is in Best Supporting Actress, where both are all but locked in, though if both ultimately are in Actress, anything could happen. Conventional wisdom centers on Blanchett getting in alone or both of them sneaking in, but I have a sneaky suspicion that we could see a situation much like the Cannes Film Festival where only Mara winds up getting in. It’s just a hunch at the current moment, but don’t sleep on Mara if this somehow comes to pass. It would be a close call though, I’ll concede that. They’re in different categories right now anyway, so keep that in mind as well here. Plus, if one winds up Supporting, there’s also Sarah Paulson with an outside chance in that field, so don’t totally sleep on her either.

Carol Rooney Mara  Cate Blanchett jpg

One other to keep in mind is, of course, The Hateful Eight. Category placement seems all over the place, but if they wind up in the same category, we could be looking at Samuel L. Jackson and Kurt Russell sharing a field. They also have Bruce Dern, Walton Goggins, and Tim Roth in play too, though Jackson and Russell seem to be getting the most early buzz. Right now, they both seem to be in Best Supporting Actor, but enough rumors have Jackson ending up in Best Actor that I’ve been considering him there. Assuming both stay Supporting and no one goes Lead, there’s a chance they both get in, though it would be hard with both of the Spotlight gentlemen in as well. Time will tell though…

In the end, you can see that Spotlight is the one in the best position by far here, though there are cases to be made for Carol and The Hateful Eight as well. There are a few other ones too that I didn’t mention, but these three are the ones to really focus in on for this particular distinction. I’ll be writing more about each of them soon, with pieces on two of the three coming this week (one is even hitting later on today). The trio are firmly in the Oscar race, so sit tight for plenty of subsequent articles on their candidacies…

Stay tuned for more on Carol, The Hateful Eight, and Spotlight!

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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