The Hamilton Spectator - - CAREERS - BRIAN TRUITT

The Oscars are al­ways an ex­cit­ing night, with some nom­i­nees danc­ing in the clouds á la “La La Land” and oth­ers left a teary mess like they just watched “Manch­ester by the Sea.” So who’s go­ing to win Sun­day at the 89th Academy Awards (ABC, 7 p.m.)? Here are our pre­dic­tions: BEST ACTOR Casey Af­fleck, “Manch­ester by the Sea”

Andrew Garfield, “Hack­saw Ridge” Ryan Gosling, “La La Land” Viggo Mortensen, “Cap­tain Fan­tas­tic” Den­zel Wash­ing­ton, “Fences” Will win/should win: Wash­ing­ton

Af­fleck was the early favourite for his por­trayal of a tragic handy­man, but Wash­ing­ton has steadily gained mo­men­tum, enough to over­take him. Wash­ing­ton’s role is one of the most iconic in a legendary ca­reer, the study of a 1950s garbage man whose bois­ter­ous and self­cen­tred per­son­al­ity up­ends the re­la­tion­ship with his fam­ily. ACTRESS Is­abelle Hup­pert, “Elle” Ruth Negga, “Lov­ing” Natalie Port­man, ‘Jackie’ Emma Stone, “La La Land” Meryl Streep, “Florence Foster Jenk­ins” Will win/should win: Stone Had Port­man not won her Os­car six years ago for Black Swan, there might be a bet­ter ar­gu­ment for her knock­out per­for­mance as griev­ing first lady Jackie Kennedy. More de­serv­ing of adu­la­tion this time is Stone, who sim­i­larly fu­els “La La Land’s” nar­ra­tive as its strug­gling thes­pian and is the pri­mary rea­son the mu­si­cal is such a joy to watch. Her char­ac­ter ’s Au­di­tion (The Fools Who Dream) song — an ode to the dreamer in us all — might as well have been a call to the Os­car en­graver to start prac­tic­ing her name. SUPPORTING ACTOR Ma­her­shala Ali, “Moon­light” Jeff Bridges, “Hell or High Water” Lucas Hedges, “Manch­ester by the Sea” Dev Pa­tel, “Lion” Michael Shan­non, “Noc­tur­nal An­i­mals” Will win: Ali Should win: Hedges This is the awards sea­son where ev­ery­body fig­ured out how tal­ented Ali is, and he’s cer­tainly wor­thy of his front-run­ner sta­tus as a drug dealer with a big heart. That said, it’s hard to over­look the con­tri­bu­tion of Hedges: He plays a con­sis­tently strong role through­out his movie — whereas Ali and Pa­tel only fac­tor into a frac­tion of theirs — and his com­pli­cated teenager bal­ances out Manch­ester’s re­lent­less grief with needed hu­mour and youth­ful en­ergy. SUPPORTING ACTRESS Vi­ola Davis, “Fences” Naomie Har­ris, “Moon­light” Ni­cole Kid­man, “Lion” Oc­tavia Spencer, “Hid­den Fig­ures”

Michelle Wil­liams, “Manch­ester by the Sea” Will win/should win: Davis The Os­car gods be­stowed Leonardo DiCaprio with his first Os­car last year, and that time is now for Davis as Fences’ put-upon house­wife who’s had it with play­ing sec­ond fid­dle to her hus­band. She could have won for “Doubt,” she should have won for ‘The Help,” but — bar­ring the big­gest up­set in years — she’ll win for “Fences.”

DIREC­TOR Damien Chazelle, “La La Land” Mel Gib­son, “Hack­saw Ridge” Barry Jenk­ins, “Moon­light” Ken­neth Lon­er­gan, “Manch­ester by the Sea” De­nis Vil­leneuve, “Ar­rival” Will win: “Chazelle” Should win: Jenk­ins Chazelle de­serves much of the credit for why “La La Land” has be­come the cat’s meow with its re­lat­able love story and show-stop­ping num­bers. Yet Jenk­ins pulls off an even greater feat by cre­at­ing a timely, un­con­ven­tional and ex­tra­or­di­nary char­ac­ter piece that fol­lows an African-Amer­i­can man from bul­lied kid to dis­tressed teen to tough drug dealer. PIC­TURE “Ar­rival” “Fences” “Hack­saw Ridge” “Hell or High Water” “Hid­den Fig­ures” “La La Land” “Lion” “Manch­ester by the Sea” “Moon­light” Will win: “La La Land” Should win: “Hid­den Fig­ures”


Janelle Monae, Taraji P. Hen­son and Oc­tavia Spencer star in “Hid­den Fig­ures.”

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