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Best Actress in a Supporting Role 2011 – 2012

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Listed in accordance to likely win.

Nominees

Bérénice Bejo, “The Artist”

Octavia Spencer, “The Help”

Janet McTeer, “Albert Nobbs” 

Melissa McCarthy, “Bridesmaids”

Jessica Chastain, “The Help”

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Analysis 

Updated: December 19, 2011

To believe that Vanessa Redgrave is still in the thick of it is hard to believe. Her presence in critics awards have been minimal and with nothing from either SAG or the Golden Globes, it’ll take quite a bit to bring her back.

 The category seems to have cemented around Bejo, Woodley, and Spencer getting nods, with Jessica Chastain’s performance in The Help getting its fair share of notices. What we have seen over the past couple of weeks is a bit of a Bridesmaids bandwagon forming for Melissa McCarthy. And I’m certainly hopping on – her SAG notice has been one of my favorite selections of the week’s precursors. Perhaps I’m going against my better judgement, as Janet McTeer is certainly in the hunt, but I’m opting for McCarthy at the moment.

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Analysis 

Updated: December 3, 2011

There are two key aspects to this race that are really going to determine how the category will turn out. First, it’s getting a feel for Sandra Bullock’s performance in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Where she stands will be known shortly, and if it’s a strong performance, she could very well take it all, especially since no single performance among the frontrunners in the category seems strong enough to warrant an award.

Secondly, it’s if Jessica Chastain can get nominated for anything at all. She has been cited for her performances in The Tree of Life, The Help, and Take Shelter. It’s common practice among critics’ societies to vote for a performer’s body of work over a given year, but when it comes time for the Oscars, there needs to be a select work to push you through. At the moment, it seems like there’s not a strong consensus built around any one of her films. The Help is her most commercial work. The Tree of Life is the role Chastain hopes to get nominated for. Take Shelter is my favorite of her performances, but with the least amount of buzz. There doesn’t seem to be a strong enough voting block for any of her films.

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Analysis 

Updated: October 24, 2011

This is a surprisingly stacked category and the most difficult to predict among the major categories. Even 1-3 don’t seem entirely secure in their position. What makes this particularly difficult to prognosticate is the rather lucid definition of what constitutes supporting; someone like Kiera Knightly is very clearly a lead in her film, though there hasn’t been much clarification as to what category she’ll be running for.

I’m still on the fence as to what role Jessica Chastain might get nominated for; given that I’m softening on Michael Shannon’s chances, I’m not entirely convinced that she’d be able to make it in there for Take Shelter without him. So that leaves either The Tree of Life or The Help; going with The Help for now.

And given that Fox Searchlight is going for a full-on campaign with Shame, I’m thinking that Carey Mulligan could get the bump in this category, especially since Drive hasn’t quite caught on commercially.

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Analysis 

Updated: October 15, 2011

Jessica Chastain is the new it girl, though she might have difficulty getting nominated for anything given the amount of work she has put out this year along; it’s an issue of splitting votes. She has more to sink into with Take Shelter than anything else, so I’m going with that for now.

Things can (and will) shake up though, especially once audiences get exposed to The Artist. Bérénice Bejo could very well steal the whole category and run away with it.

It’s Kiera Knightly‘s position that strikes me as most dubious; she is clearly a co-lead, though is being poised for supporting contention. Hopefully her category will get cleared up once the film drops.

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