The Rundown 2016: Best Supporting Actress

For our fourth Rundown article, we take a look at the second of our four acting categories. After the jump, you’ll find our winner and runner-up predictions for Best Supporting Actress as well as general commentary about the race. Tuesday, we’ll cover the truest of all categories at the Oscars.

Best Supporting Actress

Winner Predictions

  • Viola Davis – Fences (WL O) (PP O) (TB O) (TL O)
  • Naomie Harris – Moonlight
  • Nicole Kidman – Lion
  • Octavia Spencer – Hidden Figures
  • Michelle Williams – Manchester by the Sea

Runner-Up Predictions

  • Naomie Harris – Moonlight (PP O)
  • Michelle Williams – Manchester by the Sea (WL O) (TB O) (TL O)

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Wesley Lovell: Is there really any doubt that Viola Davis will win this handily. WIth the preponderance of precursors in her corner, the overdue nature accompanying her multiple nominations, and the appreciation of her strength of an actress should help her win. If there’s a surprise winner, it would probably be Michelle Williams who has a tour-de-force scene of great intensity and power that reminds one of Beatrice Straight in Network, except less explosive.
Peter J. Patrick: Viola Davis is as sure a winner here as anyone who has ever been nominated for this award. The only possible upset would be if there were a groundswell against her perceived category fraud, but there doesn’t seem to be at appetite for that. If that were to happen, Naomie Harris in Moonlight would be the likely beneficiary.
Tripp Burton: The runner-up choice here was unnecessary because Viola Davis may be the biggest lock of the night. The beloved actress, who has been nominated twice before and thought to be competitive both times, is felt by many to be due and this is her time. I guess my runner-up would be Michelle Williams, another actress who has been nominated several times but never won, and her time is certainly coming. She ran into the Viola Davis coronation bus this time, though.
Thomas La Tourrette: I am writing this before the SAG awards are handed out, but I imagine that Viola Davis will have won that award too. I do not see anything stopping her from winning here as she has the most precursor awards and her Rose was the emotional heart of Fences. She won a Tony as lead actress playing the part, also opposite Denzel Washington. She probably could have been nominated as lead for the movie as well, but she felt on seeing the film that she played a supporting role. That will probably be debated as the last third of the movie belongs squarely to her, but she is nominated for Supporting Actress. She is ferocious and fragile and absolutely deserves every accolade she has gotten for this part. Her main competition comes from Michelle Williams who makes the most of her 11-minute part in Manchester by the Sea. Through most of that film I kept wondering why she was going to be nominated, and then she absolutely killed in an emotional scene with Casey Affleck, and I could totally see why she is in consideration. Unfortunately for her, she will be going home winless on her fourth nomination. Naomie Harris, who plays a drug addicted mother in Moonlight, has some early traction, and she created a vividly alive character who also was not a stock character. I do not see her, Nicole Kidman, or Octavia Spencer standing a chance of winning this year, though all were very good. Davis will deservedly take home her first Oscar.


Appears on Four Lists
Appears on Three Lists
Appears on Two Lists

Wesley Lovell Peter Patrick Tripp Burton Thomas LaTourrette
[New] = New Prediction
[Return] = Prior Prediction Returning
(O) = Original Prediction
(R) = Rundown Series

1 Comment

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  1. I’ll applaud Viola Davis’s win at the Oscars as enthusiastically as everyone else. She is superb, even when she isn’t the focus of a scene. She is totally in character throughout “Fences.”

    I will say, however, I really prefer it when a supporting player makes the most of a limited appearance. Michele Williams does it this year in “Manchester by the Sea.” Viola Davis herself killed her primary scene with Meryl Streep in “Doubt.” Robert Duvall in “Apocalypse, Now” is another example. They rarely win, but often leave a lasting impression.

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