Jennifer Lawrence in the lead, Marion in second
According to most experts who are called on to predict these things, Jennifer Lawrence, right now, early in the Oscar race, is the frontrunner to win the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in Silver Linings Playbook. (I keep having to remind myself to remove the “The” before the title. Is it awkward?) It would be her second nomination in three years. She was previously nominated in Winter’s Bone in 2011. Lawrence just turned 22. And she could do it all. She can carry her own films -- big blockbusters and independents; she can play young, and she can go mature. This is a powerhouse. And...this year, she has Harvey Weinstein behind her. Harvey’s current campaign roster is heavy -- in addition to Silver Linings, he’s also lobbying for The Master and Django Unchained. And he’s two for two with The Artist and The King’s Speech going back to back for Best Picture and Meryl Streep, Colin Firth, and Jean Dujardin representing for him in the acting categories too. Harvey will push hard for Jennifer Lawrence, no question. So the question is, who can challenge?
Well, right now, Marion Cotillard is in sole position of second place for Rust & Bone. Should Marion receive a nomination, it would also be her second. She won Best Actress for La Vie En Rose. And she can work it too, although her campaign budget might be smaller. This time budget might make the difference. In 2007 Marion’s closest competition was Julie Christie in Away From Her. Christie didn’t have a lot of political strategy behind her, and certainly not the industry influence that Weinstein can wield. The edge Marion has on Jennifer however might be maturity. Will Academy voters want to honour Jennifer Lawrence so early in her career?
It’s a long season. The races are still taking shape. But these two will very likely be included in the final five. And here they are, both coincidentally in black Dior. Attached - Lawrence with director David O Russell at the NYC premiere of Silver Linings Playbook last night and Cotillard in Paris on Friday night turning on the Christmas lights at Printemps Haussmann in a gorgeous trench dress.
Below -- the trailers for Silver Linings Playbook and Rust & Bone. Can you believe Bradley Cooper might get nominated too?
Astrid Stawiarz/ Julien M. Hekimian /Getty