As mentioned earlier in the post about the competitive race for Best Actress Oscar, at this stage in the race, this might be one of the tightest Best Supporting Actress Oscar seasons we’ve had in a long time. For starters, if there’s a frontrunner, I don’t see her, not yet. And that’s remarkable because, typically, in this category, by now there’s not much suspense. Think of Ariana DeBose last year; Youn Yuh-jung before her, preceded by Laura Dern, Regina King, and Allison Janney – all of them had clear paths on their way to Oscar. That would have been Michelle Williams’s story had she decided to submit in Supporting but with her going for lead, the category is a lot less predictable, and therefore more fun. So there were several Best Supporting Actress contenders at the Governors Awards on Saturday. 


Jamie Lee Curtis has never been nominated for an Oscar. She’s Hollywood royalty and what I love about JLC’s attitude this season is that she knows she’s in contention and she wants it. She’s not pretending to not want it. She’s putting it out there. 


It’s safe to say at this point, though, that they all want it. Carey Mulligan has been nominated before and she’d like another, please, for her performance in She Said. The film did not do much at the box office this weekend though and, again, it’s a crowd in this category so even Carey has to hustle. Because nothing is guaranteed here. Not when you have veterans like the aforementioned Jamie Lee Curtis and Jean Smart in the game. 

Jean Smart, as we have seen, has been collecting a lot of trophies lately for her work in Hacks. She’s won Emmys, she won the SAG, the Golden Globe, the Critics’ Choice – she basically swept award season for her role as Deborah Vance, and now she’s coming for Oscar for her performance in Babylon. 

Hong Chau came close to an Oscar nomination a few years ago for her work in Downsizing and she, too, was at the Governors Awards the other night repping for The Whale. And it’s possible, although The Whale, as noted earlier in the Best Actors post, isn’t as strong of a contender for Best Picture. Unlike Everything Everywhere All At Once, which could boost Stephanie Hsu’s chances in the Supporting category. 


How many is that so far? Five? We’re not even close to done! Because we haven’t even talked about Women Talking yet. Jessie Buckley was nominated for an Oscar last year for her performance in The Lost Daughter and she’s in the running again alongside co-stars Claire Foy and Rooney Mara, both of whom were at the Governors Awards last night. Women Talking is in a strong position for Best Picture and if that holds, it’s kind of impossible to have it contending in the top category without considering its cast. Just a matter of how many of them break through for individual nominations and/or cancel each other out. 

So now we’re at nine… and we still can’t wrap it up because there’s Kerry Condon in The Banshees of Inisherin. It’s looking like her two co-stars, Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson will be nominated, and the film is in the race for a Best Picture nomination so her chances are pretty good for her to be included. She also looked lovely in a white caped dress at the Governors Awards, so I’m for sure into seeing more of her on the red carpet. 


But don’t sleep on Gabrielle Union. Like her co-star, Jeremy Pope, Gabrielle is getting big love for her performance in The Inspection. Joanna covered the premiere of The Inspection at TIFF back in September where the buzz for Gabrielle first started. And Gabrielle has been working it ever since. Like everyone else, she was at the Governors Awards on Saturday in support of the film and the best performance of her career. 

That’s…what… eleven? Eleven possibilities for Best Supporting Actress nominations and almost all of them getting face time with the Academy on the weekend. Because not a single one is a clear, runaway favourite. Which makes it all the more interesting.