Will Smith clocked two more wins this weekend, picking up Best Actor trophies at the BAFTAs and the Critics’ Choice Awards (full disclosure: I am a voting member of the CCA). He seems fairly unstoppable at this point, that “it’s his time” energy coalescing right as final balloting for the Oscars is set to begin later this week. Like the supporting actor races, Best Actor has tightened up considerably, with Smith emerging as a clear frontrunner since the SAGs. Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith elected to attend the CCAs in Los Angeles yesterday, even though there was a CCA event in London for those who went to the BAFTAs, like Troy Kotsur and Ariana DeBose. I am so curious about the politics of choosing which award show to attend live when they overlap like this.
Meanwhile, Benedict Cumberbatch was in London at the BAFTAs with his wife, Sophie Hunter. He’s got his “losing to Will Smith” face worked out, though it was a good night for The Power of the Dog overall. Despite all the very fine performances in that film, it seems like Jane Campion and cinematographer Ari Wegner have the best shot at winning individual recognition for the film (though, notably, Greig Fraser won Best Cinematography at the BAFTAs for Dune. The American Society of Cinematographers hold their awards next weekend and should further illuminate this race). This will probably look a bit mad the further we get from the films of 2021—Oscars should be handed out five years after the fact—but if Will Smith clinches it and wins Best Actor on March 27, I simply choose to believe it’s retroactive for Ali. He really should have won ages ago.