oscar futures

Oscar Futures: James Franco Way Up

Every week between now and January 25 when the nominations are announced, movies and stars will help themselves — or sometimes, hurt themselves — in the Oscar race. Vulture’s Oscar Futures will listen for insider gossip, comb the blogs, and out-and-out guess when necessary to track who’s up, who’s down, and who’s currently leading the race for a coveted nomination.

Best Director UP: Danny Boyle, 127 Hours. More mostly great reviews and his usual round of completely charming interviews. DOWN: Tyler Perry, For Colored Girls. A love letter from Manohla is nice, but not many others liked the movie as much as she did.
CURRENT PREDIX: Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan; Danny Boyle, 127 Hours; David Fincher, The Social Network; Tom Hooper, The King's Speech; Christopher Nolan, Inception.
Best Actor UP: James Franco, 127 Hours. According to critics, he makes the cut, hacks it, pulls it off, etc. DOWN: Colin Firth, The King's Speech. Franco's coming up fast — can Firth make it through the weekend with his front-runner status intact?
CURRENT PREDIX: Javier Bardem, Biutiful; Jeff Bridges, True Grit; Robert Duvall, Get Low; Colin Firth, The King's Speech; James Franco, 127 Hours.
Best Actress UP: Rachel McAdams, Morning Glory. "In order to become a Best Actress contender this year, you have to play a character who suffers through anguish and misery," notes Jeff Wells. "But if you didn't have to do that, Rachel McAdams' irrepressible, never-say-die Morning Glory character could leap right in."DOWN: Anne Hathaway, Love and Other Drugs. Not a single vote from the Gurus of Gold this week.
CURRENT PREDIX: Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right; Nicole Kidman, Rabbit Hole; Jennifer Lawrence, Winter's Bone; Lesley Manville, Another Year; Natalie Portman, Black Swan.
Best Supporting Actor UP: John Hawkes, Winter's Bone. Hey, why the hell not? wonders Steve Pond. DOWN: Ed Harris, The Way Back. Will his movie's late New York opening hurt his chances?
CURRENT PREDIX: Christian Bale, The Fighter; Armie Hammer, The Social Network; Ed Harris, The Way Back; Sam Rockwell, Conviction; Geoffrey Rush, The King's Speech.
Best Supporting Actress UP: Julianne Moore, The Kids Are All Right. Tom O'Neil demands that she forget about the lead category and campaign for a supporting Oscar. It's hers to lose if she wants it! DOWN: Everybody in For Colored Girls. Some respectful reviews for the performances, but nobody seems very nominatable here.
CURRENT PREDIX: Helena Bonham-Carter, The King's Speech; Melissa Leo, The Fighter; Miranda Richardson, Made in Dagenham; Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit; Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom.
Oscar Futures: James Franco Way Up