Jennifer Lawrence drops to supporting race in Oscar frontrunner ‘American Hustle’

Jennifer Lawrence will not be defending her Best Actress title at the Oscars this year — at least not for “American Hustle,” which currently leads the Best Picture race, according to the predictions of Gold Derby’s Editors and Top 24 Site Users. A rep for the film confirmed to Gold Derby that Lawrence will be campaigned for Best Supporting Actress where she’ll compete against Meryl Streep (“August: Osage County“) and Oprah Winfrey (“The Butler“).

Director David O. Russell‘s crime drama reunites him with his “Silver Linings Playbook” stars Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, and Robert De Niro. All three were nominated for Oscars for that film, with only Lawrence winning. De Niro will return to the supporting slot. It’s likely that Cooper will also compete there, but a final decision about his category placement is being delayed until a finished cut of the movie is seen.

Two of “American Hustle’s” other stars will compete in lead — Amy Adams and Christian Bale, who were nominated for “The Fighter.” Bale won Best Supporting Actor, while Adams lost the corresponding supporting actress race to co-star Melissa Leo.

“The Fighter” was the third of four career Oscar nominations for Amy Adams, but if she is nominated for “Hustle” it will be her first bid for a leading role. It would also be the first lead-acting nomination for Bale, whose supporting win for “The Fighter” was his only nomination to date.

Bale and Adams play Irving Rosenfeld and Sydney Prosser, a pair of con artists forced to assist the FBI in a sting operation. Lawrence plays Irving’s ex-wife Rosalyn, and Cooper plays Agent Richie DiMaso, who recruits the cons.

Best Supporting Actor contender Jeremy Renner, a two-time Oscar nominee for his roles in “The Hurt Locker” and “The Town,” plays Carmine Polito, the mayor of Camden, New Jersey.

“American Hustle” currently leads our overall racetrack odds for Best Picture and Best Director. It would be the first crime film to win the top prize since “No Country for Old Men” in 2007, but Russell — who earned a combined three Oscar nominations for “Fighter” and “Silver Linings “– could be considered due in an awards race that includes a number of previous winners like George Clooney (“The Monuments Men“), Joel and Ethan Coen (“Inside Llewyn Davis“), Martin Scorsese (“The Wolf of Wall Street“), and Woody Allen (“Blue Jasmine“).

Watch the trailer for “American Hustle” below, and then make your Oscar predictions:

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