Andrew Garfield finds himself in an embarrassment of riches this year as he is the lead in not one but two films generating Oscar buzz. The actor stars in both Mel Gibson’s “Hacksaw Ridge” and Martin Scorsese’s “Silence” and has received acclaim for both roles. Early award groups such as SAG and the Golden Globes have nominated him as Best Actor for “Hacksaw Ridge,” but a few complicating factors could arise when Oscar balloting begins on January 5. Vote in our poll below about whether you think Garfield will earn an Oscar nom for “Hacksaw Ridge” or “Silence.”
“Silence” has been largely absent from early awards due to Scorsese’s notoriously late finishing of the film. Scorsese likes to tinker with his final cuts of his films right up until the last possible minute. This can make for a quality production but can cause his films to miss the deadlines for some awards groups that announce their prizes early.
Three years ago Scorsese’s “The Wolf of Wall Street” fell into this pattern. The film’s unavailability caused star Leonardo DiCaprio to be left out of the SAG Awards which strongly hurt his Oscar chances and let “Dallas Buyers Club” star Matthew McConaughey amass most of the early awards and create great momentum going into the Oscar race, which he ultimately won. Many pundits at the time thought had “The Wolf of Wall Street” been seen earlier, Dicaprio and the film itself may have been able to reap more awards. The same thing seems to be happening this year with Garfield. The earlier availability of “Hacksaw Ridge” seems to be indicating that film has a better chance of earning Garfield an Oscar nomination.
Another complicating issue here is the Mel Gibson factor. Will the academy welcome back Gibson to their fold? The actor won the 1995 Best Director award for “Braveheart” but in recent years has become an industry pariah after a number of embarrassing incidents and arrests.
It remains to be seen if academy members will want to vote for Gibson and his film. Granted, Garfield shouldn’t be held responsible for Gibson’s past issues but having “Silence” around may be an easy way for voters still uneasy with Gibson, but desirous of acknowledging Garfield, to vote.
In this year’s Best Actor race, Casey Affleck (“Manchester by the Sea”), Denzel Washington (“Fences”) and Ryan Gosling (“La La Land”) are sure things and will likely take the first three slots. Garfield is looking to gain one of the two remaining places so the possibility of splitting his votes between two films could hurt his chances of a nomination for either of them. This happened two years ago to Jessica Chastain, who was touted as a possible supporting actress nominee for both “Interstellar” and “A Most Violent Year” but ultimately was not nominated for either.
Garfield’s co-star in “Silence,” Adam Driver, could pose another complicating factor. Driver recently won the Los Angeles Film Critics Award for Best Actor for his role in “Paterson” and is emerging as a possible long shot nominee for an Oscar nom as Best Actor. Driver’s presence in the prestigious Scorsese film will help him gain respect and so if he earns a bid for “Paterson,” he could possibly push Garfield out of the Top 5.
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see how each film is faring in our Oscar odds. You can keep changing your predictions right up until just before nominations are announced on January 24 at 5:00 am PT/8:00 am ET. Be sure to read our contest rules. And join in the fierce debate over the Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our forums.