Oscar race for Best Actor: Tom O’Neil & Pete Hammond track the frontrunners (video & podcast)

All 24 Oscar Experts at Gold Derby say Gary Oldman is far out front to win Best Actor and Pete Hammond agrees.

“How could he not be?” Pete asks in our video chat (watch above or listen to audio podcast below). “You have an actor who loses himself completely in this role of Winston Churchill in ‘Darkest Hour'” as he takes on the notorious ticks and bombastic nature of the pugnacious British prime minister, Pete adds. “He captures the essence of Churchill.”

But Pete and I agree that Daniel Day-Lewis poses a serious threat for his still-unseen performance as a domineering fashion designer in “Phantom Thread,” which has not yet been screened for the press. Day-Lewis holds the record for most Oscar wins for Best Actor (three), so he’s always a lead contender when he makes one of his rare screen turns. Now he says “Phantom Thread” will be his last performance ever, so it’s special.

According to our Experts’ predictions, other top contenders include Timothee Chalamet (“Call Me By Your Name”), Tom Hanks (“The Post”), Denzel Washington (“Roman J. Israel, Esq.”) and more.

Below: Audio podcast version. Do a search for Gold Derby at iTunes to subscribe to our podcast channel. Also see Tom and Pete’s discussions on the fall of Harvey Weinstein and the state of the Oscar race for Best Picture.

Video produced by David Janove and Andrew Merrill

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