Viola Davis (‘Fences’) at Oscars: A loss for Best Supporting Actress would be truly jaw-dropping

With her recent win at the BAFTA Awards, Viola Davis continued steamrolling the competition on what looks like an unstoppable path to Oscar victory. Davis, who is nominated for Best Supporting Actress in “Fences,” has been so dominant throughout award season that a loss for her at the Academy Awards would not only be the most jaw-dropping upset of the night, but statistically unheard of. Vote in our poll below about whether Davis is your personal pick to prevail on Oscar night.

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Her latest accolade puts her in a rare class of women who have won the Best Supporting Actress award at each of the four major precursors: Critics’ Choice, Golden Globes, SAG and BAFTA. Every one of them went on to take home the Oscar. To date, this feat has occurred six times: Renee Zellweger (“Cold Mountain” in 2003), Jennifer Hudson (“Dreamgirls” in 2006), Mo’Nique (“Precious” in 2009), Octavia Spencer (“The Help” in 2011), Anne Hathaway (“Les Miserables” in 2012) and Patricia Arquette (“Boyhood” in 2014).

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Had any of the other nominees in this category stolen just one of these major prizes, we could at least have a conversation about a potential upset on Oscar night. But for Davis, the competition has remained nearly the same throughout awards season and she has always come out victorious. Fellow nominees Naomie Harris (“Moonlight”), Nicole Kidman (“Lion”) and Michelle Williams (“Manchester by the Sea”) were all up against Davis at each of these award ceremonies. Octavia Spencer (“Hidden Figures”) was snubbed by Critics’ Choice and BAFTA, but was among the field at the Golden Globes and SAG Awards.

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History of Academy Award winning films

This isn’t the first time Davis has entered the Oscars as a frontrunner, though. In 2011 she was favored to win Best Actress for “The Help,” but went on to lose to Meryl Streep for “The Iron Lady.” That year, however, Davis and Streep had split the precursor awards with Davis winning Critics’ Choice and SAG, while Streep took home the Golden Globe and BAFTA. With her undefeated record this year, Davis appears to be on a clear path to finally get her Oscar.

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6 thoughts on “Viola Davis (‘Fences’) at Oscars: A loss for Best Supporting Actress would be truly jaw-dropping

  1. Not only is it unprecedented for Supporting Actress, it’s almost unheard in every acting category. Russell Crowe is the only person to win the four major precursors (Critics Choice, GG, SAG, and BAFTA) and lose the Oscar.

  2. I think people like a surprise and supporting actress has been the go to category fornthat in the past. The only chance for a shocker this year is supporting actor. Dev Patel is gaining serious Momentum and Could
    It. The other three acting oscars are already engraved with Viola, Emma & Casey’s names

  3. I think the reason Crowe lost that year is he won the year before and Denzel who was excellent in Training Day lost a close race two years prior for The Hurricane. It felt like The Academy owed Denzel an award. Since Viola has never won, was amazing in Fences, already won the Tony for it, and has a long list of top notch performances, she is 110% a lock.

  4. She’s a great actress; but it’s actually a leading role. She was put in there to ensure a win. That said, given the extremely weak slate of best actress nominees, she would have won anyway. A feat i would have preferred – to have another actress of colour winning snce Berry.

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