OSCARS 2012 NOMINATIONS : Best Actress

 
The Contenders

Barbra Streisan
(The Guilt ..)

Emmanuelle Riva
(Amour)

Helen Mirren
(Hitchcock)

Holliday Graing
(Great Expe..)

Jennifer Lawren
(Silver Lin..)

Jessica Chastai
(Zero Dark ..)

Judi Dench
(Best Exoti..)

Keira Knightley
(Anna Karen..)

Laura Linney
(Hyde Park ..)

Leslie Mann
(This is 40)

Maggie Smith
(Quartet)

Marion Cotillar
(Rust and B..)

Mary Elizabeth
(Smashed)

Melanie Lynskey
(Hello I Mu..)

Meryl Streep
(Hope Sprin..)

Naomi Watts
(The Imposs..)

Quvenzhane Wall
(Beasts of ..)

Rachel Weisz
(The Deep B..)
Best Actress

Of late, the Best Actress lineup looks like that of a beauty pageant and this year is no exception. The comely Jennifer Lawrence far out in front for her performance in "Silver Linings Playbook." The overwhelming majority of our Experts predict this one-time nominee to become the second youngest winner at age 22, just one year older than Marlee Matlin when she won in 1986 for "Children of a Lesser God." (See latest odds here)

Three of her closest rivals -- Marion Cotillard ("Rust and Bone"), Naomi Watts ("The Impossible") and Jessica Chastain ("Zero Dark Thirty") -- often grace the covers of fashion magazines. (Track changing odds in this race by scrolling down to the bottom of this page.)

Last year, Meryl Streep ("The Iron Lady") became only the second women over 45 to claim this prize in the past 15 years. While she is a longshot to pick up her 15th Best Actress bid for "Hope Springs," 2006 champ Helen Mirren ("The Queen") could contend again for "Hitchcock." Even she, at age 67, dons a bathing suit at one point in the picture. 

Looking to reap her first Oscar bid is Emannuelle Riva ("Amour") who, at 85, would be the oldest- ever nominee (Jessica Tandy was 80 when she won for "Driving Miss Daisy" in 1990).

Then there is newcomer Quvenzhane Wallis ("Beasts of the Southern Wild") who was all of six when she made her film debut. She would be the youngest nominee ever in this race, a record currently held by Keisha Knight-Hughes who was 13 when she contended for "Whale Rider" in 2004. 

Experts’ Rankings
Thelma Adams
Matt Atchity
Edward Douglas
1
Jessica Chastain
Jennifer Lawrence
Jessica Chastain
2
Jennifer Lawrence
Jessica Chastain
Jennifer Lawrence
3
Marion Cotillard
Marion Cotillard
Marion Cotillard
Editors’ Rankings
Chris Beachum
Marcus Dixon
Rob Licuria
1
Jennifer Lawrence
Jennifer Lawrence
Jessica Chastain
2
Jessica Chastain
Jessica Chastain
Jennifer Lawrence
3
Naomi Watts
Keira Knightley
Naomi Watts
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