Oscar cliffhanger: Will Robert Redford finally win for acting with ‘Truth’?

Despite headlining such iconic films as “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” (1969), “The Way We Were” (1973) and “All the President’s Men” (1976), Robert Redford has been nominated just once at the Oscars for acting with his starring role as a conman in the 1973 Best Picture winner “The Sting”; he lost to Jack Lemmon (“Save the Tiger”). He could right that Oscar wrong this year with his portrayal of Dan Rather in “Truth,” a look inside the controversial “60 Minutes” segment that eventually led to the resignation of the CBS news anchor. 

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Redford did win an Oscar for directing the 1980 Best Picture champ “Ordinary People.” That domestic drama also won Supporting Actor (Timothy Hutton), and Adapted Screenplay (Alvin Sargent). And he picked up two bids in 1994 for directing and producing “Quiz Show,” losing to Robert Zemeckis and his film “Forrest Gump.”

In 2001 the motion picture academy presented him with an honorary Oscar, a premature gesture considering Redford’s output as of late. In 2013 he soloed in “All is Lost” and likely just missed out on an Oscar nomination having won Best Actor from the New York Film Critics Circle and contended at the Golden Globes, BFCA and Independent Spirit Awards. 

While Redford is considered a longshot for a Best Supporting Actor nomination by our experts (journalists who cover the Oscars for the likes of Variety, Vanity Fair and Yahoo), he has several factors working in his favor. (Click on the chart to the left to see the full list of contenders and odds).

Redford will be 80 on his next birthday and academy voters love to reward veteran actors, especially those holding an Oscar IOU.

Equally, they adore movies about real-life people. In “Truth,” Redford doesn’t mimic the famous newsman. Instead, he creates the essence of him and there is never a moment where we’re doubtful that it’s Dan Rather on-screen.

And he carries the goodwill associated with his activism and his efforts on behalf of independent film centered on the Sundance Institute which he founded in 1981. 

Redford’s matinee idol persona meant that he was unfairly underrated as an actor. Old age has done little to diminish his good looks, yet it has sharpened his skills even more. He’s still willing to take chances. In “Truth” he gives us an elder statesman whose legacy is suddenly at stake due to his faith in producer Mary Mapes (Cate Blanchett). 

Do you think Redford will be nominated? Make your Oscar predictions beginning with Best Supporting Actor and you could earn a place of honor on our leaderboard and a starring role in next year’s Top 24 Users (the two dozen folks who do the best predicting this year’s Oscar nominations).

Last year, our Top 24 Users led the way with an accuracy rate of 76.67% when it came to predicting the Oscar nominations. Next up were Gold Derby’s Editors with 74.44%, followed by the Experts with 71.11% and all Users with 68.09%. (Click on any of these groups to see what they got right and wrong last year.)

Which group will be victorious this year? Meet the guy who won our contest to predict the Oscar nominations last year — and learn how he did it and how you can be our next Gold Derby superstar.

As some of our Users turn out to be our smartest prognosticators, it’s important that you give us your predictions. Your picks influence our Users racetrack odds, which also factor into our official combined odds.

Photo: Robert Redford in “Truth” Credit: Moviestore/REX

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