On Sunday, October 23, we learned after weeks of mystery that Viola Davis will campaign in the supporting category this awards season for her role as Rose Maxson in the film “Fences.” There was confusion because Davis won a Tony Award for the role in 2010 as a lead actress, while the woman who originated the role, Mary Alice, was awarded as a featured actress in 1987.
So what do our forum posters think of the decision? Is Davis now a stronger bet to win the Oscar? Could the academy reject the campaign and nominate her as a lead anyway, like they did with Kate Winslet, who campaigned as a supporting actress for “The Reader” in 2008, but ended up winning the Best Actress Oscar. “Fences” hasn’t screened for the press or the general public yet, so the best we can do is speculate, but our readers are fascinated by this turn of events.
Read some of their comments below, and make sure to join the discussion going on in our forums.
Jesse Seale: To be honest Best Actress category is very brutal this year. I’m glad she went supporting and I’m sorry for Michelle Williams right now. Her chances of winning [for ‘Manchester by the Sea’] just came to a shocking end because of Viola.
Jim Brooks: Having not seen ‘Fences’ yet, I don’t know the size of her role at all, but let’s say that Davis is campaigning in supporting actress, that doesn’t mean the academy won’t put her in lead if they consider the role a lead role. Kate Winslet was campaigning for supporting for ‘The Reader’ and they stuck her in lead.
AMG: People moaning about this – but what do you want? You’d be pissed if Davis went lead, but gave a supporting performance, yet are pissed she’s gone supporting because she’s an actress worthy of a lead nod? Pick a side, and stick to it!
Andrew Carden: With no reviews yet in for ‘Fences,’ I would still rank Davis behind Williams and [‘Moonlight’ star Naomie Harris] in terms of likelihood to land a Best Supporting Actress nomination.
Milo Kunis: Can you imagine the meltdown of this board if Viola still doesn’t win? Oy vey.
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions. Weigh in now with your picks so that Hollywood insiders can see how Davis is faring in our Oscar odds. Since Oscar voters can place her wherever they choose, we will continue to leave her as option for both lead and supporting categories. 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.