The BAFTA Awards gave Gary Oldman, Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell and Allison Janney yet another chance to practice their Oscar acceptance speeches. Each member of this quartet has taken home every one of the major precursors this awards season. They started their winning ways with the Golden Globes and Critics Choice Awards in mid January followed by the SAG Awards at the end of last month and now the BAFTAs. No group has pulled off such a sweep since the British academy moved ahead of the Oscars in 2000.
Oldman has been the Best Actor favorite all season long for his transformation into Winston Churchill in “Darkest Hour.” The veteran character actor has only contended at the Oscars once before, losing his 2011 Best Actor bid for “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” to Jean Dujardin who headlined the Best Picture champ “The Artist.”
McDormand is riveting as a mother struggling to accept her daughter’s death in the character study “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Martin McDonagh‘s film debuted at the Toronto film festival, where it won the audience award. While Sally Hawkins has won the majority of critics awards for her role as a mute woman who finds unexpected love in “The Shape of Water,” it is McDormand that has taken home all of the industry laurels.
McDormand won the Best Actress Oscar back in 1996 for her turn in the darkly comic tale “Fargo,” which was written and directed by her husband Joel Coen and his brother Ethan Coen. She had contended once before then for her supporting role in the 1988 docudrama “Mississippi Burning” (she lost to Geena Davis for “The Accidental Tourist”). She was also nominated for her featured roles in 2000’s “Almost Famous” and 2005’s “North Country” losing those Oscar races to Marcia Gay Harden (“Pollock”) and Rachel Weisz (“The Constant Gardener”) respectively.
Rockwell has ridden this same wave of support for “Three Billboards” for his role as a racist cop who has an epiphany. At the start of the season, it looked like another character actor, Willem Dafoe, would win the Supporting Actor Oscar for his heartbreaking performance in the indie drama “The Florida Project.” This two-time past Oscar nominee has scooped up most of the critics awards, it looks like Rockwell, who is a rookie at the Academy Awards, will be taking to the stage of the Dolby theater.
While Janney has appeared in such Academy-Award winning fare as “American Beauty” and “Juno,” she has never contended at the Oscars. She does have a whopping seven Emmys crowding her mantle for her work in the drama series “The West Wing” and “Masters of Sex” and the comedy series “Mom.” As with “Three Billboards,” “I, Tonya” was a breakout hit at the Toronto film festival and acquired a distribution deal that launched it as a late entry in the derby.
Janney’s wins for her role as one mean mama have come at the expense of another TV veteran, Laurie Metcalf (“Roseanne”). That three-time Emmy champ had taken home the lion’s share of critics prizes for her role as a mother struggling with her rebellious teenage daughter in “Lady Bird.”
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions so that Hollywood insiders can see if this historic sweep will happen. You can keep changing your predictions until just before winners are announced on March 4. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our movie forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.