HBO’s Southern Gothic limited series “Sharp Objects” finished its run in August, but it’s about to be back in the conversation with the 76th Golden Globe Awards not too far away. The series is primed to reap multiple nominations for its stars — and that includes breakthrough performer Eliza Scanlen, who’s seeking her first career bid, in Best Supporting Actress.
Based on Gillian Flynn’s novel of the same name, “Sharp Objects” was adapted for the small screen by Marti Noxon (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “UnReal”) and directed by Jean-Marc Vallée (“Dallas Buyers Club,” “Big Little Lies”), who helmed all eight episodes. The show follows journalist Camille Preaker (Amy Adams), who is sent to her hometown of Wind Gap to cover the murders of two pre-teen girls, Ann Nash (Keagan Baron) and Natalie Keene (Jessica Treska). Scanlen plays Camille’s sister, Amma Crellin, the innocent, obedient daughter of mother Adora (Patricia Clarkson) at home, but the mysterious, rollerskating bad girl outside of it.
While Scanlen had a supporting role on the Australian soap opera “Home and Away,” “Sharp Objects” is her first major Hollywood project. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association loves to recognize performers — usually newcomers — for their breakthrough roles. For instance:
1. Katherine Langford: nominated for Best TV Drama Actress for “13 Reasons Why” (2018)
2. Chrissy Metz: nominated for Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Limited Series or TV Movie for “This Is Us” (2017, 2018)
3. Rachel Bloom: won Best TV Comedy Actress for “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” (2016); nominated in 2017
4. Gina Rodriguez: won Best TV Comedy Actress for “Jane the Virgin” (2015); nominated in 2016 and 2017
5. Catriona Balfe: nominated for Best TV Drama Actress for “Outlander” (2016-2018)
6. Sofía Vergara: nominated for Best Supporting Actress in a Series, Limited Series or TV Movie for “Modern Family” (2011-2014)
7. Chris Colfer: won Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Limited Series or TV Movie for “Glee” (2011)
8. Lea Michele: nominated for Best TV Comedy Actress for “Glee” (2010, 2011)
To add to her breakthrough narrative, Scanlen arguably gave one of the most transformative performances of the entire “Sharp Objects” cast. Holding her own against Adams and Clarkson, the 19-year-old Australian actress effortlessly portrayed the two vastly different sides of 14-year-old Amma while putting on a not-so-easy Southern U.S. accent. Plus, you did see the end credits, right? (SPOILERS AHEAD) If you did, then you’ll remember that Amma was revealed to not only be Wind Gap’s infamous killer, but to have also continued her killing spree in her new hometown of St. Louis. This literal last-minute reveal is the type of shocking twist people will remember come voting, much to the credit of Scanlen’s haunting performance.
For what it’s worth, Scanlen has also joined the star-studded cast of Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of “Little Women.” Although the movie won’t be hitting theaters until Dec. 25, 2019, it has already brought some added attention to Hollywood’s new rising star.
Be sure to check out how our experts rank this year’s Golden Globe contenders. Then take a look at the most up-to-date combined odds before you make your own Golden Globe predictions. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominations are announced on Dec. 6.