It’s not uncommon for men to win multiple Oscars in the same year given how over-represented they are in directing, producing, sound and various other artistic fields. Women don’t get nearly as many opportunities to wear multiple hats, so it’s predictably a lot rarer for them to accomplish that feat. In fact, it has only happened to three women in the 21st century thus far. But Lady Gaga could be the fourth.
According to our predictions as of this writing, Lady Gaga is the front-runner to win Best Actress for playing an up-and-coming pop singer in “A Star is Born.” She also co-wrote multiple songs on the soundtrack, and while our predictions center is not yet open for Best Original Song, there’s a good chance she’ll be a top contender there too. And if she does win both she’ll join an exclusive club.
One woman pulled off double wins twice. Catherine Martin, the creative partner and wife of filmmaker Baz Luhrmann, won Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design for Luhrmann’s “Moulin Rouge” (2001). Then she pulled off the same double play a dozen years later, winning those two categories again for “The Great Gatsby” (2013).
One woman actually won three times. Fran Walsh, who is also married to her collaborator Peter Jackson, was part of the historic sweep for “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King” (2003). The film won all 11 of its categories, and three of them went to Walsh: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Original Song (“Into the West”).
History was made when Kathryn Bigelow won Best Director for “The Hurt Locker” (2009): she was the first woman ever to do so and only the fourth woman even to be nominated. And Bigelow also produced the film, so she collected a second trophy when the film claimed Best Picture.
The biggest challenge for Lady Gaga may actually be how Oscar voting is structured. While peer groups vote for the nominees in their respective categories (actors for actors, directors for directors, and so on), the winners are decided by the entire academy membership. That means voters will have the opportunity to check off Lady Gaga’s name twice. But if it looks like she’ll be a slam dunk for Best Original Song, voters may decide to spread the wealth to someone else in Best Actress, like Glenn Close (“The Wife“), who has been waiting decades to finally win.
But if “A Star is Born” turns out to be an Oscar juggernaut like “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King” was, voters might just give her everything that isn’t nailed down.
Be sure to check out how our experts rank this year’s Oscar contenders. Then take a look at the most up-to-date combined odds before you make your own Oscar predictions. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominations are announced on January 22.