Cate Blanchett can join rarefied air with a Best Actress BAFTA win for ‘TÁR’

Cate Blanchett is going for her third Oscar with “TÁR,” but before that, she’ll have a chance to capture her third Best Actress BAFTA Award. Should she do so, she’ll move up to second place on the all-time winners list in the category.

A three-time BAFTA champ, Blanchett has two Best Actress trophies for “Elizabeth” (1998) and “Blue Jasmine” (2013) and one for Best Supporting Actress for “The Aviator” (2004). In the lead category, she’s one of 11 with two victories. That list gets drastically smaller the higher you go. She’s looking to become just the fourth person with three Best Actress wins, one shy of Maggie Smith‘s record of four.

Blanchett would join Anne Bancroft, Audrey Hepburn and Simone Signoret as three-time champs — but their ledgers come with a caveat. Until the ceremony in 1969 when they were consolidated into Best Actress, the BAFTAs had two actress categories: Best British Actress and Best Foreign Actress. Bancroft collected two of her statuettes for Best Foreign Actress (1962’s “The Miracle Worker” and 1964’s “The Pumpkin Eater”) and her third was Best Actress for “84 Charing Cross Road” (1987). All three of Hepburn’s wins were for Best British Actress (1953’s “Roman Holiday,” 1959’s “The Nun’s Story” and 1964’s “Charade”), while Signoret’s hat trick was entirely in Best Foreign Actress (1952’s “Golden Helmet,” 1957’s “The Crucible” and 1958’s “Room at the Top”).

SEE How to watch ‘TÁR’ online

Smith’s quartet of wins all came in Best Actress for “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie” (1969), “A Private Function” (1984), “A Room with a View” (1986) and “The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne” (1988). That means if Blanchett prevails for “TÁR,” she and Smith will be the only ones with at least three victories in the single Best Actress category.

While things are tight in the Best Actress Oscar race between Blanchett and Michelle Yeoh (“Everything Everywhere All at Once”), the Aussie has a wider lead in the BAFTA odds at 17/5 to Yeoh’s 39/10. Blanchett, who’s on her eighth BAFTA bid, has already won the drama Golden Globe and Critics Choice Award for her soaring turn as world class conductor and composer Lydia Tár, in addition to having swept the top three critics’ prizes — New York Film Critics Circle, Los Angeles Film Critics Association and National Society of Film Critics — for the second time in her career (the first was for “Blue Jasmine”). Over the weekend at the London Film Critics’ Circle Awards, where “TÁR” was named Best Picture,” Blanchett won Best Actress, which has lined up with the BAFTAs and the Oscars four of the last five years.

Rounding out the rest of the BAFTA lineup are Danielle Deadwyler (“Till”) in third place, followed by Emma Thompson (“Good Luck to You, Leo Grande”), Ana de Armas (“Blonde”) and Viola Davis (“The Woman King”). If Blanchett wins, she will also have the quirky distinction of taking home a Best Actress trophy in fields of four (“Elizabeth”), five (“Blue Jasmine”) and six (“TÁR”).

BAFTA odds for Best Actress
Who will win?

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