Oscar Experts Typing: Will Kerry Condon have the luck of the Irish over Angela Bassett at the BAFTAs?

Welcome to Oscar Experts Typing, a weekly column in which Gold Derby editors and Experts Joyce Eng and Christopher Rosen discuss the Oscar race — via Slack, of course. This week, we consider some possible upsets at BAFTA.

Christopher Rosen: Hello, Joyce! It’s Friday and it feels like Phase 2 is about to start in earnest. On Saturday night, the Directors Guild of America Awards will (maybe) help clarify one of the tightest Oscar races this year where I think you can make a case for four different filmmakers winning the ultimate prize (even if that only accounts for three movies: the Daniels, Steven Spielberg and Todd Field). Then after that, the British are coming? The BAFTA Awards will announce winners on Sunday, and it’s expected that “The Banshees of Inisherin” should be the top prize-getter. Or maybe not? We made our “final” BAFTA picks earlier this week and I have “Everything Everywhere All at Once” taking home the BAFTA Best Film award. It just feels right. Plus, BAFTA voters will have plenty of other opportunities to reward “Banshees,” particularly in Best Supporting Actress. We disagreed on this prediction earlier this week, but I’m more bullish on it now than ever before. I really do think Kerry Condon can win at BAFTA over Angela Bassett. What I’m left wondering here is, were that to actually happen, does it have any effect on the Oscar race? The easy answer is no: Bassett has grabbed the Best Supporting Actress field with both hands and her speech at the Golden Globes all but assured her victory on Oscar night. But there is reason to think otherwise: “Banshees” is the more popular movie with academy members and Bassett’s win feels like it would be more cumulative than her nominated performance. Sometimes, that doesn’t work. I keep going back to 1997 when Juliette Binoche was a surprise winner in Best Supporting Actress over the legendary Lauren Bacall. It came as a shock, but then Binoche won at the BAFTA Awards the following month too — hindsight proof that she did indeed have support previously unrealized. So would a Condon win be a canary in the coal mine for her Oscar upset? Or am I just trying to make a race out of one of the acting races already sewn up?

joyceeng: Condon can very much win BAFTA and I’ve thought a lot about jumping to her — and I still might — but as I said the other day, I think even if she wins, Bassett will ultimately prevail at the Oscars. The hypothetical loss across the pond would just be a tiny speed bump but won’t derail her off course. I get the Bacall-Binoche comp on paper, but these two races are quite different. We talked about this on Oscars Playback last year, but Binoche was part of the sweeper of that night and Bacall was a lone nominee for “The Mirror Has Two Faces” and was on her first nomination too. Bassett’s on her second nom and is in a movie with four other bids whose mothership film won three Oscars. The love for Bassett also feels more passionate than the vibe toward Bacall, which leaned “respectful of a Hollywood legend.” Then there’s the SAG Awards. I assume you are predicting Bassett there, so if she loses BAFTA and wins SAG, she will have three of the televised precursors, and when you possess a majority of them, that’s pretty much unbeatable in this category. A Condon BAFTA victory would remind me more of the Brits going with Helena Bonham Carter and Geoffrey Rush for “The King’s Speech” or Dev Patel for “Lion.” We knew Melissa Leo (who wasn’t even nominated at BAFTA), Christian Bale and Mahershala Ali were still winning the Oscar. “Banshees” can obviously just dominate, but its strongest acting category is Best Actor, and everyone would probably be left slack-jawed if Colin Farrell doesn’t win. That category is still fluid at the Oscars, but can you see him losing this at all?

SEE Experts slugfest: BAFTA and DGA winer predictions — plus, Andrea Riseborough speaks!

Christopher Rosen: I have to say, we both kind of scoffed at the idea that Brendan Fraser could win at BAFTA, but I have seen some pushback on that notion. (Joyce, as always and to my detriment, I do read the comments.) Maybe we’re sleeping on Fraser because of our bias against “The Whale”? Best Actor remains hyper-competitive and I think you could easily make the case for all three top contenders winning at BAFTA. I’ll stick with Farrell because we’ve had him winning BAFTA since before we could predict him to win BAFTA. But what happens on Sunday will be indicative to me. If Farrell wins, that’s a hold in this race because we expected it. But if Butler or Fraser were to win, especially with the likelihood that one of them will win at the SAG Awards next week, I think that would go a long way to giving us an Oscar frontrunner. What other categories have you vexed here? We’ve spent a lot of time talking and typing about Best Director in the last seven days, but I’ll be interested to see where BAFTA shakes out. I have Todd Field taking home the award and I think he’s a real threat to win at the Oscars. But the odds say this is the Daniels’ race to win. Do you think they’ll go all the way, or does Field or Martin McDonagh sneak across the finish line?

joyceeng: Even though I have Fraser in third, I’ve never felt he couldn’t win BAFTA since, as I’ve said, the Brits liked “The Whale” more than the Oscars did and that role is hella baity. It’s just that “Banshees” and “Elvis” are clearly stronger overall, and BAFTA adores McDonagh and Baz Luhrmann (you know the latter, a former winner, would’ve gotten a directing nom if the category weren’t juried). I’ve mentioned this before, but Austin Butler seems like the one best positioned to win BAFTA and SAG. My feeling that Field and McDonagh can both win at BAFTA still has me keeping the Daniels in first for now. McDonagh was never beating Guillermo del Toro last time for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” which won five BAFTAs, so with this ostensibly being a more open race, voters could make it up to him? I dunno. Field feels so right too. My only wish is for DGA and BAFTA to go with different people for the maximum chaos that I crave. We’ve gone this whole Typing without mentioning Best Actress yet. But this feels similar to Best Actor in that nearly everyone has had BAFTA earmarked for Cate Blanchett, regardless of what happens at the Oscars. I know you’re predicting Blanchett, so my question is: Does Lydia Tár also have a BAFTA?

SEE Oscar Experts Typing: Can Todd Field edge out the Daniels in Best Director? And can Steven Spielberg rebound?

Christopher Rosen: I’ll zig here and suggest that Lydia Tár never won a BAFTA Award, probably due to her controversial opinion of the British monarchy. But Best Actress: I feel like it’s akin to Best Actor. I won’t think much of Blanchett winning here — we’ve had her marked down for a long time — but if Michelle Yeoh were to win, I think that’s a game-changer for the race. But I’ll leave you with the last word here, Joyce. Any big upsets you hope to see on Sunday?

joyceeng: I’m also gonna say she lost the BAFTA, which made her and pundits worry that she might lose the Oscar too, but she pulled through. Also, you know that she’d go Russell Crowe on BAFTA if they had edited her speech too. I welcome any and all upsets, but I feel like the frontrunners or alternate choices will probably prevail, so nothing totally left field. Then again, I was not prepared for “CODA” winning adapted screenplay last year.

BAFTA odds for Best Supporting Actress
Who will win?

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