Latest Odds in the Oscar Race

keira4.jpgSince Oscar trend-watching is a passion of mine, I hope I don’t bore everyone with my constant posting about the Academy Awards, and cause ennui of the kind that has already afflicted the endless coverage for the past year about the American presidential race. Unlike that political battle, which has pretty much narrowed to four or five people, the Oscar race is still wide open.

I’ve already announced my conviction that “Atonement,” the Keira Knightley-led English period piece (she’s pictured here), will be one of the five Best Picture nominations. One of my favorite Oscar prognosticators, Jeffrey Wells, has narrowed the race down to “Atonement” plus: “American Gangster,” with Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe; “Charlie Wilson’s War,” with Julia Roberts and Tom Hanks; “Elizabeth: The Golden Age,” with Cate Blanchett; “No Country for Old Men,” with Tommy Lee Jones; “Sweeney Todd,” with Johnny Depp; and “There Will Be Blood,” with Daniel Day Lewis; and “Nothing is Private.” Since Best Actor and Best Actress winners tend to come from Best Picture nominees, I’d say that Knightley and Blanchett have the best shot of winning the Best Actress award; and that Depp is in good stead for Best Actor, since the other men in these movies have won Oscars already.

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