Oscars 2020 odds: Who to bet for as nominations ballot closes

What the bookmakers are saying as the nominations announcement approaches

1917 - Trailer

The Oscars 2020 ballot has officially closed meaning that the Academy Award nominations have been decided.

Comprised of an estimated 6,000 motion picture professionals – the identity of whom remains a “closely guarded secret” – the Academy has, according to Deadline, been saving their votes for the last minute in an attempt to see every film in contention for trophies.

It’s because of this desire to see everything that makes the Golden Globes winners an important part of the awards race – for example, if a member was yet to see Sam Mendes’ First World War drama 1917, its unexpected win in the Best Film – Drama category at Sunday night’s ceremony would have no doubt brought that film to the top of the list.

Still, the Golden Globes have failed to hint at eventual Oscar winners in the past – The Hurt Locker and Spotlight are two films that went on to win Best Picture but they won absolutely nothing at the Globes.

The best predictions of what will be nominated for the big awards can be formulated by assessing those named by the Producers Guild (PGA), Directors Guild (DGA), Writers Guild (WGA) and the Baftas, which sparked fury for a severe lack of diversity among its nominations when announced earlier this week.

With the Oscar nominations less than a week away, below are how the odds are looking for all the films that are likely to be named by the Academy.

Best Picture

The favourite to win may currently be Parasite, but two films that have attracted a flurry of bets following the Globes are 1917 and Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which won Best Film – Comedy or Musical. This has been a complete reversal from about a month ago, which had The Irishman and Marriage Story sitting high as favourites. Still, if Parasite should win, it’ll be the first foreign language film to do so in Oscar history, a feat that was expected to be achieved by Netflix’s Roma up until Green Book beat it in the eleventh hour.

Best Director

Following his win at the Golden Globes, Sam Mendes – whose war film 1917 is a two-take drama following two soldiers’ journey behind enemy lines – is now the one to beat for the prize. He previously won in 2000 for American Beauty. While mob drama The Irishman‘s Best Picture odds have somewhat drifted, director Martin Scorsese still sits high as one of the most heavily-backed filmmakers in the category alongside South Korean director Bong Joon-ho, who received a standing ovation after winning at the DGAs earlier this week.

Best Actor

This is Joaquin Phoenix’s for the taking ands the odds reflect this. His controversial role in Joker has been a favourite since the film premiered at festivals last Autumn and his Golden Globe win seems to have secured his first Academy Award. Still, with a month to go, Taron Egerton could work the campaign trail to his advantage. The Rocketman star is clearly well-liked by voters and, after Rami Malek won for playing Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, its clear music biopics are in favour among those that matter.

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Best Actress

At this stage, they may as well just give the trophy to Renée​ Zellweger. While Judy would be lucky to get nominations in any other category, it seems destined to become an Oscar-winner thanks to Zellweger’s lead role of Hollywood icon Judy Garland. Her only real competition seems to be Scarlett Johansson for her role in Marriage Story – a nomination on Monday would mark a first for the actor.

Renée​ Zellweger is favourite to win Best Actress at the Oscars for her role in ‘Judy’

Best Supporting Actor

This could perhaps be the most exciting – and closest – category of the night. Brad Pitt (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood) shouldn’t go celebrating yet – even if, throughout his career, Tarantino has become something of a Supporting Actor whisperer (Christoph Waltz won in this category twice of Inglorious Basterds and Django Unchained). Both Al Pacino and Joe Pesci will provide strong competition for their work in The Irishman – as will Song Kang-ho, the lead star of Parasite. Still, the most money is going on Brad.

Best Supporting Actress

There is really an upset in this category and the 2020 ceremony looks certain to be no different. According to the odds, Marriage Story‘s Laura Dern – who was last nominated in this category in 2014 for Wild – will not only be named on Monday, but will win the prize come Oscars night. Her closest competitor is said to Hustlers star Jennifer Lopez, although the fact she was shut out by Bafta doesn’t bode well for her chances.

The Oscar nominations will be announced on Monday at 1pm GMT with the ceremony scheduled to take place in Los Angeles on 9 February. Check all the latest odds here.

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