Oscar odds: 'The Artist' heavily favored to win best picture - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Oscar odds: 'The Artist' heavily favored to win best picture

Updated:
Pundits say French actor Jean Dujardin will win his first Academy Award for his performance as silent film actor George Valentin in 'The Artist.' (Source: Entertainment Film) Pundits say French actor Jean Dujardin will win his first Academy Award for his performance as silent film actor George Valentin in 'The Artist.' (Source: Entertainment Film)
George Clooney, star of 'The Descendants,' was the once frontrunner in the best actor race. 'Descendants' was shot on location in Hawaii. (Source: Fox Searchlight Pictures/CNN) George Clooney, star of 'The Descendants,' was the once frontrunner in the best actor race. 'Descendants' was shot on location in Hawaii. (Source: Fox Searchlight Pictures/CNN)
'Help' lead Viola Davis is predicted to emerge triumphant on Oscar night as the year's best actress. Davis plays a civil rights-era maid in the Tate Taylor-directed film. (Source: Dreamworks Pictures) 'Help' lead Viola Davis is predicted to emerge triumphant on Oscar night as the year's best actress. Davis plays a civil rights-era maid in the Tate Taylor-directed film. (Source: Dreamworks Pictures)
Meryl Streep is in close competition with Davis, her former 'Doubt' co-star, in the best actress category. Streep is nominated for her portrayal of former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher in 'The Iron Lady.' (Source: The Weinstein Company/CNN) Meryl Streep is in close competition with Davis, her former 'Doubt' co-star, in the best actress category. Streep is nominated for her portrayal of former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher in 'The Iron Lady.' (Source: The Weinstein Company/CNN)

HOLLYWOOD (RNN) - For the entertainment world, it's a night that rivals the Super Bowl.

This Sunday, the newest kings and queens of Hollywood will be crowned at the 84th annual Academy Awards.

Martin Scorcesce's splashy 3-D Hugo leads all films with 11 nominations. But in spite of its stunning visuals, a back-to-basics black and white and mostly silent film is expected to be the victor of Oscar night's most-coveted prize: best picture.

The Artist, a cinematic love-letter to the golden age of Hollywood, has itself scored a hefty 10 nominations. While its name seems to already be inscribed on the golden statue of a man named Oscar, it's anyone's bet as to who will walk away with trophies in other major fields, such as the leading actor and actress categories.

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Here's a look at the odds-on favorites to win in five of the top awards categories at the 83rd annual Academy Awards.

Best Picture

The Artist is heavily favored to be the 84th film to win Oscar's best picture award with 4-5 odds over its two nearest competitors, Hugo (8-1) and The Descendants (9-1), according to Gold Derby, which bills itself as "Hollywood's original awards site."

The film about a silent movie actor whose star presence is eclipsed by the arrival of talkies has proved unbeatable in important pre-season awards competition, winning at the Critics' Choice Movie Awards, Golden Globes and the Orange British Academy Film Awards.

The Artist also won two of three major guild awards: The Producer's Guild of America and the Director's Guild of America.

The film lost the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) award to the cast of Tate Taylor's The Help, the tale of maids in civil rights-era Mississippi who find their voice by partnering with a journalist.

While the actors' guild represents the academy's largest voting bloc, The Help is unlikely to make it to the podium on Oscar night, as it failed to secure nominations for best director and best editing.

Best Supporting Actor/Actress

Two names all but universally expected to walk away with gold on Oscar night: Beginners'  Christopher Plummer for Best Supporting Actor and The Help's Octavia Spencer for Best Supporting Actress. Each actor won accolades from the Broadcast Film Critics' Association (BFCA), Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), SAG and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA).

On Derby, Plummer leads with 4-9 odds over Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close's Max von Sydow (8-1) and My Week with Marilyn's Kenneth Branagh (12-1). Spencer leads with 4-9 odds over The Artist's Berenice Bejo (13-2) and Bridesmaids' Melissa McCarthy (12-1).

Best Actor/Actress

The two performance categories with wiggle room are the Best Actor and Actress fields. Pre-season awards in each field have been equally split among a pair of actors.

George Clooney (The Descendants) seemed to be an early favorite to win a second Academy Award after snagging trophies from the BCFA and HFPA. But Jean Dujardin (The Artist) has seen a late surge, accolades from SAG and BAFTA.

Dujardin now leads Clooney in Derby's predictions, with 10-11 odds over 21-10 odds. Support from the actors' guild is likely to propel the French actor to victory on Oscar night.

The Clooney-Dujardin rivalry could make for one of the most exciting Oscar telecasts in years, following a string of easily-predicted winners, including Colin Firth and Jeff Bridges.

The season's Best Actress awards have also been evenly divided among Viola Davis and Meryl Streep. Davis won the Critics' Choice Award, then Streep won the Globe, Davis the SAG Award and Streep came back again to win the British Academy Award.

Derby gives the edge to Davis with 5-6 odds over Streep's 23-10. Once again, support from her guild should make Davis triumphant.

Interestingly, if Streep loses at the 83rd Academy Awards, she will become the biggest loser among academy acting contenders. While the American actress has been nominated more than any other actor - an astonishing 17 times - she has won only twice - for Kramer vs. Kramer and Sophie's Choice - and not since 1982.

Derby odds are aggregated from three sets of predictions: experts, Derby editors and average Joes using Derby's website. For a complete list of Oscar predictions, click here to head over to Derby, which has been serving up Oscar predictions since 2000.

The 84th annual Academy Awards air live from Hollywood at 7 p.m. ET on Sunday, Feb. 26 on ABC.


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  • Toledo News Now Poll

  • What film do you think will win best picture on Oscar night?

  • Thank you for participating in our poll. Here are the results so far:

    'The Artist'
    33%
    177 votes
    'The Descendants'
    13%
    71 votes
    'The Help'
    46%
    252 votes
    'Hugo'
    6%
    35 votes
    'Midnight in Paris'
    2%
    13 votes