The Real Reel’s Oscar Wish List: Leading Actress

It’s official! Oscar season is officially upon us – which means The Real Reel is back with our annual awards season coverage. From now until Oscar night, the blog will be filled with commentary, reviews and whatever else we can think of to bore the crap out of you.

Per usual, it’s that time of year for The Real Reel’s Oscar Wish List. A few ground rules:

  1. This is just a wish list. The following films, actors, actresses, directors, etc, are not to be confused with predictions. Those will come later on in the season.
  2. The following wish lists are highly subjective, and have been compiled  using the following criteria: (a) films that I have seen, liked, and feel should be recognized      (b) Critical reception  (c) General audience reception.

Every week, starting today, a new wish list will go up for the following categories, Best Picture, Best Director,  Leading Actor, Leading Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress and a new addition to the wish list – Original and Adapted screenplay.

In no particular order, we’ll start with the category that is sure to be one for the ages –

Leading Actress

We’re alloted five wishes per category, so here’s our list to the Oscar genie:

Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady)

Though the Weinstein’s seem to be dragging with their campaign – priming Michelle Williams for her third nomination for My Week With Marilyn instead – an awards season without Meryl Streep is like Christmas without Santa.  

The Iron Lady isn’t out for another month but even in Streep’s less than mediocre films, she still manages to get the job done and nab a nomination. Julie and Julia, anyone? Maybe this is the scenario the Weinstein’s are hoping for.

Michelle Williams (My Week With Marilyn)

Speaking of the Weinsteins – their darling this season is Michelle Williams, and rightfully so. Her career has reached a level of acclaim to the point where her decision-making (where roles are concerned)  have become the stamp of approval that any movie goer needs. Exhibit A: Oz, The Great and Powerful.  Seriously, who was going to see that before she signed on as The Good Witch?  Along with Streep, Williams is a favorite here at The Real Reel and her odds at winning this year are greater than they’ve ever been before.

Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs)


Out of everyone on this list, Glenn Close is the one who’s due the most. Yes, even more than Meryl! Close hasn’t been nominated since the early 80s and to make matters worse, she’s never won.  Is that enough, though?  Sure,  Albert Nobbs seems like a solid, Oscar bait-y effort that is definitely passion project for Close and one that should score her a nomination, but with the competition looking to be the best it’s been in years – can being “due” garner enough votes for a win?

Elizabeth Olsen (Martha Marcy Marlene May)

No wish list would be complete without an ingenue; in recent years it’s been Carey Mulligan, Jennifer Lawrence and now Elizabeth Olsen, the lost Olsen sister. Her performance in Martha Marcy Marlene May is by far the most talked about of the year, making her road to Academy recognition an easy one. Face it, nowadays a young blood is essential in any awards race – it maintains a certain balance or whatever.

Charlize Theron  (Young Adult)

This was a tough one but the writing is already on the wall! Diablo Cody + Jason Reitman + a semi- likable actress playing an unlikable protagonist = one of a few formulas for Oscar success. Along with playing ugly (which won Theron her first Oscar back in 2003), playing gay, playing mentally challenged and/or all of the above. Early reviews have been considerably favorable, and while Viola Davis could have easily claim the fifth and final spot on our wish list, we have bigger plans for her.

Stay tuned next week for The Real Reel’s Oscar Wish List: Supporting Actress.

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