Oscars BETTING: Best Actor (aka. Daniel Day-Lewis category)Some say his accent is stupid, not the 'Academy' though...
The Ack-tours George Clooney - Michael Clayton (8.2), Daniel Day-Lewis - There Will Be Blood (1.16), Johnny Depp - Sweeney Todd (8), Tommy Lee Jones - In the Valley of Elah (10), Viggo Mortensen - Eastern Promises (14)
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For those who think acting is a walk in the park, shame on you! Method actor Robert De Niro had to eat mountains of food for Raging Bull. You try eating beautiful Italian cuisine for a living, and see how you like it. And just last year, Daniel Day-Lewis spent months shouting in a pretend American accent to keep his children fed (free range).
So which poor misunderstood millionaire will be adding to the trophy cabinet this year?
» Only three times in the last ten years has a single film starred more than one award winner. The last time it happened was in 2003, when Sean Penn (Best Actor) and Tim Robbins (Best Supporting Actor) both did well in Mystic River. This could come as a shock to George Clooney (Best Actor), Tilda Swinton (Best Supporting Actress) and Tom Wilkinson (Best Supporting Actor) who are all nominated - but unlikely to win - for Michael Clayton.
» Only six actors in history have won both a Best Actor award and Best Supporting Actor - Jack Lemmon, Robert De Niro, Jack Nicholson, Gene Hackman, Kevin Spacey, and Denzel Washington. Clooney will be vying to get onto that list (after his supporting win for Syriana in 2005), as will Phillip Seymour Hoffman (nominated for his supporting role in Charlie Wilson's War, after winning Best Actor for Capote in 2005), and Tommy Lee Jones (won for his supporting role in The Fugitive, 1993, now nominated for In The Valley of Elah). Of the three, Hoffman is the best bet for Best Supporting Actor.
» Actors don't win for musicals (the last to win was Lee Marvin, for Cat Ballou, 1965), which means that Johnny Depp will struggle to get the gong for his part in the all-singing all-killing Sweeney Todd.
» The Academy loves a big epic performance - Forest Whitaker, The Last King Of Scotland, 2006; Russell Crowe, Gladiator - so Day-Lewis' over-the-top performance in There Will Be Blood should see him picking up his second Best Actor award, making him the eighth man to get two of the things. Spencer Tracy (1937, 1938), Fredric March (1932, 1946), Gary Cooper (1941, 1952), Marlon Brando (1954, 1972), Dustin Hoffman (1979, 1988), Tom Hanks (1993, 1994), and Jack Nicholson (1975, 1997) are the others.