Oscar nominations 2017: What to look out for

Mahershala Ali, Emma Stone and Casey AffleckThe nominees could include Mahershala Ali, Emma Stone and Casey Affleck

This year’s Oscar nominations are due out later, with La La Land likely to land as the clear frontrunner.

The modern musical romance has swept film fans off their feet, and its stars Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling are expected to be among the nominees.

The question is – how many nominations will the film get in total, and can it equal the Oscars record of 14?

Titanic and All About Eve currently share that record, while Mary Poppins is the most nominated musical with 13.

Natalie Portman in JackieNatalie Portman plays US President John F Kennedy’s widow in Jackie

This year’s other contenders will include Moonlight, about a young black man dealing with his sexuality in drug-torn Miami; brooding domestic drama Manchester By The Sea; and cerebral sci-fi film Arrival.

In the acting categories, Jackie’s Natalie Portman is likely to challenge Emma Stone for best actress, while Manchester By The Sea’s Casey Affleck and Fences’ Denzel Washington are tipped to give Gosling competition for best actor.

Other things to look out for:

Paramount PicturesDenzel Washington could be in contention for his third acting Oscar
  • Will it be #oscarssowhite again?

Almost certainly not. After two years with no black acting nominees, this year we could see four or five – possibly Washington (who also directed Fences), Viola Davis (Fences), Naomie Harris (Moonlight), Mahershala Ali (Moonlight) and Octavia Spencer (Hidden Figures).

Naomie Harris in MoonlightNaomie Harris is thought to be the British actress with the best chance of a nomination
  • Which Brits will be in the running?

Naomie Harris is flying the flag for British actresses, while male candidates could include Andrew Garfield (Hacksaw Ridge/Silence), Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Nocturnal Animals), Dev Patel (Lion) – and Hugh Grant (Florence Foster Jenkins), who could get his first nomination. But there probably won’t be anything for Ken Loach’s benefits drama I, Daniel Blake.

Meryl Streep at the Golden GlobesMeryl Streep’s chances have improved since her Golden Globes speech
  • Will Meryl make history?

Meryl Streep will become the first person to notch up 20 acting nominations if she gets in for Florence Foster Jenkins. She was an outsider – but her odds have shortened since berating Donald Trump at the Golden Globes.

Ryan Reynolds in DeadpoolDeadpool: A superhero blockbuster that Oscar voters can stomach?
  • Will Deadpool be up for best picture?

If it is, it will be the first superhero movie to be nominated for the top award. It has a chance – it was nominated for the Golden Globes and Producers Guild of America Awards, among others, and its star Ryan Reynolds posted a brilliant video to launch its campaign.

_93777113_still-01Arrival star Amy Adams has been nominated for five Oscars, but has never won
  • Could Arrival be the (other) surprise package?

Arrival, in which Amy Adams tries to talk to aliens, could well be second to La La Land when the nominations are totted up, partly thanks to its chances in the technical categories – despite Manchester by the Sea and Moonlight being talked about alongside La La Land as this year’s main contenders.

Mel Gibson directing Hacksaw RidgeMel Gibson has directed World Taw Two movie Hacksaw Ridge
  • Will Mel Gibson be back in the fold?

After a series of racist and sexist rants over the past two decades, Mel Gibson’s comeback movie Hacksaw Ridge will get nominations. But will Academy members bring themselves to nominate him for best director?

Tom Hanks in SullyTom Hanks has been nominated for five Oscars – but his last nomination was in 2001
  • Will Tom Hanks be back in the fold?

Despite his reputation as an Oscar favourite, Tom Hanks hasn’t had a nomination since 2001. His latest role as Hudson River pilot Chesley Sullenberger in Sully surely ticks the Academy’s boxes.

The Academy Award nominations are announced from 13:18 GMT on Tuesday, with the winners to be named in Los Angeles on 26 February.


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