Oscar 2018: Best Actor Race–Predictions–10 Performances to Watch

Best Actor Category:

This years, female performers don’t have much to complain about.  In fact, the Best Actress race is far more crowded and competitive, filled with Oscar-caliber turns, than the Best Actor field.

I have divided eleven strong male performances into three categories: frontrunners, contenders, and also in the run, each arranged alphabetically.

Incidentally, this is the 31st year that I have been doing Oscar predictions, ever since my book, All About Oscar: The History and Politics of the Academy Awards, was first published, in 1987.

Featuring on its cover Halle Berry, the first black woman to ever win the Best Actress Oscar, in 2001, the book (updated every sic year) is now in its 11th edition.


Timothes Chalamet, Call Me By Your Name



Daniel Day-Lewis, Phantom Thread

James Franco, The Disaster Artist

Gary Oldman, The Darkest Hour

Tom Hanks, The Post



Christian Bale, Hostiles

Jack Gyllenhaal, Stronger

Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out

Denzel Washington, Roman J. Israel Esq


Also in the Run:

Andrew Garfield, Breathe 

James McAvoy, Split

Adam Sandler, The Meyerowitz Stories


The Best Actor race is defined this year by two great British actors: Daniel Day-Lewis (“Phantom Thread”) and Gary Oldman (“The Darkest Hour”).  Day-Lewis, who had announced that he is retiring from acting, has already broken Oscar records.  He is the only male to have won three Best Actor Oscars.

Jack Nicholson also claims three Oscars, but only two of them are in the lead category.  The third is a Supporting Actor Oscar in the 1983 “Terms of Endearment.”

In theory, two of the Best Actor nominees could be African-American: Daniel Kaluuya in “Get Out” and two-time Oscar winner Denzel Washington in “Roman J.Israel Esq.”