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Best Actor - Drama
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Denzel Washington, Fences
Tom Hanks, Sully
Andrew Garfield, Silence
Matthew McConaughey, Gold
Next in line: Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge; Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic; Michael Keaton, The Founder; Joel Edgerton, Loving; Will Smith, Collateral Beauty; Brad Pitt, Allied; Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Snowden
This is a category where my list of 2016 blind spots is working against me. The Globes' historical taste for star power has cooled down in recent years, despite the obvious allure of having big name celebrities walk the red carpet and attend the ceremony. But most of the juicy roles are still filled by big name actors, so there's no huge concern here about deserving but obscure talents missing out. There is a possibility that Garfield's two roles cancel each other out. In theory, both could be nominated here, whereas they couldn't be at the Oscars.
Best Actress - Drama
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Amy Adams, Arrival
Ruth Negga, Loving
Emily Blunt, The Girl on the Train
Jessica Chastain, Miss Sloane
Next in line: Isabelle Huppert, Elle; Jennifer Lawrence, Passengers
Five-time Oscar bridesmaid Amy Adams has firmly moved into "overdue" status at the Academy Awards, but the Globes awarded her two straight Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical honors, following four fruitless nominations. She and Portman look like locks here. Although they are selected by the Hollywood Foreign Press, the Globes still rarely nominate non-English performances, so Huppert might just miss out here, even though an Oscar nomination is looking increasingly more likely for her turn in Paul Verhoeven's provocative French thriller Elle, which has drawn better reviews than both Blunt and Chastain's movies. It remains to be seen whether Loving is too understated for the Globes and whether they will take to an actress as relatively unknown as Ruth Negga.
Best Actor - Musical or Comedy
Ryan Gosling, La La Land
Colin Farrell, The Lobster
Ryan Reynolds, Deadpool
Ryan Gosling, The Nice Guys
Hugh Grant, Florence Foster Jenkins
Next in line: Warren Beatty, Rules Don't Apply; Don Cheadle, Miles Ahead; Robert De Niro, The Comedian; Jonah Hill, War Dogs; Josh Brolin, Hail, Caesar!
I really wanted The Nice Guys to get recognized in the Globes' Comedy or Musical categories, but instead it will probably just have to prop up Ryan Gosling as a deserving winner for what will likely end up as his more widely seen and appreciated 2016 release. My inclusion of him as a double nominee stands as wishful thinking. Deadpool is not a conventional awards contender and the Globes have shown real resistance to embracing superhero movies (even Marvel's beloved ones), but this was such a weak year for comedy that few other choices seem as likely of acknowledgement as Ryan Reynolds does.
Best Actress - Musical or Comedy
Emma Stone, La La Land
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins
Annette Bening, 20th Century Women
Sally Field, Hello, My Name Is Doris
Kate Beckinsale, Love & Friendship
Next in line: Hailee Steinfeld, The Edge of Seventeen; Susan Sarandon, The Meddler; Greta Gerwig, Maggie's Plan
This looks like the least competitive award in the bunch, with very few comedies demanding to be remembered and even fewer of them giving roles of substance to females. Needless to say, Stone has this and, most likely, the Oscar in the bag.
Best Supporting Actor
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Dev Patel, Lion
Liam Neeson, Silence
Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
Next in line: Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals; Kevin Costner, Hidden Figures; Ralph Fiennes, A Bigger Splash
Jeff Bridges seems to be on the verge of becoming the frontrunner for Supporting Actor awards this season for his terrific performance as a salty old Texas ranger weeks away from retirement in the surprisingly well-remembered heist flick Hell or High Water. He's in the movie nearly enough to be classified as a lead, which gives him an advantage over Mahershala Ali, who disappears after the first third of Moonlight, and Liam Neeson, who reportedly doesn't feature at length in Silence.
Best Supporting Actress
Viola Davis, Fences
Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea
Nicole Kidman, Lion
Naomie Harris, Moonlight
Rachel Weisz, The Light Between Oceans
Next in line: Greta Gerwig, 20th Century Women; Janelle Monae, Hidden Figures; Felicity Jones, A Monster Calls
As I said up front, I haven't seen Fences, but the fact that Viola Davis' move to Supporting Actress rather than Lead was deliberate and strategic suggests her role is big enough to get her this and probably other wins. This field is shallow enough that Weisz, whose film was released at the beginning of September and hardly seen, seems to have a legitimate shot at a nomination.
Best Director, Screenplay, Animated Feature, more