The Best Actress race at the Oscars is more competitive than its been in years, thanks to the plethora of incredible performances in the race.
Oscar prognosticators have been fretting over Best Actress for months now, with multiple actresses seeming like viable contenders to win. The race this year also has a strong variety of performances, with comedic-leaning roles to biopics to foreign language performances, and it's anyone guess who might take the Oscar in the end.
Here are out picks for the five most likely nominees for Best Actress at the 2017 Oscars, in addition to the five actresses who could upset the race.
1. Emma Stone - La La Land
Emma Stone has a near-perfect trajectory for what the Academy usually rewards. She has starred in blockbusters and indie movies, she is well-liked in the industry and she already has a previous nomination for 2014's Birdman. On top of all that, her performance in La La Land is a great culmination of all her talents as an actress. Even if her performance is more light than others in this category, she's a virtual lock for a nomination and has the best chance of winning (as of mid-January).
2. Natalie Portman - Jackie
Playing beloved First Lady Jackie Kennedy, Natalie Portman's performance is about as Oscar-friendly as it gets. She takes on Jackie O's unique accent, her mannerisms and ultimately her entire persona in Jackie. She also has the benefit of being in almost every frame of her movie, and it's hard to take your eyes off her. Portman won the Critics' Choice Award for Best Actress, establishing herself as a viable frontrunner, but she wasn't able to win the Golden Globe, so while she still has a great shot to win, she's not the undeniable favorite.
3. Isabelle Huppert - Elle
Isabelle Huppert has taken that European actress slot that seems to occur every year now, like last year's Charlotte Rampling in 45 Years, 2014's Marion Cotillard in Two Days, One Night and 2012's Emmanuelle Riva in Amour. Huppert's delightfully twisted performance in Elle has garnered a slew of critics prizes already, but it was her upset at the Golden Globes, winning over Portman, that showed she's a real contender to win the Oscar. If voters watch and appreciate Elle she's almost definitely getting in, but foreign language performances are always risky to predict.
4. Amy Adams - Arrival
Amy Adams has yet to miss a major precursor thus far for her complex performance as a linguist trying to communicate with aliens in Arrival. She's also a major Oscar favorite, with five nominations under her belt, so another nomination is looking very likely. While we are predicting her to get her sixth nomination, she hasn't won anything big outside of the National Board of Review, so she's not a guarantee at this point.
5. Meryl Streep - Florence Foster Jenkins
Meryl Streep's rallying cry at the Golden Globes against President-elect Donald Trump also happened to coincide perfectly with Oscar voting. As such, her passionate speech may tip the scales in her favor even with a performance that isn't her absolute strongest in Florence Foster Jenkins. She has also been nominated at the perfect combo of Golden Globes, SAG and BAFTA, so it would be foolish to bet against Streep right now.
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6. Annette Bening - 20th Century Women
Annette Bening was being predicted to net her fifth Oscar nomination for several months... until the precursor awards showed up. While she was nominated for both a Critics' Choice and Golden Globe Award, she was not able to get into SAG or BAFTA. However, she is getting great reviews for her performance and she is very popular in Hollywood and in the Academy, so she could very well receive a nomination over Streep or Adams.
7. Emily Blunt - The Girl on the Train
Emily Blunt has emerged as a real possibility to get her first Oscar nomination after receiving SAG and BAFTA nominations for dramatic thriller The Girl on the Train. Blunt has been steadily gaining buzz and acclaim within the industry for a decade now and could see it all pay off with a surprise Oscar nomination, but is the subject matter of the film too trashy for the more snobbish Academy voters?
8. Ruth Negga - Loving
Ruth Negga was another early contender like Bening who was being predicted to a nomination here but has since fallen. Like Bening, she only has Critics' Choice and Golden Globe nominations before this and while her performance in Loving is complex and subtle, it may be a little too subtle for Academy voters who love big acting. She's also a relative unknown compared to the other actresses in contention, so while she could surprise with a nomination, it's unlikely.
9. Taraji P. Henson - Hidden Figures
If any actress could surprise without any previous precursor mentions, it's Taraji P. Henson. Hidden Figures is coming on strong as a late-breaking contender in the middle of Oscar voting, and with Henson straddling the line between film and TV, she has gained many fans in the industry. If Academy voters really feel strongly about Hidden Figures, Henson could sneak in here, especially since she's already an Oscar nominee, for 2008's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
10. Jessica Chastain - Miss Sloane
Jessica Chastain always seems to be in the hunt for another Oscar nomination after receiving back-to-back nominations in 2011's The Help and 2012's Zero Dark Thirty. In Miss Sloane she plays a lobbyist advocating for universal background checks. Chastain earned a Golden Globe nomination for her performance but this is the only place she has showed up among precursors. She is always a contender, but it looks like this isn't her year.
The Oscar nominations will be revealed on Jan. 24.