Best Supporting Actress? Try: Best Leading Oscar Race.
You can make a case for any of the five nominees winning—and we will (even if only four are plausible cases). And then, just to show off, we'll tell you who will win. Impressive, huh?
It could be: Melissa Leo 'cause she's fierce in The Fighter, and 'cause she's got a great backstory (a working actor hits the big time!)
Or it could be: Hailee Steinfeld 'cause she's steely in True Grit, and 'cause she's got a great backstory (a 14-year-old girl hits the big time—and without the help of a Disney Channel series!) Plus, don't tell anybody, but Steinfeld is actually, kinda, sorta her movie's lead actress, something which is always an advantage in the supporting categories.
Or it could be: Helena Bonham Carter 'cause she can speak volumes without saying anything in The King's Speech, and 'cause, yeah, she's in The King's Speech.
Or it could be: Amy Adams 'cause she's so not an Enchanted princess or a Julie & Julia foodie in The Fighter.
Or it could be: Jacki Weaver 'cause, well, um, er...OK, to be honest, we've got nothing on this one, 'cause she's not going to win. (But please do the right thing in any case, and add Animal Kingdom to your Netflix queue.)
The smart money is on: Leo.
She's been around. She's well-regarded. And she's won everywhere, including, most key, at the Screen Actors Guild Awards.
And our money is on: Leo. No, Steinfeld. No, Leo. Uh-oh, we don't know.
To be perfectly honest, from an Oscar-night storyline perspective, we'd love to see a Steinfeld victory. (No disrespect intended, Ms. Leo, but we're going to be at the Kodak, and upsets are just more fun to cover.)
But here's what we think.
We think the oddsmakers are right. We think Leo's too much of a power (and a villain) in The Fighter to be ignored. And we think the controversy over her "For Your Consideration" ads was silly. (Granted, we don't vote—maybe voters find qualities such as gumption, ambition and the ability to pay for your own trade-paper ads offensive?)
OK, we've talked ourselves into it: Our pick is Leo.