Most Best Actress Oscars

And Best Actress Goes To…The Most Popular

While the Academy Awards should be awarded to the best work in film each year, only a fool thinks that they are anything other than Hollywood’s yearly popularity contest. Selecting a Best Actor or Best Actress winner is the movie industry equivalent of electing Homecoming King and Queen. Sure, the nicest and kindest kids in school might get the crown, but that’s only if they’re also the most popular kids in school.

With that in mind, we want to examine the current state of the Best Actress race. While the New York Post‘s Lou Lumenick explained why Julianne Moore is the front-runner based on merit last week, we want to examine the politics of her Oscar campaign.

Usually, when an actor is hungry for an Oscar, they attend every press screening, do oodles of interviews, and play nice at insider events. If you want an example of this kind of behavior in action, look at Benedict Cumberbatch posing with his fiancee on the red carpet for The Imitation Game, look at Benedict Cumberbatch on the cover of Time magazine, look at Benedict Cumberbatch at the Hollywood Film Awards. Basically, if you want to see an intense Oscar campaign, look at Benedict Cumberbatch.

Moore, on the other hand, has been letting critics and her peers do the work for her. She delivered yet another stellar performance in Still Alice. It’s an under-seen indie, and it’s not like it’s going to heat up the box office, but the right industry insiders have seen it, and she’s already scooped up honors at the Hollywood Film Awards and the Palm Springs International Film Festival. She’s the front-runner based on talent, but also on industry good-will. For all of her accolades, Moore has never won an Oscar. Many feel like it’s her time. Plus, Moore doesn’t have to show up at every event to be in the public eye. As Elaine Lui pointed out on Lainey Gossip, Moore is currently promoting the biggest movie in the world: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1. Her photo is going to be in plenty of papers.

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