Bradley Cooper is a well-established award winner, having received eight nominations in the past nine years. Four of these were in the acting category – for “Silver Linings Playbook” (2012), “American Hustle” (2013), “American Sniper” (2014) and “A Star Is Born” (2018). This year he has a chance to get three more nominations.
The 46-year-old actor has had two solid performances, both of which are worthy of recognition. His first role comes as Jon Peters—producer, hairstylist, and ex-boyfriend of Barbra Streisand—in Paul Thomas Anderson’s upcoming comedy “Licorice Pizza” from MGM/United Artists Releasing.
His other role comes as Stanton Carlisle, an ambitious and manipulative carrier in Guillermo del Toro’s new thriller “Nightmare Alley” from Searchlight Pictures, which Cooper is also producing.
Will you finally give him this year the long-awaited Oscar?
It seems a long time ago that Cooper was just a dumb friend in “Wedding Crashers” (2005) and a wolfpack leader in “The Hangover” (2009). In “Licorice”, his role is abbreviated, about seven minutes to the screen. Only four actors have won roles under 10 minutes – Gloria Graham in “The Bad and the Beautiful” (1952), Ben Johnson in “The Last Picture Show” (1971), Beatrice Straight in “Network” (1976) and Judi Dench in “Shakespeare” In love” (1998).
The Academy has resisted giving big movie stars “support” awards who are seen as outstanding men. Christian Bale (“The Fighter”) and Brad Pitt (“Once Upon a Time in…Hollywood”) are notable exceptions, both of whom carried their films but were not featured in the lead actor category. A notable example is Tom Cruise in Magnolia (1999) losing to Michael Caine in “The Cider House Rules”, also the last time the big star was nominated. Even Leonardo DiCaprio was not nominated for “Django Unchained” (2012), for arguably a lead performer, Christoph Waltz, who earned his second figurine.
This year’s Best Actor category got big names in the mix, with Will Smith as Venus and Serena Williams in “King Richard” emerging as the frontrunner. However, Cooper’s darkly executed portrayal of Stanton in “Nightmare Alley” is one of his best to date, building an Academy Award-perfect scene.
Cooper has not been nominated for a Golden Globe or Critics’ Choice Award for any of his performances. But Searchlight Pictures’ latest Nightmare Alley release date, which came out this past weekend, may mean voters still need time to see it, but the disappointing box office certainly isn’t helping. The nomination of the SAG will be crucial during the voting procedure.
But perhaps one movie can help the other in the race. In an update to the supporting actor’s predictions this week, Cooper is listed in the top five of this category, given the momentum gained by Anderson, who appears to be the frontrunner for the original screenplay. It is worth noting that Anderson also has eight previous nominations without winning his name. Can both of them finally catch figurines?
A few actors have won the influence of Academy voters without showing themselves there and campaigning for attention, something Cooper is not known to particularly enjoy. But in fairness, it didn’t hurt past winners like Joaquin Phoenix for “Joker” (2019), Frances McDormand for “Nomadland” (2020), and Mo’Nique for “Precious” (2009).
Time can also play a factor. If the industry feels like an actor is “running out” of it, this could be a winning ticket. Fortunately, this is not the case with Cooper. As with Nightmare co-star Willem Dafoe (who has gone up to four Oscars without a win), people tend to think it is inevitable that they will one day stand on the stage. The risk comes with that assumption with often-nominated actors like Glenn Close (eight nominations), Amy Adams (six), Ed Harris (four), and Mickey Rooney (four), as voters constantly delay their wins while they wait for the next big one. Job.
For Cooper, he may have to wait a little longer, but the season always has some surprises.
All of the Oscars predictions pages have been updated and, for the first time, include the Animation Short, Documentary Short, and Live Action Short categories.
Oscars 2022 Predictions
The 2021 Oscars predictions are available here.