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    Will Sunday see these actors, all nominated in the past, win the much elusive golden man?

    hollycooperVLeo’s baton
    Turning into the Leonardo DiCaprio of the twenty-tens, Bradley Cooper seals himself at the top level of actors with yet another nomination. This is the third time on the trot that this blue-eyed hunk has been picked for the final round. In 2012, he was chosen for his portrayal of Patrick, a man diagnosed with bipolar disorder, in the lead category (Silver Linings Playbook); in 2013 he played Richie, an undercover agent (American Hustle), and was nominated in the supporting section. This year, however, he is up for two awards—one for his stellar performance in American Sniper, as Chris Kyle, a SEAL sniper who has to come to terms with being a killer in defence of his country, and the second, as producer, for the same film. Here’s hoping this year will see him taking things to the next level, although the odds are tilted in Eddie Redmayne’s (Theory of Everything) favour.

    Ethan HawkePersonal note
    Yes, Ethan Hawke is a prolific actor. His first nomination came for the movie, Training Day, in 2001, as a supporting actor. But Hawke has previously got nominations in the category of best writing / adapted screenplay for the film Before Sunrise and Before Midnight. With Boyhood getting the highest number of nominations (six), Hawke said in a recent interview, “We poured ourselves into (the film). This whole thing could not be more personal to me and everybody else involved. There is a lot of director Richard Linklater in this movie, a lot of Ellar Coltrane, Patricia Arquette and me, and because it is so personal, it is sad that it’s over.”

    hollymarkA‘Mark’ing his territory
    We love him as Dr Bruce Banner / The Hulk, but Mark Ruffalo does a different sort of fighting in his portrayal of wrestler David Schultz. The film, Foxcatcher, sees him as an Olympic wrestling champion and a devoted husband, father and brother, who must sacrifice some of his principles to promote his brother. Subtle yet striking, the role is deserving of a win. His earlier nomination came in 2010 for the supporting character, Paul, the sperm donor father in the film The Kids Are All Right. A far cry from the first nomination, Ruffalo proves his talent as a versatile actor. With stiff competition from former winners Robert Duvall and Ethan Hawke, veteran nominee Norton, plus JK Simmons, it will be a tough call this time around.

    Norton this time
    Edward Norton is missing a precious piece of metal: the Oscar. This will be the third time the actor has been nominated for the award. His first nomination was for the movie, Primal Fear. We expected him to get a nod at least for American History X. Unfortunately, it was a huge disappointment. With films like The Grand Budapest Hotel and Everyone Says I Love You, the talented actor has been on top of his game. This year, he has got a nomination for Birdman, in which he plays an erratic method actor, Mike Shiner. Is this his lucky year?

    hollynortonGoing wild
    While the film Wild hasn’t garnered as much brouhaha as some of the other nominated films, Laura Dern’s acting certainly has. Dern plays Bobbi, a single mother whose love for life becomes an inspiration for her troubled daughter. Interestingly, the previous time she was nominated was back in 1991 for her role as Rose, in Rambling Rose, when she played a similar character—but as the daughter who supports her mother. She and her mother, Diane Ladd, were the first mother-daughter duo to be nominated in the same year. Her competitive honours, apart from these two Academy award nominations, include, five Primetime Emmy Award nominations and three Golden Globe Award wins.

    Dern plays Bobbi1Keira most likely
    She has been nominated for the Oscars just one other time—Pride and Prejudice in 2006. After nine years, actress Keira Knightley is now running again, for her role as Joan Clarke, a Cambridge graduate, in the film The Imitation Game. With Meryl Streep, Laura Dern, Emma Stone and Patricia Arquette as contenders, this one is a little tough to crack. Nevertheless, we wish this mum-to-be all the luck.
    Aakanksha Devi and Mrinalini Sundar

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