‘A Star is Born,’ ‘Roma’ Emerge As Front-Runners for Best Picture Oscar

Kim MacCormack

Wednesday, October 31, 2018 10:39 AM UTC

Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018 10:39 AM UTC

Deep into the Academy Award season, the race for the Best Picture finds “A Star is Born” has some serious competition.

We’d like to thank the Academy for the last two months of the year, a veritable overflowing popcorn bucket of Oscar hopefuls. Bring on the butter!

Movie theaters are chockfull of contenders for awards and sportsbooks already are offering odds on what movie might take home the Academy Award for Best Picture.

The front-runner, which you should know unless your head has fallen into said popcorn bucket, is “A Star is Born” (+175, BetOnline), starring Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, who also directed the film.

The latest big-screen version of this evergreen story has garnered big box office and critic approval. Gaga and Cooper, too, will be nominated in the acting categories and Cooper as director as well. We’re just hoping Sam Elliott also gets nomination as Best Supporting Actor.

BetOnline is the latest bookmaker to offer odds and its list of 10 filma reflects viable winning possibilities. Odds also can be found at Bet365, PaddyPower and Ladbrokes.

And here’s a tip for you, “Solo” doesn’t have a chance in a galaxy far, far away of winning Best Picture.

This year’s controversy about the Academy breaking off a “popular movie” category to accommodate big box office films died quickly and leaves acclaimed, money-making ventures such as “A Quiet Place,” “Avengers: Infinity War” and possibly “Black Panther” out of the running.

Best Picture nominees usually favor dramas and movies dealing with deadly serious topics. “BlackKkKlansman” and “The Favourite” are the only "comedies" on BetOnline’s list. “Black Panther” is on the bookmaker’s list too, but it remains to be seen if Academy members will reward the Marvel superhero movie with a Best Picture nomination – a first!

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This Year's Best Picture Oscar Nominees Could Be Representative Of Nearly Every Major Hollywood Studio (And, Yes, That's A Good Thing) via @forbes by @ScottMendelson https://t.co/4f2CrlZNn5
#Oscars2019 #FirstMan #AStarIsBorn #BlackPanther #Netflix #BoxOffice #Roma

— Scott Mendelson (@ScottMendelson) September 12, 2018
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Here’s our take on the best bets BetOnline is offering as Oscar competitors to “A Star is Born”:

  • “Roma” (+400): This film black & white, Spanish language drama from “Gravity’ director Alfonso Cuaron has the most potential to fell “A Star is Born.” The winner of the Venice Film Festival is a devastating portrait a woman working as a nanny and maid for a well-to-do family in the Colonial Roma area of Mexico City. For Cuaron the film is intensely personal, with the lead character based on a babysitter from his childhood. U.S. premiere in theaters and on Netflix is Dec. 14.
  • Green Book (+800): Opening Nov. 21: This film, starring Oscar winner Mahershala Ali and 2-time nominee Viggo Mortensen about the unlikely friendship between a jazz musician and his chauffeur. is another strong contender but will fall short of winning.
  • “First Man” (+1000): Ryan Gosling will certainly be nominated for his portrayal of a detached and tense Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon. The movie, too, will get a nod but it’s slow pace and failure to launch at the box office tarnishes its chances to take home the gold.
  • “If Beale Street Could Talk” (+1200): Oscar loves somber and melancholy and this one fits the bill. In “Beale Street,”a pregnant woman, tries to prove her fiancé is innocent of a crime with the help of her mom, played by sure-thing Supporting Actress nominee Regina King. Opens Nov. 30.

The also-rans which may get nominated but likely won’t win: “Black Panther” (+1400 ) is the first Marvel movie worthy of a nomination; “BlacKkKlansman (+1400) Spike Lee’s topical, relevant comedy hits close to home; “The Favourite (+1400) a period piece brimming with wit and vinegar starring Emma Stone; “Vice” (+1400) has a nearly unrecognizable Christian Bale as Vice President Dick Cheney; “Widows” (+1400) Viola Davis leads the cast of four women who inherit their husbands’ criminal activities; and “The Rider” (+3300) about an injured rodeo rider (Brady Jandreau) looking for his next ride.

Other critical darlings that could get oddsmakers favor closer to nomination time are “Boy Erased,” "Eighth Grade," “Mary Queen of Scots,” and “Beautiful Boy.”

Nominees will be announced Jan. 14 and the golden statuettes handed out out on Feb. 24.

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