Which lucky thespians will take home the lead acting Academy Award? A look ahead at next week's Oscar telecast.
REUTERS / UNRESTRICTED POOL / THE WEINSTEIN COMPANY / FOX SEARCHLIGHT / WALT DISNEY PICTURES - This year's races for the best actor has proved to be uncertain.
George Clooney is among the favorites, for his role in "The Descendants" as a well-meaning and well-off Hawaiian land owner navigating his fragile family through a period of turbulence after a boating accident leaves his wife in a coma.
Early indicators steered the speculation that Clooney would stride easily to picking up the best actor prize; he has won the Golden Globe Award and the Critics Choice for his role in "The Descendants."
But recently the scales have tipped in favor of French actor Jean Dujardin, who plays a down-on-his-luck silent film star whose career slips away with the advent of the talkies in "The Artist."
Movie expert Scott Mantz.
SOUNDBITE Movie expert Scott Mantz, saying
"What could tip the scales in favor of Jean Dujardin is this, there are over a hundred-thousand SAG members. The Academy has 5800 voting members in it, the largest branch of the Academy is the acting branch, it has about 1200 people just there. If the majority of that percentage is made up of SAG voters who voted for Jean Dujardin, then it's no question that Jean Dujardin will win the Oscar for best actor, but it's still going to be a horse-race up until the very end, between Clooney and Dujardin."
Tune into the 84th Annual Academy Awards telecast on Sunday, February 26, to find out who will take home the Oscars for best actress and best actor.
John Russell, Reuters.