The Mancunion

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Oscar 2014 Predictions: Best Supporting Actress

Sarah says that despite some strong competition, Lupita Nyong’o is the truly deserving winner for the Oscar this Sunday


This year, we have seen fantastic performances from each nominee for the Best Supporting Actress award.

Brit, Sally Hawkins is rightfully nominated for her fantastic performance in Blue Jasmine, and holding her own opposite Cate Blanchett’s much lauded portrayal of Jasmine.

Julia Roberts, similarly, gives a wonderfully considered performance where other actors may have simply been overshadowed by the brilliance of Meryl Streep in August: Osage County.

June Squibb is one of the oldest nominees in Oscar history, which makes her hilariously feisty performance, in the wonderful Nebraska all the more impressive and her nomination so richly deserved.

Despite some great performances, the dominant opinion seems to be that the award will go to either Jennifer Lawrence or Lupita Nyong’o. Lawrence has a very good chance of winning the Oscar, having previously won a BAFTA and a Golden Globe for her role as Rosalyn Rosenfeld in American Hustle. Lawrence is an extremely talented actress, and the win wouldn’t be undeserved.

However, if there is any justice in the world, Lupita Nyong’o should win the award for her outstanding performance in the role of Patsey, a slave girl that protagonist Solomon Northup meets on a plantation owned by Edwin Epps (Michael Fassbender) in Steve McQueen’s powerful 12 Years a Slave. Nyong’o was cast in her film-debut just as she was graduating from Yale. The fact that she is new to the industry makes her truly exceptional performance even more remarkable. At the risk of giving too much away to those who haven’t yet seen the film, in the much discussed scene where Epps forces Northup to whip Patsey as punishment for leaving the plantation for soap, Nyongo’s tremendous talent shines through. The scene makes for highly uncomfortable viewing; one can only imagine what Nyong’o must have gone through mentally and emotionally in order to produce such a truthful and harrowing performance. Despite the great performances by the other nominees, none compare with Lupita. She really deserves to win, and I hope her tremendous talent is rightly recognised on Sunday.