David Onda’s Countdown to the 2017 Oscars: Who Will Win Best Supporting Actor?

2017 Oscars Best Supporting Actor nominees

2017 Oscars Best Supporting Actor nominees Michael Shannon, Mahershala Ali, Dev Patel, Jeff Bridges and Lucas Hedges

The red carpet–the literal red carpet–comes to Hollywood Blvd. today.

In just a few hours crews will roll out the red carpet on the Oscars arrivals area during an annual press event aptly titled the “red carpet roll-out.” Assuming there have been no production delays (one year, the carpet was unfurled without fanfare due to rain), we’ll have glorious crimson rugs splayed out in front of the Dolby Theatre by day’s end. Check out the arrivals area construction so far in this photo gallery.

Fun fact: A large area of Hollywood’s Walk of Fame (i.e. the sidewalk with embedded stars honoring various celebrities) in front of the Hollywood & Highland Center is covered up by fan bleachers. However, a small section of sidewalk stars in front of the Dolby Theatre archway is covered in red carpet. To romanticize it, there are about 9 Walk of Fame stars that every celebrity entering the Oscars steps upon while walking the red carpet.

Walk of Fame starsAnd those stars are Martin Scorsese, Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Steven Spielberg, Halle Berry, Jamie Foxx, Mike Medavoy, Anthony Hopkins and Russell Crowe.

As far as I know, the placement of stars is mostly arbitrary. It’s highly unlikely any celebrity specifically chose to have their star placed outside of the Baja Fresh on Hollywood Blvd.

It’s been a busy 24 hours for me in L.A.

Early yesterday, I visited the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising Museum in Los Angeles for its annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design exhibit, which highlights costumes from many of the 2017 Oscar-nominated movies. It’s an absolutely stunning exhibit, and an exciting opportunity for a nerd like me to see elaborate costumes from “Suicide Squad,” “Doctor Strange,” “Star Trek Beyond,” “Rogue One” and “Batman v. Superman” up close. If you’re in the L.A. area between now and April 22, I highly recommend it. Check out my full gallery of photos from the exhibit here.

Late yesterday, I attended the Oscars Week: Shorts program at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater. The annual event celebrates nominees in the animated and live-action short film categories. I’ll have a full recap of the event (stay tuned to xfinity.com/oscars!) and these amazing little films later tonight, but the highlight of the evening was certainly host Tim Miller, who is now best known as the director of “Deadpool.”

It was a roller coaster ride for Miller, who began the event fighting back tears as he offered a “cautionary tale” in short film-making, and ended the evening wishing the nominees good luck, but adding: “I’m sure ‘La La Land’ is going to win both categories, but at least you were nominated.”

Speaking of nominees, let’s take a look at this year’s nominees for Best Supporting Actor:

  • Michael Shannon (“Nocturnal Animals”)
  • Mahershala Ali (“Moonlight”)
  • Dev Patel (“Lion”)
  • Jeff Bridges (“Hell or High Water”)
  • Lucas Hedges (“Manchester by the Sea”)

There were a few surprises in this category for me when nominations were first announced last month. Michael Shannon is incredible in everything he does. He’s a fascinating weirdo who does fascinating weird things with every role. However, I fully expected Aaron Taylor-Johnson to earn a nomination for his role in “Nocturnal Animals,” especially after he captured the Golden Globe in this category.

Dev Patel was also a surprise to me. I really enjoyed “Lion,” but my biggest issue with the film was the unevenness in Patel’s character. After 20 years of happy living in Australia, the character suddenly devolves into an angry insomniac after eating a pretzel-like treat from his past? It’s not Dev’s fault, but it detracts from my opinion of the film and his likelihood of winning.

Lucas Hedges is fine, too. But he’s still young.

Who Will Win: Mahershala Ali. No film had more of an emotional impact on me this year than “Moonlight.” It’s truly a masterpiece and an important film about youth, friendship, masculinity and fatherhood, particularly as it relates to the black community. It’s just incredible, and Ali is incredible in it. He was robbed at the Globes, and I’m hoping the Oscars correct the mistake.

Who Should Win: Mahershala Ali. Duh.

Who Could Win: Dev Patel did win the BAFTA in this category. And Academy voters love Jeff Bridges (and deservedly so). If an upset happens, I wouldn’t be surprised if it came from this direction.

That’s all for now. Check in on xfinity.com/Oscars later today for more Academy Awards coverage, including footage from today’s red carpet roll-out and a recap of last night’s Oscar Week: Shorts event.

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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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