AFFotD’s 2023 Oscar Guide – Best Actor/Supporting Actor

“Shit, we forgot to put quotes on the last one of these. WAIT THE OSCARS ARE TODAY?”

~AFFotD Editor-in-Chief, Johnny Roosevelt


We posted our rundown of all the Best Picture nominees to illustrate that we’re masochists who have watched all the Oscar nominees for Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress. We then were planning on posting our rundown, and predictions, for all the other awards in three additional articles. Then we got lazy (read as, drunk) and forgot.

But the awards are in four hours so we still have time to either come off as Award geniuses, or Award FOOLS. So let’s get started with the male acting awards.

AFFotD Predicts Best Actor and Supporting Actor Right Before The Oscars

Listen, we’re under a deadline here, so let’s just jump into the categories and nominees.

Best Lead Actor

Austin Butler – Elvis


Elvis was our least favorite of Best Picture nominations, but to be fair, Butler was by far the best thing about it. It’s a weird Baz Luhrmann joint that’s mostly montages and distorted audio, but Butler does a great job of having a soulful, nuanced, tortured performance without falling into parody or cheap impression. He’s won roughly half of the major awards he’s been nominated for, including the Golden Globes.

Should He Win

He gave an Oscar-worthy performance, and at 31 he’s likely to have many more nominations in his future. But he’s not the best performance of the year, so no. He probably was our third favorite, but that’s because we have an unhealthy lust for Colin Farrell.

Will He Win

Oof, this is tricky. This category is one of two purely 50/50 odds categories (along with Best Actress, more on that in our next hastily put together article). But we’re going to say he will not win, but would not be surprised if he does.

Colin Farrell – The Banshees of Inisherin

colin farrell

This movie is very…Irish, featuring severed fingers and most importantly Colin Farrell’s eyebrows. It’s essentially about a friendship in a small town where one friend decides he doesn’t want to be friends anymore because the other one (Farrell) is nice, but dull.

Farrell’s journey from “mildly successful A-lister in a lot of bad movies” to “very handsome character actor in amazing movies” has been wild, and it’s honestly a little surprising this is his first Oscar nomination. Just look at that picture. His face is so expressive in this movie he probably could have mimed the whole performance and gotten his point across, but thank God he didn’t because hearing Colin Farrell say “feck” thirty times is literally our kink.

Should He Win

Yes. This was our favorite performance of the year from one of our favorite actors.

Will He Win

No, as much as it pains us. He’s not won really any major awards, and he’s not in the conversation in this category, though like Butler we suspect there’s a little bit of assumption that this won’t be the first and only nomination of his career.

Brendan Fraser – The Whale


So the elephant in the room (ugh, oh God, we did not mean it that way) is that this movie has…some problems for some people. Mainly, it’s a very fat-phobic film, and people in certain communities find its portrayal of a morbidly obese individual to be at best problematic, at worst, super fucking cruel.

Also, you know how you have “amazing performances in a movie that feels like…it was a play? Oh what’s that? Oh it was a play?” thing happen sometimes (see – Fences)? Yup, this was based on a play, and it’s obvious.

If you’re not familiar, it’s about a morbidly obese, gay English teacher with oncoming heart failure. He spends the movie trying to make amends with his daughter, who he has been estranged from for years.

All said, Fraser’s performance (in a sweaty fat suit) has a few things in his favor. First of all, he is legitimately brilliant in it. It’s a career-defining turn that manages to be vulnerable, sensitive, guilty, and spoiler alert it starts with him jerking off to gay porn. Secondly, even though it’s a fat suit, the physical acting is both effective and the kind of the the Academy eats up.

And finally, as a comeback story, Fraser deserves this award. Going from a bankable blockbuster star to being blacklisted for calling out a case of sexual harassment, giving him an award here feels like a neat end to a redemption arc that has been long overdue.

Should He Win

We are ride or die for Farrell, so no, but we had this as the second best performance of the year, and he also deserves to win.

Will He Win

This is the 50/50. We’re leaning on Fraser winning, and we’ll be happy to see it. If he loses, it’ll be to Butler.

Paul Mescal – Aftersun


One of the major award nominees that have been seen by the fewest amount of people (shoutout to To Leslie), Mescal, who is best known from Normal People, plays a depressed single father taking his daughter on vacation to a Turkish resort right before his 31st birthday.

It’s a quiet, reflective, well-acted film that makes you say things like, “This seems like a stereotypical A24 movie, oh okay that’s why.” Mescal is really good in it as well, in an impressively understated performance that has nuance and heart.

Should He Win

No, but given how little buzz this movie had, it’s super cool that he got a (deserved) nomination

Will He Win

Of course not. Not a single person is predicting he’ll win. He’s also 27 so he’ll have another chance to win down the road for sure.

Bill Nighy – Living


So fun fact. Between Olivia Colman, Cate Blanchett (uncredited) and Peter Jackson (yeah he’s in that fucking movie), Hot Fuzz now has three Oscar winners in its cast, and Nighy (who plays the lead inspector at the start) is the fourth nominee to grace that IMDB cast list.

Nighy has been around forever, and has been equally great for just as long, and in Living, based on a 1950s Kurosawa movie based on an 1880s Tolstoy novel, gives him a chance to give a halting, soft, and beautiful performance worthy of an Academy Award nomination.

Based in 1950s London, Living follows the head of a bureaucratic agency in London who has recently discovered he has a terminal illness, and tries to find ways to spend the rest of his life living it to the fullest. If this sounds like it will lead to zany hijinks, you would be very much mistaken. Basically it’s him befriending a few people and failing to tell his son about his condition.

But it is a beautiful film, and Nighy is incredible in it. It will not win a single Oscar.

Should He Win

He absolutely should have been nominated, but no, he shouldn’t win.

Will He Win

Look at the last sentence of our recap.

Best Supporting Actor

Brendan Gleeson – The Banshees of Inisherin


This year’s annual “we have two main actors in an Oscar movie, but we don’t want them to split the vote” goes to Gleeson, who plays the newly-former-friend of Colin Farrell’s character.

It’s a little surprising, given his career, that this is Gleeson’s first Oscar nomination. We’ve already run down the plot of this film, so we’ll just go to our predictions.

Should He Win

No, but to be fair, for this category it’s “there’s THE DUDE, and there’s everyone else.”

Will He Win

What did we just say about THE DUDE?

Brian Tyree Henry – Causeway


An Apple+ movie that you probably didn’t hear about, this was supposed to be a “welcome back to the Oscars, Jennifer Lawrence” movie. Lawrence plays a shell-shocked and brain damaged Afghanistan vet trying to acclimate back home and heal up enough to go back into service. That screams “GIVE ME A NOMINATION.”

Instead, they gave a nomination to Henry, who has been having a moment lately, and was introduced to most people through his masterful work as Paper Boi in the show Atlanta. He himself is a character with trauma (namely, an amputated leg from a car accident) and sort of plays his best hits in the role, Henry is probably the actor with the most expressive eyes in the industry, and he’s able to say everything without ever having to say much. He’s definitely the highlight of the movie.

Should He Win

No, though it’s great to see him get nominated, and if he ends his career without a statue, it’ll be criminal.

Will He Win


Judd Hirsch – The Fabelmans


The 87-year-old Hirsch got his first nomination since 1981’s nomination for Ordinary People for what is essentially a (incredibly performed) cameo in a “Steven Spielberg talks about how much he loves movies” film. Hirsch is on screen for all of six minutes as the cranky great-uncle, but he makes the most of those six minutes.

Should He Win

You notice how we spent a lot less time writing about this than any other entry? Guess what we think. (He is incredible, though, and deserved the nomination. But see above, re: six minutes).

Will He Win

No, though it wouldn’t be the first time the Oscars surprised us by giving an award clearly meant for an obvious favorite to an octogenarian.

Barry Keoghan – The Banshees of Inisherin


The 30-year-old Irish actor you likely know best as “one of the white dudes from Dunkirk but like wait which one they all looked the same somehow?” is, unlike Gleeson, an actual supporting actor in Banshees, but he is equally deserving of his nomination. Again, he won’t win (THE DUDE),

(Also, between him and Tyree Henry, Keoghan is one if two nominees for Best Supporting Actor who were in the famously forgettable Marvel film, The Eternals.)

Keoghan is a younger resident of the small town who plays a sort of tragi-comic role, equal parts the clown and the driver of sympathy, it’s the first of what will likely not be the last nomination for the young actor.

Should He Win

No, Gleeson deserves it more based on the sheer amount of work he put into his own role.

Will He Win

Nope. Wait for THE DUDE.

Ke Huy Quan – Everything Everywhere All at Once



Quan is all but guaranteed the award, capping off his amazing comeback story after his career as a child actor (in The Goonies and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom) led to him leaving acting due to the stereotypical roles he found himself being offered.

He’s won almost every major award he’s been nominated for, and is a shoe-in for a heart-melting and endearing acceptance speech. In Everything Everywhere All at Once he shows incredible range, from meek sweetheart to suave businessman, with some impressive martial arts in between. If he doesn’t win, we will riot, but it would also be one of the biggest upsets in Oscars history.

Should He Win


Will He Win

Again, if he doesn’t, we’re burning Hollywood to the ground.

Stay tuned for our next last minute article on the Best Actress/Supporting Actress category, likely to be published in an hour.


3 responses to “AFFotD’s 2023 Oscar Guide – Best Actor/Supporting Actor

  1. Pingback: AFFotD’s 2023 Oscar Guide – Best Actress/Supporting Actress | America Fun Fact of the Day

  2. Pingback: AFFotD’s 2023 Oscar Guide – All the Other Categories That Aren’t Best Picture or an Acting Category | America Fun Fact of the Day

  3. Pingback: How Did We Do? AFFotD’s 2023 Academy Awards Rundown | America Fun Fact of the Day

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