Not sure there’s much more to say here than I did two years back ago when I called this for Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight except that this is probably one of two categories where The King’s Speech most deserves to win. Christian Bale, for eating, regurgitating, then shooting up The Fighter’s scenery, has lapped up nearly every supporting actor accolade since the start of the awards season. Oscar loves a showboater, and unlike his co-star Melissa Leo, Bale seems to have kept the drama on screen. I’m not sure the momentum he’s mustered can be toppled, even by some slightly unhinged awards speeches that suggest playing Dicky Eklund wasn’t exactly a stretch for the actor—though we knew that already from the way Bale talks to his mother. I know, it’s been less than a month since industry awards revealed that The Social Network was probably never our Best Picture frontrunner, but even then the only honor Geoffrey Rush has wrestled from an unkempt Bale’s twitchy fingers, not counting SAG’s ensemble award, was a prize from the Central Ohio Film Critics Association. Oscar loves a saint, but in the supporting categories at least, they love losers even more.
Will Win: Christian Bale, The Fighter
Could Win: Geoffrey Rush, The King’s Speech
Should Win: John Hawkes, Winter’s Bone