Home » How Did The Golden Globes Radically Change The Oscar Race?

How Did The Golden Globes Radically Change The Oscar Race?

by Diego Andaluz
A collage of Golden Globe Winners Andra Day, Rosamund Pike, and Daniel Kaluuya, all now Oscar hopefuls.

The staple of the awards season, the Academy Awards (commonly known as the Oscars) bring with them a flurry of films hoping to strike gold. With schedules being shifted, films being removed from contention, and the entire season being delayed, this year looks to be one full of surprises, twists, and turns. Since our last coverage, the Golden Globe Winners have been announced. What does this mean for the Oscar race? Luckily, Awards Editor Diego Andaluz will guide the way and help you get a leg up on your predictions and what to look for as the season continues. How did the 2021 Golden Globes change the Oscar race? Let’s find out!

The numbers accompanied by + or next to certain films indicate how they have risen or fallen in the Oscars race since our previous report. You can find the full list of winners for the 2021 Golden Globes along with the nominations for the upcoming SAG Awards and Critics Choice also on DiscussingFilm.

Best Picture


  1. The Trial of The Chicago 7
  2. Nomadland (+2)
  3. One Night In Miami (-1)
  4. Mank (-1)

Likely Nominees:

  1. Judas And The Black Messiah
  2. News of The World
  3. Promising Young Woman
  4. Minari
  5. The Father
  6. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

Major Threats:

  1. The Mauritanian (+2) 
  2. Sound of Metal (+3)
  3. Da 5 Bloods (-2)
  4. Malcolm & Marie (-1)
  5. The United States vs. Billie Holliday (+2)

Other Possibilities: 

  1. Soul (-2)
  2. Hillbilly Elegy (-1)
  3. Cherry

Over the past few weeks, the ever-changing Best Picture category has solidified itself even further. Nomadland came from behind to win the Golden Globe – a crucial step it needed to become a true contender for the Best Picture crown. The Trial of Chicago 7 still slightly remains in the lead here due to how it streamlines timely themes in a digestible way for Academy voters, but if it fails to win either at SAG and/or the PGA, Nomadland will become the clear predicted victor. While Mank had been sweeping the nominations, its woeful underperformance when it came to nabbing wins could see it become this year’s campaign equivalent to The Irishman. Meanwhile, Judas remains too brutal to pull off a win in a year where One Night In Miami (and The Trial Of The Chicago 7) employ similar themes in a more audience-friendly way.

Promising Young Woman and Minari (with an important SAG ensemble nomination) keep riding the independent buzz wave to nab nominations, although the former’s tepid performance at the Globes falls in line with what we previously forecasted. Simply put, Promising Young Woman won’t win due to its emerging controversial nature that will stop it from getting across-the-board acclaim, unlike the previous Best Picture winner that rode a similar surprise industry buzz (Parasite). 

News Of The World is looking to shape up like a Ford vs. Ferrari style contender that taps right into the older demographics, although with its recent Golden Globe buzz (more on that later), The Mauritanian could slide into its place with a steady narrative to build on. Speaking about narratives, the only other film to make a section jump after the Globes in this category is that of The United States vs. Billie Holliday. While it’s still highly unlikely, its Globes love puts it right back on our Major Threats list, moving it up from a film that was completely out of the race to one that has a fighting chance.

Best Actor


  1. Chadwick Boseman (Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom)
  2. Anthony Hopkins (The Father)
  3. Riz Ahmed (Sound of Metal) 

Likely Nominees: 

  1. Gary Oldman (Mank)
  2. Tom Hanks (News of The World) (+2)

Major Threats:

  1. Steven Yeun (Minari) (-1) 
  2. Tahar Rahim (The Mauritanian) (+1)
  3. Delroy Lindo (Da 5 Bloods) (-2)
  4. John David Washington (Malcolm & Marie)
  5. Lakeith Stanfield (Judas and The Black Messiah)
  6. Kingley Ben-Adir (One Night In Miami)

Other Possibilities: 

  1. Ben Affleck (The Way Back)
  2. Tom Holland (Cherry)

By winning the Golden Globe, Chadwick Boseman has pulled ahead and looks set to dominate the season. Even though Anthony Hopkins (The Father) could still pull off a win, the question of who will round out the nominations is a far more intriguing one. Riz Ahmed has proven himself as of late, and Gary Oldman has sidestepped De Niro’s Irishman fate to become a frequent figure here.

The final slot is truly one that’s up in the air, but due to the BFCA and Academy’s love of sneaking in familiar faces in this category when a slot is up for grabs (such as Denzel Washington and Willem Dafoe in past years), along with a probable News of The World overperformance, don’t be surprised if Tom Hanks takes it for himself, although it going to Steven Yeun (or even Globe-Nominee Tahar Rahim) is still very much in the cards.

Best Actress


  1. Carey Mulligan (Promising Young Woman) (+2)
  2. Viola Davis (Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom) (-1)
  3. Frances McDormand (Nomadland) (-1)
  4. Andra Day (United States vs Billie Holliday) (+3)

Likely Nominees:

  1. Vanessa Kirby (Pieces of A Woman) (-1)

Major Threats:

  1. Amy Adams (Hillbilly Elegy)
  2. Zendaya (Malcolm & Marie) (-2)
  3. Rosamund Pike (I Care A Lot) (NEW)

Other Possibilities:

  1. Sophia Loren (The Life Ahead)
  2. Kate Winslet (Ammonite)

A category that we originally found to be much more defined, as we said last time, the recent batch of nominations had shaken things up to the point where anyone can win. Proving to be true at the Golden Globes, Andra Day nabbed the top prize to catapult her into the top four (and falling right into the slot we predicted would fall into the hands of a young newcomer in a pattern the Academy has followed before).

With Vanessa Kirby’s counterpart in Supporting Actress being snubbed (more on that later), it’s put her nomination in doubt. Carey Mulligan looks to be a near-lock for a nomination after waves of support have let her ride to frontrunner status as well. However, don’t count out Academy favorite Amy Adams (who despite no wins has 6 nominations in the past 15 years) or Zendaya (as a “young newcomer”) just yet. Many eyes are now also on Rosamund Pike. Her Comedy Globe Actress win for I Care A Lot definitely brings her into the fold, but without a single other nomination at this moment, this might just be a one-and-done season for her.

Best Supporting Actress


  1. Glenn Close (Hillbilly Elegy)
  2. Amanda Seyfried (Mank) (+1)
  3. Olivia Colman (The Father) (-1)

Likely Nominees: 

  1. Jodie Foster (The Mauritanian) (+1)
  2. Ellen Burstyn (Pieces of A Woman) (-1)

Major Threats:

  1. Yuh Jung-Youn (Minari) (+1)
  2. Maria Bakalova (Borat: Subsequent Moviefilm) (-1)
  3. Helena Zengel (News of The World)

Other Possibilities

  1. Saorise Ronan (Ammonite)
  2. Dominique Fishback (Judas And The Black Messiah)

Still one of the more competitive races of the season, the Supporting Actress category is still very much murky at this point in time. We’ve predicted since the beginning of the season that Jodie Foster would have a spot in the final five, and after her Globes win, many are finally following suit. Another trend that we have been predicting since the beginning, Bakalova’s Globes loss (which should have been a cakewalk) has finally turned others around to the fact that she will most likely be snubbed here.

Now, Glenn Closes’ seven-time nominee narrative has propelled her to the top after receiving multiple nods, making her likely frontrunner, while Ellen Burstyn’s Pieces of a Woman performance missed out on some key nominations to be bumped down. Yet, in line with before, Yuh Jung-Youn is a major threat with her crucial SAG and Critics choice nominations that could easily knock out any of the top 5 if Minari gets the necessary love to result in a situation that mirrors a Marina De Tavira situation seen in 2019 for Roma.

Best Supporting Actor


  1. Daniel Kaluuya (Judas And The Black Messiah) (+1)
  2. Sacha Baron Cohen (The Trial of The Chicago 7) (-1)
  3. Leslie Odom Jr. (One Night In Miami)

Likely Nominees: 

  1. Chadwick Boseman (Da 5 Bloods)
  2. Mark Rylance/Frank Langella/Yahya Abdul-Mateen II (The Trial of The Chicago 7)

Major Threats:

  1. Jared Leto (The Little Things)
  2. Paul Raci (Sound of Metal)
  3. Bill Murray (On The Rocks)

Other Possibilities: 

  1. Stanley Tucci (Supernova)
  2. David Stratharin (Nomadland)

So far it’s been a neck-and-neck race between Kaluuya and Cohen… but this week, Kaluuya takes the lead after his Golden Globes win, even though Cohen still represents the face of The Trial of The Chicago 7 (which has become one of the most-awarded ensembles of the year). Leslie Odom Jr. is up next, not having missed out on any major nomination, and Boseman’s presence in the Da 5 Bloods that heartbreakingly reflects his personal fate follows, still proving to tug on voter’s heartstrings. The fifth slot could very well be one of the most chaotic of the season. Jared Leto has become a serious contender after nabbing nominations at both SAG and the Globes, while Paul Raci’s critical favoritism and Bill Murray’s subtle traction could all put up a fight.

However, similar to many past years where surprise contenders pop up in the supporting slots, If Trial shows up big across the board, the competitiveness of the slot might lead to another cast member (most likely recent winner Rylance, but don’t count out Langella or Abdul-Mateen II) to sneak in as a true testament of the power of the film.

Best Director


  1. Chloe Zhao (Nomadland) (+1)
  2. David Fincher (Mank) (-1)

Likely Nominees: 

  1. Aaron Sorkin (The Trial of The Chicago 7)
  2. Regina King (One Night In Miami)
  3. Emerald Fennell (Promising Young Woman)

Major Threats:

  1. Lee Isaac Chung (Minari) (+2)
  2. Spike Lee (Da 5 Bloods) (-1)
  3. Paul Greengrass (News of The World) (-1)
  4. Florian Zeller (The Father) 

Other Possibilities

  1. George C. Wolfe (Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom)
  2. Shaka King (Judas And The Black Messiah)

With Zhao’s win at the Globes, Fincher’s industry-centric appeal seems to have not been a match for her critically-revered work in Nomadland, catapulting her to the first slot. Although Sorkin and King could very well give them a scare if their respective films begin to dominate the circuit. Nonetheless, even they have quickly fallen behind with Fincher being the only one who can truly pose a challenge.

Other Categories

Original Screenplay:

  1. The Trial Of The Chicago 7
  2. Mank
  3. Promising Young Woman
  4. Minari
  5. Judas And The Black Messiah

Adapted Screenplay:

  1. Nomadland (+3)
  2. One Night In Miami (-1)
  3. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (-1)
  4. The Father (-1)
  5. News of The World

Animated Feature:

  1. Soul
  2. Wolfwalkers
  3. Over The Moon
  4. Onward
  5. The Croods: A New Age

Documentary Feature:

  1. All In: The Fight For Democracy
  2. Time
  3. Collective
  4. Boys State (+1)
  5. Dick Johnson Is Dead (-1)

International Feature:

  1. Another Round
  2. Collective
  3. Night Of Kings
  4. Quo Vadis Aida (NEW)
  5. A Sun


  1. The Trial of Chicago 7
  2. Nomadland
  3. Mank
  4. The Father
  5. Tenet


  1. Mank
  2. Nomadland
  3. News of The World
  4. Tenet
  5. Malcolm & Marie

Original Score:

  1. Soul
  2. Mank
  3. Tenet
  4. News of The World
  5. The Trial of Chicago 7

Production Design:

  1. Mank
  2. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  3. News of The World (+1)
  4. Tenet (+1)
  5. Mulan (-2)

Costume Design:

  1. Mank
  2. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  3. Emma
  4. The United States vs Billie Holliday (+1)
  5. The Personal History of David Copperfield (-1)


  1. Tenet
  2. The Midnight Sky
  3. Mank (+1)
  4. Birds of Prey (+1)
  5. Mulan (-2)


  1. Sound of Metal
  2. Tenet
  3. News of The World
  4. Mank
  5. Greyhound (NEW)

Makeup and Hairstyling:

  1. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  2. Mank
  3. Hillbilly Elegy
  4. Birds of Prey
  5. Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (NEW)

Original Song:

  1. Seen (The Life Ahead) (+1)
  2. Speak Now (One Night In Miami) (-1)
  3. Fight For You (Judas and The Black Messiah)
  4. Hear My Voice (The Trial Of The Chicago 7)
  5. Husavik (Eurovision)

Remaining 2021 Award Nominations:

Follow Awards Editor Diego Andaluz on Twitter: @thediegoandaluz

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