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For the first time in a while, the Academy Award for Best Actress is completely wide open. In recent years, we've had two or three clear front runners in the category, but it's anyone's game this year. We're going to take a look at the nominees and their case for victory.


Looking at This Year's Award Circuit

In past years, shows like the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards are good indicators of who will win the award at the Oscars.

But, at the Golden Globes, it was Andra Day for The United States vs. Billie Holiday. At the SAG Awards, it was Viola Davis for Ma Rainey. At the Critics Choice Awards, it was Carey Mulligan for Promising Young Woman. You see the problem?

On top of that, these ladies are competing with two time winner Frances McDormand, who gave one of the best performances of her career as Fern in Nomadland, which took home the hardware at the Golden Globes for Best Director and Best Picture.

And, Vanessa Kirby is a first time nominee, but Promising Young Woman is up for five Oscars for a reason. It was an incredible performance. We sat down with Vanessa to get her thoughts on the film, which follows the struggles of a woman who just lost her baby in childbirth.

As for what she hopes people take from the film, Vanessa said, "My biggest hope for it has always been that it reaches the people it needs to and it might be like a figurative holding of a hand. Because I think in sharing our pain and uniting in it, it helps you feel less alone"

Andra Day, a first time nominee, also had a very specific reason for making her film The United States vs. Billie Holiday, which she told us back in February.

"I want people to understand that she was a civil rights leader, and I want people to think of her when they think of Martin Luther King, when they think of Malcolm X, and Bobby Seal, and when they think of these leaders. Peaceful or militant, Billie Holiday's name should be at the forefront, if not one of the geneses of that movement"

We've got five powerful performances from five incredible women. Who will win? Who knows, but stay tuned for our live coverage this Sunday!

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