Oscar 2023 – Supporting Actors (Male & Female) Ranked with Winner Predictions: A good supporting actor makes the job of the lead actor pleasant and easier. Nothing is more encouraging to the actors to deliver superlative performances than the support from the peers they are sharing the screen with. And while doing so, the supporting act often becomes superlative in the process. 




Much like the films that the Academy Awards try to honor every year, each nomination of the Oscars itself carries a story. We have Ke Huy Quan and Judd Hirsch making their comebacks. We have Brian Tyree Henry being noticed by the Academy for his works (Atlanta fans should nod in agreement here). And then we have two Irish actors at the opposing end of their respective careers churning out stellar performances in the same film. A fantastic film, if I might add. 

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In the same film, we have Kerry Condon with a career-defining performance. Like Hirsch and Huy Quan, we have Angela Bassett making a historical comeback with her “Black Panther” role. We have the two “Everything Everywhere All at Once” ladies getting two thoroughly deserved nominations. And then we have Hong Chau getting her due nomination for her brilliant outing in “The Whale.”




So, let us delve into the attempt to rank all these performances. But before we begin, here are some performances that did not make the cut but could have done very well so. 

Notable Misses:

The first big miss would be Paul Dano from “The Fabelmans.” Dano is a consistently good actor. He exuded the necessary empathy that was needed in his role as the family head in Steven Speilberg’s semi-autobiographical work. His miss might increase his co-star Judd Hirsch’s chance.

The other miss would be Eddie Redmayne’s chillingly convincing portrayal of a killer in “The Good Nurse.” Redmayne bagged a nomination at the Golden Globes but failed to appeal to the Oscar juries.




Triangle of Sadness” was able to snag a handful of nominations, with “Best Director” and “Best Picture” being the two prominent ones among them. But, it failed to land its breakout star Dolly de Leon, a nomination in the supporting actress category.

Jessie Buckley from “Women Talking” could also be counted as a notable miss.

Now let us start the countdown.

Oscars 2023: All Best Supporting Actors (Female), Ranked

5. Hong Chau (The Whale)

Oscars 2023 Best Supporting Actors Female Ranked - Hong Chau

Hong Chau’s moving portrayal of the nurse to Brendan Fraser’s heartbreaking performance as a morbidly obese teacher has gotten her due nomination at this year’s Academy Awards. A nomination that many feel that she should have already gotten for her performance in Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” (2017). 




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4. Angela Bassett (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever)

Angela Bassett had her first Oscar nomination when she played Tina Turner in the 1993 biopic “What’s Love Got to Do with It.” She could not win that time. This time, however, she very well could. For her portrayal of the grieving Queen mother, Ramonda, in Marvel’s “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.”

Her impassioned performance was one of the key features that propelled “Wakanda Forever” to the success it was. The death of the lead star, Chadwick Boseman, had left a gaping hole in this franchise. And director Ryan Coogler astutely did not try to fill it;  instead, he tried to honor it. Angela Bassett got the box-office juggernaut MCU’s first-ever acting nomination at the Oscars. 




3. Jamie Lee Curtis (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

Best Supporting Actor Female - Jamie Lee Curtis

Jamie Lee Curtis has several BAFTA nominations and Golden Globe nominations. However, she did not have any Oscar nominations. Until this year. “Everything Everywhere All at Once” is full of rewarding stories as such. With this film, the horror queen Curtis finally gets her first Academy Award nomination. 




Her performance as the zany and hilarious IRS agent offers some of the quirkiest scenes in this action comedy. Her nod, thus, is a pleasing one. Like all the accolades of “Everything Everywhere All at Once.”

2. Kerry Condon (The Banshees of Inisherin)

Martin McDonagh’s fantastic dark comedy is full of great performances (We will address another two on the male side). Like her character Siobhan elevating the lives of her male companions, Kerry Condon’s performances also elevate the performances of her male counterparts—a mark of a great supporting act. 




She received a BAFTA and won it. And in her first-ever Oscar nomination, she is one of the frontrunners. 

1. Stephanie Hsu (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

Best Supporting Actors Female - Stephnie Hsue

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However, the best in this category (in my humble opinion) would be the young Stephanie Hsu’s dual act in “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” Hsu portrays both a depressed and teenage-angst-ridden daughter and an all-encompassing world-ending powerful being. And she nails both scenarios. Her switch and turns are a thing to behold in the film. Her entrance as “Jobu Tupaki” is one of the coolest villain entrances. One would be reminded of Gary Oldman’s volatile hallway act in “Leon: The Professional” (1994). 

This is Hsu’s first nomination at the Academy Awards and could be the start of many. 




Oscars 2023: All Best Supporting Actors (Male), Ranked

5. Judd Hirsch (The Fabelmans)

Best Supporting Actor Male - Judd Hirsch

Judd Hirsch, the 87 years old actor, got his somewhat forgotten due at this year’s Oscars when he got nominated for his role in “The Fabelmans.” His last nomination came in 1980 for his role in Robert Redford’s “Ordinary People.” After 22 years, he gets his next, setting the record for the longest gap between nominations at the Oscars.

His electrifying cameo as the enigmatic showman uncle shaped the protagonist’s fate in “The Fabelmans.” However, his role was, as mentioned, more of a cameo role than a supporting one. The aforementioned Paul Dano had the more significant role in terms of scope. However, it is understandable to reward the veteran actor when you get the chance. I am not complaining in that regard.




4. Brian Tyree Henry (Causeway)

Best Supporting Actor Male - Brian Tyree Henry

Brian Tyree Henry’s nomination is a pleasantly surprising one. His performances have always been deserving but never thoroughly rewarded. At least, not in Cinema. With “If Beale Street Could Talk,” Henry came close but could not get the coveted nomination. The Emmy and Tony Awards nominated actor finally got his due in Lila Neugebauer’s “Causeway.” Good for him. His thoughtful and nuanced performance as someone dealing with grief was heartbreaking in the film.




3. Ke Huy Quan (Everything Everywhere All at Once)

The cinderella story of the Award season belongs to Ke Huy Quan. Quan debuted in 1984 as a child actor. His debut role was the famous ‘Short Round’ character, a sidekick to Harrison Ford’s Indiana Jones in “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.” Quan struggled to build much of an acting career afterward. Subsequently, he quit acting.

He spent the following years studying film and working in various stunt jobs. He finally made a comeback in acting with the hugely successful “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” The zany multiverse comedy became a hit. Quan’s endearing portrayal as the lovable goofball husband to Michelle Yeoh’s protagonist deserves all the plaudits that are being bestowed upon him.




2. Brendan Gleeson (The Banshees of Inisherin)

Martin McDonagh has delivered a beautifully simplistic tragedy in his “The Banshees of Inisherin.” The film is an extensive examination of existentialism, philosophy, and human bonding that is known as friendship. All presented with a pinch of McDonagh’s typically dark humor.




The film had all its actors firing on all cylinders. Unsurprisingly, all the major cast members received an acting nod from the Academy. Brendan Gleeson’s weary Colm is the cornerstone of the film. He is the force that starts everything in the film. To be honest, Colm isn’t written to be particularly likable, but he is written to be understandable. And Gleeson manages to find the right balance at that.

1. Barry Keoghan (The Banshees of Inisherin)

Best Supporting Actor Male - Barry Keoghan

However, my top pick will be Gleeson’s “The Banshees of Inisherin” co-star Barry Keoghan. Keoghan’s Dominic epitomizes the unfortunate tragedies of the film. Dominic’s naivete rubs off on Padraic (Colin Farrell) and Siobhan (Kerry Condon). His abuse history makes him all the more pitiful.

Now, Keoghan has shown an uncanny proficiency at playing creeps. His pasta-eating character in “The Killing of a Sacred Deer” would be fresh in people’s minds. Even his roles in “Eternals” and “The Green Knight” were apprehensively weird. It is no wonder that he is the ‘Joker’ in Matt Reeves’ “The Batman.” However, his Dominic is creepy, but tragically so. And he makes the character downright endearing. He would be my pick. But let us know who would probably win the award.




Oscar 2023: Best Supporting Actor Predictions – Who Will Win?

Female:

Chau’s performance deservedly helped her get her first nomination. However, both in my opinion and by the award hype, she would occupy the fifth position in getting this award. 

Both Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu are garnering great hype. As is the case with “Everything Everywhere All at Once” in every category. Curtis has just won the SAG award. This tilts the odds in her favor. However, the vote-splitting scenario cannot be ignored. Hsu will cut some votes from Curtis, and it would hamper both of them. 




Angela Bassett has won the Golden Globe award, and the MCU fandom is right behind her. However, it seems to me that things might just work in favor of Kerry Condon. She has just won the BAFTA and has no threat of vote-cutting. It does appear to be down to Condon and Bassett, even though Curtis bagged SAG. 

Winner: Kerry Condon for “The Banshees of Inisherin”

Male:

Brian Tyree Henry’s nomination itself is a pleasantly surprising one. However, it does feel like the Academy juries might also channel their thoughts on the same line. The nomination itself would be deemed rewarding enough. 




Judd Hirsch’s comeback story could only be bested by Ke Huy Quan’s one. However, as mentioned above, his role is too limited to consider him a serious contender. Although the Academy does tend to reward patience, I would be surprised if the juries would go that extra mile and reward Hirsch for his small but electrifying performance. 

The two “Inisherin” boys might just be my favorites; however, they are not garnering enough steam. And it is a known phenomenon that nominations from the same film tend to undermine each other. So, even if a sizeable portion of juries harbor a soft spot for McDonagh’s superb work, Gleeson and Keoghan would be splitting those votes between them. If I had to pick one among them who could cause the upset, I would go with Gleeson. 




Needless to say, who I consider the outright favorite now. The hype train is well and truly with Ke Huy Quan. The endearing story of Quan’s comeback is the perfect vehicle to ensure the statue goes to his hands. He has already won the Golden Globe and the Critics Choice Award. His lovable outing in “Everything Everywhere All at Once” is undoubtedly the frontrunner in this department. It will be a true upset if anyone topples Quan to win “Best Supporting Actor” this year.

Winner: Ke Huy Quan for “Everything Everywhere All at Once.”

The 95th Oscars will be televised and broadcast on March 12, 2023.

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