This article contains IndieWire’s preliminary Best Supporting Actor predictions for the 2023 Oscars. We regularly update our predictions throughout awards season, and republish previous versions (like this one) for readers to track changes in how the Oscar race has changed. For the latest update on the frontrunners for the 95th Academy Awards, see our 2023 Oscars predictions hub.
Nominations voting is from January 12-17, 2023, with official Oscar nominations announced January 24, 2023. Final voting is March 2-7, 2023. And finally, the 95th Oscars telecast will be broadcast on Sunday, March 12 and air live on ABC at 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT. We update predictions through awards season, so keep checking IndieWire for all our 2023 Oscar picks.
In this year’s Supporting Actor field, several veteran Oscar-winners vie against a crop of newbies. Oscar voters sometimes reward their faves more than once, but their ultimate awards fate depends on how well their movies fare through the long Oscar season. Vying for a third Oscar after his recent win for “The Father” is Anthony Hopkins as a doting Queens grandfather in James Gray’s autofiction Cannes entry “Armageddon Time.” Chasing his second, Colin Firth (“The King’s Speech”) engages with Olivia Colman in Sam Mendes’ cinephile romance “Empire of Light” (Searchlight Pictures).
Meanwhile, three-time nominee Woody Harrelson, who is overdue for a win, plays a socialist captain on a luxury cruise in Ruben Ostlund’s Palme d’Or-winning class satire “Triangle of Sadness” (Neon). And Don Cheadle could add a second nomination after 2005’s “Hotel Rwanda” for Noah Baumbach’s “White Noise” (Netflix).
Several actors are seeking their first Oscar acting mentions: “Succession” Emmy-winner Jeremy Strong is a tightly-wound parent in “Armageddon Time”; Paul Dano has two shots, for his bravura villain turn in Matt Reeves’ “The Batman,” and as the father of Sammy Fabelman in Steven Spielberg’s semi-fictionalized coming-of-age story “The Fabelmans” (Universal); Ke Huy Quan (“Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom”) could score for his poignant and hilarious turn as Michelle Yeoh’s morphing husband in A24’s box-office hit “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” Barry Keoghan costars with Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson in Martin McDonagh’s Irish comedy “The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight). And “Harry Potter” star Harry Melling makes a mark opposite Christian Bale as the young Edgar Allan Poe in Scott Cooper’s period whodunit, “The Pale Blue Eye” (Netflix).
Several sprawling ensembles will need to shake things out, from David O. Russell’s “Amsterdam” to Damien Chazelle’s “Babylon,” depending on who nabs the juiciest screen time.
Contenders are listed in alphabetical order, below. No film will be deemed a frontrunner unless I have seen it.
Paul Dano (“The Batman”)
Woody Harrelson (“Triangle of Sadness”)
Anthony Hopkins (“Armageddon Time”)
Ke Huy Quan (“Everything Everywhere All at Once”)
Jeremy Strong (“Armageddon Time”)
John Boyega (“The Woman King”)
Tom Burke (“The Wonder”)
Don Cheadle (“White Noise”)
Paul Dano (“The Fabelmans”)
Colin Firth (“Empire of Light”)
Robert De Niro (“Amsterdam”)
Barry Keoghan (“The Banshees of Inisherin”)
Tobey Maguire (“Babylon”)
Harry Melling (“The Pale Blue Eye”)
Seth Rogen (“The Fabelmans”)
John David Washington (“Amsterdam”)
Steve Coogan (“The Lost King”)
Frankie Faison (“Till”)
Colin Farrell (“The Batman”)
Ralph Fiennes (“The Menu”)
John Glover (“TAR”)
Tom Hanks (“Elvis”)
Lucas Hedges (“Shirley”)
Rami Malek (“Amsterdam”)
Clarke Peters (“I Wanna Dance with Somebody”)
Matthias Schoenaerts (“Amsterdam”)
Mark Strong (“TAR”)
Miles Teller (“Top Gun: Maverick”)
Stanley Tucci (“I Wanna Dance with Somebody”)
Ben Whishaw (“Women Talking”)