On Feb. 24, winners will be crowned at the 91st Academy Awards. But before the red carpet is rolled out and envelopes are opened, Entertainment Weekly has inside intel on the 2019 nominees. Keep checking back at this week for spotlights on contenders in all the major categories.

Yorgos Lanthimos
Director of:
The Favourite
Age: 45
Oscar past: 1 Nom, 0 Wins

With Yorgos Lanthimos, always expect the unexpected both on and off screen. “He has a very powerful imagination, and that’s what gets up there on the screen,” says star Rachel Weisz, who also worked with the director in 2016’s The Lobster. “There’s no discussion as to what we’re doing, or what he’s looking for — he never tells you. Maybe he doesn’t know it until he sees it. I don’t know. It’s a mystery, but it’s a beautiful mystery.” Lanthimos brings that eccentric, modern energy (see: Weisz and Joe Alwyn voguing in the royal palace) to The Favourite, a period dramedy about Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) and two women (Weisz and Emma Stone) vying for her favour. Says the director: “The fact that it was a period film — I had never done one before — I felt like I should try it. I think making a period film is just a different view to human behavior and finding differing ways of exploring themes and subjects.”

On Tuesday, after The Favourite received 10 Oscar nominations (including one for Best Director), Lanthimos said, “I would like to thank The Academy for honoring The Favourite so generously today. Having felt a bit like an outsider looking in, I am truly humbled about this morning’s nominations. They are a meaningful tribute to every person involved in the making of The Favourite — my talented collaborators and sublime cast, led by Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone.”

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The Favourite
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