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EW's awards experts debate the highs, lows, and telling signs of the 2021 Oscar nominees.

By David CanfieldJoey Nolfi and Clarissa Cruz
March 15, 2021 at 05:30 PM EDT
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Much about the 2021 Oscar nominations was groundbreaking. Some of it thrilling; other parts, disappointing. But for the hosts of EW's The Awardist podcast, the big word that comes to mind is: telling.

Cohosts David Canfield and Clarissa Cruz, along with EW's awards expert Joey Nolfi, gathered to discuss the highs, lows, and everything in between of Monday's nominations, before getting straight into what the lists tell us about who will ultimately win the big categories. As they see it, no frontrunner was dislodged, exactly: Best Picture leader Nomadland performed as needed, and acting candidates Carey Mulligan and Daniel Kaluuya only stand to gain ground with Promising Young Woman and Judas and the Black Messiah, respectively, overperforming. (The late Chadwick Boseman remains a clear favorite for Best Actor, despite key category misses for Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, though players such as Riz Ahmed and Anthony Hopkins remain in the conversation.)

The category causing the most head-scratching remains Best Supporting Actress. With Golden Globe winner Jodie Foster not even making the cut, who's out front? Critics' Choice winner Maria Bakalova, our well-timed guest on today's podcast? The infamously overdue Glenn Close? Or another contender waiting in the wings? Hear what direction The Awardist thinks the race might be headed in.

Finally, Leslie Odom Jr. joins in a special guest appearance to react to his double-nomination for One Night in Miami, both for Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Song ("Speak Now").

Listen to the full podcast below. New episodes of The Awardist drop every Monday.

Check out more from EW's The Awardist, featuring exclusive interviews, analysis, and our podcast diving into all the highlights from the year's best films.

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