The 89th Academy Awards, which will be hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, are about to take place and it is a time to celebrate the best that the film industry has offerred us this past year in categories such as acting, directing, visual effects, screenplay, cinematography and films in general. Additionally, speculation and predictions about what Oscar nominees will win the coveted awards have been rife amongst film critics, pundits and film lovers alike.

I felt like I should give you some insight into who the favourites are in some of the major categories at the Oscars, starting with:

Best Supporting Actress

Viola Davis (Fences) is considered to be the frontrunner in this category, especially as it seems like she was strategically placed to win in this category instead of Best Actress.

This due to the fact that she has a better chance of winning and Oscar for Best Supporting Actress even though she was the female lead in Fences.Christian Bale was similarly subjected to this strategic treatment when he was nominated for Best Supporting Actor instead of Best Actor for The Fighter at the Oscars in 2011. Naomie Harris (Moonlight) and Michelle Williams (Manchester by the Sea) are also in contention for Best Supporting Actress.

Best Supporting Actor

This category is filled with extremely talented actor's. Michael Shannon was one of the standouts in Nocturnal Animals and Lucas Hedges (Manchester by the Sea) gave a performance beyond his young age and showed great range as an actor.

Nevertheless, Mahershala Ali (Moonlight) is the frontrunner when you consider that he won the Screen Actors Guild Award for the same category and the emotional speech that he gave that night on stage at the SAG Awards is bound to stick in the minds of Oscar voters. For those reasons, he is the slight favourite but this category is very tight so we could see a shock.

Best Actress

La La Land is expected to win in the majority of the 14 categories it is nominated in and Best Actress is no exception. Emma Stone (La La Land) is widely expected to win this award and add to the awards she has already won which include a SAG Award and a BAFTA for Best Actress. If there is any actress that could cause an upset, it is probably Natalie Portman (Jackie) but the momentum is with La La Land and Emma Stone at the Oscars.

Best Actor

A few months ago, it seemed like Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea) was an absolute lock to win Best Actor. Truly, he gave a fantastic performance full of emotion and depth and it was a performance worthy of the award recognition it has received. However, Denzel Washington (Fences) has a lot of momentum behind him after his win at the 2017 SAG Awards which has made the race to win Best Actor much more competitive. It is split between Affleck and Washington but all of the nominees deserve recognition.

Best Director

Damien Chazelle (La La Land) is the obvious favourite due to the tremendous job he did in La La Land which continued the great work he showcased in Whiplash. He does have competition in Barry Jenkins (Moonlight) and, additionally, it was a real surprise to see Mel Gibson (Hacksaw Ridge) as a nominee, especially after his chequered past, but he did a great job with Hacksaw Ridge.

Nevertheless, Chazelle is the frontrunner.

Best Picture

La La Land has been mentioned a few times so far in this article and, yet again, it is widely expected to win in this category at the Oscars. Despite the fact that there are 9 out of a possible 10 nominees in the category of Best Picture, the only film which has a realistic chance of winning instead of La La Land is Moonlight. If any of the other nominees won, it would be a big shock because La La Land has a lot of admirers and monentum going into what will be a fascinating Oscar ceremony.