Richard Roeper Blog

Oscar: Talk About Odds-on Favorites!

Now that the nominations are in, my friends at Bovada have posted the odds in the major categories–and we’re looking at some of most prohibitive favorites in recent memory.

For example, in the Best Picture category, “Boyhood” is a 1/14 favorite. You would almost never see a 1/14 favorite in any sports event or any horse race. What it means is this: if you wanted to net a single dollar on “Boyhood” winning Best Picture, you’d have to risk $14 of your own money.

Let’s say “Selma” springs the upset. The odds on “Selma” are 18/1, meaning you’d WIN $18 on a wager of $1.

For Best Actress, Julianne Moore is 1/20. That’s about right. It would be a huge upset if any of the other four nominees won.

Patricia Arquette is biggest favorite of all at 1/25 to win Best Supporting Actress. (You’d have to risk $100 to win four bucks!) No doubt Arquette is the popular choice, and I’m predicting a win for her, but if you were looking for one possible upset in the major categories, Supporting Actress has a history of surprises, including Marisa Tomei’s win over Miranda Richardson, Joan Plowright, Vanessa Redgrave and Judy Davis in 1993; Mira Sorvino besting Joan Allen and Kate Winslet in 1995; and Juliette Binoche’s stunning upset of Lauren Bacall in 1997.

Laura Dern at 20/1 would be worth risking a couple of dollars. (Imaginary dollars, of course, because gambling on the Oscars isn’t legal in the States. Plus it would be wrong. Cough cough.) Or you could check off Dern’s name in your Oscar pool just to be different.

It’s a wonderful performance by a popular, legacy actress. (Her father is Bruce Dern; her mother is Diane Ladd.) Dern probably won’t get enough votes to pull off the upset, but if the Academy revealed total votes, I’ll bet we’d find out she placed a strong second.

The Oscars – Best Picture
Boyhood 1/14
The Grand Budapest Hotel 12/1
Birdman 14/1
Selma 18/1
The Imitation Game 20/1
Theory of Everything 25/1
Whiplash 50/1
American Sniper 50/1

The Oscars – Best Director
Richard Linklater – Boyhood 1/14
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu – Birdman 13/2
Bennett Miller – Foxcatcher 25/1
Morten Tyldum – The Imitation Game 25/1
Wes Anderson – The Grand Budapest Hotel 25/1

The Oscars – Best Actor
Michael Keaton – Birdman 4/5
Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything 1/1
Benedict Cumberbatch – The Imitation Game 12/1
Steve Carrell – Foxcatcher 25/1
Bradley Cooper – American Sniper 33/1

The Oscars – Best Actress
Julianne Moore – Still Alice 1/20
Reese Witherspoon – Wild 10/1
Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl 20/1
Felicity Jones – The Theory of Everything 20/1
Marion Cotillard – Two Days One Night 33/1

The Oscars – Best Supporting Actor
JK Simmons – Whiplash 1/18
Edward Norton – Birdman 9/1
Mark Ruffalo – Foxcatcher 12/1
Ethan Hawke – Boyhood 20/1
Robert Duvall – The Judge 33/1

The Oscars – Best Supporting Actress
Patricia Arquette – Boyhood 1/25
Emma Stone – Birdman 12/1
Keira Knightley – The Imitation Game 20/1
Laura Dern – Wild 20/1
Meryl Streep – Into the Woods 25/1

Courtesy of Bovada, (, Twitter: @BovadaLV)

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