Over at The Envelope, the discussion has begun about the category placement of certain individuals through awards season. You can read it HERE.
The article speaks about Meryl Streep being possibly moved to Supporting for Julie & Julia, so that she doesn't split with It's Complicated. I think either way you slice it Streep gets nominated. Her star power is just way too strong. The Nine ladies are also in a bit of dilemma, with Marion Cotillard being pushed Lead with Penelope Cruz and Judi Dench in the supporting arena. It's a smart move since Cotillard has been one to watch for a nomination for her July release Public Enemies along with megastar Johnny Depp. Penelope Cruz also has the Pedro Almodovar film Broken Embraces in which she's been said to give an awards worthy performance.
The Last Station, a late entry into the Oscar race as of a few weeks ago, have had their strategy expressed on the web. Christopher Plummer, who plays "Tolstoy," will be campaigned supporting, which increases his chances immensely. This hurts James McAvoy, who has yet to be recognized by Oscar yet, since he's going Lead and unless it's a out-of-the-ballpark performance (which I'm hearing it isn't) that category is stacked. Co-star Helen Mirren is still said to be Lead.
A few things that weren't mentioned in the article is the placement of The Lovely Bones ladies. Is the lead in the story (Saoirse Ronan who plays "Susie Salmon") going Lead or Supporting? Susan Sarandon is definitely supporting at this point but Rachel Weisz is pretty much out of the game if she's campaigned in Lead Actress. People love citing the Steven Spielberg comment that Ronan will "win the Oscar for Supporting Actress." We'll see.
There has also been an interest to move Up in the Air star Vera Farmiga from supporting to Lead. This nearly destroys her chances unless critics really jump on board with the notion. Kendrick would be clear for Oscar if it did happen, however.
Other smart moves out there (not yet discussed but if you're reading Movie Studios, listen carefully) would be moving Natalie Portman supporting for Brothers, which would increase her chances. Not sure if Hollywood sees Portman as a Leading Lady yet. I'm on the fence about Peter Sarsgaard for An Education. It could go either way, but in supporting he competes against Alfred Molina who's said to stand out more than Sarsgaard. And there's always such a fear inside of me of Stanley Tucci missing out due to vote split with his performance in The Lovely Bones and Julie & Julia. Of all the acting players this year, I'm the most excited to see him nominated. We'll wait on the word...