Oscar season kicked off in January of 2012 when "Beasts of the Southern Wild" wowed audiences at the Sundance Film Festival. Thirteen months later, "Beasts" will compete for a host of Oscars at the 85th annual Academy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 24. With awards season mercifully coming to a close, HuffPost Entertainment is here with a preview of the major categories at the Oscars 2013 ceremony. Next up: picking the Best Actor winner.
Best Actor Nominees: Bradley Cooper ("Silver Linings Playbook"), Hugh Jackman ("Les Miserables"), Daniel Day-Lewis ("Lincoln"), Joaquin Phoenix ("The Master"), Denzel Washington ("Flight")
The Race Thus Far: Over. Since November, Daniel Day-Lewis has been the favorite to win an Oscar; if he doesn't take home a record third Best Actor trophy, assume the Academy Awards ceremony got canceled.
The Potential Spoiler(s): In another year, Jackman and Cooper would be battling it out for Best Actor. This isn't another year, however, and both actors are destined to finish behind Day-Lewis. That's too bad, since Jackman and Cooper gave career-best performances in 2012. Better luck next career.
Best Actor Prediction : Day-Lewis.
In the mood for actual data and evidence instead of speculation and conjecture? The Huffington Post Oscar Predictions Dashboard can be found here.