The bets are on for Capote, Walk the Line and Brokeback Mountain director Ang Lee

By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated March 03, 2006 02:00 PM
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It may not be as popular as poker, but betting on the Oscars has been going on hot and heavy this week – all in anticipation of the big show Sunday.

And anticipated in the winners circle, according to the latest tallies: Best Actor, Philip Seymour Hoffman in Capote; Best Actress, Reese Witherspoon in Walk the Line; Best Director, Ang Lee, for Brokeback Mountain, which is also still favored to take the top Best Picture gold – although some pundits are saying viewers might anticipate a Crash upset, especially after it won the Screen Actors Guild ensemble acting prize.

In the actors’ race, SAG winner Hoffman appears to have it in a walk, with odds of 1:7 (with some odds go as high as 1:9). His fiercest competition is Heath Ledger in Brokeback Mountain, who’s getting odds of 5:1, according to PinnacleSports.com. The long shot, at 199:1, is Terrence Howard, in the running for Hustle & Flow.

Bodog.com has Joaquin Phoenix’s Johnny Cash in Walk The Line at 14:5, while Pinnacle puts David Strathaim in Good Night, and Good Luck at 66:1.

Witherspoon, another SAG winner (as well as the Golden Globe), has a lock on her award, according to Bodog, which gives her 1:6 odds. If there’s an upset, however, expect it to come from Felicity Huffman (2:1 odds), in TransAmerica. In Huffman’s favor is that, as evidenced by Charlize Theron in Monster, Oscar loves actresses who transform themselves. Going against Huffman, though, is that so few people have seen her movie.

Pinnacle has Directors Guild Award winner Ang Lee repeating his win on Oscar night (1:19 odds), while Brokeback, at 1:13, is duking it out for Best Picture with Crash, at 11:1.

ABC will broadcast the Oscars live from Hollywood’s Kodak Theatre Sunday night at 8 p.m. ET.

And the nominees are:

Best Picture
Brokeback Mountain
Capote
Crash
Good Night, and Good Luck
Munich

Best Actor
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Capote
Terrence Howard, Hustle & Flow
Heath Ledger, Brokeback Mountain
Joaquin Phoenix, Walk the Line
David Strathairn, Good Night, and Good Luck

Best Actress
Judi Dench, Mrs. Henderson Presents
Felicity Huffman, Transamerica
Keira Knightley, Pride & Prejudice
Charlize Theron, North Country
Reese Witherspoon, Walk the Line

Best Supporting Actor
George Clooney, Syriana
Matt Dillon, Crash
Paul Giamatti, Cinderella Man
Jake Gyllenhaal, Brokeback Mountain
William Hurt, A History of Violence

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams, Junebug
Catherine Keener, Capote
Frances McDormand, North Country
Rachel Weisz, The Constant Gardener
Michelle Williams, Brokeback Mountain

Best Director
Ang Lee, Brokeback Mountain
Bennett Miller, Capote
Paul Haggis, Crash
George Clooney, Good Night, and Good Luck
Steven Spielberg, Munich

Best Original Screenplay
Crash
Good Night, and Good Luck
Match Point
The Squid and the Whale
Syriana

Best Adapted Screenplay
Brokeback Mountain
Capote
The Constant Gardener
A History of Violence
MunichForeign Language Film
Don’t Tell
Joyeux Noël
Paradise Now
The Final Days of Sophie Scholl
Tsotsi

Animated Feature
Howl’s Moving Castle
Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride
Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit

Art Direction
Good Night, and Good Luck
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
King Kong
Memoirs of a Geisha
Pride & Prejudice

Cinematography
Batman Begins
Brokeback Mountain
Good Night, and Good Luck
Memoirs of a Geisha
The New World

Costume Design
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Memoirs of a Geisha
Mrs. Henderson Presents
Pride & Prejudice
Walk the Line

Film Editing
Cinderella Man
The Constant Gardener
Crash
Munich
Walk the Line

Music (Score)
Brokeback Mountain
The Constant Gardener
Memoirs of a Geisha
Munich
Pride & Prejudice

Music (Song)
“In the Deep” – Crash
“It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp” – Hustle & Flow
“Travelin’ Thru” – Transamerica

Makeup
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Cinderella Man
Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith

Sound Editing
King Kong
Memoirs of a Geisha
War of the Worlds

Sound Mixing
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
King Kong
Memoirs of a Geisha
Walk the Line
War of the Worlds

Visual Effects
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
King Kong
War of the Worlds

Short Film (Animated)
Badgered
The Moon and the Son: An Imagined Conversation
The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello
9
One Man Band

Short Film (Live Action)
Ausreisser (The Runaway)
Cashback
The Last Farm
Our Time is Up
Six Shooter

Documentary Feature
Darwin’s Nightmare
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
March of the Penguins
Murderball
Street Fight

Documentary Short
The Death of Kevin Carter: Casualty of the Bang Bang Club
God Sleeps in Rwanda
The Mushroom Club
A Note of Triumph: The Golden Age of Norman Corwin