Christian Bale is nominated for Best Actor at the 2019 Academy Awards. He is nominated for the film Vice, where he plays former Vice President Dick Cheney at various stages in his life. The actor reportedly gained 40 pounds to convincingly portray Cheney. Will that be enough to earn Bale the Oscar?
The odds are fairly good that Bale, 45, could walk away with Best Actor. Most outlets have reported that the race has been whittled down to two of the five nominees, with Bale being one and Rami Malek being the other for his portrayal of Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. Both actors cleaned up at the Golden Globe Awards, with Bale winning Best Actor In a Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical and Malek winning Best Actor In a Motion Picture – Drama.
Bale & ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ Star Rami Malek Are the 2019 Oscar Frontrunners
That said, of the two nominees, Malek presents the stronger case for winning. Bohemian Rhapsody fared much better at the box office than Vice, grossing over $850 million worldwide, and Malek has nabbed a SAG and a BAFTA in addition to his Golden Globe. Historically, the winner of these awards has been the one to walk away with Best Actor. This is Malek’s first ever nomination.
Conversely, Bale has had a luminous Oscars track record. He was previously nominated for Best Actor for 2013’s American Hustle and Best Supporting Actor for 2015’s The Big Short, in addition to winning the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for 2010’s The Fighter. Of the five nominees, Bale is tied with Willem Dafoe and Bradley Cooper for the most acting nominations, and he is the only nominee with a previous win.
Bale Is the Only Best Actor Nominee Who’s Previously Won an Oscar
In an interview with Screen Rant, Bale spoke about the challenge of portraying Cheney, and the fine line between capturing his essence and merely doing an impression. ‘There’s a number of people who do wonderful impersonations of Cheney,” he said. And [director] Adam [McKay] and I spoke and said, ‘Well, yeah. But that’s not going to– It’s going to be a superficial representation. Extremely talented, the people that do it, but it’s superficial over a two-hour span. So, let’s go for the essence.’ So, really it was just obsessing.”
“There’s a load of interviews with Mr. Cheney and I got every single one of them on my phone. It’s just jampacked full of videos of Chaney,” Bale added. “And I’m just sitting there watching for hours and hours and hours. And imitating it and then walking around myself and trying to get the body position and all that. I don’t really know beyond that, just, it’s time.” Bale will next appear in the historical drama Ford v. Ferrari, which is due out on November 15, 2019.