The lead actor race showcases a wide variety of performances, from vets playing real people (Gary Oldman blustering as Winston Churchill in “Darkest Hour” and Jake Gyllenhaal as Boston Marathon survivor Jeff Bauman in “Stronger”) to newcomers including Timothée Chalamet (“Call Me by Your Name”) and Daniel Kaluuya (“Get Out”) portraying fictional characters. There are also previous winners such as Denzel Washington in “Roman J. Israel, Esq.” and and Daniel Day-Lewis and Tom Hanks in two films that have yet to screen, “Phantom Thread” and “The Post.” But the prestige behind their projects are enough to put the lead actors in a frontrunner position. Hugh Jackman has both “The Greatest Showman” and “Logan,” but appears to be centering on the latter for awards, and could land another nom. And James Franco channeling Tommy Wiseau in “The Disaster Artist” could just be crazy enough to pull off an upset. Then there’s Matt Damon, an Oscar winner for co-scripting “Good Will Hunting,” who could land his first acting Oscar win for his role in Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing.”

Top Contenders
Timothée Chalamet
“Call Me by Your Name”

Matt Damon

Daniel Day-Lewis
“Phantom Thread”

James Franco
“The Disaster Artist”

Andrew Garfield

Jake Gyllenhaal

Tom Hanks
“The Post”

Hugh Jackman

Gary Oldman
“Darkest Hour”

Denzel Washington
“Roman J. Israel, Esq.”

Also In Play
Christian Bale

Jamie Bell
“Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool”

Chadwick Boseman

Sam Elliott
“The Hero”

Daniel Kaluuya
“Get Out”

Kumail Nanjiani
“The Big Sick”

Robert Pattinson
“Good Time”

Adam Sandler
“The Meyerowitz Stories”

Jeremy Renner
“Wind River”

Other Possibilities
Kenneth Branagh
“Murder on the Orient Express”

Steve Carell
“Last Flag Flying”

Tom Cruise
“American Made”

Colin Farrell
“The Killing of a Sacred Deer”

Richard Gere
“Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer”

Ryan Gosling
“Blade Runner 2049”

Woody Harrelson

Tracy Letts
“The Lovers”

James McAvoy

Andy Serkis
“War for the Planet of the Apes”

Algee Smith

Donald Sutherland
“The Leisure Seeker”

Miles Teller
“Thank You for Your Service”

Jacob Tremblay