Top Contenders

Liam Neeson in a scene from Silence (Paramount Pictures)

Liam Neeson in a scene from Silence (Paramount Pictures)

One would hope that newcomers like Mahershala Ali (for Moonlight) or Lucas Hedges will come into play in this category. But I dunno: I think this category will eventually shake down to the old guard, with guys like Bridges and Costner figuring prominently and threatening for the win. And while I once considered him for the win, I figure that Shannon is probably number five here. 

MAHERSHALA ALI
"MOONLIGHT"

Jeff Bridges
"Hell or High Water"

LUCAS HEDGES
"MANCHESTER BY THE SEA"

Issei Ogata
"Silence"

MICHAEL SHANNON
"NOCTURNAL ANIMALS" 

Second-Tier Contenders

KEVIN COSTNER
"HIDDEN FIGURES"

Alden Ehrenreich
"Hail, Caesar!"

Ben Foster
"Hell or High Water"

HUGH GRANT
"FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS"

Stephen Henderson
“Fences” 

DEV PATEL
"LION"