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Will win/should win:

Daniel Kaluuya

"Judas and the Black Messiah"

Role: Fred Hampton, the Black Panther leader killed by the FBI in 1969.

In his favor: This is really a lead performance (he's the "Black Messiah"), and Mahershala Ali and Christian Bale have shown that's a great path to victory. Also: He's magnetic in a very different role from "Get Out," which earned him his first nomination.

Then again: He looks really strong but he's bound to have other chances.

The rest:

Sacha Baron Cohen

"The Trial of the Chicago 7"

Role: Abbie Hoffman, the most theatrical defendant in the 1969 trial.

In his favor: Voters would love to honor Cohen for an incredible 2020. He stood out in this ensemble while also co-writing and starring in the "Borat" sequel.

Then again: "Borat," which played a small role in the presidential election, might be the work that sticks out more to Oscar (he was nominated for co-writing both "Borat" films).

Leslie Odom Jr.

"One Night in Miami"

Role: Sam Cooke, the legendary singer.

In his favor: The movie demonstrates Odom's versatility, since he does his own singing. It's part of a busy year that also saw him impress in the taped version of "Hamilton" and the shot-in-the-pandemic series "Love in the Time of Corona."

Then again: The body of work stands out, but in this four-man movie, the performance doesn't.

Paul Raci

"Sound of Metal"

Role: Joe, who tells lead character Ruben, "Deafness is not something to fix."

In his favor: An "overnight" success who's been acting for 40 years, Raci finesses a tricky part that requires him to perform in both American Sign Language and English (Raci's parents were deaf).

Then again: An unknown can win this usually veteran-dominated category, but it hasn't happened since Haing S. Ngor in 1984.

Lakeith Stanfield

"Judas and the Black Messiah"

Role: Bill O'Neal, FBI informer.

In his favor: He has built a reputation in a series of Oscar-noticed films, including "Knives Out" and "Get Out," and it's high time he snagged a nomination.

Then again: Will he and co-star Kaluuya cancel each other out? Kaluuya has won several preliminary awards and may have an edge because he's the good guy while Stanfield plays the heavy.

Missed the cut:

Chadwick Boseman

"Da 5 Bloods"

Role: Norman, one of a group of friends who hid a treasure while they served in Vietnam.

Why he had a chance: Boseman is obviously popular with the Academy. Spike Lee's streaming movie, one of the first to make a splash in the pandemic, has stuck with audiences.

Then again: His character is seen only in flashbacks so others in the powerhouse cast overshadow him.