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'runaway' Irish actress Caitriona Balfe tipped for Oscar nomination following Belfast performance

Balfe is even tipped to win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress if the film continues to build momentum before the Oscars next spring

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Caitriona Balfe (Matt Crossick/PA)

Caitriona Balfe (Matt Crossick/PA)

Caitriona Balfe (Matt Crossick/PA)

Irish actress Caitriona Balfe is regarded as a shoo-in for an Oscar run next spring - after a movie-industry bible tipped her as a certainty for a nomination.

Film publication Variety has picked Balfe as a likely nominee for her performance in Belfast, Kenneth Branagh’s emotional love letter to the city where he grew up.

Balfe is even tipped to win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress if the film continues to build momentum before the Oscars next spring. “Caitriona Balfe could be a runaway, especially if the film is winning Best Picture,” according to Variety.

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Sir Kenneth Branagh, left to right, Jamie Dornan, Jude Hill and Caitriona Balfe at the film’s premiere (Ian West/PA)

Sir Kenneth Branagh, left to right, Jamie Dornan, Jude Hill and Caitriona Balfe at the film’s premiere (Ian West/PA)

Sir Kenneth Branagh, left to right, Jamie Dornan, Jude Hill and Caitriona Balfe at the film’s premiere (Ian West/PA)

 

The film’s producers have already indicated that they will put Balfe forward for an awards-season run - and added that her co-stars Jamie Dornan, Ciaran Hinds and Judi Dench will be joining her.

The semi-autographical drama has become a firm awards-season favourite since it debuted to rave reviews at last month’s Toronto Film Festival. Set in the late 1960s in the northern Irish city, it tells the story of a working-class family during a period of great change in the city.

This week top US awards prediction website Gold Derby also placed Balfe firmly on its shortlist after bosses confirmed she would be put forward for Best Supporting Actress.

The site places her in likely competition with Kirsten Dunst (The Power of the Dog), Marlee Marlin (CODA), Ann Dowd (Mass) and Aunjanue Ellis (King Richard).

The Co Monaghan actress is a major star in the US thanks to the success of Outlander, the time-travelling romantic TV series in which she has the leading role.

Balfe was a highly successful supermodel before turning her hand to her first love - acting - in recent years. The teenager had been studying drama when a model agency boss spotted her in a Dublin supermarket, setting her up for a catwalk career.

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