The 88th annual Academy Awards is Sunday night, and the buzz has been building ever since the Oscar nominees were first revealed more than a month ago.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will ultimately decide who takes home the trophies, but before the envelopes are opened, we can look to Google to see what Canadians want to know:

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After finding out when the show is, people’s searches have mirrored the two major pre-Oscar storylines.

After a full docket of white nominees was announced, Twitter began proclaiming, for the second year in a row, #OscarsSoWhite for their lack of diversity. This led to some personalities promising to boycott the ceremony, prompting Canadians to look for who won’t be in attendance.

And, of course, all eyes are on Leonardo DiCaprio to see if he can finally end what many perceive to be a series of snubs.

Strangely, another popular question asked was which awards Will Smith was nominated for. Spoiler alert: he isn’t up for anything.

Google’s Jenn Kaiser said people likely expected him to get nominated based on his past performances.

"It’s interesting to see that Canadians associated Will Smith with the Oscars, and perhaps assumed that he was getting a nomination," Kaiser said.

The rankings for most-searched “best picture” nominees also seem to correlate to the films generating the most real-life discussion:


The Revenant, a film that features Leo attempting to crawl and grunt his way to an Oscar, appears atop the list, followed by the summer action blockbuster Mad Max: Fury Road.

Though it’s not always true, Kaiser said that at least during the Grammys, the artists and albums people seemed to be searching for beforehand were the ones that ended up going home with trophies.

“Often the things we love are the things that end of getting accolades or winning awards,” Kaiser said.

And if we’re going by betting odds, the same goes for actors. Leo is by far the favourite to win best actor (some betting sites have him at 1-to-100 odds, meaning a $100 bet will only yield a measly $1 in profit) – however, his highly-searched co-star Tom Hardy is a distant third in the odds to win best supporting actor.


Based on this Google Trends chart, at the peak of Oscar nomination buzz, Leonardo DiCaprio was being searched more than five times as often as the next most popular Oscar Actor, Matt Damon.

And for the women, Jennifer Lawrence dominated the search box -- though Brie Larson did see a quite a large spike in interest around nomination time.


For supporting actresses, seeing as these searches are restricted to Canada, it makes sense that a Canadian would pique our interest the most.

“My suspicion is that we’re searching for her most, and more than the other individuals, in part because of her role in Spotlight, but also because we’re really rooting for her,” Kaiser said.

Here’s what people have been wondering about the London, Ont. Native:


And just for fun, here’s a similar list for the unofficial star of this year’s show: