Everything Everything at Once may seem like the best contender in this particular awards season, but The Banshees of Inisherin has given it the most difficult run for its money. Despite the fact that each individual part stands out in its own right, from the cinematography to the subject matter to a string of high-profile performances, all of which earned Oscar nominations.
Barry Keoghan was the perfect fit to play Dominic Kearney, the deceptively sharp young man who played a significant role in revealing Pádraic's true colors.
But the journey to this award was far from an easy one; the actor's story is one of hard-boiled determination and cheeky grit from a boy who didn't deserve the terrible hand he received at a young age.
Keoghan's childhood was marred by hardship when his mother passed away at the age of 12, leading him and his brother Eric to being placed into Ireland's foster care system, which saw them move between 13 different foster homes over the course of seven years, and watching films by going to his local cinema (from which he was also eventually banned).
Keoghan noticed a casting call advertisement in a shop window for a crime film in which he was ultimately chosen. This inspired him to enroll in a local Dublin acting school known as The Factory.
Keoghan found himself featured in the likes of Dunkirk, The Killing of the Sacred Deer, and the miniseries Chernobyl in the mid-2010s, and by 2021, he was a Marvel Cinematic Universe star, portraying Druig in Eternals with all the swagger we know him for.
Keoghan has received his first Oscar nomination for The Banshees of Inisherin, alongside co-stars Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, and Kerry Condon. It's a milestone achievement for the young actor who began his career as a result of sheer willpower and unending curiosity.
Keoghan's inspiring journey will have a major impact on his career, and we can only assume that this isn't the last Oscar presentation we've seen of the talented young man.