Michigan Operators Rolling Out The Red Carpet To Take Your Oscars Bets

Written By Derek Helling on April 21, 2021

Since regulators gave their approval, Michigan Oscars betting has been the focus of a lot of work by MI sportsbook operators. With the 2021 Academy Awards show now just days away, Michiganders now have a better view of their wagering options.

The 93rd edition of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Awards will be the first that bettors in MI can legally wager on. Here are details about which MI sportsbooks have options and what they’re offering.

Who’s in on Michigan Oscars betting?

Shortly after the Michigan Gaming Control Board assented to operators’ requests, DraftKings Sportsbook and PointsBet Sportsbook were first to the market. As of mid-day Wednesday, they were the only two MI operators with markets live, although several others had action earlier in the week.

The MGCB approved a wide menu of potential wagers. Those include 23 distinct awards, not all of which operators have action on. When PointsBet first launched its Academy Awards markets in MI, it consisted of odds on which nominee would win Best Picture. A full list of nominees is available on the Academy’s website.

DraftKings’ initial offering was a bit more robust, including Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress in addition to Best Picture. So, is there a consensus for the top categories? If so, where are the best odds on those favorites?

And the Oscar goes to…

Nomadland is the consensus favorite for Best Picture. It started out at -670 at DraftKings and -527 on PointsBet, and those lines haven’t moved. Other action of note includes:

  • The late Chadwick Boseman retains his enormous favorite status for Best Actor (-1667 at both DraftKings and PointsBet).
  • Carey Mulligan is still the leading contender for Best Actress at +125 on DraftKings.
  • DraftKings is even more confident about Nomadland director Chloe Zhao taking home Best Director honors, moving its line from -2500 to -3335.
  • Both DraftKings and PointsBet have added markets for Best Supporting Actor and Actress, along with Best Adapted and Original screenplays.
  • DraftKings now offers betting on 16 other awards, such as Best Original Score and Best Visual Effects.

This year’s awards show will be unique for more reason than just the fact that MI sports betting on the voting is ongoing. As with everything else in the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has had its effects.

A down year means potential opportunities

The pandemic made this year’s crop of nominees unique. The heavy contenders are a mix of independent films and non-theatrical releases. Additionally, many of the nominations for actor awards are off the well-worn path.

The lack of blockbuster, heavily invested, major studio films might make some bettors decide to stay away from the awards this year. This could be a year in which more than any in recent history, voters decide to divide up awards, rather than laud one standout movie.

Thus, this could be the year to take some fliers on longer odds. For example, the chances of Nomadland taking Best Picture and Zhao claiming Best Director may not be as strong as DraftKings’ odds indicate.

If there is an upset in either category, some MI bettors might enjoy an award-winning payout. Regardless, movie buffs are likely happy to see Michigan Oscars betting available for this year and beyond.

Photo by Danny Moloshok/Invision/AP File
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Derek Helling

Derek Helling is a freelance journalist who resides in Chicago, IL. He is a 2013 graduate of the University of Iowa and covers the intersections of sports with business and the law. Recently, he has written about the expanded gambling industry in Michigan, including online sports betting, online casinos, and the cornerstone land-based casino market.

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