Oscars 2016: Who would win if Academy went by box office

The best bet of 2016 Oscars? Leonardo DiCaprio
The best bet of 2016 Oscars? Leonardo DiCaprio

The Academy Awards celebrate the best in film, but the ceremony isn't exactly a popularity contest.

But what if it was?

Ticket sales are a great indicator of what is popular at the cineplex, so we looked up who brought home the gold in terms of the U.S. box office in each of this year's five major Oscar categories.

Going strictly by box office, "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" would sweep all categories from Best Picture to having Chewbacca accept the award for Best Supporting Actor.

So for the purpose of this exercise, we will restrict it to which nominated movies would take home the statuette if the deciding factor was money.

Best Picture box office winner: "The Martian"

Matt Damon The Martian
20th Century Fox

Three of the eight nominated films have raked in more than $100 million at the box office.

Ridley Scott's lost in space thriller leads the pack with a $228.3 million domestic haul, according to comScore (SCOR).

However, the favorite to take the award home, "The Revenant," trails with a total of $165.1 million.

Best Actor box office winner: Matt Damon, "The Martian"

the martian matt damon

The Oscar for Best Actor is Leonardo DiCaprio's to lose, but DiCaprio's trek through the wilderness is second again to "The Martian" when it comes to the box office.

Matt Damon's performance was not just raved about by nearly every critic, it's also the highest-grossing role of the actor's career.

Best Actress box office winner: Jennifer Lawrence, "Joy"

jennifer lawrence joy

At 25, Jennifer Lawrence is youngest four-time acting nominee in Oscar history, but it's doubtful that Lawrence will take home anything but that distinction on Sunday.

According to GoldDerby.com, an Oscars predictor website, Lawrence is the least likely to win Best Actress with her odds at 80-to-1.

Brie Larson is the Oscar favorite for her performance in "Room," which took in only $12.6 million.

Related: Here are 8 golden facts about this year's Oscar nominations

Best Supporting Actor box office winner: Tom Hardy, "The Revenant"

tom hardy revenant

Sylvester Stallone is the industry and fan favorite to win Best Supporting Actor for his return to the role of Rocky Balboa in "Creed."

However, the Italian Stallion would lose the bout to Tom Hardy in "The Revenant" if the Academy was going by ticket sales.

Best Supporting Actress box office winner: Jennifer Jason Leigh, "The Hateful Eight"

jennifer jason leigh hateful eight

Jennifer Jason Leigh turned in a bloody performance in Quentin Tarantino's "The Hateful Eight," which made $53.4 million -- enough to give the actress the box office Oscar.

But Leigh is given only a 2% chance to win by GoldDerby.com.

The site's favorite to win, Alicia Vikander in "The Danish Girl," made the least amount of money in this category with $10.9 million in the U.S.

Related: Oscar odds: Favorites and longshots for Hollywood's big night

Red carpet coverage of the 88th Annual Academy Awards begins at 7 p.m. ET this Sunday on ABC. The ceremony hosted by Chris Rock begins at 8:30 p.m.


CNNMoney Sponsors