Andrew Garfield and Will Smith Brought Best Actor Race Into Focus at AFI Fest

So have we seen everything yet?AFI Fest, which just wrapped in Los Angeles, is the final prominent film festival to unveil a handful of awards hopefuls.Lin-Manuel Miranda’s directorial debut, “Tick, Tick … Boom!,” from Netflix, premiered to strong reviews and plenty of Oscar buzz.

As part of a banner year for Miranda that includes involvement in three other projects — “Encanto,” “In the Heights” and “Rita Moreno: Just a Girl Who Decided to Go for It” — Miranda successfully stages a movie adaptation of a lesser-known, autobiographical musical from “Rent” composer Jonathan Larson.

The film will most likely earn a second lead actor Oscar nomination for Andrew Garfield (after “Hacksaw Ridge”) for playing Larson, in a role that requires quite a bit of singing.In fact, Garfield may emerge as a formidable challenger to Will Smith for “King Richard,” where he plays Richard Williams, the father of tennis champs Venus and Serena.

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