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Tony Awards: We predict 'Mormon' will be the big winner

Book of Mormon

Book of Mormon Credit: Handout

There are some years when the Tony Awards are completely unpredictable (i.e. "Wicked" versus "Avenue Q," "Jersey Boys" versus "The Drowsy Chaperone"), and others when the awards are already set in stone. This year definitely falls into the latter category.

"The Book of Mormon," which received critical acclaim and is now a sold-out hit, will surely - and deservedly - win Best Musical. Having received a whopping 14 nominations, there is little doubt that it will pick up at least a few of the other awards, too.

The visually stunning "War Horse" is expected to win Best Play, with the slight possibility of a challenging new work like "The Motherf----- With the Hat" or "Good People" pulling an upset.

"Anything Goes" will easily win Best Musical Revival over "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," its only competition.

A few months ago, one would have thought that "The Merchant of Venice" would win Best Play Revival. However, the first Broadway production of Larry Kramer's seminal AIDS drama "The Normal Heart," a last-minute entry into the Broadway season, is now expected to take home the prize.

The Best Actor in a Play category is an embarrassment of riches. Mark Rylance, who received raves this season for masterful performances in two Broadway plays, probably will receive the award for "Jerusalem." However, the honor easily could go to any of the nominees, especially Bobby Cannavale ("Motherf-----") or Al Pacino ("The Merchant of Venice").

Nina Arianda, 26, has received plenty of buzz for her breakout performance in "Born Yesterday" as a not-so-ditzy blonde, but Best Actress in a Play will probably go to Frances McDormand, who portrayed a single mother on the brink of homelessness in "Good People."

Andrew Rannells and Josh Gad, the two leads of "The Book of Mormon," could potentially split the Best Actor in a Musical vote, allowing Tony Sheldon - whose deeply felt performance as an aging transsexual is the best part of the otherwise trashy "Priscilla Queen of the Desert" - to pull off the win.

Sutton Foster, whose musical comedy chops are on full display in "Anything Goes," is expected to take home her second Tony for Best Actress in a Musical. But don't discount the possibility of newcomer Patina Miller, who is sensational in "Sister Act," winning instead.

On TV: The Tony Awards air on Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBS/2.

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