Feb. 20, 2014 at 9:02 AM ET
Mark your ballots: Jimmy Kimmel believes he knows who's going to win the Academy Award for best actor on March 2 — "Dallas Buyers Club" star Matthew McConaughey. And on Wednesday's "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" the host even got the actor to preview what his acceptance speech might sound like.
McConaughey said he would hearken back to his first lines ever spoken on film, his "All right, all right, all right" drawl from 1993's "Dazed and Confused," which he also used in accepting his Golden Globe for the "Dallas" role in January.
It was a speech that Kimmel noted would be "untoppable." "I feel like you wasted your A material on the Golden Globes, and you should've saved it for the Oscars ... you have a lot to live up to!" the late-night host added.
"If I start out with 'all right, all right, all right,' it'll swing back somehow to be 'just keep living' story pitch," McConaughey explained to Kimmel of his potential Oscar speech.
"You starved yourself almost to death ... I feel like just based on that alone you should get it," said Kimmel.
The actor didn't agree that losing 40 pounds was the basis for an Oscar, but did note, "Doing that for five months put me in a place where I was able to study and surround myself with everything Ron Woodruff." While playing the AIDS-stricken Woodruff, the actor added that he was "literally and figuratively hungry."
The transformation of his body led to a surprising distribution of his energy, he added. "I needed three hours less sleep a night, I had an amazing amount of energy, but it was only ... from the neck up."
An Oscar might not be the end of the award-winning road for McConaughey, who looks to be an early smart bet at the Emmys later this year thanks to his co-starring role as an investigator with Woody Harrelson on HBO's "True Detective." The pair have been friends a long time, and they share at least one thing in common: ping pong.
"I am pretty good. He's real good," said McConaughey. "He's very competitive." Once, he said, they were staying in a rented Hollywood house and had a few free days, so they began playing.
"About two hours later, the game had turned into 'do not let the ball stop,'" he said. "So we're dripping in sweat, I've got blood on me, he's hittin' this tree and he's run into stuff, there's broken glass all over the place ... but we never let the ball stop!"
The Oscars air March 2 at 7 p.m. ET on ABC. "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" is on ABC weeknights at 11:35 p.m., and "True Detective" airs on HBO on Sundays at 9 p.m.