Why Haven’t These Actors Won an Oscar Yet?

Awarding an actor an Oscar is another way of Hollywood and the movie industry approve the work an actor has done in a particular role; however there are some actors who have not yet won an Oscar even though they deserved it. Now, let’s get started.

Edward Norton

Edward Norton has only been nominated for 2 Oscars, Best Lead Actor in American History X and Best Supporting Actor for Primal Fear. The fact that he wasn’t even nominated for Fight Club is itself a tragedy. Norton is a great actor in most all his roles and always gives roles his all, his performance in American History X and Fight Club especially are definitely worth of giving him the gold.

When he was nominated for American History X he lost to Robert Benigni in Life Is Beautiful and, personally I think that Norton should have definitely won it over Benigni. However, Benigni was playing a character who encountered prejudice, which the academy eats up, sometimes foolishly so.

Edward Norton’s acting in Fight Club is arguably his best, he and Pitt give amazing, thoroughly convincing performances and it turns what could have been a good film, into a spectacle of a film. It really is a shame that the Academy hated Fight Club and couldn’t recognise its cerebral genius.

Gary Oldman

Gary Oldman is a great actor who has made some pretty bad choices in the films he stars in. However, sometimes he appears in a great movie which is improved merely by his presence, Oldman could have won for a lot of his movies; however I feel that Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy or Léon are/were his best chances. In 1994, when Léon was released it had a lot of competition from Pulp Fiction, Forrest Gump and The Shawshank Redemption, which also had some great performances, so it is debatable whether Oldman should have won then, but in my opinion, he would have come very close.

I still remain hopeful that the Academy will give Oldman the award for Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy this year, however I highly doubt it. Keep working Oldman, you will get there one day.

Leonardo DiCaprio

Oh Leo, I genuinely feel sorry for you, you give great performances in amazing films, but you just can’t get a win. You even resorted to pure Oscar bait roles (J. Edgar) but the Academy just doesn’t like you.

Leonardo DiCaprio has given solid performances in almost every film he has been in but it seems that he can’t escape the mighty shadow Titanic has cast over him. He was nominated for What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? in 1994 but then Titanic came along and he wasn’t nominated again until 2005 for The Aviator and then again in 2007 for Blood Diamond. He could have easily won for any of those roles or, my personal top 3 DiCaprio roles (Shutter Island, Inception, The Departed) Maybe Tarantino can help you win an Oscar, but don’t hold your breath Leo.

Paul Giamatti

Paul Giamatti, like Oldman has chosen some terrible films to star in however that does not detract from the solid performances he has given in the good films he has done. He was nominated for Cinderella Man in 2005 however he lost to George Clooney in Syriana. I also feel that Giamatti should have won for his role in Sideways or even in The Ides of March. Two very different performances, but both pulled off excellently. However I do think that a win is coming for Giamatti, he just needs to cut back on the shit roles he takes for the paycheque *cough*Lady in the Water*cough*.

Brad Pitt

Brad Pitt, you poor bastard, the Academy just won’t give you a break. However, I don’t feel too sorry for you as you have Angelina at home to comfort you, plus when she isn’t there, you can pretend that her Oscar is yours.

Enough joking around, Brad Pitt, in my opinion is one of the most deserving on this list, he has had some great roles and has given some mind-blowing performances. Pitt has been nominated by the academy several times, for his roles in Moneyball, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and Twelve Monkeys, but hasn’t won. Also I am appalled that he hasn’t been nominated for more of his roles, a few examples of where he gave great performances are; Inglourious Basterds, Fight Club, Se7en, Snatch (wishful thinking on my part, of course), etc.

In all of those roles he gave amazing performances and should have won several Oscars by now, my guess is that Pitt must have pissed a lot of academy voters off to have not won the gold by now.

Wait, Brad Pitt voiced a character in Happy Feet Two? Fuck it, he doesn’t deserve an Oscar.

Johnny Depp

At first I was surprised that Depp has not won an Oscar, but then when I thought about it I realised that Depp has not had that many films that the Academy would even look at, never mind consider giving him the gold for. However I was even more surprised to find the films where he was nominated – Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Finding Neverland. Really? The Academy snub his nominations for Ed Wood, Edward Scissorhands, Donnie Brasco and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, but nominate him for Sweeney Todd? A nomination is a nomination I guess, but the Academy really does puzzle me sometimes.

Johnny Depp will definitely win an Oscar one day, I have no doubt about it, I just hope it is because he deserves it and not because “it is his time.”

Ralph Fiennes

Ralph Fiennes always plays great villains, he was perfect as Voldemort, he had the perfect look, the perfect delivery of dialogue and was pure brilliant. In Clash of the Titans, although it was a shit film, casting him as Hades was one of the only good things about the film, his presence in all of his films is felt throughout and the eeriness he can communicate with the audience through his actions and his eyes alone are great.

Fiennes has been nominated twice, once for Schindler’s List, which is arguably his best role and once for his role in The English Patient, which was another solid performance. Fiennes lost to Tommy Lee Jones in 1993, which in my opinion was a wrong decision by the Academy, Tommy Lee Jones gave a great performance but it was nothing compared to Fiennes’ performance in Schindler’s List. Then Fiennes lost to Geoffrey Rush’s performance in Shine, it is arguable who deserved the win in that particular situation however I strongly believe that Fiennes should have won for his performance in Schindler’s List.

Also, I think that Fiennes should have been nominated for his performance as Voldemort in the final Harry Potter film, however I do not believe he should have won, but a nomination would have been nice.

Liam Neeson

Liam Neeson has earned the reputation of being a bad ass in recent years, partly due to his role in the unexpectedly great film, Taken. However just because he has become an action star recently doesn’t mean he cannot give a great performance.

Neeson was nominated in 1994 for best actor for his great role in Schindler’s List and yet again it is debatable whether he should have won or not. Neeson is a truly great actor with great versatility however often his choice in films is…questionable to say the least. Come on Liam, you can’t star in Wrath of the Titans and Battleship and expect to get nominated. I still strongly believe that we have yet to see the best of what Neeson has to offer and he will blow us all away with a film that will truly showcase his talent.

Tim Roth

Not a name you would expect to see on this list however I have a soft spot for Roth, he was great in both Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction. His role in Pulp Fiction was a pretty small role, but I think he should have been nominated for his performance in Reservoir Dogs, although not possibly a win.

Roth was nominated in 1996 for his supporting role in Rob Roy but lost out to Kevin Spacey’s performance in The Usual Suspects, which to be honest is fair enough.

However, I think if Tarantino gives Roth a decent role in one of his future movies, Roth might yet win the gold. Come on Tarantino, Tim is waiting for your call since Lie to Me finished.


Ewan McGregor

McGregor has never been nominated for an Oscar, despite good performances in Big Fish, The Ghost and Moulin Rouge and his great performances in Trainspotting and Shallow Grave.

Trainspotting was snubbed entirely at the Oscars so it is no surprise that his best acting role to date received no recognition, which is a shame. I also feel that since starring in the Star Wars prequels, McGregor will have to give an absolutely mind blowing performance to get the Academy voters to forget about the prequels.

Ryan Gosling

Let me just start off by saying that Ryan Gosling should have gotten a nomination for his performances in Drive and The Ides of March, but he was not, for reasons that I cannot comprehend.

In 2006, Gosling was nominated for his role in Half Nelson, where he lost out on the gold to Forest Whitaker with The Last King of Scotland, which is fair enough, Whitaker’s performance was outstanding.

Gosling is definitely one of the stronger actors of the younger generation in Hollywood and almost always has had good taste in the films he chooses to be in. As such there is no doubt in my mind that Gosling will win an Oscar within the next few years.

The cast of The Lord of the Rings

The fact that almost the entire cast of The Lord of the Rings did not win any gold for their performances shocks me, most, if not all of the roles are perfectly cast with great performances from everyone involved, Orlando Bloom even put in a good performance.

In The Fellowship of the Ring, only one actor was nominated for their performance, Ian McKellen for his role as Gandalf, yet he lost to Jim Broadbent’s performance in Iris, which is bullshit, they should have given it to McKellen and his great performance as Gandalf in all three films, but especially in The Fellowship of the Ring.

The fact that Ian McKellen was the only actor nominated throughout all three films tells me that something is very wrong at the Academy.

How Viggo Mortensen was not nominated for his performance in Return of the King I do not know. His performance was spectacular throughout all three films but he gave it his all in the final film.

Elijah Wood and Sean Astin should have been nominated for their superb performances throughout all three films. However in Return of the King, Astin gave the performance of his life which definitely deserved a nomination, if not a win.

Andy Serkis was robbed of a nomination because of the Academy and their bullshit rules.

Bill Murray
Bill Murray’s performance in Lost in Translation was nothing short of great. So great that he was nominated for said performance in 2003, however he lost out to Sean Penn in Mystic River, I am not going to start debating who deserved the win more, but Murray was genuinely out of his comfort zone with Lost in Translation and Sean Penn was deeply in his comfort zone with Mystic River.

I doubt Murray will ever win the gold now, unless he pulls out an amazing performance in the future, but I think he will get an honorary Oscar, because come on, he’s Bill fucking Murray!

 

Alan Rickman

Alan Rickman plays great bad guys, he was brilliant in his first ever acting role in a film in Die Hard as Hans Gruber, his performance as Snape is also brilliant. In Sweeney Todd he played the evil Judge Turpin and showed off his vocal skills.

Besides the above, he has not had that many great films and as such has not had any chances to flex his acting chops.

I do think that the Academy should have nominated him for his final performance as Snape in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, because he went from being “That bad teacher that hates Harry” to a deeply complex character who is not really a bad person and Rickman sold that brilliantly.

Sigourney Weaver

Sigourney Weaver has been nominated for an Oscar 3 times in the past, once in 1986 for Aliens, which she lost to Marlee Matlin’s performance in Children of a Lesser God, which in itself was a mistake as Weaver is brilliant in all of the Alien films, but especially in Aliens. Weaver was also nominated for 2 Oscars in 1988, once for Gorillas in the Mist, which she lost to Jodie Foster in The Accused and once for Working Girl, where she lost to Geena Davis’ performance in The Accidental Tourist.

I highly doubt Weaver will get another nomination, especially if she decides to stick with James Cameron, whose films look pretty but rarely have substance, especially his past few films.

Will Smith

Will Smith is the kind of actor who can easily switch between comedic and dramatic roles yet still bring in a big box office. Unlike most comedic actors who attempt drama and fail, Smith takes it in his stride and gives amazing performances, even if the film is just simply average.

Smith has been nominated for 2 Oscars, once in 2001 for his title role in Ali, which he lost to Denzel Washington in Training Day, which was fair enough as Denzel’s performance was nothing but outstanding but I believe that if Denzel’s performance was just slightly weaker, Smith would have stolen that Oscar from under him. Smith was also nominated in 2006 for his role in The Pursuit of Happyness which he lost to Forest Whitaker, which again Whitaker deserved.

I do believe that Smith has the potential to win more than one Oscar in his life, however he needs to make some wiser choices, a Shyamalan film Will?

Peter O’Toole

Peter O’Toole has been nominated for 8 Oscars and has never won, to which I politely say, what the fuck?!

Also, I am not counting the bullshit “Outstanding contribution to film” award, that is just the Academy trying to make up for mistakes, fuck that.

O’Toole was nominated for his performances in the following films; Lawrence of Arabia, Becket, The Lion in Winter, Goodbye, Mr. Chips, The Ruling Class, The Stunt Man, My Favourite Year and finally Venus.

He could have won for any of those roles but the role that stands out for me personally is his role in Lawrence of Arabia was superb, he lost to Gregory Peck’s performance in To Kill A Mockingbird, however I believe that it should have been really close. It might have been, I wasn’t alive in 1962 to have a personal account of the Oscars.

Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise has been nominated 3 times, once in 1989 for Born on the Fourth of July, where he lost to Daniel Day-Lewis’ performance in My Left Foot. Once again in 1996 for Jerry Maguire, where he lost to Geoffrey Rush’s performance in Shine and finally in 1999 for his performance in Magnolia, where he lost to Sir Michael Caine’s performance in The Cider House Rules.

However Cruise was not nominated for, in my opinion is one of his best performances, which is in Rain Man, starring opposite an amazing Dustin Hoffman, playing Cruise’s long lost brother who happens to have autism. Cruise starts the film as a despicable human and you are truly disgusted with some of the stuff he attempts to get the money off of his Autistic brother, but towards the end of the film he transforms and becomes a truly sympathetic character as you see his fondness growing, it really is an amazing performance.

Robert Downey Jr.

Robert Downey Jr. has been nominated for 2 Oscars in the past, once for Chaplin in 1992, which he lost against Al Pacino’s performance in Scent of a Woman, which in my opinion Downey Jr. or Denzel Washington should have won over Pacino. Then Downey was nominated for his role in Tropic Thunder, where he lost to Heath Ledger’s performance in The Dark Knight and I believe that nobody thinks Downey Jr. should have won for his performance when compared to the mind blowing performance given by Heath Ledger.

Downey Jr. has great acting chops but he prefers roles which are more fun, Tony Stark, Sherlock Holmes, but even then he gives great performances. This leads me to believe that when Downey Jr. gets too old to play Tony Stark, he will delve into more dramatic roles and that will be when he wins his Oscar.

Tom Hardy

An unusual choice for a list like this I know, especially considering that he is relatively new to Hollywood and is only getting the recognition he deserves in the past 2 years, however his performance as Bronson was near perfection. He immersed himself in that role and truly became the monster that is Charles Bronson, the criminal, not the actor.

The acting chops he showed in Bronson alone put him on Christopher Nolan’s radar which boosted his rise to Hollywood status. However Bronson is not Hardy’s only accomplishment in the world of acting. In Warrior, he gave another outstanding performance which in any other year he would have been nominated for.

Hardy is young and hungry for roles, he is a great actor, and like future co-star Christian Bale, changes his body drastically for certain roles. There is no doubt in my mind that Hardy will win more than one Oscar in his career.

by Brady Clay

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