With the Academy Awards just around the corner, it’s always astonishing to take a look at the list of some of our favorite and most revered actors who have never taken home that coveted golden statuette. The names on the list are very recognizable, and most film fans probably assumed these actors already had an Oscar in their trophy case. Which actors have not won Oscars? The answer might surprise you.
Hopefully, as the years progress, many of these names will be checked off the list. It did take Leonardo DiCaprio six nods to get the Academy Award, so actors do have to find patience with the award show process and keep picking good movie roles.
Here are some of the most beloved actors in Hollywood who have not yet won an Oscar.
Glenn Close is a seven-time Oscar nominee and overdue for the honor. This year, it’s The Wife that brings her the nomination as a long-suffering wife in the shadow of a revered man.
However, anyone can look back at Albert Nobbs, The Big Chill and Fatal Attraction and know Close is one of the greatest actresses of her time. With the Golden Globes surprise win over Lady Gaga, she’s definitely a front-runner to win the Oscar and get off this list.
It’s been 19 years since Tom Cruise was last nominated for an Oscar, for Magnolia, considered by many film critics to be his finest role to date. He was on a hot streak earlier in his career with a string of well-received successes, like Born on the Fourth of July and Jerry Maguire.
Cruise has focused on his action-film career over the last two decades, but we think an Oscar-winning role is still in his future.
Besides acquiring a mean set of biceps for her role as Tina Turner in What’s Love Got To Do With It?, Angela Bassett turned in the finest performance of her career with no Oscar win. The award in 1994 went to Holly Hunter for The Piano.
Last March, Bassett admitted on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen that she deserved that Oscar after he read a comment from a fan who believed she should have won.
“Yeah, me too,” she laughed.
What’s it going to take for Bradley Cooper to win his Oscar? He has not only been nominated in the acting categories but has also branched out to other categories, like best picture for producing American Sniper in 2015.
Will 2019 be his lucky year for A Star Is Born? A lot of fans are rooting for him to win something, even though he got snubbed in the directing category. It would be fun to see the man behind Jackson Maine take home at least one honor.
Michelle Williams has given us consistently gut-wrenching performances over the years, from Brokeback Mountain to Manchester by the Sea. She speaks her heartbreak through her facial expressions without ever uttering a word. So how is it possible she doesn’t have an Oscar yet?
We can see the upcoming drama This Is Jane or her portrayal of teacher-turned-astronaut Christa McAuliffe in The Challenger as future Oscar wins for Williams. Both films are in pre-production.
The Academy tends to overlook action stars when it comes to nominations. It’s hard to believe that Ford’s turns as Indiana Jones or Han Solo never earned him an Oscar — he’s managed the right balance of dramatic and funny in those roles.
Ford does have one solitary nomination, back in 1985 for Witness. Will he ever see another nomination again? Maybe 2019’s Call of the Wild as novelist Jack London will be his lucky role.
Will Vice be the movie that bumps Amy Adams over to the Oscar winner list? She nailed her powerful role as the muscle behind the man, Lynne Cheney. We’ve been very patient waiting for Adams to win with movies like American Hustle and The Fighter, but our patience is wearing thin.
The Academy needs to take a closer look at Adams’ nuanced performances. She makes those accents look easy, but they are anything but.
Nobody, and we mean nobody, has had a better on-camera meltdown than Annette Bening in American Beauty. Her flawless execution with the scene screams Oscar, but Bening has lost all four times she’s been nominated. In fact, she lost to Hilary Swank in both 1999 and 2004.
She has a juicy role coming in 2019 as Senator Dianne Feinstein in the post-9/11 drama The Report. Let’s hope another Oscar nod comes Bening’s way soon — she needs to win!
Edward Norton scored two Oscar nominations in the 1990s with Primal Fear and American History X. He didn’t return to the big show until 2014’s Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance). He was nominated for best supporting actor, and the film went on to win best picture.
We don’t know what the Academy missed during Birdman because his character’s epic tanning booth fight with actor Michael Keaton is a delicious gem. Norton’s next project includes a dual role as actor/director for the 1950s drama Motherless Brooklyn.
There is no one more badass than Sigourney Weaver in Alien. We think Ellen Ripley paved the way for Linda Hamilton’s character in The Terminator, and Weaver got an Oscar nod for blazing that trail.
Weaver was even one of the rare nominees to get two nominations in a single year — 1988’s Gorillas in the Mist and Working Girl. Sadly, she didn’t walk away with either Oscar that night.
The 2019 Oscars will air live on Sunday, Feb. 24, at 8/7c on ABC.