As far as being acknowledged for a piece of work goes, an Oscar nomination is easily one of the most difficult to earn. That being said, year after year, there are front runners. The same, familiar faces we, as cinephiles, have come to expect great things from. And every year, as sure as the seasons change, one of these remarkable actors is fortunate enough to capture the gold statue. The talented men below, are not one of these lucky individuals. For whatever reason, the 10 men listed below can’t seem to close the deal. Granted, it isn’t for a lack of effort or quality, neither is it due to some misguided bias. It just so happens that every performance they’ve given that has eventually earned them this elusive recognition, has been trumped by another individual. Now, we may not unanimously agree on the winner yearly, but one thing we can all agree on, is the men listed below, should have some Oscar gold on their shelves.
The way I concluded on how to compile this top 10 is simple. Each actor mentioned in the top 10 has a performance I feel should have earned them an Oscar win. A lot of the men listed have been nominated, some more than once. Nonetheless, have yet to take home the hardware. As for the “still time” and “honourable mentions,” they might not have been nominated previously, but I still feel will win an Oscar in my lifetime.
- Ryan Gosling
- Michael Fassbender
- Cillian Murphy
- Benedict Cumberbatch
- Johnny Depp
- John Travolta
- Viggo Mortensen
- Vincent Cassel
- Harrison Ford
- Jim Carrey
- Ian McKellan
- Joaquin Phoenix
- Patrick Stewart
10: Ed Harris – The Truman Show
A four-time Oscar nominee, Ed Harris just can’t seem to get the respect he deserves or be able to catch a break.
9: Edward Norton – American History X
“Fight Club,” “Moonrise Kingdom,” and “American History X,” Edward Norton has no shortage of great performances under his belt. Now, if he could just get that elusive win, we could all cross him off of our lists.
8: Bill Murray – Lost in Translation
His best chance to win the golden statue may have already passed with the release of “Lost in Translation.” But who knows, maybe he can surprise us once more and finally grab a victory.
7: Tom Cruise – Jerry McGuire
All Cruise craziness aside, he has stared in numerous films that should have garnered him at least one Oscar win, if not more.
6: Sam Rockwell – Moon
Many of you may not agree with this choice. Nonetheless, I feel Sam Rockwell has given the performance of our lifetime in “Moon” and should have been at least recognized for it, in my opinion, he should have been given the Oscar hands down.
5: Samuel L. Jackson – Pulp Fiction
Really? How did Jackson not win an Oscar for his performance in “Pulp Fiction?”
4: Liam Neeson – Schindler’s List
Another no-brainer. Liam Neeson is an outstanding actor, yet has not earned an Oscar.
3: Gary Oldman – Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
One of the most illustrious actors on this list, Mr. Oldman has only been nominated once. While it should have been more, his performance in “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” should have gotten him the win.
2: Brad Pitt – 12 Monkeys
Now we are getting into ridiculousness. Take your pick, Pitt should have multiple Oscar wins, but has yet to receive his first, utterly insane.
1: Leonardo DiCaprio – The Aviator
Arguably one of the best actors to ever grace the big screen. Leonardo DiCaprio has yet to win an Oscar. WIth a plethora of performances that should have gotten him at least one win. We, as cinephiles can only hope he will be recognized for his work sometime in the near future.