10 A-List Actors Who Have Never Won an Oscar

Here are 10 actors who should already have an Oscar (according to us).

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It’s a funny thing: Almost without fail, ever year, Oscar recipients inevitably tell the room that “it meant a lot just to be nominated.” Or “I forgot to write a speech because I didn’t think I’d win” or “I’m so proud of and grateful for the other nominees.”

Etc. etc. etc.

We can all agree that the Oscars are overblown and essentially involve industry executives picking the winners. That said, while the awards show could be trimmed, the outcomes matter to a lot of people. That goes for anyone working in the independent film industry, like a first-time director who can finish his next film thanks to the recognition he’ll get from their Academy Award.

Bearing in mind that the awards themselves are innocuous, there are many actors who should at least be sharing the same Airbnb with the rest. Here are 10 of the most egregious cases:

10. Johnny Depp

So … yeah, Johny Depp hasn’t exactly had a great few years. But since personal behavior doesn’t always trounce talent, Depp belongs somewhere on this list. A flood of his films defined a generation — Cry-Baby and Edward Scissorhands (1990), and Benny & Joon and What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (1993) for example.

9. Robert Downey Jr.

Wait, you’re telling me Robert Downey Jr. didn’t get an Oscar for his performance in Chaplin? Or as Sherlock Holmes? Or in any of the Marvel movies? Yup, that is the case. Maybe his role in Christopher Nolan’s hugely awaited film Oppenheimer will finally facilitate Downey Jr. getting an Oscar statuette.

8. Ralph Fiennes

Actor Ralph Fiennes has two Oscar nominations under his belt — but no statuettes. Fiennes earned the nods for Schindler’s List (1993) and The English Patient (1996) — two of the most appreciated films of the 1990s. Ralph Fiennes also enjoyed a stint at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Need we say more? Hand this man an Oscar.

7. Michael Keaton

One could argue that Michael Keaton is more of a likable actor than an extremely talented one. That might be why the Academy has only granted him one nomination (the Best Actor prize for 2015, for Birdman). While Michael Keaton started his career as a stand-up comic, his other noteworthy — and, perhaps, award-worthy — performances prove that he’s even better at dramatic roles than comedic ones.

6. Laura Linney

Laura Linney is an “actors’ actor,” meaning she has enormous cred among other actors for her impressive career. Her first role was a small one for Lorenzo’s Oil (1992). She eventually racked up three Oscar nominations for the dramas You Can Count on Me (2000), Kinsey (2004), and The Savages (2007). Linney is perfect Oscar material … c’mon, Academy.

5. Tom Cruise

Most of us think Tom Cruise, 60, is an ageless action hero whose star began rising again as time went by and more people forgot what Scientology even was. As top-notch of an action star as Tom Cruise is, he also earned three Academy Award nominations along the way. Those films included Born on the Fourth of July (1989), Jerry Maguire (1996), and Magnolia (1999).

4. Sigourney Weaver

Perhaps no other actor has the chops to play both a fictional alien-hunter who lives in space and real-life anthropologist Dian Fossey (in Michael Apted’s Gorillas in the Mist). All it would take for Sigourney Weaver to get into the EGOT Club is one Academy Award. It would belong nicely on her shelf that already has two Golden Globe Awards, a Grammy Award, three Academy Award nominations, four Primetime Emmy Awards, and a Tony Award.

3. Samuel L. Jackson

Not only is it a travesty that Samuel L. Jackson hasn’t won an Oscar — he only has one nomination to his name. In 1995, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences nominated his supporting role in Pulp Fiction. Earlier this year, the Academy honored Samuel L. Jackson with an Honorary Academy Award.

2. Glenn Close

Winner of three Golden Globe Awards, three Primetime Emmy Awards, and three Tony Awards, Glenn Close has enjoyed no such luck from the Academy. Close claims a dubious honor with the Academy: She is tied for first on the list of actors who earned the most Oscar nominations in an acting category without a win.

1. Kurt Russell

Tombstone, one of the only two great cowboy movies from the 1990s (the other: Unforgiven), still holds up great and is probably the best argument for Kurt Russell to get noticed for his expert acting skills. Then again, he would’ve faced the stiffest competition imaginable in Tom Hanks, Daniel Day-Lewis, Laurence Fishburne, Anthony Hopkins, and Liam Neeson.

(The Guardian put Kurt Russell in the honorable mention category alongside Christian Bale, Alan Rickman, Jeff Daniels, and Kevin Bacon.)

Read More: “The Best and Worst from the 90th Academy Awards red carpet

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