Movie Maniac

Living actors with the most Oscar nominations and no wins

Glenn Close is a frontrunner for a best actress Oscar for “The Wife.”
Glenn Close is a frontrunner for a best actress Oscar for “The Wife.” Sony Pictures Classics

Could this finally be her year? Glenn Close is the most Oscar-nominated living performer. She’s won almost every best actress pre-cursor award this year for her performance in “The Wife” leading up to the Academy Awards on Sunday, Feb. 24, so signs look pretty good.

But she’s not the only one Oscar’s been holding out on. Here’s a look, starting with Close.

GLENN CLOSE

Seven nominations:

1983: Supporting actress, “The World According to Garp“

1984: Supporting actress, “The Big Chill”

1985: Supporting actress, “The Natural”

1988: Lead actress, “Fatal Attraction”

1989: Lead actress, “Dangerous Liaisons”

2012: Lead actress, “Albert Nobbs”

2019: Lead actress, “The Wife”

AMY ADAMS

At six nominations, she’s has a, well, close tail on Close:

2006: Supporting actress, “Junebug”

2009: Supporting actress, “Doubt”

2011: Supporting actress, “The Fighter”

2013: Supporting actress, “The Master”

2014: Lead actress, “American Hustle”

2019: Supporting actress, “Vice”

ANNETTE BENING

By all rights, her performance in “American Beauty” is darn near perfect, but that was the same year as Hilary Swank’s transformative performance in “Boys Don’t Cry” (she rightfully won the Oscar).

1991: Supporting actress, “The Grifters”

2000: Lead actress, “American Beauty”

2005: Lead actress, “Being Julia”

2011: Lead actress, “The Kids Are All Right”

ED HARRIS

He ties with two others to be the most nominated living male actors:

1996: Supporting actor, “Apollo 13”

1999: Supporting actor, “The Truman Show”

2001: Lead actor, “Pollock”

2003: Supporting actor, “The Hours”

BRADLEY COOPER

These are only his acting noms. He’s been nominated a total of seven times, including for producing and writing nominations (there should have been one for directing, too).

2013: Lead actor, “Silver Linings Playbook”

2014: Supporting actor, “American Hustle”

2016: Lead actor, “American Sniper”

2019, Lead actor, “A Star Is Born”

WILLEM DAFOE

He had 17 years in between nominations then back-to-back. Impressive.

1987: Supporting actor, “Platoon”

2001: Supporting actor, “Shadow of the Vampire”

2018: Supporting actor, “Supporting Role The Florida Project”

2019: Lead actor, “At Eternity’s Gate“

MARSHA MASON

The late ‘70s and early ‘80s were her heyday, but she’s still working, most recently on “Netflix’s “Grace and Frankie.”

1974: Lead actress, “Cinderella Liberty”

1978: Lead actress, “The Goodbye Girl“

1980: Lead actress, “Chapter Two”

1982: Lead actress, “Only When I Laugh“

JANE ALEXANDER

Another gem from the ‘70s and ‘80s, but she’s most recently been on TV’s “The Good Wife” spin-off “The Good Fight.”

1971: Lead actress, “The Great White Hope”

1977: Supporting actress, “All the President’s Men”

1980: Supporting actress, “Kramer vs. Kramer”

1984: Lead actress, “Testament”

MICHELLE WILLIAMS

She’s so consistently good, she’s bound to win — someday.

2006: Supporting actress, “Brokeback Mountain”

2011: Lead actress, “Blue Valentine”

2012: Lead actress, “My Week with Marilyn”

2017: Supporting actress, “Manchester by the Sea”

Rod Pocowatchit is an award-winning independent filmmaker and SAG/AFTRA-eligible actor who has written and directed four feature-length films, all made in Kansas. He has been a journalist for 29 years and is also an internationally award-winning page designer.

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