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The Oscars Underappreciated Actors and Directors

This coming Sunday, February 24, 2013, the 85th Annual Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars will be awarded in Los Angeles to honor the best in the art of film making. This event is Hollywood’s biggest night when the best in the business receive the film industry’s highest honor.

This year’s edition of the Oscars features a wide variety of films for Best Picture such as the favorite, “Lincoln,” “Zero Dark Thirty, ” and the musical, “Les Miserable.” Actors such as Denzel Washington, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Hugh Jackman are up for Best Actor, and actresses Naomi Watts, and Jennifer Lawrence are up for Best Actress.

Of course, the Academy Awards has several other categories, and the ceremony itself goes on forever. Who will win? My readers, you will have to tune in.

That being said, there have been many great movies that have been awarded with the “Best Picture” Oscar. Pictures such as “The Godfather,” “Titanic, ” “Gone With The Wind, ” and many others. Great actors, directors, and actresses have been bestowed upon with the Oscar as well.

However, there have been times when there have been great actors, actresses, and even directors who have been nominated multiple times, but for some reason (personal, political, etc.) never won it. There also are those actors, actresses, and directors who have won the Academy Award, but it was for a film role/movie that was good, but it felt more like a lifetime achievement award, or have won an Oscar, but should have won more.

[adinserter block=”1″]In this blog, I will be discussing, in no particular order, directors, actors, and actresses who I think have been under appreciated by the Academy.

I hope my readers will enjoy this blog.

I am going to start with a couple of the men I consider the best directors ever.

Alfred Hitchcock 5 Nominations for Best Director – 0 Wins

Despite his first Hollywood film, “Rebecca” (1940) winning the Oscar for Best Picture, Alfred Hitchcock lost Best Director Oscar to John Ford who won for “The Grapes of Wrath.”

Hitchcock was called “The Master of Suspense, ” and was never rewarded with an Oscar for Best Director. He should have gotten it for “Rebecca” if they were going to give it “Best Picture.”

“Grapes of Wrath” is a great movie, but I never understood giving one movie Best Director and the other Best Picture.

Hitchcock did win the Irving G Thalberg Award in 1968 at the Oscars.

The famous “dream sequence” from Hitchcock’s “Spellbound” (1945)

Martin Scorsese- 7 Nominations for Best Director- 1 Win

Martin Scorsese is, in my opinion, the best director ever. This man has won just about every kind of award there is to win. He has won Emmys, Golden Globes, BAFTAs (the British version of Oscar), a Grammy, a Palme D’Or (Cannes), a DGA (Director’s Guild Award), and many others.

Scorsese is one of the most influential filmmakers, and is also a film historian. His films contain themes of realism, Italian American identity, Catholic themes of guilt, and redemption, crime, and violence.

Many of his films are well known masterpieces, such as “Goodfellas,” “Mean Streets,” “Raging Bull,” and many others.

Unfortunately, when he has been up for an Academy Award, the Academy for some reason gives the award to someone else.

I mean, his brilliant “Goodfellas” lost to Kevin Costner (Best Director) and that silly “Dances with Wolves.”(Best Picture, 1990). “Raging Bull” loses to Robert Redford’s (Best Director) forgettable “Ordinary People (Best Picture, 1980).

I know Oscar likes to reward uplifting films, but really. I thought Best Picture meant Best Picture. It just seems to me that the Academy is a bit out of touch when it comes to Scorsese.

Anyway, Martin Scorsese did win Best Director for “The Departed” (Best Picture, 2006). “The Departed” is a very good film, but Scorsese should have won for “Bull” and “Goodfellas,” in my opinion.

The “Funny, like I amuse you?” scene from Scorsese’s 1990 Classic, “Goodfellas.”

Now the actors and actresses:

Deborah Kerr 6 Nominations- 0 Wins

I just love this great actress from Scotland. I am just sorry that she never was rewarded with a Best Actress Oscar. Nominated for such classics as “From Here to Eternity,” and “The King and I,” Ms.Kerr showed class, beauty, and grace.

While Audrey Hepburn had a good performance in 1953’s “Roman Holiday” (Best Actress, 1953), I think Kerr’s performance was way better.

Kerr received an Honorary Academy Award in 1994.

A segment from “Heaven Knows Mr. Allison,” a film Kerr was nominated for Best Actress in 1957, co-starring Robert Mitchum.

Richard Burton 7 Nominations – 0 Wins

Burton was an awesome Welsh actor. Most people nowadays would remember him as one of the late, great actress Elizabeth Taylor’s former husbands. In fact, they married twice.

However, this is about Burton’s acting. He was nominated for such classics as “The Robe (1953), ” “Equus (1977),” and “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (1966).” Ironically, Elizabeth Taylor won Best Actress (1966) for her role in “Virginia Woolf.” Sadly, Burton did not.

I don’t know if it was because of Burton’s drinking problem, or what, but Burton never won the Oscar, and I really think he should have won, at least for “Woolf.”

Here is Burton in the 1966 classic, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” in the “Killing Martha” scene.

Peter O’Toole 8 Nominations – 0 Wins

Irish actor Peter O’Toole holds a record for having the most nominations without a win. That is sad because he’s such a wonderful actor, both on the stage and screen.

O’Toole has been nominated for such films as “Laurence of Arabia”(1962), “Becket”(1964), The “Lion in Winter”(1968), and “Goodbye Mr. Chips” (1969).

Here is O’Toole with the legendary Katherine Hepburn in the 1968 film, “A Lion In Winter.”

Montgomery Clift 4 Nominations 0 Wins

Montgomery Clift was an amazing actor. He was a master of the “method” way of acting, and was known for films such as “The Heiress” (1949), ” “From Here to Eternity” (1953), ” and “A Place in the Sun,” (1951).

As far as his not receiving an Academy Award, I think he was a victim of Hollywood politics. People in Hollywood were not happy that he didn’t go to parties, and things like that.

Sad, considering how later in life, he got into a car accident, and didn’t make it to age 50.

Here is Montgomery Clift playing the German laborer that was sterilized under Hitler’s Nazi regime who is getting cross examined in the 1961 classic, “Judgment at Nuremberg.”

Now, I will end this blog with a discussion of actors who got the Oscar that was more like an Honorary Oscar, or should have won more.

Al Pacino- 8 Nominations – 1 Win

Al Pacino is an amazing actor. That goes without saying. He has been nominated 8 times for Acting Oscars (4 times for Best Actor and 4 times for Best Supporting Actor). He has been in a lot of great films such as “The Godfather” (1972), “Dog Day Afternoon” (1975), and many others.

What is very frustrating to me about this is that he has been nominated 8 times total, and when he FINALLY heard his name called, it was for “Scent of a Woman” (Best Actor, 1992), a film that was very good, and he was very good in it, but I just don’t think I would have called it an Oscar winning performance.

Al Pacino plays a blind, irascible , former army officer who is being taken care of by a prep student in the movie. Again, he is very good in the film, but I just think his earlier work should have been rewarded instead.

I just hate when Oscar does this. The Best Actor Oscar winner for 1974 was Art Carney for “Harry and Tonto,” a movie about an old man traveling with a cat. I was like, “Al Pacino (nominated for Best Actor for “The Godfather II.”) lost Best Actor to that?”

Oscar is very strange.

A scene from the 1992 cult classic “Glengarry Glen Ross,” where Al Pacino tells off Kevin Spacey.

(Warning: Strong Foul Language)

Burt Lancaster 4 Nominations – 1 Win

Burt Lancaster is a great actor. At first, he was known for tough guy roles, but he adapted, and changed his style for more complex roles. Some of his films are “The Birdman from Alcatraz” (1962), “The Killers” (1946), “The Sweet Smell of Success” (1957), and “From Here to Eternity” (1953).

Over his long career, the only Oscar Lancaster ever won was Best Actor for his awesome performance in the title role in the 1960 classic, “Elmer Gantry.”

I think Lancaster should have been awarded for “Eternity” as well.

Burt Lancaster in the “Bar Fight” scene in 1953’s “From Here To Eternity,” featuring Frank Sinatra, and Ernest Borgnine.

Henry Fonda 3 Nominations – 1 Win

Henry Fonda is one of America’s best, and he only got nominated three times by the Academy. Shame. Shame Shame. He is known for classics like “Mr. Roberts” (1955), “The Grapes of Wrath” (1940), ” and “On Golden Pond” (1981). These films are the tip of the iceberg of his body of work.

Fonda excelled on stage and screen. It was after his death in 1982 that his work was appreciated.

It’s sad, because he should have been nominated more, and should have had more Oscars.

Here is Henry Fonda in “The Knife Argument” scene as Juror #8 in the 1957 classic “12 Angry Men.” Lee J. Cobb, and E. J. Marshall are featured.

Lord Laurence Olivier 12 Nominations 2 Wins (1 for Best Actor 1948 & Best Picture 1948 as Producer of “Hamlet.” (Note: amongst these nominations are nominations for Best Director )

In my opinion, Laurence Olivier is the greatest actor ever. The man was amazing. He was brilliant on stage, TV, and on the silver screen. He is known for his brilliant interpretation of Shakespeare, and his portrayal of all other kinds of roles.

Olivier is known for “Richard III” (1956), “Marathon Man” (1976), “The Boys from Brazil” (1978), “Wuthering Heights” (1939), and many, many more.

Olivier had done so many great roles in his career. I just think he could have had been awarded with more Oscars, even though he did receive two honorary awards in 1947 and in 1979.

I certainly would have given him Best Actor for 1956 in “Richard III” over Yul Brynner in “The King and I.” I know Brynner did a great job, but I think Olivier did a much better job as the evil Richard III.

Here is Olivier as the brutal Richard III in the 1956 classic, “Richard III.”

Warren Beatty 15 Nominations – 1 Win (Best Director 1981 for the film “Reds”) (Note: The nominations included Best Actor, Best Director, Best Writer.)

Well, Warren Beatty is an amazing all around talent. He is an awesome actor in his own right, but he is also a great producer, writer, and director as well. His prowess in these areas of film making have made the Academy take notice, and therefore, Beatty has been recognized with 15 nominations, but only 1 win.

[adinserter block=”2″]Warren Beatty is known for great films like “Bonnie and Clyde” (1967), “Shampoo” (1975), “Reds” (1981), “Bugsy” (1991), “Heaven Can Wait,” and many more. I am glad he got rewarded with a Best Director Oscar, and the Irving G. Thalberg Award, but I think he should have been awarded a Best Actor Oscar as well.

Beatty was excellent in the films I just listed, especially in “Clyde,” “Reds,” and “Bugsy.” I certainly would have given Beatty the 1991 Best Actor Oscar over Anthony Hopkins in “The Silence of the Lambs.” I wasn’t all that much in love with “Lambs.”

Warren Beatty won the Academy Award for Best Director in 1981 for the movie “Reds.” The film “Reds” lost Best Picture to “Chariots of Fire.” I thought “Chariots” was a nice film, but “Reds” was way better.

Here is Beatty in his 1981 Oscar-Nominated role as Jack Reed, who wrote the book, “Ten Days that Shook The World.” Reed witnessed the Bolshevik Revolution. In this scene, Emma Goldman (Maureen Stapleman in her Oscar winning role as Best Supporting Actress), tells Jack Reed that the revolution can’t work.

Honorable Mentions: Morgan Freeman, Annette Bening, and Paul Newman.

Well, those are the actors, actresses, and directors I feel should have had much more Oscar gold than they received. I am talking about brilliant performers, both on and off camera. There have been cases where folks have won the Oscar, and didn’t really deserve it, but those are the breaks.

Again, this emphasizes why I don’t like awards, or Halls of Fame. It is because of the human element. Again, Audrey Hepburn had a nice role in “Roman Holiday,” but Kerr should have won. Bening stole the show in “Bugsy,” but she wasn’t even nominated. Bening SHOULD HAVE won for “American Beauty,” but the Oscar had to go to Hilary Swank in “Boys Don’t Cry.” Really?

I also love “West Side Story,” but to give the Supporting Actor Oscar to George Chakiris over Montgomery Clift was a real travesty.

Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed this blog.

Terri Bey currently blogs for about Wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture related subjects. Her work has appeared in BleacherReport and for Terri can be found here at Facebook- and at Twitter-

Terri Bey currently blogs for about Wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture related subjects. Her work has appeared in BleacherReport and for Terri can be found here at Facebook- and at Twitter-



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