While Hollywood is a lot of glitz and glam, when it comes to winning awards, it can also be fierce competition. While the Academy has been known to be a tad political, impressing them enough to walk away with an Oscar can be quite the feat, even for the most skilled of actors. Stars who have blown us away in a number of films, such as Glenn Close, Robert Downey Jr., and Sigourney Weaver, have yet to snag a little gold man for their mantels.
Here are 54 of the world’s most esteemed actors who have never won an Oscar:
1. Glenn Close
According to Time, Close is almost tied with Richard Burton as the most Oscar nominated actor with no wins. The 72-year-old star has left the ceremony empty-handed seven times since her first nom in 1982.
2. Robert Downey Jr.
Though the Marvel fandom, along with Avengers: Endgame directors the Russo Brothers, are rallying for Downey to take home an Oscar for his performance as Tony Stark, the star has never won the prestigious award, despite being nominated twice.
3. Harrison Ford
Ford has been the pillar in a number of huge movie franchises, including Star Wars and Indiana Jones, but as has surprisingly only been nominated once for his 1986 role in Witness.
4. Joaquin Phoenix
Phoenix has been nominated three times by the Academy, but has yet to take home the prize. However, with the buzz surrounding his newest film, Joker, that might just change soon.
5. Edward Norton
Norton rightfully earned Oscar nominations for his work in Primal Fear and American History X, as well as for his 2015 role in Birdman, but unfortunately he was beat out each time.
6. Michelle Williams
Michelle Williams has stunned audiences in a number of diverse roles, such as in Blue Valentine and My Week With Marilyn, earning her four nominations over the years. However, she hasn't lucked out yet.
7. Liam Neeson
The 67-year-old actor has kicked many asses on the silver screen, keeping us on the edge of our seat for decades. However, the Irish star has never taken home a little gold trophy (see what I did there?).
8. Bill Murray
Bill Murray is arguably one of the most likeable people in Hollywood, and has kind of become the world’s cool uncle. Unfortunately, the Academy doesn’t give awards for being a sweetheart.
9. Sigourney Weaver
The 70-year-old actress has tackled every kind of role imaginable during her 40+ year career. She has fought aliens, been possessed by ghosts, and has been certifiably crazy on a few occasions. But, like her Ghostbusters co-star Bill Murray, she has yet to win over the Academy.
10. Sam Elliot
This veteran actor has been making us swoon over that mustache for decades, but has yet to nab an Oscar. Variety reports that he came close recently, receiving his first nomination for A Star Is Born, but ultimately lost to Mahershala Ali in the supporting actor category.
11. Samuel L. Jackson
Speaking of vets, Jackson has been in over 125 films spanning his almost-50-year career. Despite all that hard work, however, he has only been nominated for one Oscar for his role in the 1995 Quentin Tarantino film Pulp Fiction.
12. Angela Bassett
The 61-year-old actress is a queen, both on and off the silver screen. But, despite her killer acting, the Black Panther star has only received one nomination for her 1993 film What’s Love Got to Do with It.
13. Salma Hayek
The Mexican American actor blew audiences, and the Academy, away with her role as Frida Kahlo in the 2002 film Frida. Unfortunately, she was up against some seriously tough competition in Julianne Moore, Renee Zellweger, Diane Lane, and Nicole Kidman, the latter of whom won for “The Hours.”
14. Brad Pitt
This one only kind of counts. The Ad Astra star did win an Oscar for producing 2014 Best Picture winner 12 Years a Slave. However, even though he is one of Hollywood’s biggest stars, he has still never won an Oscar for his acting chops.
15. Johnny Depp
When we think of chameleon actors, we think of Johnny Depp. He is the master of weird, creepy, and hilarious. Yet, despite three nominations, he has never gotten the gold, much like his famed character from Pirates of the Caribbean, Jack Sparrow.
16. Jake Gyllenhaal
The 38-year-old actor has only been nominated once for his groundbreaking role in Brokeback Mountain, starring opposite Heath Ledger.
17. Ed Harris
Ed Harris is another seasoned vet who has frustratingly come close to the gold four times, only to be beaten out by the competition.
18. Tom Cruise
We first fell in love with cruise almost 40 years ago when he went sliding across a wooden floor in his socks and unmentionables in Risky Business. The superstar has portrayed a number of trailblazing roles since then, but has yet to go home with a win.
19. Saoirse Ronan
It is hard to feel super bad for Ronan, considering the number of life-long veterans included on this list. Regardless, the 24-year-old actress has been nominated three times so far in her career and yes yet to win, the first being for Atonement in 2013.
20. Matt Damon
Much like Brad Pitt, Damon has won an Oscar, along with co-writer Ben Affleck, in 1998 for penning Good Will Hunting, but has lost all his nominations for acting.
21. Will Smith
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star has earned two Oscar nominations; one for The Pursuit of Happyness and the other for Ali. He was also famously shut out for his 2015 role in Concussion, which helped spark the controversial hashtag #OscarsSoWhite.
22. John Travolta
John Travolta has been boogy-ing for audiences since the '70s, but has only managed to snag two nominations. The first was for Saturday Night Fever in 1978, and second was for Pulp Fiction almost two decades later in 1995.
23. Amy Adams
Amy Adams has kind of taken Leonardo DiCaprio’s place recently. The Vice star has been nominated six times for her amazing acting in films like The Fighter and American Hustle, but still hasn't taken home an award.
24. Bradley Cooper
The actor-turned-director (and now Grammy-winning musician) joined his A Star is Born castmate, Sam Elliott, in a nom for the film. However, it wasn’t his first rodeo. He was also nominated for his work in Silver Linings Playbook, American Sniper, and American Hustle.
25. Willem Dafoe
The 64-year-old actor has been nominated four times, including a nod for his role as Vincent van Gogh in At Eternity’s Gate. Though he is not an Oscar winner, his Lighthouse co-star, Robert Pattinson, says that the voice he is going to use for Batman in his upcoming film is inspired by Dafoe himself. My point? This guy deserves the big award!
26. Ralph Fiennes
He might be Voldemort, but not even the Dark Prince could use his magic on the Academy. Fiennes has had two nominations, including one for his 1994 role in the critically acclaimed film, Schindler's List.
27. Jessica Chastain
The X-Men: Dark Phoenix star has been nominated twice for her roles in Zero Dark Thirty (2013), and The Help (2012). She lost to Jennifer Lawrence and Octavia Spencer, respectively.
28. Helena Bonham Carter
Much like Johnny Depp, Carter is an absolute master of disguise, playing every kind of fantastical role imaginable. Despite her talents, however, the The King's Speech star has been nominated twice with no wins.
29. Naomi Watts
The 51-year-old actress has come close to the gold twice with no avail. But, don’t feel too bad for her--she will soon fill the large void in all of our lives when she stars in the upcoming Game of Thrones prequel.
30. Annette Benning
Annette Benning is another one of those seasoned actors who is always just a hair away from the gold each time. She has been nominated four times, the last being in 2011 for The Kids Are Alright. She lost that year to Natalie Portman for her performance in Black Swan.
31. John Malkovich
Malkovich is definitely considered an iconic actor, but has surprisingly only been nominated twice. Even more shocking was the last one was nearly 25 years ago for his role in In the Line of Fire.
32. Laura Linney
The Love Actually star has been nominated three times, but has never taken home the gold.
33. Viggo Mortensen
The Danish-American actor, author, musician, photographer, poet, and painter (talk about a renaissance man) has been nominated for Green Book, Eastern Promises, and Captain Fantastic, but no wins.
34. Woody Harrelson
It is no exaggeration to say that this guy has played everything, but despite the diversity of his resume, he has only earned three nominations with no wins.
35. Laura Dern
The Big Little Lies star has been nominated twice. The first time she lost in 1992 to Jodie Foster for The Silence of the Lambs when she was nominated for Rambling Rose, and later lost in 2015 to Patricia Arquette for Boyhood when she was nominated for Wild.
36. Ethan Hawke
The 48-year-old actor has actually been nominated four times, twice for acting, and twice for adapted screenplay.
37. Peter O’Toole
Though the iconic actor died in 2013, he holds the records for most Oscar-nominated actor without a win, Variety reports. He was nominated eight times over the span of his long career.
38. Albert Finney
Albert Finney, like O'Toole, is another legendary star who is sadly no longer with us. He died earlier this year with five nominations under his belt.
39. Pam Grier
In another controversial move on the Academy's part, Pam Grier not only didn't win an Oscar for Quentin Tarantino’s classic crime film Jackie Brown, but was actually robbed of a nomination all together. However, her co-star Robert Forster, who sadly passed away this month, picked up a Supporting Actor nomination.
40. Jim Carrey
Though Carrey is often pegged as the hilarious actor from films like Liar Liar and Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, he has also shown his acting chops in darker, more complex films. Unfortunately, the Academy has never given him a nomination. He does, however, have several Grammy noms under his belt, The Independent reports.
41. James Dean
James Dean has gone down in history as a bright star who burnt out too soon. Only one of his films, Eden, was released before his tragic passing in 1955 at the age of 24. However, of his three film roles, two were nominated for Oscars.
42. John Goodman
John Goodman is an absolute legend, winning our hearts with playful parts like Sully in Monsters, Inc., to more "adult" roles like Walter Sobchak in The Big Lebowski. Despite his undeniable talent, however, he has never been nominated by the Academy.
43. Michelle Pfeiffer
Michelle Pfeiffer has been nominated three times, but she unfortunately has never been able to leave with a victory.
44. Rosario Dawson
The fact that Rosario Dawson doesn't even have a nomination is a major disappointment. Her work in Rent, Sin City, and the lesser known A Guide to Recognizing your Saints are definitely all Oscar-worthy.
45. Angela Lansbury
The 94-year-old Dame has five Tony Awards and six Golden Globes, but has yet to bring home one Oscar. While she does have three nominations under her belt, the last one was in 1962 for her role in The Manchurian Candidate.
46. Robin Wright
Robin Wright gave us the legendary line, "Run, Forrest, Run!" However, despite her contributions to culture (The Princess Bride, come on?), she has never received an Oscar nomination.
47. David Oyelowo
Another incident that added fuel to the fire of the #OscarsSoWhite movement was when David Oyelowo was snubbed an Oscar nomination for his role as Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma. He has never been nominated by the Academy.
48. Oscar Isaac
The Star Wars fandom might adore Oscar Isaac, but the Academy is giving him a really tough time. He was overlooked for a nom for his roles in Inside Llewyn Davis, Ex Machina, and A Most Violent Year.
49. Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe might be one of the most iconic cultural figures of Hollywood, but despite her worldwide fame, the late star never received an Oscar nomination.
50. Steve Buscemi
Steve Buscemi is a rare talent whose unique skills have made classic films like Reservoir Dogs and Fargo what they are today. Despite this, however, he has never been nominated for the prestigious award.
51. Idris Elba
Despite Idris Elba being involved in films such as Beasts of No Nation, Molly’s Game, and Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, he has never even received a nomination.
52. Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johansson might play Black Widow in the Avengers franchise, but she has yet to be able to weave her way into an Oscar nomination.
53. Mia Farrow
Mia Farrow has won has won three Baftas and a Golden Globe, but never managed to snag an Oscar nom; not even for Rosemary's Baby, which is now one of the most iconic horror movies ever.
54. Richard Burton
The iconic actor, who starred in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, is tied with Glenn Close for the record for second-most Oscar nominations without a win.