‘What? They never won an Oscar?!’ Part 1

Before we crack on with this list, I should point out that in no way do I think Oscars are the sole measurement for greatness when it comes to movies. I think if people love a movie and keep watching it over the years, that’s what really matters in the end. And that goes for actors, directors, etc… However, the Oscars are just so much fun! And they do, of course, mean something. If nothing else, just to be recognized by your peers must be extremely humbling. So basically, I just like talking about the Oscar and I’ve had many a light-hearted argument over these things, so I decided to compile this little list of people who never won an Oscar. Warning: some of these are shocking, depending on how you feel about the Oscars.


barbara-stanwyck-picture-376331495Barbara Stanwyck

Stella Dallas, 1937/38

Ball of Fire, 1941/42

Double Indemnity, 1944/45

Sorry, Wrong Number, 1948/49

If you’ve been following this blog, you know I absolutely love Barbara Stanwyck. The fact that she never won an Oscar is an absolute disgrace and, while I agree that she had tough competition in the years she was nominated (particularly from Ingrid Bergman, who gave an exceptional performance in Gaslight (1944)), I do think she should have won at some point.



Cary Grant

Penny Serenade, 1941/42

None but the lonely heart, 1944/45

Everybody loves Cary Grant. He had quite possibly the most remarkable and versatile career ever of any actor, and a string of memorable performances. So how in the world did he not win an Oscar? Not even nominated for Notorious (1946), one of his best performances! Ludicrous.


alfred-hitchcockAlfred Hitchcock

Rebecca, 1940/41

Lifeboat, 1944/45

Spellbound, 1945/46

Rear Window, 1954/55

Psycho, 1960/61

I’ll be honest with you, he did have unbelievably tough competition nearly every time he was nominated (lost to Billy Wilder TWICE, which is fair enough. Hitch himself was a fan). However, I do think the sheer fact that he wasn’t even nominated for Vertigo is outrageous. Surely, he would have won.


elErnest Lehman

Sabrina, 1954/55

North by Northwest, 1950/60

West Side Story, 1961/62

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf, 1966/67

A masterful storyteller, and his best screenplay (Sweet Smell of Success, 1957), wasn’t even nominated. I do think he should have won for North by Northwest, though. It’s a far more impressive screenplay than the winner, Pillow Talk (1959) – which I also like, by the way.




Edward G. Robinson

Edward G. Robinson was never even nominated for an Oscar. Can you believe that? Not even for his excellent performance as Barton Keyes in Double Indemnity (1944). I mean, who can forget his monologue about the different ways of committing suicide?




howardhawksHoward Hawks

Sergeant York, 1941/42

Only one nomination in his entire career. I still can’t get my head around that. I mean, how was he not nominated for Only Angels Have Wings (1939) or The Big Sleep (1946)? He made some of the most well-known and iconic films from Hollywood’s Golden Age and he is, without a doubt, one of the greatest and most versatile directors of all time. As well as one of the most unfairly underrated.


Part 2 coming soon!


17 thoughts on “‘What? They never won an Oscar?!’ Part 1

  1. “in no way do I think Oscars are the sole measurement for greatness when it comes to movies”: Bravo! In special now that we’re up for another injustice this Sunday (Huppert vs Stone).
    The more I learn about the Oscars the more I’m sure that the Academy has made more mistakes than got it right. Only one nomination for Hawks? Unbelievable.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, over the years there have been some major upsets, but in the end, it’s all subjective. However, I do think the Best Supporting Actor category has been quite fair. Obviously we all have our favorite, but I do think the Academy has made the right choice in that category, like 90% of the time.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post Carol. I do not put much stock in the Oscars, or any of the major award shows, they are just the opinions of a few. There are many Oscar winners that years later have disappeared into to obscurity.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. annsblyth

    I just love reading about who didn’t win! It’s both fascinating and infuriating at the same time. I completely agree with everyone on your list as well, and I can’t wait for part two!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. caracoleta07

    What a way to start this list… Two of my babies

    Stella Dallas is one that I got to see soon. I keep putting it off

    I think I’ll finish watching Cary Grant’s entire filmography this year (yay!), including None But the Lonely Hearts.
    Notorious, though… *heavy sigh* I even named one of my YT accounts after it. Too bad I can’t remember the log in e-mail, I only remember the password 😛

    Hitchcock. Still considered a master to this day and yet 0 Oscars.

    Dear Lehman… I have such fondness for this man…

    Hawks – 1 nomination only? Mind-boggling

    I love the work everyone on this list did, except for Edward G. Robinson for the sole reason that I do not know enough of his work. And still, it amazes me that he didn’t get nominated once.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah yeah, I remember that infamous YT account… The beginning of a beautiful friendship! 😀
      I love Eddie G Robinson. One of these days, we should have a Woman in the Window/Scarlett Street double bill!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. caracoleta07

        Ah the good old days… The Golden Age of YT… ahah
        actually the account I was referring to is another one. we met through my main on at the time

        Ooooh sounds good 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Pingback: Six classics, zero Oscar nominations – The Old Hollywood Garden

  6. Pingback: Oscar Season: Walter Huston in The Treasure of Sierra Madre (1948) – The Old Hollywood Garden

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s