fictional characters The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked  

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List Rules Vote up the greatest performances that WON the Academy Award, either for Best Actor or Best Supporting Actor

Over the years, many great actors and actresses have been awarded the title of "Best Actor" for their portrayal of classic characters in film. Some of these Oscar-winning performances were based on real people, while other performances that won Oscars were based on fictional characters. 

Who are some of the best character portrayals that have earned actors Oscars? Forrest Gump from Forrest Gump made our list. Tom Hanks won a Best Actor Academy Award for his portrayal of this multi-talented man. Forrest Gump was based on the 1986 Winston Groom book of the same name. Anthony Hopkins's iconic portrayal of Hannibal Lecter in the film The Silence of the Lambs also made our list. Hopkins took home the Best Actor Oscar in 1991.

Several Best Supporting Actor performances also made the cut. Gregory Peck's performance as Atticus Finch in the film To Kill A Mockingbird, based on the novel by Harper Lee, earned him an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 1962. Other supporting actor roles that are featured on this list include Tommy DeVito from Goodfellas, played by Joe Pesci, and Rod Tidwell from Jerry McGuire, played by Cuba Gooding Jr.

Which best actor performance is your favorite? Vote up your favorite Oscar-winning character below! 
list ordered by

1
1,225 356
Forrest Gump is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Forrest Gump Forrest Gump Tom Hanks - Best Actor (1994).

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2
963 319
Andrew Beckett is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Andrew Beckett Philadelphia Tom Hanks - Best Actor (1993).

3
495 365
Randle McMurphy is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Randle McMurphy One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Jack Nicholson - Best Actor (1975).

4
580 476
Hannibal Lecter is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Hannibal Lecter The Silence of the Lambs Anthony Hopkins - Best Actor (1991).

5
547 420
Vito Corleone is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Vito Corleone The Godfather Marlon Brando - Best Actor (1972).

6
359 184
Atticus Finch is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Atticus Finch To Kill a Mockingbird Gregory Peck - Best Actor (1962).

7
759 780
The Joker is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
The Joker The Dark Knight Heath Ledger - Best Supporting Actor (2008).

8
295 191
Anton Chigurh is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Anton Chigurh No Country for Old Men Javier Bardem - Best Supporting Actor (2007).

9
354 297
Raymond Babbitt is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Raymond Babbitt Rain Man Dustin Hoffman - Best Actor (1988).

10
199 149
Mahatma Gandhi is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tom Islava added Mahatma Gandhi Gandhi Ben Kingsley-Best Actor (1982)

11
284 221
Tommy DeVito is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tommy DeVito Goodfellas Joe Pesci - Best Supporting Actor (1990).

12
257 247
Jake LaMotta is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Jake LaMotta Raging Bull Robert De Niro - Best Actor (1980).

13
260 220
Hans Landa is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Hans Landa Inglourious Basterds Christoph Waltz - Best Supporting Actor (2009).

14
200 113
General George S. Patton, Jr. is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
General George S. Patton, Jr. Patton George C. Scott - Best Actor (1970).

15
257 257
Abraham Lincoln is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Abraham Lincoln Lincoln Daniel Day-Lewis - Best Actor (2012).

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16
177 132
Terence Fletcher is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Terence Fletcher Whiplash J. K. Simmons - Best Supporting Actor (2014).

17
230 191
Roger 'Verbal' Kint is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Roger 'Verbal' Kint The Usual Suspects Kevin Spacey - Best Supporting Actor (1995).

18
205 195
King George VI is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
King George VI The King's Speech Colin Firth - Best Actor (2010).

19
166 131
Truman Capote is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Truman Capote Capote Philip Seymour Hoffman - Best Actor (2005).

20
243 179
Sean Maguire is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Sean Maguire Good Will Hunting Robin Williams - Best Supporting Actor (1997).

21
166 125
Jimmy 'Popeye' Doyle is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Jimmy 'Popeye' Doyle The French Connection Gene Hackman - Best Actor (1971).

22
178 184
Stephen Hawking is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Stephen Hawking The Theory of Everything Eddie Redmayne - Best Actor (2014).

23
251 300
Maximus Decimus Meridius is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Maximus Decimus Meridius Gladiator Russell Crowe - Best Actor (2000).

24
183 213
Lester Burnham is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Lester Burnham American Beauty Kevin Spacey - Best Actor (1999).

25
152 94
Nick Chevotarevich is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Nick Chevotarevich The Deer Hunter Christopher Walken - Best Supporting Actor (1978).

26
154 118
Idi Amin Dada is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Idi Amin Dada The Last King of Scotland Forest Whitaker - Best Actor (2006).

27
156 120
Samuel Gerard is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
U.S. Marshal Samuel Gerard The Fugitive Tommy Lee Jones - Best Supporting Actor (1993).

28
164 111
Dickie Eklund is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Dickie Eklund The Fighter Christian Bale - Best Supporting Actor (2010).

29
144 170
Dr. King Schultz is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Dr. King Schultz Django Unchained Christoph Waltz - Best Supporting Actor (2012).

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30
185 169
Ray Charles is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Ray Charles Ray Jamie Foxx - Best Actor (2004).

31
149 168
Melvin Udall is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Melvin Udall As Good as It Gets Jack Nicholson - Best Actor (1997).

32
99 52
Aaron Stampler is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Morgan Snyder added Aaron Stampler Primal Fear

Edward Norton

33
172 215
Daniel Plainview is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Daniel Plainview There Will Be Blood Daniel Day-Lewis - Best Actor (2007).

34
92 60
T. E. Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
CarstenSchultz added T. E. Lawrence Lawrence of Arabia, A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia

35
122 89
Antonio Salieri is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Antonio Salieri Amadeus F. Murray Abraham - Best Actor (1984).

36
116 140
Wladyslaw Szpilman is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Wladyslaw Szpilman The Pianist Adrien Brody - Best Actor (2002).

37
106 83
Homer Smith is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Homer Smith Lilies of the Field Sidney Poitier - Best Actor (1963).

38
75 66
Howard Beale is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tom Islava added Howard Beale Network Peter Finch- Best Actor (1976)

39
130 154
Hugh Glass is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tom Islava added Hugh Glass The Revenant Leonardo DiCaprio - Best Actor (2015).

40
135 209
Alonzo Harris is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Alonzo Harris Training Day Denzel Washington - Best Actor (2001).

41
87 91
David Helfgott is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
David Helfgott Shine Geoffrey Rush - Best Actor (1996).

42
98 99
Bela Lugosi is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Bela Lugosi Ed Wood Martin Landau - Best Supporting Actor (1994).

43
67 83
Christy Brown is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Christy Brown My Left Foot

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44
117 138
Rooster Cogburn is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
DonPhillips added Rooster Cogburn True Grit, Rooster Cogburn John Wayne - Best Actor (1969).

45
31 22
Frank Serpico is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Frank Serpico Serpico

46
31 23
Jack Sparrow is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
heesung237 added Jack Sparrow Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

47
59 67
Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Lana Bradstream added Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade

48
97 128
Ron Woodroof is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Ron Woodroof Dallas Buyers Club Matthew McConaughey - Best Actor (2013).

49
30 27
Sonny is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Sonny Dog Day Afternoon

50
21 24
Lee Chandler is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Lee Chandler Manchester-by-the-Sea