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
1,169 324
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
945 292
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
491 405
Vito Corleone is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Vito Corleone The Godfather Marlon Brando - Best Actor (1972).

4
456 344
Randle McMurphy is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Randle McMurphy One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Jack Nicholson - Best Actor (1975).

5
524 456
Hannibal Lecter is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Hannibal Lecter The Silence of the Lambs Anthony Hopkins - Best Actor (1991).

6
333 166
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
686 758
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
326 288
Raymond Babbitt is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Raymond Babbitt Rain Man Dustin Hoffman - Best Actor (1988).

9
182 138
Mahatma Gandhi is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tom Islava added Mahatma Gandhi Gandhi Ben Kingsley-Best Actor (1982)

10
259 209
Tommy DeVito is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tommy DeVito Goodfellas Joe Pesci - Best Supporting Actor (1990).

11
260 181
Anton Chigurh is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Anton Chigurh No Country for Old Men Javier Bardem - Best Supporting Actor (2007).

12
226 244
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
236 207
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
187 107
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
240 248
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
158 118
Jimmy 'Popeye' Doyle is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Jimmy 'Popeye' Doyle The French Connection Gene Hackman - Best Actor (1971).

17
221 168
Sean Maguire is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Sean Maguire Good Will Hunting Robin Williams - Best Supporting Actor (1997).

18
162 122
Terence Fletcher is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Terence Fletcher Whiplash J. K. Simmons - Best Supporting Actor (2014).

19
187 186
King George VI is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
King George VI The King's Speech Colin Firth - Best Actor (2010).

20
211 180
Roger 'Verbal' Kint is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Roger 'Verbal' Kint The Usual Suspects Kevin Spacey - Best Supporting Actor (1995).

21
157 123
Truman Capote is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Truman Capote Capote Philip Seymour Hoffman - Best Actor (2005).

22
169 202
Lester Burnham is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Lester Burnham American Beauty Kevin Spacey - Best Actor (1999).

23
138 87
Nick Chevotarevich is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Nick Chevotarevich The Deer Hunter Christopher Walken - Best Supporting Actor (1978).

24
229 293
Maximus Decimus Meridius is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Maximus Decimus Meridius Gladiator Russell Crowe - Best Actor (2000).

25
167 176
Stephen Hawking is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Stephen Hawking The Theory of Everything Eddie Redmayne - Best Actor (2014).

26
150 105
Dickie Eklund is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Dickie Eklund The Fighter Christian Bale - Best Supporting Actor (2010).

27
143 110
Idi Amin Dada is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Idi Amin Dada The Last King of Scotland Forest Whitaker - Best Actor (2006).

28
145 114
Samuel Gerard is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
U.S. Marshal Samuel Gerard The Fugitive Tommy Lee Jones - Best Supporting Actor (1993).

29
177 160
Ray Charles is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Ray Charles Ray Jamie Foxx - Best Actor (2004).

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30
92 45
Aaron Stampler is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Morgan Snyder added Aaron Stampler Primal Fear

Edward Norton

31
103 77
Homer Smith is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Homer Smith Lilies of the Field Sidney Poitier - Best Actor (1963).

32
88 57
T. E. Lawrence is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
CarstenSchultz added T. E. Lawrence Lawrence of Arabia, A Dangerous Man: Lawrence After Arabia

33
105 135
Wladyslaw Szpilman is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Wladyslaw Szpilman The Pianist Adrien Brody - Best Actor (2002).

34
154 209
Daniel Plainview is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Daniel Plainview There Will Be Blood Daniel Day-Lewis - Best Actor (2007).

35
109 85
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
68 62
Howard Beale is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tom Islava added Howard Beale Network Peter Finch- Best Actor (1976)

37
120 149
Hugh Glass is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Tom Islava added Hugh Glass The Revenant Leonardo DiCaprio - Best Actor (2015).

38
94 94
Bela Lugosi is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Bela Lugosi Ed Wood Martin Landau - Best Supporting Actor (1994).

39
137 161
Melvin Udall is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Melvin Udall As Good as It Gets Jack Nicholson - Best Actor (1997).

40
127 161
Dr. King Schultz is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Dr. King Schultz Django Unchained Christoph Waltz - Best Supporting Actor (2012).

41
127 202
Alonzo Harris is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Alonzo Harris Training Day Denzel Washington - Best Actor (2001).

42
82 88
David Helfgott is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
David Helfgott Shine Geoffrey Rush - Best Actor (1996).

43
110 131
Rooster Cogburn is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
DonPhillips added Rooster Cogburn True Grit, Rooster Cogburn John Wayne - Best Actor (1969).

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44
62 81
Christy Brown is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Christy Brown My Left Foot

45
53 63
Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Lana Bradstream added Lieutenant Colonel Frank Slade

46
85 123
Ron Woodroof is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Ron Woodroof Dallas Buyers Club Matthew McConaughey - Best Actor (2013).

47
23 22
Sonny is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Sonny Dog Day Afternoon

48
22 20
Frank Serpico is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Frank Serpico Serpico

49
15 18
Lee Chandler is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Lee Chandler Manchester-by-the-Sea

50
27 14
Norman Stansfield is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Actor Performances, Ranked
Norman Stansfield Léon: The Professional