award shows The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role  

Ranker Film
Originally by
7.9k votes 1.1k voters 14.5k views 80 items Embed

Every year the Academy evaluates a year's worth of brilliant performances and picks what they believe to be the best of the best, nominating these for the most prestigious acting awards in cinema: the Oscars. This in itself is an honor - just to be nominated for an Academy Award. But only one person can win each year, and the men listed here have all taken home Oscar gold for Best Actor in a Leading Role - so which Best Actor Oscar winners are the best?

Of the leading men who have won Best Actor, who is the best Best Actor?! Do you think it's a classic choice like Marlon Brando? Clark Gable? Humphrey Bogart? Is it a more recent recipient like Philip Seymour Hoffman? Sean Penn? Jack Nicholson?

With so many options choosing the best is hard, but that's where you come in. Vote up the very best actors of all the Best Actor Academy Award winners below!
list ordered by

1
637 70
Tom Hanks is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Tom Hanks age 61 - Philadelphia (1993), Forrest Gump (1994)

Celebrities Who Weren't Born Where You Think The Best Actresses to Ever Win Oscars for Best Actress

2
147 61
Henry Fonda is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Henry Fonda Died at 77 (1905-1982) - On Golden Road (1981)

3
122 53
Gene Hackman is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Gene Hackman age 87 - The French Connection (1971)

4
163 103
Jack Nicholson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Jack Nicholson age 80 - One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975), As Good as It Gets (1997)

5
99 40
Paul Newman is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Paul Newman Died at 83 (1925-2008) - The Color of Money (1986)

6
174 106
Robert De Niro is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Robert De Niro age 74 - Raging Bull (1980)

7
113 46
James Stewart is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
James Stewart Died at 89 (1908-1997) - The Philadelphia Story (1940)

8
153 104
Anthony Hopkins is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Anthony Hopkins age 80 - The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

9
94 41
Gregory Peck is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Gregory Peck Died at 87 (1916-2003) - To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

10
98 46
Robert Duvall is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Robert Duvall age 86 - Tender Mercies (1983)

11
120 58
Dustin Hoffman is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Dustin Hoffman age 80 - Kramer vs. Kramer (1979), Rain Man (1988)

12
126 71
Marlon Brando is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Marlon Brando Died at 80 (1924-2004) - On the Waterfront (1954),  The Godfather (1972)

13
93 46
Laurence Olivier is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Laurence Olivier Died at 82 (1907-1989) - Hamlet (1948)

14
94 47
Spencer Tracy is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Spencer Tracy Died at 67 (1900-1967) - Captain Courageous (1937), Boys Town (1938)

15
71 37
Humphrey Bogart is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Humphrey Bogart Died at 58 (1899-1957) - The African Queen (1951)

2018 Golden Globe Nominees For Best Leading Actor The Best Looking Car Brands

16
140 106
Al Pacino is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Al Pacino age 77 - Scent of a Woman (1992)

17
84 42
Jack Lemmon is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Jack Lemmon Died at 76 (1925-2001) - Save the Tiger (1973)

18
113 74
Kevin Spacey is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Kevin Spacey age 58 - American Beauty (1999)

19
64 38
Ben Kingsley is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Ben Kingsley age 74 - Gandhi (1982)

20
68 42
Sidney Poitier is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Sidney Poitier age 90 - Lilies in the Field (1963)

21
67 37
Clark Gable is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Clark Gable Died at 59 (1901-1960) - It Happened One Night (1934)

22
92 53
Philip Seymour Hoffman is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Philip Seymour Hoffman Died at 47 (1967-2014) - Capote (2005)

23
64 37
Gary Cooper is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Gary Cooper Died at 60 (1901-1961) - Sergeant York (1941), High Noon (1952)

24
90 86
Russell Crowe is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Russell Crowe age 53 - Gladiator (2000)

25
38 20
Alec Guinness is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Alec Guinness Died at 86 (1914-2000)

26
37 21
Lee Marvin is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Lee Marvin Died at 63 (1924-1987)

27
32 19
George C. Scott is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added George C. Scott Died at 72 (1927-1999)

28
37 25
Colin Firth is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Colin Firth age 57

29
111 97
Denzel Washington is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Denzel Washington age 63 - Training Day (2001)

13 Movie Myths That Are Making Us All Dumber The 13 Sexiest Psycho Girlfriends in Internet History

30
72 51
Jeff Bridges is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Jeff Bridges age 68 - Crazy Heart (2009)

31
30 17
James Cagney is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added James Cagney Died at 87 (1899-1986)

32
73 69
Michael Douglas is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Michael Douglas age 73 - Wall Street (1987)

33
27 20
Jeremy Irons is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Jeremy Irons age 69 - Reversal of Fortune (1990)

34
33 12
Forest Whitaker is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Forest Whitaker age 56

35
30 19
Burt Lancaster is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Burt Lancaster Died at 81 (1913-1994)

36
30 20
Richard Dreyfuss is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Richard Dreyfuss age 70

37
29 17
Yul Brynner is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Yul Brynner Died at 65 (1920-1985)

38
60 49
Charlton Heston is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Charlton Heston Died at 85 (1923-2008) - Ben-Hur (1959)

39
61 58
Leonardo DiCaprio is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Leonardo DiCaprio age 43

40
23 17
William Holden is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added William Holden Died at 63 (1918-1981)

41
24 21
Geoffrey Rush is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Geoffrey Rush age 66 - Shine (1996)

42
22 18
David Niven is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added David Niven Died at 73 (1910-1983)

43
20 16
Charles Laughton is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Charles Laughton Died at 63 (1899-1962)

The Best Kids Cartoons of All Time The Best Actresses in Film History

44
41 34
Ernest Borgnine is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Ernest Borgnine Died at 95 (1917-2012) - Marty (1955)

45
108 121
Daniel Day-Lewis is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Daniel Day-Lewis age 60 - My Left Foot (1989),  There Will Be Blood (2007), Lincoln (2012)

46
23 20
Ray Milland is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Ray Milland Died at 79 (1907-1986)

47
41 35
William Hurt is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
William Hurt age 67 - Kiss of the Spider Woman (1985)

48
20 18
Maximilian Schell is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Maximilian Schell Died at 84 (1930-2014)

49
19 14
Rod Steiger is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Matthew Baker added Rod Steiger Died at 77 (1925-2002)

50
25 17
Robert Redford is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role
Margaret Anne Chalmers Hunt added Robert Redford age 81