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The Greatest Actresses Who Have Never Won an Oscar (for Acting)

Updated September 23, 2021 94.4k votes 5.2k voters 67.8k views188 items

List RulesVote up the actresses who have never been awarded the Oscar for Best Actress or Best Supporting Actress.

There are many actresses who haven't won an Oscar. For 95 percent of the acting population, there is probably a good reason they haven't taken home one of film's most prestigious honors being on the Academy Awards winners list. Only two actresses per year can win either the Best Actress or Best Supporting Actress Oscars, leaving eight other nominees with nothing - and all of the other actresses in the biz out in the cold. 

But does the Academy always get it right? There are plenty of actresses who haven't won an Oscar despite the fact that they’ve turned in amazing performances. Whether it’s due to stellar competition, bad luck, or an out-and-out snub, some artists have never gotten the recognition they deserve. 

Amy Adams, Rachel McAdams, and Glenn Close are all big draws at the box office who haven't received the same respect of the Academy that they have from audiences. While they've all been nominated for Oscars, they've never taken home the big prize. Other top actresses without Oscars include Michelle Pfeiffer, Annette Bening, Sigourney Weaver, Helena Bonham Carter, and Christina Ricci. This list of female Hollywood celebrities who have no Academy Awards also includes black Actresses, like Angela Bassett, and famous classic stars, like Greta Garbo and Judy Garland. With six nominations, Thelma Ritter has the most nominations without winning the Oscar.  

There are a surprising number of big name actresses who haven't won an Oscar. It's up to you to determine which of these women is the greatest.

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  • 1
    1,913
    437

    Nominated For: The World According to Garp, The Big Chill, The Natural, Fatal Attraction, Dangerous Liaisons, Albert Nobbs

  • 2
    1,881
    578
    Nominated For: The Wings of the Dove, The King's Speech
  • 3
    1,458
    482
    Age: 47
    Nominated For: Junebug, Doubt, The Fighter, The Master, American Hustle
  • 4
    1,325
    396
    Dec. at 47 (1922-1969)
    Nominated For: A Star is Born, Judgement at Nuremberg 
  • 5
    1,416
    487
    Nominated For: Aliens, Gorillas in the Mist, Working Girl.
  • 6
    1,454
    520
    Nominated For: Dangerous Liaisons, The Fabulous Baker Boys, Love Field.
  • 7
    1,177
    450
    Nominated For: The Grifters, American Beauty, Being Julia, The Kids Are Alright.
  • 8
    1,006
    363
    CraigAlarm addedAge: 96
    Nominated For: Gaslight, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Manchurian Candidate
  • 9
    815
    299
    Nominated ForThe Sixth Sense
  • 10
    952
    377
    Dec. at 89 (1924-2014)
    Was never nominated, did however receive an Honorary Academy Award, for her career as a whole, in 2009.
  • 11
    1,112
    354
    Has never been nominated for an Academy Award
  • 12
    743
    278
    Manuel Cruz Aav addedAge: 42

    Nominated for: Spotlight

  • 13
    737
    303
    Nominated For: The Savages, Kinsey, You Can Count on Me.
  • 14
    535
    185
    Teej addedAge: 46

    Never nominated

  • 15
    715
    289
    Daisy Kat addedAge: 31
  • 16
    527
    167
    Manuel Cruz Aav addedAge: 56

    Nominated for: Unfaithful

  • 17
    874
    411
    Nominated For: What's Love Got to Do with It.
  • 18
    520
    230
    CraigAlarm addedAge: 91
    Nominated For: Gloria
  • 19
    985
    376
    Nominated For: 21 Grams, The Impossible.
  • 20
    774
    385
    Nominated For: Little Women, The Age of Innocence.
  • 21
    529
    132
    shakeitup addedAge: 27
  • 22
    542
    220
    Dec. at 84 (1932-2016)
    Nominated ForThe Unsinkable Molly Brown
  • 23
    943
    422
    Has never been nominated for an Academy Award.
  • 24
    471
    226
    Nominated ForPieces of April
  • 25
    652
    248
    CraigAlarm addedAge: 101
    Was never nominated for an Academy Award.
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List Rules: Vote up the actresses who have never been awarded the Oscar for Best Actress or Best Supporting Actress.