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

Updated September 25, 2020 81.9k votes 4.5k voters 59.8k views192 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
    Amy Adams
    1,352
    458

    Amy Adams

    Age: 46
    Nominated For: Junebug, Doubt, The Fighter, The Master, American Hustle
  • 2
    Glenn Close
    1,724
    411

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

  • 3
    Sigourney Weaver
    1,253
    470
    Nominated For: Aliens, Gorillas in the Mist, Working Girl.
  • 4
    Helena Bonham Carter
    1,677
    598
    Nominated For: The Wings of the Dove, The King's Speech
  • 5
    Michelle Pfeiffer
    1,292
    508
    Nominated For: Dangerous Liaisons, The Fabulous Baker Boys, Love Field.
  • 6
    Judy Garland
    1,160
    389

    Judy Garland

    Dec. at 47 (1922-1969)
    Nominated For: A Star is Born, Judgement at Nuremberg 
  • 7
    Annette Bening
    1,036
    429
    Nominated For: The Grifters, American Beauty, Being Julia, The Kids Are Alright.
  • 8
    Angela Lansbury
    840
    350
    Nominated For: Gaslight, The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Manchurian Candidate
  • 9
    Lauren Bacall
    827
    368

    Lauren Bacall

    Dec. at 90 (1924-2014)
    Was never nominated, did however receive an Honorary Academy Award, for her career as a whole, in 2009.
  • 10
    Rachel McAdams
    529
    209

    Nominated for: Spotlight

  • 11
    Margot Robbie
    559
    221
  • 12
    Emily Blunt
    912
    344
    Has never been nominated for an Academy Award
  • 13
    Laura Linney
    557
    281
    Nominated For: The Savages, Kinsey, You Can Count on Me.
  • 14
    Winona Ryder
    637
    347
    Nominated For: Little Women, The Age of Innocence.
  • 15
    Toni Collette
    596
    262
    Nominated ForThe Sixth Sense
  • 16
    Bette Midler
    730
    453
    Nominated For: The Rose, For the Boys
  • 17
    Angela Bassett
    704
    404
    Nominated For: What's Love Got to Do with It.
  • 18
    Naomi Watts
    842
    373
    Nominated For: 21 Grams, The Impossible.
  • 19
    Scarlett Johansson
    741
    483
    Has never been nominated for an Academy Award.
  • 20
    Jamie Lee Curtis
    808
    418
    Has never been nominated for an Academy Award.
  • 21
    Diane Lane
    341
    124

    Diane Lane

    Age: 54

    Nominated for: Unfaithful

  • 22
    Sarah Paulson
    303
    146

    Never nominated

  • 23
    Debbie Reynolds
    409
    205
    Nominated ForThe Unsinkable Molly Brown
  • 24
    Jessica Chastain
    757
    454
    Nominated For: The Help, Zero Dark Thirty
  • 25
    Gena Rowlands
    352
    216
    Nominated For: Gloria