TV The Greatest Oscar Acceptance Speeches of All Time  

Ranker Film
1.1k votes 449 voters 6.8k views 30 items Embed

One of the best parts of the Oscars broadcast each year is the moving and heartfelt acceptance speeches. The Academy Awards are the highest honor a director, actor, or person in the world of film can win. As a result, some of the best Oscar speeches are memorable for the winner's nerves, excitement, and enthusiasm. Which Oscar-winning stars have given the best acceptance speeches?

Especially with the advent of YouTube and social media, Academy Award speeches (and those from just about any awards show) are replayed and enjoyed (or scrutinized) even long after the telecast has aired. But not all Oscar speeches are created equal. Far from it. Winners react with everything from pure excitement (Cuba Gooding, Jr.) to an outpouring of emotion (Halle Berry) to being completely overwhelmed (Jennifer Lawrence).

These are the best Academy Award Speeches of all time! Vote up the speeches you find the most moving, and get ready to feel all the feels.

Ranker Video
Video: YouTube

Year: 1995
Film: Forrest Gump
Award: Best Actor in a Leading Role

Tom Hanks is the embodiment of charm. When he thanks you, he means it - really, truly means it. He thanks everyone and you as the viewer feel thanked and loved. Powerful words, powerfully delivered.

Credits (TV): Band of Brothers, Tales from the Crypt, Big Love, John Adams, Bosom Buddies, + more

Birthplace: Concord, California, United States of America

Nationality: United States of America

Also Ranked

#1 on The Best Actors in Film History

#1 on The Best Living American Actors

#1 on The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

#1 on The Best (Male) Actors Working Today

118 10
Agree or disagree?
see more on Tom Hanks

Ranker Video
Video: YouTube

Year: 1998
Film: Good Will Hunting
Award: Best Actor in a Supporting Role

You knew Robin Williams to be excited and excitable in nearly all of his performances, but to see the late actor near speechless with excitement here is powerful and amazing.

Credits (TV): Mork & Mindy, The Crazy Ones, Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In, Mork & Mindy/Laverne & Shirley/Fonz Hour, The Richard Pryor Show, + more

Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA

Nationality: United States of America

Also Ranked

#26 on The Best Actors in Film History

#30 on The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

#6 on People We Wish Were Still Alive

#3 on The Best Oscar Hosts Ever

38 24
Agree or disagree?
see more on Robin Williams

Ranker Video
Video: YouTube

Year: 2014
Film: Dallas Buyers Club
Award: Best Actor in a Leading Role

McConaughey manages to hit all of the standard notes in the beginning of his speech, thanking the Academy, his team, his costars, and the other acceptance speech regulars. He then elaborates on his life and his path, in pure poetic McConaughey style.

Credits (TV): True Detective, Unsolved Mysteries, Festival Pass with Chris Gore

Birthplace: Uvalde, Texas, United States of America

Nationality: United States of America

Also Ranked

#73 on The Best Actors in Film History

#16 on The Best Living American Actors

#35 on The Best (Male) Actors Working Today

#48 on The Best Actors to Ever Win Best Actor in a Leading Role

39 25
Agree or disagree?
see more on Matthew McConaughey

Ranker Video
Video: YouTube
Year: 1972
Film: N/A
Award: Honorary Award for "the incalculable effect he has had in making motion pictures the art form of this century."
 

The speech given to announce Charlie Chaplin was impassioned and powerful, using quotes from the man and examples of his work. Once Chaplin took the stage he barely would have needed to speak, as his face says it all. However, this serves to make his speech even more poignant and powerful.

Birthplace: Walworth, United Kingdom

Nationality: England

Also Ranked

#37 on The Best Actors in Film History

#19 on The Greatest Actors & Actresses in Entertainment History

#39 on People We Wish Were Still Alive

#60 on The Most Influential People of All Time

17 6
Agree or disagree?
see more on Charlie Chaplin