To Win a Best Actor Oscar, Play a Real Person
Most of the recent Oscar-winning roles have been drawn from real life.
Four out of five of the nominees for Best Actor at this Sunday’s Academy Awards have something in common. Yes, they’re all white (and so is the fifth). They’re also all nominated for playing real people.
Over the past 50 years, roughly a third of the Oscars for Best Actor and Best Actress have been awarded for roles based on real people. Recently, those numbers have shot up: Since 2003, over half of the Best Actress winners and more than two-thirds of the Best Actor winners have portrayed characters who exist outside of movies.
Biopics are as old as movies themselves. But while today’s actors tend to win awards for their realistic portrayals of historical figures, that wasn’t always the case.