2017 Awards Circuit In Line Series: 25 Actors for an Oscar Win

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Welcome to the official 2017 AWARDS CIRCUIT IN LINE SERIES!

The Academy Awards get tons of flack for not rewarding actors and actresses in the prime of their careers. It often boils down to poor timing, but sometimes the Academy’s choices are downright baffling. Here at Awards Circuit, we will begin an annual tradition called “In Line,” a collection of actors and actresses that are “in line” to either win an Academy Award or garner their very first nomination. The men and women have been divided up, with each getting their own annual list.

This list will change on a year-to-year basis, with obvious newcomers having the ability to jump out in front. This list will be released every January, one day after New Year’s.

Click through the gallery to see the list of 25 Actors In Line for an Oscar Win:

Share your thoughts on the list in the comments section below!

25. Josh Brolin

BEST PERFORMANCE: “Inherent Vice” (2014)

After two decades of yeoman’s work, Josh Brolin finally got the respect he deserved with his role of Llewelyn Moss in the Best Picture winner, “No Country for Old Men.” The following year he earned his first Oscar nomination for “Milk.” He’s been hit-or-miss since 2008, but has managed to balance cashing big checks for studios with great work in the likes of “Inherent Vice,” “Hail, Caesar!,” and “Sicario.” It’s hard to believe his first Oscar nomination was so far away, but he fits the bill of a working actor who finally wins one day. Perhaps his “Sicario” (titled “Soldado“) sequel will garner more Oscar buzz for him.
-Sam Coffey

  • Joey Magidson

    Gyllenhaal seems the most likely of the group on first glance, but anything is possible, obviously.

  • Tee

    Bill Murray was nominated for Lost in Translation, and I’m surprised there’s no “best performances” like previous lists. I’m interested where you stand on Prisoners vs Brokeback as his best.

    My top ten is about the same, but shuffled around and with a notable inclusion.

    1. Jake Gyllenhaal
    2. Michael Keaton
    3. Bradley Cooper
    4. Joaquin Phoenix
    5. Edward Norton
    6. Mark Ruffalo
    7. Michael Fassbender
    8. Ryan Gosling
    9. Ralph Fiennes
    10. Andrew Garfield

    I’ll also ask about a couple industry veterans I’m surprised didn’t get mentioned, such as Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, and Robert Downey Jr.

    • For the honorable mentions, what’s in parenthesis is their best performance.

      In terms of the other “BEST PERFORMANCES,” they’ve been added. Thanks for reading.

  • Matt St.Clair

    Jake Gyllenhaal definitely feels like the next Leonardo DiCaprio even though he’s only got one nomination.

    Ralph Fiennes HAS to win an Oscar at some point. With all the great performances he’s given over the years and how he constantly delivers at every turn, they’ll have to honor him at some point.

    • Steve

      Ralph Fiennes should already have one for Schindler’s List.

      • Luke McGowan

        In my opinion he should have at least two

  • Hard to believe Phoenix doesn’t have an Oscar yet. Talk about overdue!

  • Nick Fraser

    The only thing I’d disagree with are the performances. Love the list!

  • davi

    Additionals:
    Brad Pitt
    Robert Downey Jr
    William H. Macy
    Tom Cruise
    Casey Affleck, who still can lose in the race for win this year
    Clive Owen
    Eddie Murphy
    Viggo Mortensen

  • Luke McGowan

    Gary Oldman being only one nomination in hurts the most. I hope Flying Horse makes an impact

  • Gevorg Keoseyan

    I really thought we would see Tom Hardy on this list given his incredible body of work. But I’m assuming since he hasn’t been around as long as most of the names on this list, is the reason for his ommission.

  • Damian Pietrzak

    Keaton/Cooper before Gyllenhaal or Phoenix? lol..

    • Kevin

      Gyllenhaal has one nomination. Phoenix has three, but they’re spread out. Cooper got three in a row, you can argue he was number two behind Daniel Day Lewis for Silver Lining Playbook, and he’s become one of the more popular actors. How can you argue Gyllenhaal is more in line than Cooper when he hasn’t gotten a nomination in what, 10 years now? Of course we know Gyllenhaal should have three or four nominations, but this article isn’t only about personal feelings. Someone who has three nominations in three years is more in line than someone who has one nomination 10 years ago.

  • Kevin

    Really good list. One person that wasn’t on that I am curious about is Brad Pitt. Do you not think he’s someone in line for anow acting win, or do you not count him because he does have a win, for producing 12 Years a Slave?

    • He’s an Oscar-winner already for “12 Years a Slave”