Six Spot #7: Best Actor 1997

Oscar Question

Welcome back to The Six Spot! In case you missed last week’s 2007 Best Director Six Spot, you can catch it here.

This week, in honor of ACCA 1997, we dive into the 1997 Best Actor race (thanks to Terence for his persistent suggestion of this Six Spot idea). The last time we saw the Best Actor race was when we honored ACCA 1998 in the inaugural Six Spot. The 1997 Best Actor race was a unique one. The five actors have a combined seven Oscars: five in Best Actor, one in Best Supporting Actor, and one in Original Screenplay. Sadly, Peter Fonda remains the sole Oscar-less member of this race. Indeed, rarely do we have years that are so simple to predict as the 1997 nominees were—the Oscars and SAGs overlapped 5/5 in this race. So we’re presented with quite the challenge in finding reliable evidence to point us towards the Six Spot.

In the end, however, it came down to two of the three breakout stars of Easy Rider vying for the Oscar. So without further ado, here we go!

Here goes nothing!

The First Five Spots

Jack Nicholson

The Academy Award nominees were…

  • Matt Damon, Good Will Hunting
  • Robert Duvall, The Apostle
  • Peter Fonda, Ulee’s Gold
  • Dustin Hoffman, Wag the Dog
  • Jack Nicholson, As Good As It Gets

Breakdown of Seasonal Hardware*

 Peter Fonda

  • Matt Damon, Good Will Hunting
    • Key Nominations: SAG, Golden Globe
  • Robert Duvall, The Apostle
    • Key Wins: LAFCA, NSFC
    • Key Nominations: SAG, NTFCC (runner-up)
  • Peter Fonda, Ulee’s Gold
    • Key Wins: Golden Globe (Drama), NYFCC
    • Key Nominations: SAG, NSFC (runner-up)
  • Dustin Hoffman, Wag the Dog
    • Key Nominations: SAG, Golden Globe, NSFC (runner-up)
  • Jack Nicholson, As Good As It Gets
    • Key Wins: SAG, Golden Globe (Comedy/Musical), BFCA, NBR
    • Key Nominations: LAFCA (runner-up)

Jack Nicholson Helen Hunt

  • Daniel Day-Lewis, The Boxer
    • Key Nominations: Golden Globe
  • Leonardo DiCaprio, Titanic
    • Key Nominations: Golden Globe
  • Djimon Hounsou, Amistad
    • Key Nominations: Golden Globe
  • Samuel L. Jackson, Jackie Brown
    • Key Nominations: Golden Globe
  • Jim Carrey, Liar Liar
    • Key Nominations: Golden Globe
  • Kevin Kline, In & Out
    • Key Nominations: Golden Globe
  • Ian Holm, The Sweet Hereafter
    • Key Nominations: NSFC (runner-up), NYFCC (runner-up)
  • Al Pacino, Donnie Brasco
    • Key Nominations: NSFC (runner-up)

*remember, pre-2000, BAFTAs don’t matter for the purposes of the Six Spot*