List of Academy Best Actor Award Winners Last 10 Years

On Sunday January 14, 2016, five men square it off at the Academy Awards for Best Actor — only, The Danish Girl's Eddie Redmayne, have won the Oscar before. This century has discovered an array of actors claim this valuable prize, everyone from French comic performers to veteran American superstars, newcomers to well-known Hollywood names resurrecting their careers.

We would like to look back at the last 10 years of Best Actor champs, listing them in descending order. A few things we come to realize along the way, though: 1.) Performing a real person facilitates your chances of nabbing an Oscar (few of the 10 winners belong to that category); and 2.) Your likelihood of winning increase immeasurably if you happen to be Sean Penn or Daniel Day-Lewis (they've both won two Oscars this century).

1) The Long nightmare has ended

After five failed attempts, the actor at last has an Oscar to his name. Leonardo DiCaprio chased down that plate of uncooked bison liver with a Best Actor award for his rugged acting in The Revenant, a win that was anticipated and yet still pleasing based on the miles DiCaprio has had to travel to get to the podium.

2) Eddie Redmayne -The Theory of Everything (2014)

Eddie Redmayne captured the terror of losing control of one's own body in this drama concerning the complicated relationship between Jane ( Felicity Jones ) and her husband Stephen Hawking (who was identified as having ALS in his early 20s ) . It's the kind of acting that is easy to overlook as Oscar-bait, however the actor's performance pushes past mimicry.

3) Matthew McConaughey -Dallas Buyers Club (2013)

Ron Woodroof , the electrician at the helm of Dallas Buyers Club , is not the kind of guy who's normally the focus of an Oscar winning movie — making it ideal that he's played by Matthew McConaughey, who, for the majority of his career , wasn't part of any Oscar conversation . The award-winning actor turn as a Texas homophobe who, after being infected with HIV, discovers what it's like to be discriminated against in America.

4) Daniel Day-Lewis -Lincoln (2012)

Most realize that Daniel Day-Lewis at first rejected Steven Spielberg's request that he play America's 16th president. Thankfully, the two-time Oscar-winner changed his mind. His role made him the only actor to ever win three Best Actor Academy Awards. It took a foreign-born actor to show the best of the American character: our humanity, our will, our decency, our love of telling dopey jokes.

5) Jean Dujardin -The Artist (2011)

Jean Dujardin had previously worked with movie director Michel. In The Artist, Dujardin just as before used his deceitful handsomeness as a tool. It's a captivating performance in a captivating film, but its pleasantness begins to feel one-note.

6) Colin Firth -The King's Speech (2010)

A high-class period movie that gets its compassion from Firth's modest. An actor well known for playing characters filled with impeccable gentility and debonair charm, Firth constantly let us feel the weight of the crown that lays heavy on his character's head.

7) Jeff Bridges -Crazy Heart (2009)

In the late 90's The Big Lebowski, Jeff Bridges positioned himself as America's much-loved stoner uncle. A lot more than a decade later, the actor cashed in on that friendly character with an Oscar award, wherein he acted a faded America celebrity who starts a romantic affair with a journalist that was sent to write a story on him.

8) Sean Penn -Milk (2008)

If Sean Penn's Oscar award for Mystic River movie shown his tough aggression, his transform as an activist Harvey Milk shown his compassion and sweetness. In a career personified by acting tough guys (both on and off screen), Penn performed an unusual gentleness here, which does not signify he wasn't any less steely in this particular role. Penn has maybe never been more lovable, a quality that is seldom been related to this actor.

9) Daniel Day-Lewis -There Will Be Blood (2007)

To prepare to act Daniel Plainview, the greedy, towering misanthrope who strides the landscape like a lanky giant in 'There Will Be Blood', Daniel Day-Lewis studied tapes of actor-director John Huston, along with Dust Bowl-era audio recordings. From those resources as well as others, he crafted one of the signature depictions of American exceptionalism writ large.

10) Forest Whitaker -The Last King of Scotland (2006)

Forest Whitaker won the Best Actor Oscar award although he is not actually the lead in his own movie. Just similar to Washington's crooked cop, the actor creates the African dictator a hypnotic portrait of evil, a man who creates significant personal friendliness yet can turn heartless if anybody crosses him. 

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