With the upcoming Oscars, everyone is talking about which actors and actresses are going to come out on top. And while there are plenty of women in Hollywood who are making a name for themselves just because of how good looking they are, it’s clear that the women on our list are both beautiful and talented.
Below we cover the 10 best looking women that are being nominated for an Oscar this upcoming year. You’ll have to forgive us as we also bend the rule to include two of our favorite picks for Best Animated Films and 2 of the gorgeous girls behind the success. Then as we circle into the latter portion of our list, we go through the past 5 years and identify which actress was the best looking that year, but ultimately came up short.
While there were no shortage of amazing performances from this past year, these women certainly deserve all eyes to be on them.
15. Natalie Portman – Jackie
Natalie Portman may be catching everyone’s eye because of her very apparent baby bump, but anyone who saw her in Jackie knows that Portman‘s good looks is only perhaps surpassed by her acting talent. Portman was attached to the project for years before it came together, originally saying she was drawn to the level of humanity that she would be able to bring to the character.
Portman was previously nominated for an Academy Award in 2004 when she played a stripper (talk about a difference!) for the movie Closer.
“It’s unimaginable what [Jackie] went through because it was so public, so violent and so unexpected – and so traumatic, personally, I think we forget that, how terrifying it must have been to have happened right next to you. We’ve seen the photos and the footage of all this so many times, but I hope the movie makes you consider it in a more personal way,” she added. “It still feels very upsetting – and it should,” said Portman when talking about the role.
14. Ruth Negga – Loving
Ruth Negga may have first come to your attention when she showed up on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you also don’t track her down in the movie Loving.
The movie is based on the true story of the Lovings, an interracial couple that in 1958 were arrested and sentenced to a year in jail after marrying each other. The case ended up going to the supreme court and was monumental in helping legalize interracial marriages.
Negga is nominated for a Best Actress award and her passion exudes throughout the film, so perhaps you aren’t shocked to hear that acting has always been her dream job
13. Charlize Theron – Monkey (Kubo And The Two Strings)
If we’re going to talk about movies at the Academy Awards this year that should blow you away with the visuals, Kubo and the Two Strings needs to be talked about. The movie is done in 3D stop-motion and marks the directorial debut of Travis Knight. With 97% on RottenTomatoes, it’s hard to imagine watching this movie is going to be considered a waste of your time. It is currently nominated for Best Animated Feature Film as well as Best Visual Effects.
While Theron is not nominated for an individual award, she is the lead in Kubo and her talent is well worth recognizing. Matthew McConaughey, Rooney Mara, and Ralph Fiennes are all involved with the project as well.
12. Nicole Kidman – Lion
Lion is such an unbelievable story that Nicole Kidman could not believe it was all true.
“I still couldn’t quite believe it. Then I thought, maybe they’d fudged some of it. But no. It really is all true,” she said in an interview.
Lion tells the story of Saroo, a 5-year-old boy from India who got separated from his family one day after falling asleep on the train. He grew up in an orphanage, before being adopted by an Australian couple. Once older, Saroo was able to track down his hometown through Google Earth and returns to India to try and track down his birth family.
When you consider Kidman has also adopted two children from her marriage with Tom Cruise, you can imagine the story hit home all the harder.
11. Michelle Williams – Manchester By The Sea
Michelle Williams has no shortage of roles in which she is quick to show off her acting chops, including winning a Golden Globe when she took on the role of Marilyn Monroe in 2011.
This past year it is her role in Manchester by the Sea that is leaving critics talking. The movie also stars Casey Affleck who has already won a Golden Globe for his performance.
Williams plays the role of his ex-wife and doesn’t have nearly as much screen time as Casey, but don’t think that means she didn’t have to work hard.
“Someone will say: ‘Oh, it won’t take any time.’ And actually it will. I have to figure out how I walk and talk and what I wear and what my history is and why I’m there and where I’m going and it’s gonna take me all year!,” she said in a past interview.
10. Naomie Harris – Moonlight
Naomie Harris may be used to being overshadowed by James Bond on the big screen, as she appeared in Skyfall and Spectre, but all eyes should be on her on the red carpet. And when you consider she was absolutely outstanding in the movie Moonlight, they’re definitely going to be no shortage of positive things to say about her.
Moonlight chronicles the life of a black man throughout his life and the struggles he faces while growing up. It is led by Mahaershala Ali who plays Cornell Stokes in Luke Cage. Ali is nominated for a best actor award.
Harris played the role of a drug-addicted mother and while you can imagine this role was taxing, you may be shocked to hear her entire role was filmed over 3 days.
When talking about the experience, Harris said “I loved it. I loved the opportunity to work morning, noon, and night. There was no time to languish in a trailer — it was like, ‘Get on, and deliver.’”
9. Isabelle Huppert – Elle
Isabelle Huppert definitely had to engage with her emotions in a very real way to play the lead character in Elle. The movie sees her character get raped in her home by an unknown assailant and elects not to report it. We then see her attempt to handle her life through the aftermath as she also attempts to plan revenge.
Huppert was interviewed recently and talked more about playing a character with such a dark past, something Huppert has experience with,
“I know exactly what it means to suffer for a character, to hate a character, to love a character. Although as an actress it’s completely different. You don’t suffer the same way the spectator suffers. When you suffer as an actress, you don’t suffer, you have pleasure.”
8. Ginnifer Goodwin – Zootopia
One of my own personal favorite categories at the Oscars is the best-animated feature film and this year would not be complete without Zootopia getting some recognition. And while you cannot see the beautiful Ginnifer Goodwin on-screen, it’s clear that she is well deserving of a spot on our list.
The movie was a huge hit with critics and fans and naturally, has left everyone clamoring for a sequel.
“I feel like there must be further to go because she and Nick specifically went so far the first time. Maybe I’d like to see them switch places a little bit. I’d love for Nick to have to be the one to convince Judy that the world is worth fighting for,” said Goodwin when talking about the possibility for one and what she would love to see in it.
7. Viola Davis – Fences
Fences is a tremendous movie that has earned 4 separate nominations at this year’s Oscars. While Denzel Washington is up for Best Actor, you wouldn’t be alone in thinking that Viola Davis steals the show. The fact that she is marked for Best Supporting Actress can make us all hopeful that this may be her year. Denzel Washington has since come out and said she thinks she should have been nominated for Best Actress (not supporting), but that this will improve her chances of winning and that it was her own decision.
Davis previously took home the Golden Globe this year for her performance.
6. Emma Stone – La La Land
Emma Stone looks absolutely gorgeous in the movie La La Land, but we can imagine she’s going to be looking even more alluring when she hits the red carpet for the Oscars. The role required Stone to not only bring her acting game, but also her singing; including two songs (“City of Stars” and “Audition”) which were recorded live.
The film was a passion project of director Damien Chazelle who in a past interview said, “It always felt somewhat unlikely and even impossible at times. I just had a hope that the thing I loved about the older musicals could still apply today,” Stone was also quick to share her excitement saying “[I was] so excited by the fact it was an original musical because nobody had done it before.”
5. Loss – Rachel McAdams (2016): Spotlight
Rachel McAdams has had plenty of roles in Hollywood that we are sure you fell in love with (Mean Girls, Wedding Crashers and Doctor Strange to start), but unfortunately she must have felt disappointed when Alicia Vikander beat her out for Best Supporting Actress in a Supporting Role at the 2016 Oscars.
McAdams was nominated for her role in the movie Spotlight, which at least to her credit, went on to win Best Picture! McAdams was portraying the life of Sarah Pfeiffer, a journalist who in a past interview opened up about how dedicated McAdams was to the role
“I was with her a lot. I would get text messages in the middle of the work day, and Rachel would say, ‘When you were doing an interview here, would you have used your notebook or typed into a computer?’”
4. Loss – Kiera Knightley (2015): The Imitation Game
Keira Knightley may have made her mark on the high seas with the Pirates of the Caribbean series, but it was travelling back in time for the historical piece The Imitation Game that Knightley earned an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Sadly for Knightley, she lost out to Patricia Arquette for her role in the movie Boyhood.
Knightley shared the screen with Benedict Cumberbatch and was quick to praise him in a past interview, “[He] is a lovely bloke. He’s a very dedicated actor. His research and just his immersion into this role was very impressive.”
Sadly, Cumberbatch lost out to Eddie Redmayne. Emma Stone was also nominated for a Best Supporting Actress nomination that year, but we can hope she has better luck this year!
3. Loss – Amy Adams (2014): American Hustle
Arrival is brought together by so many amazing elements, that perhaps you aren’t surprised to hear it has been nominated for Cinematography, Directing, Film Editing, Production Design, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Writing (Adapted Screenplay) and Best Picture.
We’re sure they must be stoked about that, but one area that failed to get recognized is the outstanding acting done by Amy Adams. This isn’t the first time a critically acclaimed movie that starred Adams failed to garner recognition. She was nominated very recently for her role in American Hustle but came up short.
2. Loss – Naomi Watts (2013): The Impossible
The Impossible tells the story of Maria Belon and her family in the aftermath of the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. The role definitely required a strong actress to step into the lead role, and you can imagine they were thanking their lucky stars that Naomi Watts signed on for the part. Alongside Ewan McGregor, the movie earned a great reception with critics (81% on RottenTomatoes) and earned over $180 million at the box office.
Sadly for Watts, her quest for an Academy Award was beaten by Jennifer Lawrence who was outstanding in the lead role of Silver Linings Playbook.
1. Loss – Jessica Chastain (2012): The Help
Jessica Chastain is an outstanding actress who has been nominated for an Academy Award on two separate occasions but has yet to be able to claim the honor. In 2012, she was a strong candidate to take home Best Supporting Actress for the movie The Help, but she was thwarted by Octavia Spencer. We are sure there weren’t any hard feelings though as Spencer also won for her work on The Help.
She was every bit as good the following year, earning a nomination for Best Actress in Zero Dark Thirty, but like Watts, was beaten by Jennifer Lawrence.