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The Oscar Quest: Rankings (Best Supporting Actress)

Each time I write up Oscar categories for the Quest, I put rankings at the bottom. I can say what I want, but it really only gains perspective when I show you how I feel about each of the films or performances in relation to the others in the category. Plus, lists are easy to read.

They tend to be slightly different each time. The actual rankings are of course different, but also my methodology behind how I ranked them is different. Each time I do it, I seem to be getting closer to a consensus, so hopefully this one sticks.

The way I’m ranking these performance, as least in this current iteration: for each of the performance-related categories, the rankings are about quality of performance. I’ll vote for what I vote for, but the rankings are meant to reflect what I believe to be the best performances of the category, in order. Now, there may be some slight skewing on a few categories where my personal preference outweighs what may be objective criticism, but I promise those are limited.

Hopefully I can continue updating this as we go, and whenever I watch another movie again and shift my opinion, I’ll go back and reorganize these lists as I see fit. So that means, if this page is different than the actual category I wrote up, that’s the reason. Ideally one day I’ll have set pages for each of the categories and can just have one master location. I think we’re moving closer to that. I just need to get to a place where I feel my opinions have leveled out. We’re not there yet, but I’m working on it.

Anyway, this is a compilation of my rankings for the Best Supporting Actress categories:

(NOTE: A * means that was my vote. If a nominee is underlined, that means it was the winner in the category.)

2016

  1. Viola Davis, Fences *
  2. Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea
  3. Naomie Harris, Moonlight
  4. Nicole Kidman, Lion
  5. Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures

2015

  1. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs *
  2. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl
  3. Rooney Mara, Carol
  4. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
  5. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight

2014

  1. Patricia Arquette, Boyhood *
  2. Emma Stone, Birdman
  3. Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game
  4. Meryl Streep, Into the Woods
  5. Laura Dern, Wild

2013

  1. Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave *
  2. Julia Roberts, August: Osage County
  3. Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
  4. June Squibb, Nebraska
  5. Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine

2012

  1. Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables *
  2. Amy Adams, The Master
  3. Sally Field, Lincoln
  4. Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook
  5. Helen Hunt, The Sessions

2011

  1. Jessica Chastain, The Help *
  2. Berenice Bejo, The Artist
  3. Octavia Spencer, The Help
  4. Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
  5. Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids

2010

  1. Melissa Leo, The Fighter *
  2. Helena Bonham Carter, The King’s Speech
  3. Amy Adams, The Fighter
  4. Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit
  5. Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom

2009

  1. Mo’Nique, Precious *
  2. Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
  3. Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
  4. Penelope Cruz, Nine
  5. Maggie Gyllenhaal, Crazy Heart

2008

  1. Viola Davis, Doubt *
  2. Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona
  3. Amy Adams, Doubt
  4. Marisa Tomei, The Wrestler
  5. Taraji P. Henson, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

2007

  1. Tilda Swinton, Michael Clayton
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Atonement *
  3. Amy Ryan, Gone Baby Gone
  4. Cate Blanchett, I’m Not There
  5. Ruby Dee, American Gangster

2006

  1. Adriana Barraza, Babel *
  2. Jennifer Hudson, Dreamgirls
  3. Rinko Kikuchi, Babel
  4. Abigail Breslin, Little Miss Sunshine
  5. Cate Blanchett, Notes on a Scandal

2005

  1. Amy Adams, Junebug *
  2. Rachel Weisz, The Constant Gardener
  3. Michelle Williams, Brokeback Mountain
  4. Catherine Keener, Capote
  5. Frances McDormand, North Country

2004

  1. Cate Blanchett, The Aviator *
  2. Natalie Portman, Closer
  3. Sophie Okonedo, Hotel Rwanda
  4. Laura Linney, Kinsey
  5. Virginia Madsen, Sideways

2003

  1. Shohreh Aghdashloo, House of Sand and Fog *
  2. Holly Hunter, Thirteen
  3. Renée Zellweger, Cold Mountain
  4. Marcia Gay Harden, Mystic River
  5. Patricia Clarkson, Pieces of April

2002

  1. Catherine Zeta-Jones, Chicago *
  2. Julianne Moore, The Hours
  3. Kathy Bates, About Schmidt
  4. Meryl Streep, Adaptation
  5. Queen Latifah, Chicago

2001

  1. Jennifer Connelly, A Beautiful Mind *
  2. Helen Mirren, Gosford Park
  3. Marisa Tomei, In the Bedroom
  4. Maggie Smith, Gosford Park
  5. Kate Winslet, Iris

2000

  1. Frances McDormand, Almost Famous *
  2. Kate Hudson, Almost Famous
  3. Marcia Gay Harden, Pollock
  4. Julie Walters, Billy Elliot
  5. Judi Dench, Chocolat

1999

  1. Chloe Sevigny, Boys Don’t Cry *
  2. Angelina Jolie, Girl, Interrupted
  3. Samantha Morton, Sweet and Lowdown
  4. Toni Collette, The Sixth Sense
  5. Catherine Keener, Being John Malkovich

1998

  1. Brenda Blethyn, Little Voice *
  2. Kathy Bates, Primary Colors
  3. Judi Dench, Shakespeare in Love
  4. Lynn Redgrave, Gods and Monsters
  5. Rachel Griffiths, Hilary & Jackie

1997

  1. Joan Cusack, In & Out *
  2. Julianne Moore, Boogie Nights
  3. Minnie Driver, Good Will Hunting
  4. Kim Basinger, L.A. Confidential
  5. Gloria Stuart, Titanic

1996

  1. Barbara Hershey, The Portrait of a Lady
  2. Juliette Binoche, The English Patient *
  3. Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Secrets & Lies
  4. Joan Allen, The Crucible
  5. Lauren Bacall, The Mirror Has Two Faces

1995

  1. Mira Sorvino, Mighty Aphrodite *
  2. Kate Winslet, Sense and Sensibility
  3. Joan Allen, Nixon
  4. Mare Winningham, Georgia
  5. Kathleen Quinlan, Apollo 13

1994

  1. Jennifer Tilly, Bullets Over Broadway *
  2. Dianne Wiest, Bullets Over Broadway
  3. Uma Thurman, Pulp Fiction
  4. Helen Mirren, The Madness of King George
  5. Rosemary Harris, Tom & Viv

1993

  1. Rosie Perez, Fearless *
  2. Anna Paquin, The Piano
  3. Winona Ryder, The Age of Innocence
  4. Emma Thompson, In the Name of the Father
  5. Holly Hunter, The Firm

1992

  1. Judy Davis, Husbands and Wives
  2. Marisa Tomei, My Cousin Vinny *
  3. Vanessa Redgrave, Howards End
  4. Miranda Richardson, Damage
  5. Joan Plowright, Enchanted April

1991

  1. Mercedes Ruehl, The Fisher King *
  2. Juliette Lewis, Cape Fear
  3. Diane Ladd, Rambling Rose
  4. Kate Nelligan, The Prince of Tides
  5. Jessica Tandy, Fried Green Tomatoes

1990

  1. Lorraine Bracco, Goodfellas *
  2. Diane Ladd, Wild at Heart
  3. Whoopi Goldberg, Ghost
  4. Annette Bening, The Grifters
  5. Mary McDonnell, Dances with Wolves

1989

  1. Brenda Fricker, My Left Foot *
  2. Dianne Wiest, Parenthood
  3. Julia Roberts, Steel Magnolias
  4. Lena Olin, Enemies, A Love Story
  5. Angelica Huston, Enemies, A Love Story

1988

  1. Geena Davis, The Accidental Tourist *
  2. Frances McDormand, Mississippi Burning
  3. Michelle Pfeiffer, Dangerous Liaisons
  4. Sigourney Weaver, Working Girl
  5. Joan Cusack, Working Girl

1987

  1. Anne Ramsey, Throw Momma from the Train *
  2. Olympia Dukakis, Moonstruck
  3. Norma Aleandro, Gaby: A True Story
  4. Anne Archer, Fatal Attraction
  5. Ann Sothern, The Whales of August

1986

  1. Dianne Wiest, Hannah and Her Sisters *
  2. Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, The Color of Money
  3. Maggie Smith, A Room with a View
  4. Piper Laurie, Children of a Lesser God
  5. Tess Harper, Crimes of the Heart

1985

  1. Meg Tilly, Agnes of God *
  2. Oprah Winfrey, The Color Purple
  3. Anjelica Huston, Prizzi’s Honor
  4. Amy Madigan, Twice in a Lifetime
  5. Margaret Avery, The Color Purple

1984

  1. Peggy Ashcroft, A Passage to India *
  2. Geraldine Page, The Pope of Greenwich Village
  3. Christine Lahti, Swing Shift
  4. Lindsay Crouse, Places in the Heart
  5. Glenn Close, The Natural

1983

  1. Linda Hunt, The Year of Living Dangerously *
  2. Cher, Silkwood
  3. Glenn Close, The Big Chill
  4. Alfre Woodard, Cross Creek
  5. Amy Irving, Yentl

1982

  1. Terri Garr, Tootsie *
  2. Glenn Close, The World According to Garp
  3. Jessica Lange, Tootsie
  4. Lesley Ann Warren, Victor/Victoria
  5. Kim Stanley, Frances

1981

  1. Maureen Stapleton, Reds *
  2. Joan Hackett, Only When I Laugh
  3. Elizabeth McGovern, Ragtime
  4. Melinda Dillon, Absence of Malice
  5. Jane Fonda, On Golden Pond

1980

  1. Mary Steenburgen, Melvin and Howard *
  2. Cathy Moriarty, Raging Bull
  3. Eileen Brennan, Private Benjamin
  4. Diana Scarwid, Inside Moves
  5. Eva La Gallienne, Resurrection

1979

  1. Meryl Streep, Kramer vs. Kramer *
  2. Jane Alexander, Kramer vs. Kramer
  3. Barbara Barrie, Breaking Away
  4. Candice Bergen, Starting Over
  5. Mariel Hemingway, Manhattan

1978

  1. Maggie Smith, California Suite *
  2. Meryl Streep, The Deer Hunter
  3. Penelope Milford, Coming Home
  4. Dyan Cannon, Heaven Can Wait
  5. Maureen Stapleton, Interiors

1977

  1. Vanessa Redgrave, Julia *
  2. Leslie Browne, The Turning Point
  3. Quinn Cummings, The Goodbye Girl
  4. Tuesday Weld, Looking for Mr. Goodbar
  5. Melinda Dillon, Close Encounters of the Third Kind

1976

  1. Beatrice Straight, Network *
  2. Jodie Foster, Taxi Driver
  3. Piper Laurie, Carrie
  4. Lee Grant, Voyage of the Damned
  5. Jane Alexander, All the President’s Men

1975

  1. Ronee Blakley, Nashville *
  2. Lee Grant, Shampoo
  3. Lily Tomlin, Nashville
  4. Sylvia Miles, Farewell, My Lovely
  5. Brenda Vaccaro, Once Is Not Enough

1974

  1. Diane Ladd, Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore *
  2. Madeline Kahn, Blazing Saddles
  3. Talia Shire, The Godfather Part II
  4. Valentina Cortese, Day for Night
  5. Ingrid Bergman, Murder on the Orient Express

1973

  1. Tatum O’Neal, Paper Moon *
  2. Madeline Kahn, Paper Moon
  3. Linda Blair, The Exorcist
  4. Candy Clark, American Graffiti
  5. Sylvia Sidney, Summer Wishes, Winter Dreams

1972

  1. Susan Tyrrell, Fat City *
  2. Shelley Winters, The Poseidon Adventure
  3. Eileen Heckart, Butterflies Are Free
  4. Jeannie Berlin, The Heartbreak Kid
  5. Geraldine Page, Pete ‘n’ Tillie

1971

  1. Barbara Harris, Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me? *
  2. Cloris Leachman, The Last Picture Show
  3. Ann-Margret, Carnal Knowledge
  4. Ellen Burstyn, The Last Picture Show
  5. Margaret Leighton, The Go-Between

1970

  1. Karen Black, Five Easy Pieces *
  2. Helen Hayes, Airport
  3. Lee Grant, The Landlord
  4. Sally Kellerman, MASH
  5. Maureen Stapleton, Airport

1969

  1. Catherine Burns, Last Summer *
  2. Susannah York, They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?
  3. Goldie Hawn, Cactus Flower
  4. Dyan Cannon, Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice
  5. Sylvia Miles, Midnight Cowboy

1968

  1. Ruth Gordon, Rosemary’s Baby *
  2. Lynn Carlin, Faces
  3. Sondra Locke, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter
  4. Estelle Parsons, Rachel, Rachel
  5. Kay Medford, Funny Girl

1967

  1. Estelle Parsons, Bonnie and Clyde *
  2. Katharine Ross, The Graduate
  3. Beah Richards, Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner
  4. Charol Channing, Thoroughly Modern Millie
  5. Mildred Natwick, Barefoot in the Park

1966

  1. Sandy Dennis, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? *
  2. Vivien Merchant, Alfie
  3. Wendy Hiller, A Man for All Seasons
  4. Jocelyne LaGarde, Hawaii
  5. Geraldine Page, You’re a Big Boy Now

1965

  1. Shelley Winters, A Patch of Blue *
  2. Ruth Gordon, Inside Daisy Clover
  3. Maggie Smith, Othello
  4. Joyce Redman, Othello
  5. Peggy Wood, The Sound of Music

1964

  1. Lila Kedrova, Zorba the Greek *
  2. Agnes Moorehead, Hush… Hush, Sweet Charlotte
  3. Grayson Hall, The Night of the Iguana
  4. Edith Evans, The Chalk Garden
  5. Gladys Cooper, My Fair Lady

1963

  1. Joyce Redman, Tom Jones *
  2. Margaret Rutherford, The V.I.P.s
  3. Diane Cilento, Tom Jones
  4. Edith Evans, Tom Jones
  5. Lilia Skala, Lilies of the Field

1962

  1. Patty Duke, The Miracle Worker *
  2. Angela Lansbury, The Manchurian Candidate
  3. Mary Badham, To Kill a Mockingbird
  4. Shirley Knight, Sweet Bird of Youth
  5. Thelma Ritter, Birdman of Alcatraz

1961

  1. Rita Moreno, West Side Story *
  2. Judy Garland, Judgment at Nuremberg
  3. Fay Bainter, The Children’s Hour
  4. Lotte Lenya, The Roman Spring of Miss Stone
  5. Una Merkel, Summer and Smoke

1960

  1. Shirley Jones, Elmer Gantry *
  2. Janet Leigh, Psycho
  3. Glynis Johns, The Sundowners
  4. Mary Ure, Sons and Lovers
  5. Shirley Knight, The Dark at the Top of the Stairs

1959

  1. Juanita Moore, Imitation of Life *
  2. Shelley Winters, The Diary of Anne Frank
  3. Susan Kohner, Imitation of Life
  4. Hermione Baddeley, Room at the Top
  5. Thelma Ritter, Pillow Talk

1958

  1. Wendy Hiller, Separate Tables *
  2. Cara Williams, The Defiant Ones
  3. Maureen Stapleton, Lonelyhearts
  4. Peggy Cass, Auntie Mame
  5. Martha Hyer, Some Came Running

1957

  1. Carolyn Jones, The Bachelor Party *
  2. Hope Lange, Peyton Place
  3. Miyoshi Umeki, Sayonara
  4. Elsa Lanchester, Witness for the Prosecution
  5. Diane Varsi, Peyton Place

1956

  1. Eileen Heckart, The Bad Seed *
  2. Patty McCormack, The Bad Seed
  3. Dorothy Malone, Written on the Wind
  4. Mercedes McCambridge, Giant
  5. Mildred Dunnock, Baby Doll

1955

  1. Jo Van Fleet, East of Eden
  2. Betsy Blair, Marty *
  3. Natalie Wood, Rebel Without a Cause
  4. Peggy Lee, Pete Kelly’s Blues
  5. Marisa Pavan, The Rose Tattoo

1954

  1. Eva Marie Saint, On the Waterfront *
  2. Katy Jurado, Broken Lance
  3. Nina Foch, Executive Suite
  4. Claire Trevor, The High and the Mighty
  5. Jan Sterling, The High and the Mighty

1953

  1. Thelma Ritter, Pickup on South Street *
  2. Grace Kelly, Mogambo
  3. Donna Reed, From Here to Eternity
  4. Geraldine Page, Hondo
  5. Marjorie Rambeau, Torch Song

1952

  1. Colette Marchand, Moulin Rouge *
  2. Jean Hagen, Singin’ in the Rain
  3. Gloria Grahame, The Bad and the Beautiful
  4. Thelma Ritter, With a Song in My Heart
  5. Terry Moore, Come Back, Little Sheba

1951

  1. Kim Hunter, A Streetcar Named Desire *
  2. Joan Blondell, The Blue Veil
  3. Thelma Ritter, The Mating Season
  4. Lee Grant, Detective Story
  5. Mildred Dunnock, Death of a Salesman

1950

  1. Hope Emerson, Caged *
  2. Josephine Hull, Harvey
  3. Celeste Holm, All About Eve
  4. Nancy Olson, Sunset Boulevard
  5. Thelma Ritter, All About Eve

1949

  1. Mercedes McCambridge, All the King’s Men *
  2. Ethel Barrymore, Pinky
  3. Ethel Waters, Pinky
  4. Celeste Holm, Come to the Stable
  5. Elsa Lanchester, Come to the Stable

1948

  1. Claire Trevor, Key Largo *
  2. Agnes Moorehead, Johnny Belinda
  3. Jean Simmons, Hamlet
  4. Ellen Corby, I Remember Mama
  5. Barbara Bel Geddes, I Remember Mama

1947

  1. Celeste Holm, Gentleman’s Agreement *
  2. Gloria Grahame, Crossfire
  3. Ethel Barrymore, The Paradine Case
  4. Anne Revere, Gentleman’s Agreement
  5. Marjorie Main, The Egg and I

1946

  1. Anne Baxter, The Razor’s Edge *
  2. Gale Sondergaard, Anna and the King of Siam
  3. Ethel Barrymore, The Spiral Staircase
  4. Lillian Gish, Duel in the Sun
  5. Flora Robson, Saratoga Trunk

1945

  1. Ann Blyth, Mildred Pierce *
  2. Anne Revere, National Velvet
  3. Joan Lorring, The Corn Is Green
  4. Eve Arden, Mildred Pierce
  5. Angela Lansbury, The Picture of Dorian Gray

1944

  1. Agnes Moorehead, Mrs. Parkington *
  2. Ethel Barrymore, None But the Lonely Heart
  3. Jennifer Jones, Since You Went Away
  4. Angela Lansbury, Gaslight
  5. Aline MacMahon, Dragon Seed

1943

  1. Katina Paxinou, For Whom the Bell Tolls *
  2. Paulette Goddard, So Proudly We Hail
  3. Gladys Cooper, The Song of Bernadette
  4. Anne Revere, The Song of Bernadette
  5. Lucille Watson, Watch on the Rhine

1942

  1. Agnes Moorehead, The Magnificent Ambersons *
  2. Teresa Wright, Mrs. Miniver
  3. Susan Peters, Random Harvest
  4. Gladys Cooper, Now, Voyager
  5. May Whitty, Mrs. Miniver

1941

  1. Patricia Collinge, The Little Foxes *
  2. Mary Astor, The Great Lie
  3. Teresa Wright, The Little Foxes
  4. Sara Allgood, How Green Was My Valley
  5. Margaret Wycherly, Sergeant York

1940

  1. Jane Darwell, The Grapes of Wrath *
  2. Judith Anderson, Rebecca
  3. Barbara O’Neil, All This, and Heaven Too
  4. Ruth Hussey, The Philadelphia Story
  5. Marjorie Rambeau, Primrose Path

1939

  1. Hattie McDaniel, Gone With the Wind *
  2. Olivia de Havilland, Gone With the Wind
  3. Geraldine Fitzgerald, Wuthering Heights
  4. Edna May Oliver, Drums Along the Mohawk
  5. Maria Ouspenskaya, Love Affair

1938

  1. Beulah Bondi, Of Human Hearts *
  2. Spring Byington, You Can’t Take It With You
  3. Miliza Korjus, The Great Waltz
  4. Fay Bainter, Jezebel
  5. Billie Burke, Merrily We Live

1937

  1. Andrea Leeds, Stage Door *
  2. Anne Shirley, Stella Dallas
  3. Claire Trevor, Dead End
  4. Alice Brady, In Old Chicago
  5. May Whitty, Night Must Fall

1936

  1. Beulah Bondi, The Gorgeous Hussy
  2. Bonita Granville, These Three *
  3. Alice Brady, My Man Godfrey
  4. Gale Sondergaard, Anthony Adverse
  5. Maria Ouspenskaya, Dodsworth

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