January 3, 2005

Schadenfreude Achievement Awards

As I mentioned in my review of Ray, Academy members tend to reward roles which involve some kind of handicap or illness. Oscar voters especially favor roles where the character achieves some kind of triumphant healing or trancending achievement. Emily calls these the Schadenfreude Achievement Awards. The following table chronicles most of these nominations from the last two decades.
YearActor, FilmAffliction
2007Tom Wilkinson, Michael Claytonchemical imbalance
Julie Christie, Away From HerAlzheimer's disease
2006Ryan Gosling, Half Nelsonaddict
Eddie Murphy, Dreamgirlsheroin
Alan Arkin, Little Miss Sunshineheroin
2005Joaquin Phoenix, Walk The Linepills, alcohol
2004Hilary Swank, Million Dollar Babycrippled
Jamie Foxx, Rayblind, heroin
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Aviatorcrazy
Morgan Freeman, Million Dollar Babyhalf-blind
2003Patricia Clarkson, Pieces Of Aprildying
2002Nicole Kidman, The Hourssuicide, depression
Salma Hayek, Fridacrippled
Ed Harris, The HoursAIDS
2001Russell Crowe, A Beautiful Mindcrazy
Sean Penn, I Am Samretarded
Judi Dench, IrisAlzheimer's disease
Nicole Kidman, Moulin Rougeconsumption
2000Ed Harris, Pollockcrazy, drunk
Ellen Burstyn, Requiem for a Dreamcrazy, pill popper
1999Michael Clarke Duncan, The Green Mileretarded
Samantha Morton, Sweet & Lowdownmute
Angelina Jolie, Girl, Interruptedcrazy
1998Emily Watson, Hilary & Jackiecrazy
Billy Bob Thornton, A Simple Planretarded
1997Jack Nicholson, As Good As It Getscrazy
1996Geoffrey Rush, Shinecrazy
Billy Bob Thornton, Sling Bladecrazy
Diane Keaton, Marvin's Roomleukemia
Ed Norton, Primal Fearcrazy
1995Nicolas Cage, Leaving Las Vegasdrunk
Brad Pitt, Twelve Monkeyscrazy
1994Tom Hanks, Forrest Gumpretarded
Nigel Hawthorne,
The Madness of King George
crazy
Jodie Foster, Nellsorta retarded
Gary Sinise, Forrest Gumpcrippled
1993Tom Hanks, PhiladelphiaAIDS
Debra Winger, Shadowlandscritically ill
Leonardo DiCaprio,
What's Eating Gilbert Grape
retarded
1992Al Pacino, Scent of a Womanblind
Mary McDonnell, Passion Fishcrippled
1991Robin Williams, The Fisher Kingcrazy
1990Kathy Bates, Miserycrazy
Robert De Niro, Awakeningssleepy
1989Daniel Day-Lewis, My Left Footcrippled
Tom Cruise, Born on the Fourth of Julycrippled
Julia Roberts, Steel Magnoliaskidney failure (diabetes)
1988Dustin Hoffman, Rain Manautism
1987Jack Nicholson, Ironweedcrazy