How to Win an Oscar!


With the 84th Academy awards coming up just next month, I thought I would create a quick guide to make sure that you! The reader! Is in for a shout of finally winning one this year. I personally haven’t won any but I feel that my guide is still relevant. I mean Science teachers don’t go on to make ground breaking discoveries, but they do mould the minds that do.

1. Star in a Film that is coming out near the time the nominees are announced.

This one might seem pretty obvious, The judging panel usually picks the Films which are released around the same time as the nominees. Of course this is no coincidence, the hype of the nomination means your film is going to get more viewers and you will earn more money, but this isn’t a guide to making a quick buck! We are trying to win prestigious awards here. Nevertheless, clear out your calendar for January and February because you are going to be going to a lot of premieres.

kings speech

2. Act in a biopic of a historically important person.

It’s no coincidence that many of the recent winners of the best actor/actress award have all been starring as famous people in high positions of power. Colin Firth deservedly won as the stuttering King George VI in the Kings speech. Meryl Streep caught the eye of film goers in her extremely attractive and sensual performance of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady, this young actress is going to go far and I expect more nominations to come! How could we talk about historical figure portrayals without mentioning Helen Mirren’s take on Elizabeth the 2nd in The Queen. This year we have Daniel Day-Lewis as the front runner to win in his category, and what do you know he’s playing honest Abraham Lincoln. I think I know where to put my money on this one. So there you go, that’s my first tip for trying to win an academy award. Most of the figures portrayed in these films were dead at the time of release, this could be another important factor in the nomination though not vital, as Margaret Thatcher is surprisingly still alive yet still wins Oscars for Meryl Streep. As it might not be obvious which historical figures you could play I will now provide a list of possibilities.

  • Ronald Reagan
  • Albert Einstein
  • Robert Mugabe
  • Princess Diana
  • Steve Irwin

3. Act in a film to do with historical disaster or tragedy.

This subject is a bit sensitive, of course many films try to play on the heart strings of viewers to achieve success. When this is done correctly the results are incredibly touching and the nominations tend to flow in. The Titanic held the record for most nominations for nearly a decade and is still strongly remembered for its success at the 70th Academy awards. This year we have the sublime The Impossible based on the events of the boxing day tsunami. The film has garnered a best actress nomination for Naomi Watts and is expected to do very well. My advice is to now keep your ears to the ground, watch the news and find out what film will be made in ten years time. You can’t be in a story about Somalian pirates however because Tom Hanks has already beaten you to it and will star in the drama Captain Phillips soon, touché Mr Hanks.

The Impossible

Naomi Watts stars in The Impossible.

4. Do not star in a sequel. (unless it is the Godfather or The Lord Of the Rings)

This tip might be somewhat controversial, as two of the greatest films to win an Oscar (The Godfather Part 2 and The Return of The King) are both sequels. Despite this fact, it is generally considered that sequels do extremely poorly at award ceremonies, in particular the Oscars. It’s interesting to think that there is a certain amount of stigma attached to a sequel, that somehow they appear less prestigious. Despite this I cannot think of any real sequel that has wrongfully missed out on a nomination, feel free to comment with your suggestions. This is especially relevant if the director tells you that you are replacing the role of another prestigious actor, no film which has replaced its lead has ever gone on to achieve success (Take note Transformers producers).

Peter Jackson shows off his award for the trend breaking Return of the King

Peter Jackson shows off his award for the trend breaking Return of the King

5. Finally, take the safe option and star in a Pixar Film.

Okay with this one you aren’t going to win best actor, you aren’t going to win your very own personal statuette. But you will star in an Oscar winning production, Pixar always wins in the animation category. This not only means that you might get a chance to get on stage to collect the award but you also don’t have to do any serious acting, just a voice over. This is probably the easiest way to ensure you get to collect an award. It might not be your personal award but you played your part in it and deserve the praise. Not only this, but it is probably the easiest way to ensure Academy award victory.


The voice actors in Pixar’s “Brave” make another sensible career choice.

So there you have it, a lesson in acting. A plethora of essential advice to guide the actors of tomorrow towards global recognition. Now get practising, get networking and don’t stop acting, I expect that this article will be getting a lot of mentions in acceptance speeches and look forward to hearing success stories.


About Author

I have a keen interest in video games and technology. I write mostly about the best games and sometimes the worst. follow me on twitter @jakecov

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