Best Actor – 1976

Official Nominations: Peter Finch. Robert De Niro. Giancarlo Giannini. William Holden. Sylvester Stallone.

This year finally broke free from the Jack and Al love fest, with neither actor getting a nomination (Pacino didn’t appear in anything this year). Peter Finch picked up the win for Network, ironically a film you could see a more aged Jack or Al play pretty well. Finch died before receiving the win. It’s a strong performance and a worthy winner, but there’s a better choice here. Giancarlo Giannini isn’t a name many will be familiar with, nor is the film he was nominated for – Seven Beauties. It’s bold and shocking and funny, and is notable for being one of the most successful foreign movies in terms of Oscars – five nominations including the first for a female director. Giannini is great in the role of protector, scoundrel, scumbag, survivor.

William Holden shines alongside Finch in Network, a friend who is disgusted by and becomes embroiled in the hysteria surrounding Finch’s angry man shtick. Sylvester Stallone is Rocky – need I say more? Finally, De Niro is Travis Bickle – again, need I say more?

My Winner: Robert De Niro

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My Nominations: Robert De Niro. Peter Finch. Robert De Niro. Giancarlo Giannini. Sylvester Stallone. David Bowie. Gregory Peck.

Most of the official nominees make my list, and only two join them. David Bowie makes his first major mark on the movie work with his performance as The Man Who Fell To Earth – who better to act as a Spaceman in a man’s skin? Gregory Peck works, kind of against cast, in Richard Donner’s classic chiller The Omen as the man who wants a son and ends up adopting one called Damien. Bringing his trademark earnest class to proceedings, he is one of many reasons why the film is such a success and why it endures – his pain at the end truly visible thanks to his guilt over avoiding the obvious for so long – and losing.

My Winner: Robert De Niro

Let us know in the comments who you pick as the Best Actor of 1976!

One thought on “Best Actor – 1976

  1. John Charet July 26, 2019 / 11:47 pm

    Great post 🙂 I would choose Robert De Niro as well 🙂 Anyway, keep up the great work as always 🙂

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