World’s greatest actor Peter O’Toole goes to his grave as Oscar’s biggest loser

It just happened again. Arguably the world’s greatest actor just went to his grave as Oscar’s biggest loser. Peter O’Toole died today after a long, undisclosed illness at age 81 without ever having won an Academy Award in a competitive category. He got snubbed eight times, which is once more than his ole drinking pal Richard Burton who died in 1984 as Oscar’s biggest loser with seven slaps.

Such insulting awards treatment sure puts the Oscar in harsh perspective when you realize some of the far lesser talents who have claimed chunks of academy gold.

O’Toole lost for “Lawrence of Arabia” (1962), “Becket” (1964), “The Lion in Winter” (1968),
“Goodbye, Mr. Chips” (1969), “The Ruling Class” (1972), “The Stunt Man” (1980), “My Favorite Year” (1982), “Venus” (2006).

The Golden Globes weren’t so stingy. He nabbed three: “Becket,” “The Lion in Winter” and “Goodbye, Mr. Chips” plus he snagged that Most Promising Newcomer prize later made notorious by Pia Zadora.

He won an Emmy in 1999 as Bishop Cauchon in “Joan of Arc” and BAFTA for Best British Actor in “Lawrence of Arabia.”

He did receive an honorary Academy Award in 2002-2003, but it was obviously a consolation prize meant to assuage academy guilt for getting it wrong so many other times. But he graciously showed up to accept it. Well, maybe not so graciously. Let’s be honest. He was probably snubbed so often by his peers because of his rowdy, boozy behavior and he continued his rampage when he arrived backstage at the Oscars. While waiting in the green room, he roared, “Can I have a drink?”

“We have lemon juice, apple juice, still or sparkling,” he was told.

“No, I want a drink!” he fumed. He stood up and was about to storm out, saying, “All right, I’m f**king off. I’ll be back.”

The staff panicked, begged him to sit back down and someone dashed out and smuggled vodka backstage to him.



12 thoughts on “World’s greatest actor Peter O’Toole goes to his grave as Oscar’s biggest loser

  1. What a beautiful headline and tribute to someone so dearly beloved who just passed away….not. Please show some sensitivity for the dearly departed. The catty gossip and trivia belongs on Perez Hilton’s blog or a place where people don’t expect to find respect.

  2. Why does anyone connect not winning an oscar , but being nominated as a loser! I wool never understand it. Most actors would give anything just to be nominated. To be nominated 7 times. Not actually claiming the award is not losing. No one who is nominated loses. They just don’t take home the statuette.

  3. I’m usually ok with your no-holds-barred style, Tom (except for the occasional disregard for learning foreign-sounding names: Lupita what’s-her’face? Really?), but this is going too far. Show some respect for the man; he was nominated 8 times, that makes him in no way a loser. And saying he’s oscar’s biggest “loser” is trivializing the accomplishments of a brilliant actor.

  4. What a ridiculous post – everyone knows that each time you’re nominated you’re competing against people from THAT YEAR, so obviously in a weak year someone will win an Oscar who might not have in a strong year, and someone may have been very deserving but barely missed it in a strong year.

  5. I think this post shows a great deal of respect to an actor with a great sense of humour who clearly took it in his stride being ‘Oscar’s biggest loser’ – he’ll be rolling (with laughter) in his grave. Guys, relax.

  6. Good article, horrible title. Is it really losing being nominated that many times? To have one performance in your career being recognized is wonderful. But for him to be in one of the 5 slots for an acting category for 8 years is quite an achievement

  7. Tom O’Neill, as usual the bitter also-ran, relegated to writing snarky headlines about people far more respected than he. So sad.

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