Nyong’o went head-to-head with Jennifer Lawrence (“American Hustle“) throughout the entire awards derby and this was the closest acting Oscar race of the year. While Lawrence prevailed at the Golden Globes and BAFTAs, Nyong’o cleaned up at SAG, Critics’ Choice and now of course at the Oscars.
26 of our 30 Oscar Experts correctly predicted Nyong’o would take home the statue, with four thinking Lawrence could upset. Reports of a late surge for Lawrence thanks to her BAFTA victory turned out to be all for naught.
Nyong’o’s prize-winning role in “12 Years a Slave” was as Patsey, a slave owned by Michael Fassbender‘s ruthless villain who is raped and brutally beaten on screen. Her performance was hailed by Oprah Winfrey and all of her fellow nominees: Lawrence, Sally Hawkins (“Blue Jasmine“), Julia Roberts (“August: Osage County“) and June Squibb (“Nebraska“).
Below, the list other eight Best Supporting Actress winners crowned for their film debuts:
Gale Sondergaard (“Anthony Adverse,” 1936)
Katina Paxinou (“For Whom the Bell Tolls,” 1943)
Mercedes McCambridge (“All the King’s Men,” 1949)
Eva Marie Saint (“On the Waterfront,” 1954)
Jo Van Fleet (“East of Eden,” 1955)
Tatum O’Neal (“Paper Moon,” 1973)
Anna Paquin (“The Piano,” 1993)
Jennifer Hudson (“Dreamgirls,” 2006)