1. Chaim Topol
2. Gene Hackman
3. Peter Finch
4. Walter Matthau
5. George C. Scott
Gene Hackman in his greatest screen performance.
This just seemed like the perfect moment to honor Hackman, both in how the performance ranks up there with the greatest of cinema (or at least has the distinction of being viewed as his signature role), and how he could’ve been seen as “due” with this being his 3rd nomination.
For me, the real question has to do with Malcolm McDowell. Had he been nominated, who would people have preferred: him or Hackman?
Not all that crazy about Scott’s winning performance the year before…much prefer his work here. All but Matthau, IMO, were stellar.
1. George C. Scott, THE HOSPITAL
2. Peter Finch, SUNDAY, BLOODY SUNDAY
3. Gene Hackman, THE FRENCH CONNECTION
4. Topol, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF
5. Walter Matthau, KOTCH