Oscars: Top 20 Category Frauds

20. George Clooney, 'Syriana'
19. Jessica Lange, 'Tootsie'
18. Marcia Gay Harden, 'Pollock'
17. Jennifer Connelly, 'A Beautiful Mind'
16. Goldie Hawn, 'Cactus Flower' (1969)
15. Jim Broadbent, 'Iris'
14. Patricia Neal, 'Hud'
8. Reese Witherspoon, 'Walk the Line'
9. Eva Marie Saint, 'On the Waterfront'
11. Meryl Streep, 'Kramer vs. Kramer' (1979)
10. Javier Bardem, 'No Country for Old Men'
9. Jennifer Hudson, 'Dreamgirls'
8. Kevin Spacey, 'The Usual Suspects' (1995)
7. Louise Fletcher, 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'
6. Benicio Del Toro, 'Traffic'
5. Katharine Hepburn, 'Guess Who's Coming to Dinner' (1967)
4. David Niven, 'Separate Tables'
3. Nicole Kidman, 'The Hours'
2. Timothy Hutton, 'Ordinary People'
1. Tatum O'Neal, 'Paper Moon'
20. George Clooney, 'Syriana'

There's proof of how sneaky Hollywood can be in the lists of Oscar champs. Many stars who belong in the lead category drop down to supporting so they can have a better chance of winning (Kevin Kline in "A Fish Called Wanda," Rachel Weisz in "The Constant Gardner") while some have supporting roles and big egos that refuse to budge from lead (Anthony Hopkins in "Silence of the Lambs").

In geopolitical thriller "Syriana," George Clooney has the lead role as CIA operative Bob Barnes, but he campaigned in supporting for a shrewd strategic reason. It was obvious that no one had a shot at beating Philip Seymour Hoffman ("Capote") in the lead race, so Clooney humbly dropped to supporting. It worked. He won. The year 2005 was a prolific one for Clooney since he also co-wrote, directed, and co-starred in Best Picture-nominee "Good Night and Good Luck." He knew that Hollywood wanted to give him an Oscar for something.

To count down the other 19 worst cases of category fraud, click the arrow to the right of the image.

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