#10 of Performances that Should Have Won the Oscar

Play it Again, Dan

Joaquin Phoenix for Gladiator


2000 was peculiar year for the Academy Awards with the tug-of-war between the sensational Gladiator and the critically acclaimed Traffic. Gladiator was the favorite to win, yet its chances weren’t guaranteed when Traffic, a film chronicling the numerous factions of the illegal drug industry, was the critics’ favorite to win. Due to the heavy competition and with the Oscar financing that occurs, producers put more of their Oscar campaigning behind Russell Crowe and not nearly as much emphasis upon the film’s other lead star, Joaquin Phoenix. Subsequently, with Traffic being a multiple-character film, its producers put their efforts behind Benicio Del Toro, who was the most acknowledged actor when it came to reviews. As a result, Del Toro, with the blatantly inferior performance, beat out Phoenix when it came down to Oscar night.

  Gladiator is the story of Maximus (Crowe), a respected general who is…

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