10 Surprise Oscar Winners

Updated: February 17, 2015 15:47 IST

Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs: In 1992, Anthony Hopkins' portrayal of cannibal killer Dr Hannibal Lecter took home the Oscar over critics' favourite Robert De Niro who was nominated for Cape Fear. Hopkins' win was all the more surprising because he was on-screen for only 16 minutes, the shortest role ever to take home a leading actor prize.

10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Anthony Hopkins in The Silence of the Lambs: In 1992, Anthony Hopkins' portrayal of cannibal killer Dr Hannibal Lecter took home the Oscar over critics' favourite Robert De Niro who was nominated for Cape Fear. Hopkins' win was all the more surprising because he was on-screen for only 16 minutes, the shortest role ever to take home a leading actor prize.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Sandra Bullock in Blind Side: Oscar punters in 2010 favoured Meryl Streep for Julie and Julia with Gabourey Sidibe's performance in Precious a close second. When Sandra Bullock won the Best Actress Oscar for h Blind Side, her comeback movie of sorts, there was loud applause but also a vague air of disbelief.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Cuba Gooding Jr in Jerry Maguire: 1997's Best Supporting Actor Oscar went to Cuba Gooding Jr's comedic performance in Jerry Maguire, widely considered the weakest nomination in the category that year. He beat favourites Edward Norton, nominated for Primal Fear, and James Woods, nominated for Ghosts of Mississippi.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Marisa Tomei in My Cousin Vinnie: So surprised was everyone when Marisa Tomei won Best Supporting Actress in 1992 for playing Joe Pesci's loudmouth girlfriend, that presenter Jack Palance was even suspected of having read out the wrong name. The year's favourite was Judy Davis, nominated for Husbands and Wives. There were other strong contenders including Vanessa Redgrave for Howards End.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Mira Sorvino in Mighty Aphrodite: In 1996, Kate Winslet's performance as the impulsive Marianne Dashwood in Sense And Sensibility was tipped for the Best Supporting Actress Oscar. Instead, Mira Sorvino, who played a prostitute in Woody Allen's Might Aphrodite, earned both the golden man as well as a dubious place in history with her win considered one of the most surprising ever.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Chicago: A rare winner from the usually disfavoured musical genre, Chicago's Best Picture Oscar in 20013 still has people puzzled. Also nominated that year was Martin Scorsese's acclaimed Gangs of New York, easily the favourite, and Roman Polanski's The Pianist, which won Best Actor for Adrien Brody.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Shakespeare in Love: So sure was the Academy itself that Steven Spielberg's war drama Saving Private Ryan would take home the Best Picture Oscar in 1999, that Harrison Ford – who played Indiana Jones in Spielberg's action-adventure series – was chosen to present. However, John Madden's Shakespeare in Love became one of the few comedies to have won Best Picture.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Braveheart: 1996 was a surprising year in Best Picture terms. Comedy film Babe, about a pig loose in the city, was a surprise nomination; favourite films Sense And Sensibility and Apollo 13 did not win; and Mel Gibson's Scottish hero biopic Braveheart did win, in what was considered a major upset.
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
Robert Wise and Sound Of Music: Critics were left reeling from a double blow in 1966 when the Best Picture Oscar went to blockbuster musical Sound Of Music and Best Director to Robert Wise over David Lean's Doctor Zhivago..
10 Surprise Oscar Winners
John Avildsen and Rocky: 1977 was another jaw-dropping year with boxing movie Rocky and its director John Avildsen taking home the Oscars over Martin Scorsese and Taxi Driver, the clear favourites, Alan J Pakula and All The President's Men, and Ingmar Bergman who was nominated for Face To Face..

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