The Oscars aren't always a paint-by-numbers affair.
We typically look to the Golden Globes and all the other shows during awards season to determine who looks poised and ready to take home an Academy Award. But with the 2013 Oscars just five days away, some of the longshots to win this year can take heart in the fact that upsets can (and often do) happen.
1. Art Carney (Best Actor, 1974, Harry and Tonto)
Art is best known for his role on TV show The Honeymooners, but he's also responsible for what many consider to be the biggest upset in Oscar history. He defeated Jack Nicholson in Chinatown, Dustin Hoffman in Lenny and Al Pacino in The Godfather Part II to take home the award for Best Actor.
2. Juliette Binoche (Best Supporting Actress, 1997, The English Patient)
The audience was stunned when this French actress took home the Oscar over Hollywood screen legend Lauren Bacall, who was considered a clear favorite for her role in The Mirror Has Two Faces.
3. Adrien Brody (Best Actor, 2003, The Pianist)
Adrien was the clear underdog in facing off against Jack Nicholson in About Schmidt and Daniel Day-Lewis in Gangs of New York. But he became the youngest actor to ever win the Best Actor award -- and showed his gratitude by planting an infamous kiss on award presenter Halle Berry. But it's Danie who's likely to get his day in the sun this year for playing Honest Abe in Lincoln. (And where is Adrien Brody?)
4. Helen Hunt (Best Actress, 1998, As Good as it Gets)
Even though just about everyone loved Helen in this movie, she was hardly a favorite to win that year. In order to take home the Best Actress award, she had to beat out perennial favorite Kate Winslet for her role in Titanic, as well as more established film legends like Julie Christie in Afterglow and Judi Dench and her portrayal of Queen Victoria in Mrs. Brown.
5. Marisa Tomei (Best Supporting Actress, 1992, My Cousin Vinny)
Vanessa Redgrave was the clear favorite to win that year for her role in Howards End. When the presenter called Marisa up for the award, the entire arena screamed and many critics and viewers initially thought he had read the wrong name!
6. Roberto Benigni (Best Actor, 1999, Life is Beautiful)
Tom Hanks appeared to be a lock in this category for his work in Saving Private Ryan, but Roberto pulled off a monumental upset by becoming the first person to win the Best Actor award for a non-English speaking role.
7. Gwyneth Paltrow (Best Actress, 1998, Shakespeare in Love)
Thanks to the political machinations of Harvey Weinstein, Shakespeare in Love pulled two major feats on Oscar night. Gwyneth beat out the critics' darling Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth to win her first Academy Award, and Shakespeare in Love bested Spielberg's WWII neo-classic Saving Private Ryan as Best Picture.
7. Robert Redford (Best Director, 1980, Ordinary People)
The Academy loves actors... especially when they decide to start directing. Robert managed to unseat Martin Scorsese and his legendary film Raging Bull to take home the crown in what is widely considered to be the biggest upset in this category.
9. Crash (Best Picture, 2005)
Brokeback Mountain had swept the Best Picture category in all of the shows throughout awards season, but was unable to pick it up at the most important ceremony of all. The win generated controversy because Crash director/producer Paul Haggis had been persistently lobbying the Academy for the win, while many believed the gay subject matter of Brokeback Mountain was looked down upon by some more conservative members amongst the voting pool.
10. Rocky (Best Picture, 1976)
This movie is certainly a classic in its own right, but many would hardly consider it to be Oscar-worthy. The Academy apparently thought differently though -- it beat our heavyweights like Taxi Driver and All The President's Men to take home the award.
What do you think was the most surprising Oscar upset?
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