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Oscars ‘Daily Bite’: Meryl Streep’s 20th nomination sets record. Who’s behind her?

Three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep in the title

Three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep in the title role of "Florence Foster Jenkins." Credit: Paramount Pictures and Pathé / Nick Wall

It’s become a Hollywood tradition — almost even a Hollywood law — that Meryl Streep’s name appear on the Oscar ballot each year. Thanks to her performance in “Florence Foster Jenkins,” Streep earned her 20th nomination, beating her own record set in 2015 when she was up for supporting actress as the Witch in “Into the Woods.” To date, she’s won three times — for “Kramer vs. Kramer” (1979), “Sophie’s Choice” (1982) and “The Iron Lady” (2011).

What makes Streep’s string of nominations even more of a feat is that no one else comes close to matching her. Tied for second place with 12 nominations apiece are Katharine Hepburn, still the most honored actor with four wins — for “Morning Glory” (1933), “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?” (1967), “The Lion in Winter” (1968) and “On Golden Pond” (1981) — and Jack Nicholson, who took home statuettes for “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975), “Terms of Endearment” (1983) and “As Good as It Gets” (1997).

After that, Bette Davis and Laurence Olivier are tied with 10 nominations each. Davis was two for two when she earned best actress Oscars for “Dangerous” (1935) and “Jezebel” (1938), but never won again on her next eight tries. Olivier’s only win was for playing the title role in “Hamlet” (1948), although he was also presented with an honorary Oscar for his body of work in 1979.

Those folks had at least one occasion when they didn’t come up empty-handed at the Oscars, unlike Peter O’Toole. The revered actor racked up eight best actor nominations between 1962’s “Lawrence of Arabia” and the 2006 drama “Venus,” the most of any performer without ever winning.

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