Here Are the 7 Black Actors Who Have Won an Oscar

Here Are the 7 Black Actors Who Have Won an Oscar

Despite the breadth of roles to choose from in 2015, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences extended their #OscarsSoWhite streak for the second year in a row. When the nominations for the 88th Academy Awards were announced in January, no minorities were represented in the acting categories, prompting celebrities like Jada Pinkett Smith to call for a boycott.

In comparison to their counterpart, Oscar-winning roles for black actors have been more varied in terms of scope, including leading and supporting roles, as well as type — not the ones that David Oyolewo dubbed in 2015 as "subservient." In its 87-year history, seven black actors have won an Academy Award for eight different roles.

Read more: Academy Awards Announces Plan to Diversify Membership by 2020, Organization Says

Sidney Poitier

Sidney Poitier in 'Lilies of the Field'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Homer Smith, Lilies of the Field

Oscar win: 36th Academy Awards on April 13, 1964

Category: Best actor

Source: YouTube

Note: Poitier also received a noncompeting, honorary Oscar at the 74th Academy Awards in 2002.

Louis Gossett Jr. 

Louis Gossett Jr. in 'An Officer and a Gentleman'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Gunnery Sergeant Emil Foley, An Officer and a Gentleman

Oscar win: 55th Academy Awards on April 11, 1983 

Category: Best supporting actor

Source: YouTube

Denzel Washington – twice!

Denzel Washington in 'Glory'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Private Silas Trip, Glory

Oscar win: 62nd Academy Awards on March 26, 1990

Category: Best supporting actor

Source: YouTube
Source: Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Alonzo Harris, Training Day

Oscar win: 74th Academy Awards on March 24, 2002

Category: Best actor

Source: YouTube

Cuba Gooding Jr.

Cuba Gooding Jr. in 'Jerry Maguire'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Rod Tidwell, Jerry Maguire

Oscar win: 69th Academy Awards on March 24, 1997

Category: Best supporting actor

Source: YouTube

Jamie Foxx

Jamie Foxx in 'Ray'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Ray Charles, Ray

Oscar win: 77th Academy Awards on Feb. 27, 2005

Category: Best actor

Source: YouTube

Morgan Freeman

Morgan Freeman in 'Million Dollar Baby'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Eddie "Scrap-Iron" Dupris, Million Dollar Baby

Oscar win: 77th Academy Awards on Feb. 27, 2005

Category: Best supporting actor

Source: YouTube

Forest Whitaker

Forest Whitaker in 'The Last King of Scotland'
Source: 
Mic/YouTube

Role and film: Idi Amin, The Last King of Scotland

Oscar win: 79th Academy Awards on Feb. 25, 2007

Category: Best actor

Source: YouTube

How much do you trust the information in this article?

Andrew Leung

Andrew was an editorial fellow at Mic. He is based in New York and can be reached at aleungnyc@gmail.com

MORE FROM

‘Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later’ proves sometimes it’s okay to skip the reunion

If you're looking to trim down your Netflix consumption, start by avoiding this pointless sequel series.

Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington was open about his pain. That doesn’t make his death less shocking.

“If it wasn’t for music, I’d be dead,” Bennington once said. “One hundred percent.”

Please stop hating on ‘The Dark Knight Rises’

Christopher Nolan's final Batman film is simply not as bad as some fans think.

It’s time for Steve Whitmire to let Kermit the Frog go

The veteran puppeteer is having a tough time relinquishing his 27-year relationship with the famous Muppet.

Debate: Is director Christopher Nolan the best or the worst filmmaker of our time?

Mic asked two staff members to debate the relative merits of award-winning director Christopher Nolan and his movies.

‘The Vampire Diaries’ ending could be what saves ‘The Originals’

The end of 'The Vampire Diaries' could mean a new beginning for 'The Originals.'

‘Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later’ proves sometimes it’s okay to skip the reunion

If you're looking to trim down your Netflix consumption, start by avoiding this pointless sequel series.

Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington was open about his pain. That doesn’t make his death less shocking.

“If it wasn’t for music, I’d be dead,” Bennington once said. “One hundred percent.”

Please stop hating on ‘The Dark Knight Rises’

Christopher Nolan's final Batman film is simply not as bad as some fans think.

It’s time for Steve Whitmire to let Kermit the Frog go

The veteran puppeteer is having a tough time relinquishing his 27-year relationship with the famous Muppet.

Debate: Is director Christopher Nolan the best or the worst filmmaker of our time?

Mic asked two staff members to debate the relative merits of award-winning director Christopher Nolan and his movies.

‘The Vampire Diaries’ ending could be what saves ‘The Originals’

The end of 'The Vampire Diaries' could mean a new beginning for 'The Originals.'