Supporting actor insights

JACK NICHOLSON
“The Departed”

  • Twelve nominations: “Easy Rider” (1969), “Five Easy Pieces” (1970), “The Last Detail” (1973), “Chinatown” (1974), “Reds” (1981), “Prizzi’s Honor” (1985), “Ironweed” (1987), “A Few Good Men” (1992), “About Schmidt” (2002); won for “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” (1975), “Terms of Endearment” (1983), “As Good as It Gets” (1997)
  • The most nominations and wins of any male performer
  • “The Departed” marked the first time Nicholson worked with director Martin Scorsese and thesps Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon
  • Famously refuses to do TV interviews

MICHAEL PENA
“World Trade Center”

  • Seeking first nomination
  • Had breakout year in 2005, co-starring in Oscar-winning “Crash” and FX drama series “The Shield”
  • Continued his roll in 2006: He has a small role as a border patrol agent in “Babel” and starred in HBO film “Walkout”

EDDIE MURPHY
“Dreamgirls”

  • Seeking first nomination
  • Born in Brooklyn
  • Has starred in five film franchises: “Shrek,” “Dr. Dolittle,” “The Nutty Professor,” “Beverly Hills Cop,” “48 Hours”
  • His first showbiz screen credit was “Saturday Night Live,” which he joined in 1980 at the age of 19

ADAM BEACH
“Flags of Our Fathers”

  • Seeking first nomination
  • Is a member of the Salteaux Indian tribe
  • Has just completed work on upcoming miniseries “Comanche Moon” and is about to start the HBO film “Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee”
  • As in “Flags of Our Fathers,” played a World War II-era character previously in “Windtalkers”

BRAD PITT
“Babel”

  • One previous nomination: “Twelve Monkeys” (1995)
  • Born in Shawnee, Okla., and grew up in Springfield, Mo.
  • Is a chief spokeman for the ONE Campaign, working to fight poverty in Africa
  • Is passionately interested in architecture

MARK WAHLBERG
“The Departed”

  • Seeking first nomination
  • Has starred in two films set in his hometown of Dorchester, Mass.: “The Perfect Storm” and “The Departed”
  • Previously worked with Leonardo DiCaprio in “The Basketball Diaries”
  • Behind the scenes, he is exec producer of HBO’s showbiz satire “Entourage” and upcoming “In Treatment,” as well as producer of feature “We Own the Night”

BEN AFFLECK
“Hollywoodland”

  • One previous nom: won for original screenplay (with Matt Damon) for “Good Will Hunting” (1997)
  • Has just completed filming his directorial debut, “Gone, Baby, Gone,” the screenplay he adapted from Dennis Lehane’s acclaimed novel
  • Will star in Joe Carnahan’s “Smoking Aces” in 2007

ALAN ARKIN
“Little Miss Sunshine”

  • Two previous nominations: “The Russians Are Coming! The Russians Are Coming!” (1966), “The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter” (1968)
  • Early in his career, was a folk singer with the Tarriers
  • Co-wrote “The Banana Boat Song” (“Day-o”), an international hit for singer Harry Belafonte
  • A founding member of Chicago’s Second City improv group

DJIMON HOUNSOU
“Blood Diamond”

  • One nomination: “In America” (2003)
  • His character in “Blood Diamond” is the second he’s played from Sierra Leone (Cinque in “Amistad”)
  • Was a successful model in Paris and London before becoming an actor
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