Oscar history: Second nomination; won supporting actor for “The Fighter” (2010)
Bale is no stranger to the extreme weight loss and gain that can sometimes come with different roles. He proved himself capable in the “The Machinist” and “The Fighter,” losing dramatic amounts of weight. In “American Hustle,” Bale transforms himself again, only this time working in the opposite direction as chubby con man Irving Rosenfeld. But as usual, his performance transcends mere physical trickery. The actor crafts a complex, lovable character who, despite his bad comb-over and generous midsection, is both sexy and charming. Is it any wonder Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence are fighting over him?
— Francesca Bacardi