-> '''Sick Boy''': All I'm trying to do, Mark, is help you understand that ''Film/TheNameOfTheRose'' was merely a blip on an otherwise uninterrupted downward trajectory.\\
'''Renton''': What about ''Film/TheUntouchables''?\\
'''Sick Boy''': I don't rate that at all.\\
'''Renton''': Despite the Academy Award?\\
'''Sick Boy''': That means fuck all! It's a sympathy vote.
-->-- ''Film/{{Trainspotting}}'' on the subject of Creator/SeanConnery

What may happen as a result of someone getting one too many {{Award Snub}}s. Basically, someone in the entertainment industry has gone too long without winning a particular award, despite their work being considered some of the best in their field. Eventually, they do end up winning the award... but for something considered pretty inferior to the rest of their work.

Ironically, this ends up continuing the cycle of snubs, since, well, ''someone'' better has to lose.



* Creator/PeterOToole has been nominated eight times for the Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role, making him the most-nominated actor never to win the award. In 2003, he instead received an Academy Honorary Award for his entire body of work and his lifelong contribution to film. Well gee, thanks a lot, Academy. O'Toole received another Best Actor nomination afterwards for ''Film/{{Venus}}'', only to lose to Creator/ForestWhitaker for ''Film/TheLastKingOfScotland''.
** This trope's DistaffCounterpart to O'Toole is Creator/DeborahKerr, who earned six Academy Award nominations for Best Actress in a Leading Role over a twelve year period from 1950-1961, and lost all six, coming up short on her last try to Elizabeth Taylor's consolation Oscar for ''Butterfield 8'' (see below). She also received four BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) nominations for Best Actress in her native Great Britain and lost all four of those too, making her the most-nominated performer never to win Best Actress in TWO countries. Both the British and American Academies finally and belatedly presented her with Honorary Awards for lifetime achievement in the 1990s, more than two decades after she had effectively retired from acting.
* Creator/MartinScorsese's ''Film/TheDeparted'' is not widely considered to be one of his best (even the critical praise, its Website/RottenTomatoes rating, Website/{{IMDB}} rating and its high ranking in [[http://www.imdb.com/chart/top the Top 250 list]] suggests otherwise). So, one can't help but wonder if this trope was in effect when it won Best Picture and he won Best Director, after decades of Scorsese's work never getting the honor. Arguably, though, it might also because it was the most successful movie out of that year's Best Picture nominees.
** Its wins for Screenplay and Editing (which some thought might go to ACE award co-winner ''Film/{{Babel}}'') also suggest otherwise. Some even expected "Babel" to win Best Picture and Scorsese to win Best Director, which would have been more indicative of a Consolation Award.
** An important trend to remember about Scorsese was that his more critically acclaimed movies that many feel he should have previously won for [[note]]''Film/TaxiDriver'', ''Film/RagingBull'', ''Film/TheLastTemptationOfChrist'', ''Film/GoodFellas''[[/note]] were all VindicatedByHistory. At the time of their releases controversy actually overshadowed the films themselves leading to their snubs year in and out.
* Creator/CecilBDeMille's 1952 film ''Film/TheGreatestShowOnEarth'' is considered by many to be one of the worst films to ever win Best Picture. Some suspect the only reason it got the award was because [=DeMille=]'s films had never won one yet, despite the man's career dating all the way back to the silent era. Ironically, they could have just waited a few years and given it to his last film and one of his best -- ''Film/TheTenCommandments''. Instead, it lost Best Picture and [[AwardSnub DeMille wasn't even nominated as Best Director]].
** And incidentally, one film that wasn't even nominated for Best Picture in 1952? ''Film/SinginInTheRain!''
* Creator/JohnWayne's Best Actor win in 1969 for ''Film/TrueGrit'' is seen as a consolation for him not winning the award for his work in films like ''Film/RedRiver'', ''Film/TheQuietMan'', ''Film/TheSearchers'', and ''Film/SandsOfIwoJima'' (though Wayne was at least nominated for the latter). To this day, majority of people strongly feel that Creator/DustinHoffman should have one his much deserved Best Actor Oscar for his gritty, heartbreaking performance in ''Film/MidnightCowboy''.
* Creator/HenryFonda finally won a Best Actor Oscar for ''Film/OnGoldenPond'' -- the last movie he ever made.
** Notably, this came just a year after he won an Honorary Oscar (like Paul Newman below).
* By the time 2008 rolled around, Creator/KateWinslet had been nominated six times and had yet to win an Oscar. What makes people believe that this occurred is that she won Best Actress for ''Literature/TheReader,'' even though she won the Golden Globe for Best ''Supporting'' Actress for the same role. (Interestingly, she also won Best Lead Actress at the Golden Globes that year, but for ''Revolutionary Road''.)
* Creator/AlPacino got a Best Actor Oscar in 1992 for ''Film/ScentOfAWoman'', despite the role not being nearly as critically acclaimed as ''Film/TheGodfather'', ''Film/TheGodfatherPartII'' or ''Film/DogDayAfternoon''.
** Arguably ''Film/TheGodfather'' was this for Creator/MarlonBrando. Pacino was nominated for Best Supporting Actor. It could be argued the nominations should have been reversed as Michael is really the protagonist and has more screen time than Vito who spends a good portion of the movie recovering from multiple gunshots.
* An example of the cycle continuing: In 2001, Creator/NicoleKidman was nominated for ''Film/MoulinRouge'', but lost to Creator/HalleBerry. The next year, she won for ''Literature/TheHours'', a film that has been all but forgotten.
** However, in doing so, she beat Creator/ReneeZellweger in ''Film/{{Chicago}}'', who ended up winning Best Supporting Actress in 2003 for ''Film/ColdMountain''. A lot of the reviews of ''Cold Mountain'' actually contained comments along the lines of "just give Renee the Oscar already" (NOTE: She had been nominated for Best Actress in 2001 as well, for ''Literature/BridgetJones's Diary''.
** Kidman's win also came at the expense of Julianne Moore's performance in ''Far From Heaven'', which had previously won the Best Actress prize at the Broadcast Film Critics Choice, Los Angeles Film Critics, and National Board of Review Awards and came in second place at the New York Film Critics Circle. Creator/JulianneMoore's win for ''Film/StillAlice'' in 2014 was seen in large part consolation for not having won for ''Film/FarFromHeaven'' or ''Film/BoogieNights'' (as she lost the latter prize to Kim Basinger in ''Film/LAConfidential''), as many feel Creator/ReeseWitherspoon should've won for her performance in ''Film/{{Wild}}''.
* One of the more infamous of these was Creator/PaulNewman winning for his work in a sequel to ''Film/TheHustler'', ''Film/TheColorOfMoney'', because he'd been snubbed decades earlier for his work in the original. Moreover, he'd just received an Honorary Oscar the previous year!
** For that matter, he didn't win for the likes of ''Film/{{Hud}}'', ''Film/CoolHandLuke'' and ''Film/TheVerdict''.
* Possibly the most famous (or infamous) of these is that Creator/AlfredHitchcock never won an Oscar as a director (though ''Film/{{Rebecca}}'' won Best Picture). The Academy gave him a lifetime achievement award, which he deserved anyway, but it was mostly an apology for never giving him an award for ''Film/{{Vertigo}}'', ''Film/{{Psycho}}'', ''Film/NorthByNorthwest'', ''Film/TheBirds'', ''Theatre/{{Rope}}'', ''Film/StrangersOnATrain'', ''Film/TheManWhoKnewTooMuch'', ''Film/ToCatchAThief'', ''Film/DialMForMurder'', ''Film/RearWindow'', ''Film/{{Marnie}}''...
* The first two installments of ''Film/TheLordOfTheRings'' trilogy received nothing but technical awards. The final installment received just about ''every'' (non-acting) Oscar. The Academy was apparently reluctant to hand out big awards to the early installments for fear of clogging up the awards for the next three years, and decided to treat the last installment as a catch-all summation of the trilogy.
* Creator/DenzelWashington's work in ''Film/TrainingDay'', after losing for ''Film/TheHurricane'' and ''Film/MalcolmX''.
* Creator/RussellCrowe's win for ''Film/{{Gladiator}}'' might have been a consolation award for not winning for ''Film/TheInsider'', which was generally thought to be a stronger performance but like Denzel with ''Film/TheHurricane'', lost to Creator/KevinSpacey in ''Film/AmericanBeauty''. (then an even more lauded performance by Crowe in ''Film/ABeautifulMind'' lost to Denzel in ''Training Day'')
* Creator/ElizabethTaylor's 1960 Oscar for ''[=Butterfield 8=]'', a film that's forgotten, and she didn't even want to do (she called it "a piece of garbage"). She was nominated in 1957 for ''Raintree County'', in 1958 for ''Film/CatOnAHotTinRoof'' and in 1959 for ''Film/SuddenlyLastSummer'', of which the latter two are considered classics. It's widely thought that she won by a vote of sympathy, because of her recent near-fatal illness - Taylor herself agreed with this in her book ''Elizabeth Takes Off''.
* Aversion: In 1996, it was thought of as certain that legendary Golden Age of Hollywood star Creator/LaurenBacall, who had never been ''nominated'' for an Oscar before, would win the Best Supporting Actress award for the poorly-reviewed Barbra Streisand vehicle ''The Mirror Has Two Faces''. When she '''didn't''' win, instead losing to Creator/JulietteBinoche for ''Film/TheEnglishPatient'' (which swept that year's awards), it was a huge shock; Binoche claimed when she accepted the award that she didn't even prepare a speech in the expectation that Bacall would win. (Bacall would receive an honorary Oscar in 2009.)
* On the subject of Golden Age stars, while Creator/HumphreyBogart (Bacall's husband) gave his usual quality performance in ''Film/TheAfricanQueen'' opposite fellow screen legend Creator/KatharineHepburn, it is universally agreed that his Oscar for that film was ''actually'' for his work in ''Film/TheMalteseFalcon'' and ''Film/{{Casablanca}}'', for which he was ignored.
* James Baskett, the lead actor of ''Film/SongOfTheSouth'', was given an "Honorary Oscar" at that year's Academy Award because at the time, an African American wasn't going to be nominated for a lead role.
* Although Creator/JimmyStewart gave a solid performance in ''Film/ThePhiladelphiaStory'', it's commonly accepted that the Best Actor Oscar he won was really for his career-defining work in ''Film/MrSmithGoesToWashington'' the year before.
* Within ''minutes'' of her 2012 Best Actress win, the general consensus was that Creator/MerylStreep won for ''Film/TheIronLady'' as compensation for... oh, everything she's ever done since ''Film/SophiesChoice'' (her last Oscar win, nearly 30 years and 17 nominations ago). It's been said that Meryl is simply beyond awards, and she's usually excluded simply to give the rest of the gender a chance. Unfortunately, the fact that she won over Viola Davis (who really should have won for ''Theatre/{{Doubt}}'' four years earlier) means that many people are crying racism. There were even accusations that Octavia Spencer's win for Best Supporting Actress was a deliberate step by the Academy to stave off such cries, though that may be taking the conspiracy theories a bit too far.
** It didn't help matters when people looked at the two movies in question. When you look at ''Film/TheIronLady,'' the reviews frequently said that Meryl was the best part of an otherwise lukewarm film, whereas ''Film/TheHelp'' was both a critical and commercial darling.
* A not inconsiderable number of people thought that Creator/HeathLedger's [[AuthorExistenceFailure posthumous]] Best Supporting Actor win for ''Film/TheDarkKnight'' was an attempt to make up for not giving him Best Actor for ''Film/BrokebackMountain'', [[DeadArtistsAreBetter when he was still alive]].
* Creator/HalleBerry's Best Actress win for ''Film/MonstersBall'' is considered by some a consolation towards black actresses - including Creator/AngelaBassett, nominated a few years prior for ''Film/WhatsLoveGotToDoWithIt''.
* Creator/BetteDavis herself said that her Oscar for ''Dangerous'' was a consolation prize for ''Literature/OfHumanBondage'', for which she was not nominated.
* Creator/CharlieChaplin, the most influential actor, comedian and film maker of the first half of the 20th century has never won any Oscar for acting or directing. He did win an honorary Oscar for ''Film/TheCircus'' (1929), but this is generally considered to be one of his less iconic films. In 1972 he won an honorary Oscar for Lifetime Achievement and one for composing the score to ''Film/{{Limelight}}'' (1952), a film that was already 20 years old by that time but was never shown in the USA for those 20 years due to accusations of Chaplin being a communist. In the 1970s the film was finally shown in the USA and the jury decided it would be a fine opportunity to give the iconic star an honorary award for his entire career. ''Limelight'', though a fine film, is not generally considered to be one of Chaplin's greatest comedies.
** Similarly, innovative and influential comedians like Creator/BusterKeaton, Creator/HaroldLloyd, [[Creator/LaurelAndHardy Stan Laurel]] and [[Creator/TheMarxBrothers Groucho Marx]] never won an Oscar for many of the classic films they performed in. All of them did receive honorary Oscars later in their career, though.
** In this same vein, Creator/JackieChan who is considered a successor to some of those influential comedians (especially to the more physically oriented ones like Buster Keaton), earning an honorary Oscar in 2016 comes off like this to some people; though for the most part it's taken in a positive light. As his body of work in general is rather unlikely to win a regular Oscar, many fans and supporters were happy that he was actually given recognition ''at all'' for his contributions to action-comedy films, stuntwork, choreography, and action scene editing.
* Despite [[SoOkayItsAverage middling reviews]], Jacques Audiard's ''Dheepan'' still won the Palme d'Or at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, largely due to snubs for earlier, much better films such as ''A Prophet'' and ''Rust and Bone''. Even moreso, the film beat out acclaimed front runners such as ''Film/SonOfSaul'', ''The Assassin'' and ''Film/{{Carol}}'' for this prize.
* Inverted with Ellen Burstyn; she won an Oscar in 1975 for her part in ''Film/AliceDoesntLiveHereAnymore''; even though her role in ''Film/RequiemForADream'' is her most highly regarded today while the former film is largely forgotten. Potentially played straight, though, in that her win might have been partially due to her not winning for ''Film/TheExorcist'' the year before.
* Creator/LeonardoDiCaprio has built a solid body of work since ''Film/{{Titanic|1997}}'' and some would argue that the films he made before winning for ''Film/TheRevenant'', had better performances: ''Film/CatchMeIfYouCan'', ''Film/TheAviator'', ''Film/TheDeparted'', ''Film/ShutterIsland'', ''Film/JEdgar'', ''Film/{{Inception}}'' and especially ''Film/TheWolfOfWallStreet'', which leads them to see ''The Revenant'' as a case of consolation award.
* Creator/WhoopiGoldberg's win for ''Film/{{Ghost}}'' [[http://www.agonybooth.com/ghost-1990-part-1-4222 was argued by Agony Booth]] to have been a consolation award for her snub for ''Film/TheColorPurple''.
* Creator/SpikeLee, a director who made some critically acclaimed films based on social commentary about race, such as ''Film/DoTheRightThing'' and ''Film/MalcolmX'', received an honorary Oscar in 2016 for his whole body of work, after being nominated multiple times and losing in the past. However, he didn't attend the ceremony that year, and still criticized the institution of Hollywood for its lack of diversity after accepting the award.
* ''Film/TheMuppets''[='=] 2012 Oscar win for Best Song ("Man or Muppet") is seen by some as this for [[Film/TheMuppetMovie "The Rainbow Connection"]], which was nominated in the same category in 1979 but lost to the comparatively more obscure "It Goes Like It Goes" from ''Film/NormaRae''.

* Music/{{Metallica}} won a Consolation UsefulNotes/GrammyAward after losing Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance to (shockingly) Music/JethroTull the year before. The Grammys finally realized how much Metallica had contributed to heavy metal and decided to give the award for their SelfTitledAlbum, ''[[Music/MetallicaAlbum Metallica]]''.
* Music/{{Nirvana}}'s ''only'' Grammy win could be considered this. After five unsuccessful nominations, the band finally won a Grammy award in 1996 for Best Alternative Music Performance for ''Music/MTVUnpluggedInNewYork''. Seeing as how the band had already broken up by then after Music/KurtCobain's suicide in 1994, this was obviously the last chance the Grammys had to award the band.
* Music/SteelyDan won 3 Grammies for their 2000 album ''Music/TwoAgainstNature'', which was their first in 20 years. Their 70s work is extremely well regarded, but even the band wasn't totally satisfied with ''Nature'', and noted this trope in action. In particular they said Music/{{Eminem}} should have received the 'Album Of The Year' award instead (for ''Music/TheMarshallMathersLP'').

[[folder:Professional Wrestling]]
* There's a possible analogue in Professional Wrestling - some performers can work for years, often in a jobber role, but just by ill fortune, injuries or other reasons can go largely unrecognised in terms of championships, so they get a token reign later on. Examples:
** Wrestling/HughMorrus in WCW stands out as one - he was a classic "jobber" for years, making other people look good on the way up, and eventually got a "feel good" US title reign in 2000.
** Wrestling/MickFoley stated in his second book that he felt that his title reign in 1999 were granted more as a lifetime achievement award rather than being the "top guy" although some of the fans might have disagreed since he was the top active face at the time (Stone Cold was briefly on the shelf).
** Another notable example of a "Thank You" rein is when long time {{Jobber}}, [[Wrestling/SteveLombardi The Brooklyn Brawler]] beat (by way of a fluke) WWE golden boy Triple H in a handicap elimination match where he teamed with Kaientai via Wrestling/ChrisJericho's interference. The Brawler is one of those guys that makes anyone look great.
** [[Wrestling/StevieRichards Steven Richards]] and Funaki were jobbers for years before they both got their own consolation gimmicks related to the shows they were on, Stevie Night Heat and Smackdown's Number 1 Ring Announcer. They were kept with the company for many years longer than most other jobbers as they were well liked and loyal to the company, but none of the writing team knew what to do with them.
** Also, older veterans who were still active like Wrestling/ChrisBenoit, Wrestling/{{Kane}}, Wrestling/MarkHenry, were given title reigns in their late careers for paying their dues.

* UsefulNotes/AlbertEinstein never won any awards for Relativity theory. His Nobel Prize was for the photoelectric effect instead (though his explanation was one of the key points leading to the development of quantum mechanics).

* It is quite common for the Gold Logie (an Australian television award) to be awarded to someone who is retiring or at least moving on from a long-term role. A good example is John Wood, who was nominated every year from 1997 until he finally won in 2006 (the year ''Series/BlueHeelers'' was cancelled). Similarly, Kate Ritchie won the award shortly after leaving ''Series/HomeAndAway''. Subverted the following year when Ian Smith, who had just left ''Series/{{Neighbours}}'' after more than 20 years, was beaten by Rebecca Gibney for her role in ''Packed to the Rafters''.
* While she didn't win the award, Kate Bell was nominated for the Silver Logie for Best New Female Talent in 2010 for a guest role in ''Series/HomeAndAway'', seemingly because both TV Week and its ''readers'' (she had to be shortlisted by the magazine and then nominated by a reader poll) forgot about her regular role in ''Series/BlueWaterHigh'' in 2005 and 2008. Considering the name of the award, it overlaps with AwardCategoryFraud.
* Although the Primetime Emmys are known less for consolation awards than other organizations (as decisions were, until 2015, made by select groups of people in panels rather than by the Academy as a whole, unlike with the Oscars), Creator/PeterDinklage's second Emmy win for ''Series/GameOfThrones'' was seen by this by some. His work in Season 5, although still considered good, was far less active than it had been in previous years, and several of the other nominees in his category were nominated for much more showy work (notably Jonathan Banks from ''Series/BetterCallSaul'', whom Dinklage cited in his acceptance speech). It was theorized by some that he won both for being the most popular actor associated with the show and for losing the award for his performance in Season 4's "[[{{Recap/GameOfThronesS4E6TheLawsOfGodsAndMen}} The Laws of Gods and Men]]" the year before.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Despite being one of the most beloved cartoon characters ever, no WesternAnimation/BugsBunny cartoon ever won the Oscar until 1958's ''Knighty Knight Bugs''. A fine cartoon, but hardly Bugs' finest moment, especially compared to the previous year's ''WesternAnimation/WhatsOperaDoc'', which was submitted for nomination but ultimately rejected. (In fact, Bugs wasn't even a nominee for the previous ''sixteen'' years.) On the same token none of Creator/ChuckJones' most famous classic and influential cartoons have ever won an Oscar. In 1996 he was given an honorary award to make up for all those years.
* Legendary voice actress Creator/JuneForay won her ''first'' Emmy award for voice acting in 2012. It was for a guest spot on ''WesternAnimation/TheGarfieldShow''. According to June herself, and a few other people involved with the Emmy awards, part of the reason why she had gone unrecognized is because she's so legendary that many insiders assumed she had already won several times. There was a lot of shock when it was realized she had never even been nominated prior to her win![[note]]Though for a large part of her career, there wasn't an Emmy category for voice acting.[[/note]] Many are looking at the Emmy win as a "career award".
* A common criticism of the Best Animated Feature category in the Oscars is that it was made as [[AnimationAgeGhetto a consolation prize for animated films]] (or, alternately, that it was created after ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast'' nearly won Best Picture and the Academy wanted to prevent an animated film from winning that award). This came to a head in 2008 when ''WesternAnimation/WallE'' won the Best Animated Feature award but wasn't nominated for Best Picture, despite being one of the best-reviewed films of the year. Despite this, the Academy said that an animated film can be nominated in both categories. In the years ahead, the amount of films eligible for nomination for Best Picture doubled and ''WesternAnimation/{{Up}}'' and ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory3'' got nominated consecutively.
** Also, the award used to be voted upon by Academy members each year. It wasn't until the 2012 ceremony that it became a permanent category.
** At the 2013 ceremony of both the Academy Awards and Golden Globes, ''WesternAnimation/{{Brave}}'' was the winner despite getting weaker critical responses than [[WesternAnimation/{{Frankenweenie}} all]] [[WesternAnimation/ParaNorman of]] [[Disney/WreckItRalph its]] [[WesternAnimation/ThePiratesBandOfMisfits competitors.]] There was big controversy surrounding ''Brave'' and the fact that their first female director, Brenda Chapman, got fired from the project. The fact that she went on stage to accept the award with the crew made it ''too'' coincidental. Others saw the victory as the Academy was kissing Pixar's asses. The next year, ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'' came out and won both the Globe and the Oscar which some consider a consolation award for ''Wreck It Ralph''.