'12 Years A Slave's Michael Fassbender Won't Campaign For Oscar Nod: Here Are 4 Other Nominees Who Also Denounce The Rat Race

In GQ's Nov. 2013 cover story, Michael Fassbender explains why after his failed campaign for Steve McQueen's Shame two years ago he won't be participating in the Oscar campaign race this year. Fassbender has two films on the slab that could get him an Oscar nod, McQueen's 12 Years A Slave and Ridley Scott's The Counselor, but he'll be too busy with other projects (including Macbeth opposite Marion Cotillard) to even entertain the Oscar circus. He tells GQ, "You know, I get it. Everybody's got to do their job. So you try and help and facilitate as best you can. But I won't put myself through that kind of situation again. It's just a grind. And I'm not a politician. I'm an actor." Here are some other actors who have denounced the campaign rat race for the golden statuette...

Joaquin Phoenix

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Phoenix’s role as a lonely writer that falls in love with his computer operating system in Spike Jonze’s Her could potentially garner him an Oscar nomination this year, but he’s even less interested in the awards season than Fassbender. In Interview magazine last year, Phoenix called the awards circuit “total, utter bullshit.” He called his time campaigning for his role as Johnny Cash in 2005’s Walk The Line, “one of the most uncomfortable experiences of my life.” And went further to say, “It’s a carrot, but it’s the worst-tasting carrot I’ve ever tasted in my whole life. I don’t want this carrot. It’s totally subjective. Pitting people against each other … It’s the stupidest thing in the whole world.” However, his comments didn’t deter the Academy from nominating him for his work in The Master last year.

Sir Anthony Hopkins

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The Academy Award-winning actor had some choice words for his peers who engage in the butt-kissing that has become awards season. “I find it nauseating to watch and I think it’s disgusting to behold. People groveling around and kissing the backsides of famous producers and all that. It makes me want to throw up, it really does. It’s sick-making. I’ve seen it so many times. I saw it fairly recently, last year. Some great producer-mogul and everyone kisses this guy’s backside. I think, ‘What are they doing? Don’t they have any self respect?’ I wanted to say, ‘Fuck off.’”

Bill Murray

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In yet another GQ interview in Jan. 2013, Academy Award-winner Bill Murray told the magazine that he felt like he’d “sold his soul” to the studio publicist for Hyde Park on Hudson, whose job it was to shuttle him to interviews that he really didn’t want to do. Murray also addressed his loss to Sean Penn for Best Actor when he was nominated for his role in Lost in Translation, something that still puzzles him because of how many other awards he took home that season. He told the magazine, “I really saw something in myself and I thought, “‘Oh, my God. I really did want that thing!’ Some part of me was disappointed that I got tricked into thinking it was important. I told myself, if that happens again, I don’t want to do that.”

James Cromwell

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Cromwell’s film The Artist picked up the night’s biggest Oscar at the 2012 Academy Awards but that didn’t stop him from commenting on the state of the awards’ season campaign race. “It’s a lot of hoopla, which is not really what we do as actors and as artists. We like to do the work, and the work stands for itself, and then the industry takes over,” he told The Hollywood Reporter. Cromwell made a good point that the Academy Awards was created to promote pictures, not to pit the actors against one another in competition because, “it isn’t a contest — we’re all in this together.”