Pennsylvania Has 3rd Best Odds of State to Produce Best Actor Nominee

If you were able to place a wager on what state a Best Actor Oscar nominee was most likely to come from, the first two choices across Pennsylvania sports betting would logically be California and New York, the two hotbeds for actors. But since 2000, the third choice would be Pennsylvania.

That’s largely because Philadelphians Will Smith and Bradley Cooper (Cooper’s really from a northern suburb of Philly) have each been nominated three times. Smith was making music before he became well-known as an actor on his breakthrough sitcom “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” 

It wasn’t long before he became one of the biggest stars in the world with films like “Men in Black” and “Bad Boys” and interspersed those movies with more serious projects. Smith won the Best Actor award in 2022 for “King Richard” – he was also nominated as a producer – and was also nominated as an actor in 2007 for “The Pursuit of  Happyness” and in 2002 for “Ali.” (It was shortly before his “King Richard” win that Smith channeled Ali and hit presenter Chris Rock with a right cross slap.)

Keep an eye out for how operators like BetMGM Sportsbook Pennsylvania calculate Smith's future Oscar odds after that display.

States With Most Oscar Best Actor Nominees Since 2000

Location Percentage of Nominees Odds of State To Produce A Nominee
California 18.9% +429
New York 11.7% +755
Pennsylvania 6.3% +1487
Kentucky 5.4% +1752
Texas 3.6% +2678
Illinois 3.6% +2678
Massachusetts 2.7% +3604
New Jersey 2.7% +2604
Oklahoma 1.8% +5456
Tennessee .90% +11011
Missouri .90% +11011
South Carolina .90% +11011
Wisconsin .90% +11011
International 39.6% +153

Bradley Cooper Nominations

Cooper, after half a dozen years on TV series before his breakout in “The Hangover,” was nominated for 2019’s “A Star Is Born,” 2014’s “American Hustle,” and 2013’s “Silver Linings Playbook.” He has three additional nominations in the Best Picture category but hasn’t won any hardware.

Michael Keaton, from Coraopolis near Pittsburgh, has one nomination, for 2015’s “Birdman.” Pennsylvania has produced 6.3% of Best Actor nominees since 2000 and would have odds of +1487 to produce another across PA sports betting apps

Although it’s unclear how the Academy will feel about nominating Smith again, he does have some Oscar bait coming in 2023 with the Antoine Fuqua-directed slave thriller, “Emancipation.” That seems a better bet than the possibly upcoming “Bad Boys 4.”

Cooper will next be heard in “Guardians of the Galaxy 3,” but his next Oscar bait movie will be “Maestro,” which he’s also directing and co-writing, a biopic about the conductor/composer Leonard Bernstein. 

On the women’s side, Frances McDormand was born in Illinois but raised in Pittsburgh. She won Best Actress honors for 2021’s “Nomadland,” 2018’s “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" and 1997s “Fargo.”

Count on for odds coverage from now through the next Academy Awards and beyond as well as for the top Pennsylvania sports betting promo codes.

Methodology utilized to gather all actors that were nominated for the award “Best Actor” at the Oscars since 2000. Since 2000, there have been 110 nominations and we found the percentage and odds of each state that is likely to produce a nomination. Actors with multiple nominations during this time period are counted each time. 

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Howard Gensler

Howard Gensler is a veteran journalist who’s worked at the Philadelphia Daily News, TV Guide and the Philadelphia Inquirer and is a founding editor of

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