The Top 13 EGOT Contenders: Who Will Be Next to Win All Four Major Awards?
There are currently more than 40 living people one award away from achieving EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony award) status. But the likelihood of eventually achieving all four is slim for most -- there’s a reason this is an exclusive club! -- and even the most promising EGOT contenders can still get snubbed, as we saw with E, G and T winner Lin-Manuel Miranda and his Oscar loss this year.
In fact, only 12 people in history have ever “EGOT’ed," including icons like Aubrey Hepburn, Whoopi Goldberg and Mel Brooks. All this begs the question of... who's next in the EGOT queue? Looking ahead, here’s a roundup of the top 13 next contenders.
KATE WINSLET (EGO-)
Awards refresher: Winslet’s work has made it rain Oscar nominations (seven total), with two of those nods by age 22 and six by 33. Her role as Mildred Pierce in the eponymous miniseries earned the 2011 best actress Emmy, and her narrative contribution to Listen to the Storyteller: A Trio of Musical Tales from Around the World won the 2000 best spoken word album for child Grammy.
Likeliest “T” scenario: She acted onstage in her youth, but in a 2014 interview she said the reason she doesn’t do theater is because she isn’t prepared to miss her children’s bedtimes every night (totally fair). But children grow, and she’s young. Plus, Winslet’s the daughter of two stage actors, and her grandparents founded and managed a local theater — so it’s also hard to imagine she won’t circle back at some point. If she does, the New York theater community would go nuts for her, and Tony voters are historically anglophiles.
Bonus factoid: She keeps her Oscar in the bathroom. Why? So visitors can go ahead and hold it and do an acceptance speech in the mirror without feeling self-conscious. New friend goals.
MAGGE SMITH (E-OT)
Awards refresher: Dame Maggie’s aversion to the Emmy Awards became a recurring joke for last year’s host Jimmy Kimmel throughout the ceremony. She had the last laugh that night, though, with her fourth in-absentia Emmy win. She’s also got two Oscars and a Tony in her awards cache and/or lost and found.
Likeliest “G” scenario: Now that Downton Abbey is off-air, we could see her going on-air to lend her voice to record literally anything. Grammy voters would eat is up, and it’s a best spoken word album waiting to happen. However, it’s doubtful she cares enough about EGOTing for that to be a motivating factor...
Bonus factoid: At the Emmys, Kimmel pointed out that Dame Maggie showed up to accept her awards at the Oscars and the Tonys. She actually didn’t show up for her first Oscar win in 1970 for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie. Her friend Alice Ghostley accepted on her behalf, sans an explanation. The woman’s busy.
HELEN MIRREN (E-OT)
Awards refresher: Playing Queen Elizabeth I got Dame Helen her first Emmy, and playing Queen Elizabeth II got her the royal Oscar and Tony treatment. If it ain’t broke…
Likeliest “G” scenario: Same as Dame Maggie: best spoken word album. Done.
Bonus factoid: On screen she’s played a queen six times: Caligula (1979), The Madness of King George (1994), The Snow Queen (1995), The Prince of Egypt (1998), Elizabeth I (2005) and The Queen (2006).
STEPHEN SONDHEIM (-GOT)
Awards refresher: The music man has seemingly collected 4,000 Grammys and Tonys between Into the Woods, Sweeney Todd, Company and more. He added a 1991 best original song Oscar for “Sooner or Later” in Dick Tracy. (Vocals courtesy of Madonna.)
Likeliest “E” scenario: Sondheim is 86 but still at it. He has nothing in the cooker along these lines yet, but any of these Emmy awards seem attainable for him pre-retirement (if he ever does retire): outstanding music composition for a series; outstanding original music and lyrics; or outstanding music direction.
Bonus factoid: His mentor was Oscar Hammerstein II (of that Rogers and Hammerstein).
AUDRA McDONALD (EG-T)
Awards refresher: McDonald is a certified Broadway Living Legend. She’s won six Tonys — the most by a performer, ever. She also scooped up two Grammys in 2009 for her operatic recording work on Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny. (She’s a classically trained Juilliard alumna.) Add a 2015 outstanding special class program Emmy with a Live from Lincoln Center episode, and she’s 3 for 4.
Likeliest “O” scenario: McDonald earned Emmy and Screen Actors Guild nominations for her captivating performance as Billie Holiday in last year’s TV movie Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill — a role she originated, and won a Tony for, on Broadway. She’s got loads of past TV appearances, but she’s ramping up her film presence (she’s part of the Beauty and the Beast squad), and the right future role, musical or not, could push her across the EGOT finishing line. Hollywood also loves top tier stage transplants when it comes to awards season…
Bonus factoid: She has won a Tony in all possible performance categories.
MARTIN SCORSESE (EGO-)
Awards refresher: Everybody breathed a collective sigh of relief when Scorsese finally picked up an Oscar in 2007 for The Departed. He’s scored Emmys with Boardwalk Empire and a TV special on George Harrison, plus a Grammy for his work on a long-form Bob Dylan music video.
Likeliest “T” scenario: Scorsese’s one and only go at theater was directing Liza Minnelli, whom he allegedly had an affair with, in a vexed musical production called The Act in 1977. It was a box office bomb, and Scorsese went back to film. However, the director is also a prolific film, documentary, and TV producer. If he doesn’t want to direct another stage production, but still felt like dipping his toe back into the theater world, he could pull a Scott Rudin and produce. (The EGOT’ed film and theater producer has probably made four separate trips to Ikea to make shelf space for all his Tonys.) Scorsese is also a noted music lover, so there could still be some Broadway allure for him. He’s 74, but one look at his IMDB profile shows he’s only getting busier with age.
Bonus factoid: He’s worked with Robert De Niro on eight films.
Awards refresher: She’s Cher. But the award highlight reel includes a best dance recording 1999 Grammy for “Believe,” a 2003 outstanding variety special (music or comedy) Emmy for Cher: The Farewell Tour and, of course, a 1988 best actress Oscar for Moonstruck.
Likeliest “T” scenario: Cross all your fingers and toes, then knock on wood and throw salt over your shoulder because, yes, Cher: The Musical is gaining momentum… and the tentative behind-the-scenes team includes some Broadway heavyweights from shows like Hamilton, Avenue Q, Newsies and Jersey Boys. The level of her involvement right now is speculative, but should she participate it’s likely she would at the very least get a producer credit, opening her up to Tony potential. Beautiful: The Carole King Musical got Tony love, so there is precedence.
Bonus factoid: Cher initially turned down her role in Moonstruck and didn’t think she could accurately play a bookkeeper because in reality she’s such an over-the-top spender.
TREY PARKER AND MATT STONE (EG-T)
Awards refresher: The University of Colorado buds turned satirical comedy dream duo have won four Emmys, a Grammy, and two Tonys. Already famous (or infamous) as the unapologetic co-creators of the NSFW animated sitcom South Park, they were catapulted to next-level acclaim as part of the Book of Mormon dream team (along with current EGOTs Scott Rudin and Robert Lopez). Parker has actually already been nominated for an Oscar for his work on the song “Blame Canada” in the film South Park: Bigger, Longer, & Uncut. Robin Williams’ performance of the song at the 2000 Oscars was one for the books.
Likeliest “O” scenario: If the Book of Mormon movie ever gets liftoff, or if they do another original song. it seems like a real possibility. There’s actually a lot of possibilities here.
Bonus factoid: The pair dropped acid before attending the Oscar ceremony. They attended wearing versions of famous (or infamous) Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Lopez gowns.
ALAN MENKEN (It’s Complicated)
Awards refresher: Disney music God (The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Pocahontas…) has won eleven — ELEVEN! — Grammy Awards, eight — EIGHT! — Oscars and one — STILL COOL! — Tony. Technically speaking, he is an EGOT with an honorary 1990 Emmy for outstanding contribution to the success of the Academy’s anti-drug special for children. But the traditional rules are strict, and to be considered a true EGOT, all awards have to have been won in a competitive category.
Likeliest “E” scenario: Menken has showed a relatively new interest in TV work, earning his second Emmy nomination just last year for outstanding original music and lyrics (he was also a producer) on the musical comedy series Galavant. Menken alas lost, and Galavant was canceled, but if Menken keeps up that interest in TV work, rounding out a competitive EGOT membership status is completely attainable.
Bonus factoid: In the original 1991 Beauty and the Beast film there are 25 minutes of song, and only five minutes with no musical underscore at all.
ANNE HATHAWAY (E-O-)
Awards refresher: Hathaway famously took home the 2013 best supporting Oscar statue for her performance in Les Miserables. Less famously, she took home the Emmy for outstanding voice-over performance in 2010 for voicing “Princess Penelope” in an episode of The Simpsons.
Likeliest "G" and “T” scenario: Yes, she is two away from EGOT, but she has a very real chance to shore this up sooner rather than later. Hathaway is an undeniably versatile actress, and she’s only 34. Since 2012, the best spoken word album for children and best musical album for children merged into one award that covers both genres. A best children’s album (the current moniker) is right up Hathaway’s alley, for either musical or spoken word. Her singing chops are well established, but her non-singing voiceover abilities already got her that Emmy. She’s also the voice of Jewel the macaw in the popular animated Rio movie franchise. Plus, pre-Devil Wears Prada, it was roles in Ella Enchanted (in which she became a princess) and The Princess Diaries (in which she found out she was a princess) that made her famous. Those movies continue to be popular with young people, so combined with her Rio kid klout, she has a built in fan-base with Generations Z and Alpha, and the potential nostalgia factor for older generation voters. Regarding the Tonys, it’s not a question of if but when.
Bonus factoid: She has a thing for playing princesses. In 1998 she played one at the Paper Mill Playhouse (a very prestigious New Jersey theater) in Once Upon a Mattress.
Awards refresher: Common has racked up a staggering 19 Grammy noms, scoring his first of three wins in 2002 with Erykah Badu collab “Love Of My Life (An Ode To Hip-Hop)” and his second for the Kanye West-featuring “Southside” in 2007. But his winning streak really picked up when he joined forces with writer and director Ava DuVernay on 2014’s Selma, winning his third Grammy and first Oscar for composing its theme, “Glory,” with John Legend. He recently picked up an Emmy for writing “Letter to the Free" for acclaimed Netflix doc 13th, a study on mass incarceration in the U.S. written and directed by -- you guessed it -- DuVernay.
Likeliest “T” scenario: Following his Emmy win, which left him just a Tony short of EGOT-dom, Common said that he “would love to do theater.” And he’s got the acting chops to hit the Broadway stage, having starred in a number of films from Suicide Squad to breakout comedy Girls Trip with roles in Starz’s Black Samurai television adaptation and a film version of YA novel The Hate U Give forthcoming. At this point, the Broadway options are...pretty endless, and we could imagine Common snagging a Tony for anything from writing an original score to starring in a lead role. (And if DuVernay has any interest in theater, all the better).
Bonus factoid: When Common got word that DuVernay was working on a documentary about mass incarceration with 13th, he asked her if he could write a song for it -- and ended up rapping some of it to her at the White House during a party for President Obama.
BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN (G-O-T)
Awards refresher: The Boss has been nominated for a mind-blowing 50 Grammy Awards, taking home his first of 20 in 1985 for Record of the Year and Best Male Rock Vocal Performance for the single "Dancing in the Dark." His awards shelf got seriously heavy a decade later when the emotional "Streets of Philadelphia" (from the Oscar-winning AIDS drama Philadelphia) raked in four Grammys in 1995 as well as an Oscar for Best Original Song. Springsteen got three-quarters of the way to the first rock EGOT when he declined to submit his smash one-man Broadway show Springsteen on Broadway for consideration for the Tonys. So, the Tony Awards Administration Committee announced that it was bestowing a Special Tony on the singer at its 2018 show. The critically acclaimed show will end up running for 238 performances and the decision to give New Jersey's favorite son an out-of-competition trophy is likely a bid to have him perform on the June 10 prime time program.
Likeliest "E" scenario: It's hard to believe that Springsteen on Broadway hasn't been filmed for either theatrical or TV release, which feels like a slam-dunk for America's most beloved rock icon.
Bonus factoid: After getting signed to Columbia Records in 1972 by the legendary Clive Davis, Springsteen's first two albums were commercial flops. He spent 14 months on his 1975 breakthrough, Born to Run, only to get sidelined for nearly a year during a fight with former manger Mike Appel that nearly derailed his career just as it was taking off.
JOHN LEGEND (G-O-T)
Awards refresher: R&B powerhouse Legend is one of the most in-demand and outspoken and acclaimed singers of his generation. In addition to his 28 Grammy nominations -- including 10 wins -- and an Academy Award in 2015 for his stirring collaboration with Common on "Glory," he also has a 2017 Best Revival of a Play Tony for his work as a co-producer of Jitney.
Likeliest "E" scenario: In between his active social justice calendar, Legend found time to play Jesus in the 2018 televised revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's Jesus Christ Superstar. His universally lauded performance instantly had people talking EGOT, though the ever-so-humble Legend said in an interview, "You can't go into it thinking, 'I want to get an award for this.' You have to go into it thinking, 'I want this to be the best production we can possibly make it.' And then the awards will come."
Bonus factoid: Legend shared his Oscar with rapper Common for co-writing "Glory" for the movie Selma and with Common nabbing a songwriting Emmy in 2017 -- putting him just a Tony short of an EGOT -- the old friends are neck-and-neck in the race to the top of EGOT Mountain.