As the actor celebrates his seventh Oscar nod, we round up his career highlights.
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8. Vito Corleone in "The Godfather Part II" (1974)
Though he'd made a significant breakthrough the year before in "Mean Streets" and "Bang the Drum Slowly," Francis Ford Coppola's follow-up to his blockbuster Mafia epic was the film that truly announced De Niro to mainstream audiences. It also required him to pull off a tricky task: playing the youthful version of a character indelibly rendered by Marlon Brando two years previously, the young actor had to forge recognizable DNA with another actor's characterization, while recreating the character of Vito Corleone as an unspoiled, even vulnerable man. In Italian, to boot. He was rewarded with his first Oscar nod, and won first time out.
Awards: Best Supporting Actor, Academy Awards
Nominations: Best Supporting Actor (runner-up), New York Film Critics' Circle; Most Promising Newcomer, BAFTA Awards