Who do the Oscar hopefuls from this year's prestige biopics need to measure up to?
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« Previous gallery2012 Best Actress Oscar Contenders
8. Julia Roberts as Erin Brockovich in "Erin Brockovich" (2000)
That’s right, both the winning ladies of 2000 make the cut, though the performances (and the degree of surprise that greeted their respective victories) couldn’t be more opposed. Roberts’s fizzy, funny, finally affecting portrayal of a mouthy legal secretary turned environmental crusader is exemplary evidence that playing a real-life character needn’t subsume a strong star persona. She’s Julia Roberts and Erin Brockovich, and the marriage between them couldn’t be more mutually flattering: it’s one of the greatest movie-star turns to wind up at the podium.