Meryl Streep’s nomination for “Julie & Julia” increases her Oscar record to 16, putting her even further ahead of Katharine Hepburn and Jack Nicholson (both at 12). Though Hepburn won four lead-actress Oscars and Nicholson a pair of lead-actor Academy Awards as well as a supporting one, Streep has just one lead Oscar and a supporting prize to show for all her nominations.
Though Streep just broke Hepburn’s record of an even dozen nods in the lead-actress race, she should take inspiration from Hepburn’s Oscar history. Hepburn won her first Oscar bid, for “Morning Glory” in 1933, but she lost her next eight Oscar races. It was only after Hepburn turned 60 in 1967 — the age Streep is now — that she prevailed again with nod No. 10 for “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.” Hepburn credited that win as a way for the academy to honor her late love and frequent costar Spencer Tracy, who had died just days after finishing “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner.”