Jason Statham has some strong words for the Oscars.
In a new interview with Vanity Fair, the British star took on the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, arguing that the stuntmen and women behind some of Hollywood s biggest action films don’t get a fair shake when it comes to awards.
“I think it is an overlooked category,” Statham told the magazine, especially considering “how much responsibility these coordinators have for some of the greatest entertainment in action movies.” He also noted that critics frequently miss the point of over-the-top action films like, say, The Transporter III.
From Arnold Schwarzeneggar’s Terminator growling, “I’ll be back,” to Chuck Norris in Lone Wolf McQuade almost wistfully saying, “My kind of trouble doesn’t take vacations,” action heroes make up an integral part of pop culture. Here are a handful of stars we think should have won Oscars:
Pam Grier in Coffy (1973)
Grier played a nurse by day, vigilante by night. Sure, she wore a lot of bikinis, but no one messed with this one-chick hit squad.
Danny Trejo in Machete (2010)
After being set up by a politician, Machete Cortez sets out on a devastating path of revenge and redemption and gets a Green Card along the way. Quentin Tarantino was the first director smart enough to give Trejo a leading role and Trejo did not disappoint.
Jean Claude Van Damme in Time Cop (1994)
Monitoring the rules of time travel is hard business, but Van Damme is up for the job as police officer turned TEC agent Max Walker.
Jackie Chan in Supercop (1993)
As a police officer on a mission, Chan uses both breathtaking stunts and slapstick comedy to bring down drug lords who are ruining his city.
Uma Thurman in Kill Bill, Vol. 2 (2004)
Beatrix Kiddo fought her way out of a coma and a coffin, killed a man with one hand and wore a killer yellow leather jumpsuit. What have you done lately?
Kurt Russell in Escape from New York (1981)
As one-eyed Snake Plissken, Russell was the only man who could possibly escape from the prison that is the Manhattan of the future:
Chuck Norris in Delta Force (1986)
Norris plays Captain Scott McCoy who is loyal, brave and never leaves a man behind. He also knows how to use a rocket launcher when necessary, and it’s often necessary.
Sylvester Stallone in First Blood (1982)
John Rambo is Stallone’s most iconic role. For many fans the two are inseparable and few know where Sly Stallone, the actor, ends and Rambo, the tortured Vietnam veteran prone to violent acts of vigilante justice begins.
Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Terminator (1984)
When Skynet sent Schwarzenegger’s Terminator cyborg to earth to hunt down John Connor, the machine had no idea how iconic the phrase “I”ll be back” would become. Or maybe it did.
This year’s winner? Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Watch the trailer below: