Oscar year: 1989
His Norbit: Punchline
How it went down: Even before the shorthand was coined, actors were turning out ''Norbits.'' And who better to look back to than Oscar golden boy Hanks, who earned his first nomination and catapulted to stardom with 1988's Big. Columbia Pictures hoped to capitalize on Big's box office by releasing another Hanks comedy, Punchline, four months later just as awards season was beginning to heat up. Who could have predicted a movie about stand-up comics would be so unfunny?
Did it hurt him? Nope. Hanks went on to win back-to-back Academy Awards (for 1993's Philadelphia and 1994's Forrest Gump). In 1989, though, he was up against Dustin Hoffman, whose performance in Rain Man was pure Oscar bait.