10 EGOT Winners (Plus One)

If you’re a fan of the television show 30 Rock, you may be familiar with the term EGOT. The term was central to a long running plot in which the Tracy Jordan character strives to win an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony, an elusive grand slam of entertainment. What you may not have realized is that the EGOT is a very real term, and it has been achieved by a very select few entertainers over the years. Here are the top 10 EGOT winners, plus one, because well, only 11 people have ever accomplished this impressive feat.

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 10. Mike Nichols

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Mike Nichols is an acclaimed director who kicked off his EGOT grand slam campaign in 1961, but wasn’t able to complete it until 40 years later. Interestingly, he completed his EGOT in the same year as the person who comes in at #1 on our list. Anyway, Nichols won a Grammy in 1961 for Best Comedy Performance, and three years later won a Tony for directing the play Barefoot in the Park.

That first Tony would be the first of a staggering nine Tony Awards for the legendary director, who added his Oscar for directing The Graduate in 1967. So basically, Nichols completed the first three legs of the EGOT in only six years and then, we guess, got lazy? That’s the only explanation for why it took him until 2001 to finally take home an Emmy, one of two he received that year. He added two more Emmys in 2004, presumably after realizing how easy they were to win, we guess.

9. Richard Rodgers

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Richard Rodgers is on the left.

Composer Richard Rodgers was the first person to ever pull off the EGOT, completing the first leg in the Grand Slam in 1945 and finishing it off in 1962, one of the shortest time spans of any EGOT winner. Along with one other person on this list, he is also one of only two people to have completed the EGOT while also winning a Pulitzer Prize.

He won an Oscar for Best Song in 1945, and five years later won his first of six Tony Awards, in this case winning Best Musical for South Pacific. He earned a Grammy for Best Show Album for The Sound of Music in 1960, and capped off his EGOT two years later when he won the Emmy for Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composed.

8. Helen Hayes

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Helen Hayes was an actress who enjoyed a long, successful career on both stage and screen. She has two Oscars to her name, the first coming in 1932 and the second coming an incredible 38 years later, when she took home another little golden man for her role in the film Airport. She must have been pretty comfortable with those large gaps between awards, too, because the 44 years it took her to accomplish the EGOT is longer than anyone else on the list.

She earned the first of her two Tony Awards in 1947, and in 1953 brought home an Emmy Award to add to her mantle. It was not until 1976 that she finally grabbed that elusive Grammy, however, winning the award for Best Spoken Word Recording to finally at long last pull off the Gram Slam of Showbiz.

7. Rita Moreno

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Rita Moreno became the first Hispanic winner of the EGOT, as well as the first person to win her Grammy in an actual singing category. She also pulled off her EGOT amazingly quickly, winning her first award in 1961 and capping off her EGOT in 1977, when she won the first of two career Emmy Awards.

For a lot of people, she is most famously remembered for her performance in West Side Story, for which she won an Academy Award in 1961. If you don’t know Moreno from that film, then there’s a solid chance you remember her work in The Electric Company, for which she won a Grammy in 1972 for Best Recording for Children. In 1975 she added a Tony for her performance in The Ritz, and took home an Emmy for her work on The Muppet Show in 1977.

6. Jonathan Tunick

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There is a pretty good chance you’ve never heard of Jonathan Tunick, largely because he’s a composer and is one of the people on this list who never won more than one awards in the EGOT. What a slacker. Anyway, one of the interesting things about Tunick is that he worked multiple times on the films of the guy who comes in at #1 on our list as an orchestrator on that person’s films. He did not win either of his Oscars for those films, however.

Instead, he won his Oscar in 1977 for a movie called A Little Night Music, and followed with an Emmy in 1982. He added his Grammy in 1988, and somewhat surprisingly, despite being an acclaimed composer who did the music for such stage productions as Sweeney Todd, did not win his Tony until 1997 for the stage production of Titanic.

5. John Gielgud

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John Gielgud, or as we prefer to call him, Sir John Gielgud, was one of the most well respected British stage actors of the 20th century. Despite his prominence on the British stage as well as Broadway, he is perhaps best remembered for his role in the film Arthur, for which he won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 1981.

Gielgud actually got started with his EGOT all the way back in 1948, winning a Tony for his performance in The Importance of Being Earnest, which we’re sad to say is not about the guy who is always talking to some dude name Vern. He won his Grammy for Best Spoken Word Recording in 1979, and capped off his EGOT in 1991 when he won an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Special.

4. Marvin Hamlisch

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If you’re below a certain age, you may only know Marvin Hamlisch as that guy McLovin mentions in a speech at the end of the movie Role Models. But if you appreciate classic scores then you know him as one of the greatest American composers ever. Along with Rodgers, he is also one of only two people to not only achieve the EGOT, but also win a Pulitzer Prize.

Hamlisch perhaps most famously wrote the music for the movie The Sting and worked extensively with Barbara Streisand and in 1973 won three Oscars in one evening. He has also won four Grammys, four Emmys, and won his Tony Award for A Chorus Line, which was also the play that earned him his Pulitzer. He completed his EGOT in 1995 when he won his first Emmy.

3. Whoopi Goldberg

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No, we are not messing with you right now. Out of everyone in the history of entertainment, with only 11 people having ever pulled off the coveted EGOT, that woman from The View who used to be a stand up comic, is one of them. Whoopi Goldberg kicked off her bid for an EGOT in 1985 thanks to that history as a stand up coming, winning a Grammy for Best Comedy Recording, and five years later won an Oscar for her performance in the movie Ghost.

In 2002, lacking two legs of the EGOT, she decided to quit messing around and just went out and won her Emmy and Tony in that same year. She won her Emmy for hosting a television special about Hattie McDaniel, and took home a Tony for her performance in Thoroughly Modern Millie. Oh, and she later added another Emmy for her work as a host on…The View. Hey, someone has to win those Daytime Emmys, right?

2. Audrey Hepburn

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One of the most beloved and admired actresses of the 20th century, Audrey Hepburn has the distinction of being the only EGOT winner who never knew that she was an EGOT winner, as her fourth and final award came posthumously a year after her death, when she was award a Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album for Children.

Hepburn received her first leg of the EGOT in 1953, when she won an Oscar for Best Actress for her performance in the film Roman Holiday, and added a Tony for Best Actress in a Drama in 1954. Amazingly, not only did her final leg of the Grand Slam come posthumously, but the third came the same year that she passed away as she won an Emmy in 1993. She is the only member of the EGOT list who won two of her awards in consecutive ceremonies, as her 1994 Grammy came at the first such show since her Emmy win the previous year.

1. Mel Brooks

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The man, the myth, the legend. Mel Brooks. Or, as we like to call him, Mel Freaking Brooks. One of the funniest men to ever walk the earth, Mel Brooks might not be the first guy you would think of when talking about the coveted EGOT, but he began his run at the Grand Slam in 1968 and closed it out in 2001, when he won three Tony Awards for his stage version of The Producers.

Coincidentally, it was also The Producers that kicked off his run at the EGOT, as his first award came in the form of an Oscar for Best Writing for the film version. He went on to win four Emmy Awards, the first of which came in 1967 for Outstanding Writing Achievement in Variety. To date he has also won three Grammy Awards, the first of which came in 1998, and the other two coming in 2002 for, you guessed it, The Producers. While others have pulled off the EGOT more quickly and won more awards over the years, to us, Mel Brooks will always be the King of EGOT, and as he always reminds us, it’s good to be the king.

BONUS: Scott Rudin

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Sorry Scott Rudin, but we’re not quite ready to bump you into the top 10, though that’s only because you’re the most recent inductee into this prestigious fellowship. If you follow the entertainment industry you may have heard the name Scott Rudin, but you have no clue what he actually does. And that right there tells you that, oh yeah, he’s probably a producer.

Rudin won his first leg of the EGOT in 1984 with an Emmy Award for Outstanding Children’s Program, and added a Tony (his first of eight) in 1994. In 2007 he won an Oscar for producing No Country for Old Men, and just last year capped off his EGOT with a Grammy for producing The Book of Mormon’s soundtrack, which won Best Musical Theater Album.

SPECIAL NOTE: Three other people have technically achieved the EGOT as well, though they have only achieved it by receiving honorary awards and, let’s face it, that really doesn’t count. If you’re curious as to whom they are, it’s Barbara Streisand, Liza Minelli, and James Earl Jones. Astonishingly, Jones lacks only an Oscar, Streisand a Tony, and Minelli a Grammy, meaning that each is lacking in a category that, really, you would have assumed they’d already won in long ago.

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5 Responses

  1. Bill at |

    Sorry – why was Scott Rudin a ” plus one” again? Couldnt quite figure out from the commentary what makes his EGOT less than the others. Because its recent? Is that a criteria?

    Reply
  2. Ned at |

    You forgot three others- Liza Minnelli, Barbra Streisand and James Earl Jones.

    Reply
    1. Orrin K at |

      Are you an idiot? The author covered them. I absolutely disagree that an honorary award is worse less than in competition, but whatevs

      Reply
  3. Peter W. Pinto at |

    Jonathan Tunick did not compose the music for Sweeney Todd… that would be Mr. Stephen Sondheim. Tunick DID, however, create the orchestrations for it.

    Reply
  4. Peter W. Pinto at |

    Also, Whoopi did not perform in Thoroughly Modern… she was merely a producer.

    Reply

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