jk simmons adventures of pete and pete J.K. Simmons in 'The Adventures of Pete and Pete': Would you give this man an Oscar?Leading up to the 2015 Academy Awards, Zap2it
is taking a closer look at some of the acting nominees’ earlier work —
ones that were maybe not as awards-worthy as the roles for which
they’re currently nominated. We ask you: Based on what you’re about to
see, would you give this person an Oscar?

J.K. Simmons is considered the favorite to win Best Supporting Actor for “Whiplash” at the 87th Academy Awards. He has already deservedly won the SAG, Golden Globe and numerous Critics Associations’ awards for the role of the tough-as-nails instructor at a cutthroat music conservatory.

RELATED: The 2015 Oscar nominee field

But long before “Whiplash,” Simmons was one of “those guys” that you could spot all over the small screen and silver screen landscape. His very first TV role was “Popeye Doyle,” the television spinoff of “The French Connection” that starred Ed O’Neill, and his first movie role was as drill sergeant Siskel in hilarious Christmas movie “The Ref.”

A couple other memorable early roles are below — Simmons as Barber Dan in “The Adventures of Pete and Pete” and AMC’s drama “Remember WENN,” set during the 1930s and ’40s radio days. Based on these performances, would you give this man an Oscar?

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."