16 Renée Zellweger Movies to Watch Before She (Probably) Wins the Best Actress Oscar

It’s been 16 years since Renée Zellweger won an Oscar for her performance in Cold Mountain, and now she’s back in the awards race with her Best Actress nomination for Judy. (Did someone say front-runner?!)

So, in honor of the upcoming Academy Awards on Sunday, February 9, we’re looking back at 16 of the best Reneé Zellweger movies of all time. 

love and a 45 renee zellweger movies

1. ‘love And A .45’ (1994)

Zellweger plays the fiancée of a small-time criminal. She joins him on his escape to Mexico to evade the authorities, loan sharks and his murderous ex-partner. The actress earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Debut Performance for the film.  

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

Tristar pictures

2. ‘jerry Maguire’ (1996)

When a successful sports agent (Tom Cruise) has a moral epiphany and is fired for expressing it, he decides to put his new philosophy to the test as an independent agent. He’s joined by his secretary (Zellweger) and a single client/athlete (Cuba Gooding Jr.).

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

one true thing
Universal Pictures

3. ‘one True Thing’ (1998)

When Ellen Gulden’s (Zellweger) mother is stricken with a serious illness, she is forced to quit her job and end her relationship in order to take care of her. Of course, she finds out quite a few things she didn't know about her mother (Meryl Streep) and father along the way. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

the bachelor
New Line Cinema

4. ‘the Bachelor’ (1999)

We know it’s hard to believe, but ABC’s The Bachelor wasn’t the first of its name. James Shannon III (Chris O’Donnell) is seeing his single friends get married one by one. He isn’t too worried until his girlfriend, Anne Arden (Zellweger), catches the bouquet at a friend’s wedding. After finding out about the $100 million he stands to inherit from his grandfather, James goes on a hunt to find a bride (since his girlfriend goes MIA).

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

me myself and irene

5. ‘me, Myself & Irene’ (2000)

A nice-guy cop with dissociative identity disorder (Jim Carrey) must protect a woman (Zellweger) accused of involvement in a hit-and-run accident who insists she is being framed by a mobster boyfriend. Yikes. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

nurse betty
USA Films

6. ‘nurse Betty’ (2000)

Zellweger is understatedly hilarious in this dark comedy about a woman whose drug-dealing husband is viciously murdered. In shock from the trauma of the incident, she begins to think she is the lead character of her favorite soap opera and takes off to Hollywood. Little does she know, her hubby’s drug supply is in her car and his murderers are now after her. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

bridget jones diary

7. ‘bridget Jones’s Diary’ (2001)

In one of her most popular films, Zellweger stars as Bridget Jones, an average woman struggling to cope with her age, her job, her lack of a man and her self-perceived imperfections. As a New Year’s resolution, she decides to take control of her life by keeping a diary in which she will always tell the complete truth. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

white orleander
Warner Bros

8. ‘white Oleander’ (2002)

The film tells the story of a 15-year-old girl (Alison Lohman) caught up in the Los Angeles foster care system after her mother (Michelle Pfeiffer) is incarcerated for the murder of her boyfriend. Zellweger plays a sensitive former actress who takes the girl in and forms a relationship with her before the girl’s mom intervenes. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video


9. ‘chicago’ (2002)

Based on the Broadway musical of the same name, Chicago follows Roxie Hart (Zellweger), who tries to turn the murder of a lover into a successful show-business career. Did we mention the actress had no significant dancing or singing experience prior to this film?

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

down with love
Twentieth Century Fox

10. ‘down With Love’ (2003)

Made as an homage to the old Doris Day/Rock Hudson films, this comedy takes place in 1962 New York City. Love blossoms between a playboy journalist (Ewan McGregor) and a feminist advice author (Zellweger). Oh, and Sarah Paulson also stars. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

cold mountain

11. ‘cold Mountain’ (2003)

Zellweger won an Oscar, Golden Globe, BAFTA Award and SAG Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Ruby Thewes in this Civil War drama. The film follows a wounded soldier (Jude Law) as he embarks on a perilous journey back home to Cold Mountain, North Carolina, to reunite with his sweetheart (Nicole Kidman).

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

cinedrella man
Universal Pictures

12. ‘cinderella Man’ (2005)

This biopic from director Ron Howard focuses on the life of world heavyweight boxing champion James J. Braddock (Russell Crowe). Zellweger plays Mae, Braddock’s supportive wife and the mother of his children. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

miss potter

13. ‘miss Potter’ (2006)

Zellweger received a Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy Golden Globe nomination for this biopic about Beatrix Potter, the author of the best-selling children’s book The Tale of Peter Rabbit and her struggle for love, happiness and success.

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

bee movie

14. ‘bee Movie’ (2007)

Barry the Bee (Jerry Seinfeld) finds the prospect of working with honey uninspiring. He flies outside the hive for the first time and talks to a human (Zellweger), breaking a cardinal rule of his species. Barry learns that humans have been stealing and eating honey for centuries, and he realizes that his true calling is to obtain justice for his kind by suing humans. LOL. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

new in town

15. ‘new In Town’ (2009)

A high-powered consultant in love with her upscale Miami lifestyle is sent to a middle-of-nowhere town in Minnesota to oversee the restructuring of a manufacturing plant. Eventually, she begins to warm up to the small town—until she gets word that she has to close down the plant and put the entire community out of work.

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video

Roadside Attractions

16. ‘judy’ (2019)

Rupert Goold’s biographical drama finds the troubled actress-singer Judy Garland (Zellweger) performing to sold-out crowds in London in the winter of 1968, just months before her untimely death. For her performance, Zellweger has received Best Actress nominations at the Oscars, BAFTA Awards and SAG Awards, plus victories at the Golden Globes and Critics Choice Awards.

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video