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A supporting actor is an actor who performs a role in a play or film below than that of a lead role, and above that of a bit parts. In recognition of important nature of this work, the theater and film industries give separate awards to the Best Supporting Actor and actress.
These roles range from minor roles to secondary leads or other principal players. Supporting roles are often pivotal or vital to the story as in a best friend, love interest, 'sidekick' (such as Robin in the Batman series) or 'antagonist' (such as the villain). They are sometimes but not necessarily character roles. In earlier times, these could often be ethnic stereotypes. A supporting actor should usually not upstage the starring or main actor/actress. The title of the role is usually specific to the performance, that is, a person may be a supporting actor in one film and the lead in another.
In television, a day player refers to most performers with supporting speaking roles hired on a daily basis without long-term contracts.
- Supernumerary actor
- Extra (actor)
- Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor
- Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress
- Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actor
- Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
- Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
- Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor - Comedy Series
- Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor - Drama Series
- Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor - Miniseries or a Movie
- Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress - Comedy Series
- Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress - Drama Series
- Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress - Miniseries or a Movie
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