Lon Chaney Jr. did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying Larry Talbot as well as the titular character in The Wolfman.
Lon Chaney Jr., the son of perhaps the most famous performer of monsters in the silent era, is the last addition of the most famous of the Universal monsters. Of course the funny thing is the werewolf was already covered once in Werewolf of London played by Henry Hull, but this film and Chaney's rendition of the character is the best remembered now. It is interesting to note that he's ushered in by being supported by two other famous monsters the Invisible Man (Claude Rains) who plays Larry's father, and Dracula (Bela Lugosi) who has an curiously small role as the werewolf who infects Larry. The Wolfman offers a different sort of monster as he is both the least and most malicious of the Universal monsters. On the first end he's the least in that Larry is technically the victim himself by being cursed by becoming the werewolf, but the Wolfman himself does not even have the discretion of Dracula. The Wolfman in full monster mode just viciously looks for the next victim to kill as soon as possible nothing more.
We first meet Chaney as he returns home from a long journey away. Chaney in the early scenes is a very unassuming performer to be sure, but he makes Larry quite likable because of just how unassuming of a guy he is. Even when he spies on a woman with a telescope, and tries to steal her away from her fiancee Chaney does it in such aw shucks sort of way it's hard to ever lose sympathy for the guy. When he gets infected this becomes all the worse since Chaney is so good at being a sad sack. He's such an endearing lug that it's pretty hard to watch him undergo such stress. Chaney is quite good in portraying the devastation in Larry as its absolutely exudes the pain in Larry as he learns what to expect. Adding even more to it is that Chaney is quite moving in portraying such a powerful anguish as Larry realizes that he's been killing people, even for the original wolf when he realizes that he was a man after all. Chaney does well to always keep what the curse does to him past the transformation.