James McAvoy is convinced he has no hope of winning a prize at Britain's upcoming Olivier Awards as fellow nominee Mark Rylance is unbeatable as "the best actor in the world".

The Scottish star has been nominated in the Best Actor category for his turn in MACbeth, but he faces tough competition from Rylance (Twelfth Night), Rupert Everett (The Judas Kiss), Rafe Spall (Constellations) and Luke Treadaway (The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time).

MCAvoy previously lost out to Rylance at the 2010 event, which recognises excellence in London theatre, and he is fairly certain he will walk home empty-handed again this year (13).

He says, "The last time I got nominated for an Olivier I was up against Mark Rylance and I didn't win it because you can't beat him. He's the best actor in the world. That'll probably happen again this year."

The Atonement star insists he was taken by surprise when the nominations were announced, adding, "We didn't realise that we were in the catchment, we thought we may have been in consideration the following year.

"It's just lovely to be nominated and for the company to get nominated for best revival was just such an important thing for us because it's an outpouring of energy in this show."

The winners will be revealed during a prizegiving in London on Sunday (28Apr13).