THE ONLY SILENT FILM TO WIN BEST PICTURE
[The Artist (2011) was a mostly silent film, but had a soundtrack that featured some sequences with sound effects, music throughout, and several characters with brief dialogue at the end of the film.]
THE FIRST SOUND FILM TO WIN BEST PICTURE
The Broadway Melody (1928/29)
THE FIRST COLOR FILM TO WIN BEST PICTURE
Gone with the Wind (1939)
THE LAST ENTIRELY BLACK-AND-WHITE FILM TO WIN BEST PICTURE
The Artist (2011)
[Prior to 2011, The Apartment (1960) held this distinction; Schindler's List (1993) had some color elements.]
THE ONLY SEQUELS TO WIN BEST PICTURE
The Godfather Part II (1974)
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
THE ONLY X-RATED FILM TO WIN BEST PICTURE
Midnight Cowboy (1969)
[The film was subsequently edited and given an R rating in 1971.]
THE FIRST FOREIGN-LANGUAGE FILM TO BE NOMINATED FOR BEST PICTURE
Grand Illusion (1938), in French.
[To date, no foreign-language film has won Best Picture.]
THE FIRST NON-HOLLYWOOD FILM TO WIN AN ACADEMY AWARD
The Private Life of Henry VIII (1932/33), which won a Best Actor Award for Charles Laughton.
THE FIRST NON-HOLLYWOOD FILM TO WIN BEST PICTURE
Hamlet (1948), financed and filmed in England.
THE ONLY FILMS TO WIN THREE ACADEMY AWARDS FOR ACTING
A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
[To date, no film has won all four of the Academy Awards for acting.]
THE FIRST FOREIGN-LANGUAGE PERFORMANCE TO WIN AN ACADEMY AWARD
Sophia Loren, named 1961's Best Actress for her work in the Italian film Two Women.
THE ONLY PERFORMERS TO WIN CONSECUTIVE ACADEMY AWARDS
Luise Rainer, 1936 and 1937
Spencer Tracy, 1937 and 1938
Katharine Hepburn, 1967 and 1968
Jason Robards, 1976 and 1977
Tom Hanks, 1993 and 1994
THE ONLY PERSON TO WIN AN OSCAR FOR PLAYING A MEMBER OF THE OPPOSITE SEX
Linda Hunt, 1983, Best Suporting Actress for The Year of Living Dangerously.1.18 - 2
THE ONLY PERFORMER NOMINATED TWICE FOR THE SAME PERFORMANCE
Barry Fitzgerald, 1944, nominated both as Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor for Going My Way.
[Such a feat is not possible under current Academy rules.]
THE ONLY PERFORMER TO WIN TWO OSCARS FOR THE SAME PERFORMANCE
Harold Russell, 1946, voted Best Supporting Actor for The Best Years of Our Lives, and voted an Honorary Oscar
that year for his performance.
MOST HONORED INDIVIDUALS AT A SINGLE CEREMONY
(male) Walt Disney (1953), in the categogries of Documentary Feature, Documentary Short Subject, Cartoon Short
Subject and Two-reel Short Subject.
(female) Fran Walsh (2003), in the categories of Original Song, Best Picture and Adapted Screenplay.
THE FIRST POSTHUMOUS OSCAR WINNER
Sidney Howard, 1939 winner for writing the screenplay of Gone with the Wind.
THE FIRST POSTHUMOUS ACTING OSCAR WINNER
Peter Finch, 1976 Best Actor winner for Network.
THE ONLY YEARS TWO OSCARS WERE GIVEN FOR BEST DIRECTOR
1961, Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins, codirectors of West Side Story.
2007, Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, codirectors of No Country for Old Men.
THE FIRST PERSON TO WIN OSCARS FOR DIRECTING AND WRITING
Leo McCarey, 1944, for Going My Way.
THE FIRST PERSON TO WIN OSCARS FOR DIRECTING, WRITING AND BEST PICTURE
Billy Wilder, 1960, for The Apartment.
[This feat was not possible prior to 1951, when the Best Picture award went to the studio rather than individual
THE ONLY THREE-GENERATION OSCAR-WINNING FAMILIES
The Hustons. Walter Huston won Best Supporting Actor in 1948; son John Huston won Best Director and Best
Screenplay in 1948; and granddaughter Anjelica Huston won Best Supporting Actress in 1985.
The Coppolas. Carmine Coppola won for Original Dramatic Score in 1974; son Francis Ford Coppola's first win
was for Original Screenplay in 1970; and granddaughter Sofia Coppola won for Original Screenplay in 2003.
THE ONLY BROTHER AND SISTER TO WIN ACTING OSCARS
Lionel Barrymore, 1930/31
Ethel Barrymore, 1944
THE ONLY SISTERS TO WIN ACTING OSCARS
Joan Fontaine, 1941
Olivia de Havilland, 1946 and 1949
THE ONLY BROTHERS NOMINATED FOR ACTING OSCARS
River Phoenix, 1988
Joaquin Phoenix, 2000, 2005 and 2012
THE ONLY MARRIED COUPLES TO WIN ACTING OSCARS
Laurence Olivier (1948) and Vivien Leigh (1951).
[They were not yet married when Leigh won her first Oscar in 1939.]
Paul Newman (1986) and Joanne Woodward (1957).
[They were married in 1958, prior to Woodward receiving 1957's Best Actress award.]
THE ONLY OSCAR WINNER WITH PARENTS WHO BOTH RECEIVED OSCARS
Liza Minnelli. Her mother Judy Garland received an Honorary miniature Oscar in 1939; father Vincente Minnelli
won Best Director in 1958; Liza Minnelli won Best Actress in 1972.
THE MOST OSCAR-NOMINATED FAMILY
The Newmans, with 88 nominations and counting. Brothers Alfred Newman (43 nominations), Emil Newman (1),
and Lionel Newman (11); second generation, Randy Newman (20), David Newman (1), and Thomas Newman (12).
THE FIRST PERSON TO REFUSE AN OSCAR
Dudley Nichols, 1935, winner for his screenplay of The Informer.
THE ONLY WRITE-IN OSCAR WINNER
Hal Mohr, 1935, for his cinematography of A Midsummer Night's Dream.
[He won without having been a nominee, a feat not possible under today's Academy
Ten Best Picture winning films have gone on to win Best Picture without receiving any acting nominations for any of its cast. Can you guess which ones they are?
WINGS, ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT, GRAND HOTEL, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH, AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS, GIGI, THE LAST EMPEROR, BRAVEHEART, and THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING
What were the three awards given during Oscar's first year only that were never given again?
BEST ARTISTIC QUALITY OF PRODUCTION, BEST TITLE WRITING (an award for silent films), BEST COMEDY DIRECTION
There are only three films in history that have won the top five major awards, for Picture, Actor, Actress, Director, and Screenplay. Do you know them?
IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT, ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST, THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS
The actress who has received the most acting nominations is Meryl Streep with 16 nominations currently and the potential to gain more. Katharine Hepburn was the previous record holder with 12 nominations, and she still holds the record for the most Oscar wins by an actress, with 4 Best Actress trophies.
Jack Nicholson is Oscar's most honored male actor, currently with 12 nominations, and 3 Oscar wins, most recently in 1997 for AS GOOD AS IT GETS.
Talk about a perennial Oscar favorite : Woody Allen, having only one acting nomination, has been nominated 19 times for either writing or directing.
The youngest Oscar winner ever? Tatum O'Neal, who at age 10 in 1973 won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for PAPER MOON. Justin Henry in KRAMER VS. KRAMER was the youngest ever nominated.
The oldest Oscar winner over? 81 year old Jessica Tandy, for DRIVING MISS DAISY in 1989. Gloria Stuart is the oldest nominee ever, nominated in 1997 for TITANIC at the age of 87.
Who are Oscar's most honored film directors? William Wyler has 12 nominations for Best Director, the most for any director, and he won three times. One director has won more Oscars for directing though, and that is John Ford, winning four Oscars for directing. Ford was always well known for his Westerns, but amazingly his four directing Oscars came for films that were unlike the films we usually associate with him ... can you name them? He won for directing THE INFORMER, THE GRAPES OF WRATH, HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY, and THE QUIET MAN.
Five individuals have won back to back Oscars one year after another, can you name them? Luise Rainer was the first, in 1936 and 1937. Spencer Tracy won the lead acting Oscar two years in a row, 1937 and 1938. Katharine Hepburn won the Lead Actress Oscar two years in a row in 1967 and 1968, and then Jason Robards won the Supporting Actor Oscar two years back to back in 1976 and 1977. Most recently, Tom Hanks won back to back Oscars in 1993 and 1994 for two very different performances, a gay lawyer dying of AIDS in PHILADELPHIA, and a simple man making his way through life in FORREST GUMP.
Best Picture winners are typically films with long running times, but which three films are the longest? Three run more than three and a half hours ... GONE WITH THE WIND, LAWRENCE OF ARABIA, and BEN-HUR.
Speaking of length, what Oscar ceremony was the longest in history? It wasn't too long ago! It was the 74th Annual Academy Awards, honoring the films of 2001, that ran some four hours and eighteen minutes by varying accounts of it. Before that, it was the 1999 telecast that ran four hours and eight minutes long, one of only three to run past four hours! The 1998 telecast ran four hours and two minutes.
I bet you didn't know that it wasn't until 1985 that all 10 leading acting nominees were Americans!
Only two actors have won Oscars for a performance in a foreign language film ... Sophia Loren in TWO WOMEN and more recently, Roberto Benigni for LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL.
Who has hosted the Oscar telecast the most? No surprise here, Bob Hope is the reigning champ, hosting the show 18 different times between 1939 and 1977. Billy Crystal is the next runner up, having hosted eight times. Johnny Carson did it five times, Jack Lemmon and Whoopi Goldberg did it four times, and David Niven hosted the Oscars three times.
It's still hard to believe, but in 1941, when Orson Welles won the Screenplay Oscar for his immortal classic CITIZEN KANE, the film almost universally regarded as one of the greatest of all time, he was actually booed by the Oscar audience at the time. Some genuises just are not recognized in their time.
There is actually one Best Picture winning film that was originally a television series : MARTY, the Best Picture winner of 1955.
Oscar's most honored individuals: In the Best Actress category, as you probably know, Katharine Hepburn once held the all time record, with 12 nominations spanning from 1932 to 1981. And she has also won the most acting Oscars of any other actor, 4 of them. Do you know for which films she won for? MORNING GLORY, GUESS WHO'S COMING TO DINNER, THE LION IN WINTER, and ON GOLDEN POND. Meryl Streep recently surpassed Hepburn with 13 nominations, but not as many wins. The other most honored leading actresses include Bette Davis, with 11 nominations. Geraldine Page received 8 Best Actress nominations, Greer Garson and Jane Fonda each received the honor of a nomination 7 times, as well as Ingrid Bergman.
How about the leading actors? Jack Nicholson leads the pack, with 12 nominations and 3 Oscar victories, all happening since 1969. Laurence Olivier received 10 nominations, Spencer Tracy and Paul Newman were nominated 9 times, and a fine group of actors were nominated 8 times : Marlon Brando, Jack Lemmon, and Al Pacino. And poor Peter O'Toole and Richard Burton -- they each were nominated 7 times, but never won.
Two directors have managed the feat of winning back-to-back directing Oscars. They were John Ford (for THE GRAPES OF WRATH and HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY in the early 40's), and Joseph Mankiewicz for PEOPLE WILL TALK and ALL ABOUT EVE right around 1950.
Two films share an honor they probably would rather not share ... two films have been nominated for 11 Oscars, without winning a single one of the awards they were nominated for. They were THE COLOR PURPLE and THE TURNING POINT.
How often has the Best Picture winner and the Best Director winner been for different films?
It has happened quite a few times in the Academy's history, where the Best Director did not end up directing the chosen Best Picture ... it hasn't happened as frequently in the contemporary cinema, but has still happened.
Here is when it has happened (I list the year, who won Best Director, and the other film that won Best Picture):
Best Director but not Best Picture
2005 : Ang Lee for BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
(Crash won Best Picture)
2002 : Roman Polanski for THE PIANIST
(Chicago won Best Picture)
2000 : Steven Soderbergh for TRAFFIC
(Gladiator won Best Picture)
1998 : Steven Spielberg for SAVING PRIVATE RYAN
(Shakespeare in Love won Best Picture)
1989 : Oliver Stone for BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY
(Driving Miss Daisy won Best Picture)
1981 : Warren Beatty for REDS
(Chariots of Fire won Best Picture)
1972 : Bob Fosse for CABARET
(The Godfather won Best Picture)
1967 : Mike Nichols for THE GRADUATE
(In The Heat of the Night won Best Picture)
1956 : George Stevens for GIANT
(Around the World in 80 Days won Best Picture)
1952 : John Ford for THE QUIET MAN
(The Greatest Show on Earth won Best Picture)
1951 : George Stevens for A PLACE IN THE SUN
(An American in Paris won Best Picture)
1949 : Joseph L. Mankiewicz for A LETTER TO THREE WIVES
(All The King's Men won Best Picture)
1948 : John Huston for THE TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE
(Hamlet won Best Picture)
1940 : John Ford for THE GRAPES OF WRATH
(Hitchcock's Rebecca won Best Picture)
1937 : Leo McCarey for THE AWFUL TRUTH
(The Life of Emile Zola won Best Picture)
1936 : Frank Capra for MR. DEEDS GOES TO TOWN
(The Great Ziegfeld won Best Picture)
1935 : John Ford for THE INFORMER
(Mutiny on the Bounty won Best Picture)
1931 / 32 : Frank Borzage for BAD GIRL
(Grand Hotel won Best Picture)
1930 / 31 : Norman Taurog for SKIPPY
(Cimarron won Best Picture)
1928 / 29 : Frank Lloyd for THE DIVINE LADY
(The Broadway Melody won Best Picture)
And in the Academy's first year, the directing prizes were split into drama and comedy, and went to
1927 / 28 :
COMEDY = Lewis Milestone for TWO ARABIAN KNIGHTS
DRAMA = Frank Borzage for 7TH
(Wings won Best Picture)
DIDN'T WIN A BEST DIRECTOR OR SCREENPLAY AWARD
1949: ALL THE KING'S MEN
1936: THE GREAT ZIEGFELD
1935: MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY
1931/32: GRAND HOTEL
1928/29: THE BROADWAY MELODY
WON A SCREENPLAY AWARD, BUT NOT BEST DIRECTOR
1998: SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE
1989: DRIVING MISS DAISY
1981: CHARIOTS OF FIRE
1972: THE GODFATHER
1967: IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT
1956: AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS
1952: THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH
1951: AN AMERICAN IN PARIS
1937: THE LIFE OF EMILE ZOLA
WON BEST DIRECTOR, BUT NOT A SCREENPLAY OSCAR
1996: THE ENGLISH PATIENT
1978: THE DEER HUNTER
1965: THE SOUND OF MUSIC
1964: MY FAIR LADY
1962: LAWRENCE OF ARABIA
1961: WEST SIDE STORY
1947: GENTLEMAN'S AGREEMENT
1941: HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY
1938: YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU
1929/30: ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT
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