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Academy Award for Best Picture
Awarded for "Best Motion Picture of the Year"
Presented by Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Country United Statesmarker
First awarded 1929 (for films released in 1927/1928)
First winner Wings (1927)
Currently held by Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
Official website
The Academy Award for Best Motion Picture is one of the Academy Awards of Merit presented annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) to artists working in the motion picture industry. The Best Picture category is the only category in which every member of the Academy is eligible not only to vote on the final ballot, but also to nominate. During the annual Academy Awards ceremony, Best Picture is reserved as the final award presented and, since 1951, is collected at the podium by the film's producers. The Academy Award for Best Motion Picture is considered the most important of the Academy Awards, as it is the final result of the collaborative producing, directing, acting, and writing efforts put forth for a film. The Grand Staircase columns at the Kodak Theatremarker in Los Angelesmarker, where the Academy Awards ceremonies have been held since 2002, showcase every film that has won the Best Picture title since the award's inception 80 years ago. On June 24, 2009 it was announced that the Best Picture nominees would be raised from 5 selected films to 10 selected nominees for the award, starting with the 2010 Academy Award Ceremony.

History

At the 1st Academy Awards ceremony (for 1927 and 1928), there was no Best Picture award. Instead, there were two separate awards, one called Most Outstanding Production, won by the epic Wings, and one called Most Artistic Quality of Production, won by the art film Sunrise. The awards were intended to honor different and equally important aspects of superior filmmaking, and in fact the judges and the studio bosses who sought to influence their decisions paid more attention to the latter - MGM head Louis B. Mayer, who had disliked the realism of King Vidor's The Crowd, pressured the judges not to honor his own studio's film, and to select Sunrise instead. The next year, the Academy instituted a single award called Best Production, and decided retroactively that the award won by Wings had been the equivalent of that award, with the result that Wings is often listed as the winner of a sole Best Picture award for the first year. The title of the award was eventually changed to Best Picture for the 1931 awards.

Since 1944, the Academy has restricted nominations to five Best Picture nominees per year. As of the 81st Academy Awards ceremony (for 2008), there have been 464 films nominated for the Best Picture award. Throughout the past 81 years, AMPAS has presented a total of 81 Best Picture awards. Invariably, the Academy Awards for Best Picture and Best Director have been very closely linked throughout their history. Of the 81 films that have been awarded Best Picture, 59 have also been awarded Best Director.[9745] Only three films have won Best Picture without their directors being nominated (though only one since the early 1930s): Wings (1927/28), Grand Hotel (1931/32), and Driving Miss Daisy (1989). The only two Best Director winners to win for films which did not receive a Best Picture nomination are likewise in the early years: Lewis Milestone (1927/28) and Frank Lloyd (1928/29).

However, beginning in 2010, The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences will double the number of Best Picture nominees from five to ten. The expansion is a throwback to the Academy's early years in the 1930s and '40s, when anywhere between eight and 12 films were shortlisted (or longlisted). "Having 10 Best Picture nominees is going allow Academy voters to recognize and include some of the fantastic movies that often show up in the other Oscar categories but have been squeezed out of the race for the top prize," AMPAS President Sid Ganis said in a press conference. "I can't wait to see what that list of 10 looks like when the nominees are announced in February." .

One point of contention is the lack of consideration of non-English language films for categories other than Best Foreign Language Film. Very few foreign language films have been nominated for any other categories, regardless of artistic merit. To date, only eight foreign language films (and three partly foreign language films) have been nominated for Best Picture: Grand Illusion (French, 1938); Z (French, 1969); The Emigrants (Swedish, 1972); Cries and Whispers (Swedish, 1973); Il Postino (Italian/Spanish, 1995); Life Is Beautiful (Italian, 1998); Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Mandarin Chinese, 2000); and Letters from Iwo Jima (Japanese, 2006), which was ineligible for the Best Foreign Language Oscar because it was an American production. The only partly foreign language films to win Best Picture are The Godfather Part II (English/Sicilian, 1974), The Last Emperor (English/Mandarin, 1987) and Slumdog Millionaire (English/Hindi, 2008).

Another point of contention is the recent extreme bias toward 2-plus hour films: Crash (2005, 113m) is the shortest film to win Best Picture in the past 20 years. It has been criticized for ignoring films that were huge commercial and critical successes such as The Dark Knight and WALL-E. Furthermore, of animated films only Beauty and the Beast has been nominated for the award, and only one comedy (Shakespeare in Love, 1998) has won in the last 30 years.

To date, ten films exclusively financed outside the United States have won Best Picture; all ten were financed, in part or in whole, by the United Kingdom. Those films were, in chronological order: Hamlet, The Bridge on the River Kwaimarker, Lawrence of Arabia, Tom Jones, A Man for All Seasons, Oliver!, Chariots of Fire, Gandhi, The Last Emperor, and Slumdog Millionaire.

No Best Picture winner is lost, though a few such as All Quiet on the Western Front and Lawrence of Arabia exist only in a form altered from their original, award-winning release form, usually having been edited for reissue (and subsequently partly restored by archivists). Other winners and nominees such as Tom Jones and Star Wars are widely available only in subsequently altered versions. The 1928 film The Patriot is the only Best Picture nominee that is lost; The Racket was believed lost for many years but a print existed in producer Howard Hughes' archives and it has since been shown on Turner Classic Movies. Wings and Sunrise were the only silent winners of a Best Picture-equivalent award, although a part-silent version of All Quiet on the Western Front was created for foreign-language release and survives.

Winners and Nominees

In the list below, the winner of the award for each year is shown first, followed by the other nominees. Except for the early years (when the Academy used a non-calendar year), the year shown is the one in which the film first premiered in Los Angeles County, Californiamarker; normally this is also the year of first release, but it may be the year after first release (as with Casablanca and, if the film-festival premiere is considered, Crash). This is the year before the ceremony at which the award is given; for example, a film exhibited theatrically during 2005 was eligible for consideration for the 2005 Best Picture Oscar, awarded in 2006. The number of the ceremony (1st, 2nd, etc.) appears in parentheses after the awards year, linked to the article (if any) on that ceremony. Each individual entry shows the title followed by the production company, and the producer. For foreign language films, the original title is also shown. Until 1950, the Best Picture award was given to the production company; from 1951 on, it has gone to the producer. The official name of the award has changed several times over the years:
  • 1927/28 → 1928/29: Outstanding Picture
  • 1929/30 → 1940: Outstanding Production
  • 1941 → 1943: Outstanding Motion Picture
  • 1944 → 1961: Best Motion Picture
  • 1962 → Present: Best Picture


1920s







1930s





(Note: The Academy also announced that A Farewell to Arms came in second, and Little Women third.)

(Note: The Academy also announced that The Barretts of Wimpole Street came in second, and The House of Rothschild third.)

(Note: The Academy also announced that The Informer came in second, and Captain Blood third.)









1940s





















1950s



From 1951 on, the individual producer/s (rather than the production company) receives this award.

















1960s





















1970s





















1980s





















1990s





















2000s



















Milestones

Annual Year Film Awards Noms Milestone
1st 1927-28 Wings 2 2 Winner of the first Academy award for Best Picture
1st 1927-28 Wings 2 2 First (and only) silent film to win Best Picture
2nd 1928-29 The Broadway Melody 1 3 First sound film to win Best Picture
2nd 1928-29 The Broadway Melody 1 3 First musical to win Best Picture
2nd 1928-29 The Broadway Melody 1 3 First film to win Best Picture without winning any other Academy Awards
2nd 1928-29 The Broadway Melody 1 3 First winner for Best Picture to receive an acting nomination
3rd 1929-30 All Quiet on the Western Front 2 2 First talkie war film to win Academy Awards
4th 1930-31 Cimarron 3 7 First film to be nominated for every major Academy Award, including Best Picture
4th 1930-31 Cimarron 3 7 First Western to win Best Picture
4th 1930-31 Skippy 1 4 First (and only) film based on a comic book, comic strip, or graphic novel to be nominated for Best Picture
5th 1931-32 Grand Hotel 1 1 First (and only) film to win Best Picture without receiving any other nominations
6th 1932-33 She Done Him Wrong 0 1 Shortest film to be nominated for Best Picture (1 hour 6 minutes)
6th 1932-33 The Private Life of Henry VIII 1 2 First foreign film to be nominated for Best Picture and to win any Academy Award (British)
7th 1934 It Happened One Night 5 5 First of only three films to win every major Academy Award, including Best Picture
7th 1934 It Happened One Night 5 5 First Best Picture nominee to win both Best Actor and Best Actress
7th 1934 It Happened One Night 5 5 First comedy to win Best Picture
8th 1935 Mutiny on the Bounty 1 8 First remake to win Best Picture
8th 1935 Mutiny on the Bounty 1 8 Only film to have three performers nominated in the Best Actor category
8th 1935 Mutiny on the Bounty 1 8 Last film to date to win Best Picture without winning any other Academy Awards
8th 1935 A Midsummer Night's Dream 2* 3 First Shakespeare adaptation to be nominated for Best Picture (*one of its two Oscars was a write-in winner)
10th 1937 A Star Is Born 1 7 First all-color film nominated for Best Picture
10th 1937 The Life of Emile Zola 3 10 First biographical picture (biopic) to win Best Picture
11th 1938 Grand Illusion 0 1 First foreign language film to be nominated for Best Picture (French)
11th 1938 You Can't Take It With You 2 7 First of only two Best Picture winners to have been adapted for the screen from plays which won the Pulitzer Prize
12th 1939 The Wizard of Oz 2 6 First children's film to be nominated for Best Picture
12th 1939 Gone with the Wind 8 13 Longest film to win Best Picture (3 hours 54 minutes)
12th 1939 Gone with the Wind 8 13 First all-color film to win Best Picture
13th 1940 Rebecca 2 11 First thriller to win Best Picture
15th 1942 Mrs. Miniver 6 12 First Best Picture nominee to receive nominations in all of the four acting categories
18th 1945 The Bells of St. Mary's 1 8 First sequel to be nominated for Best Picture
18th 1945 The Lost Weekend 4 7 Only film to win both Best Picture and the Cannes Film Festivalmarker Grand Prix du Festival International du Film
21st 1948 Hamlet 4 7 First foreign film to win Best Picture (British)
23rd 1950 All About Eve 6 14 First of only two films to receive 14 Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture
26th 1953 From Here to Eternity 8 13 Last Best Picture winner to date to receive nominations in all of the four acting categories
26th 1953 The Robe 2 5 First motion picture (and Best Picture nominee) in CinemaScope
28th 1955 Marty 4 8 Only film to win both Best Picture and the Cannes Film Festivalmarker Palme d'Or
28th 1955 Marty 4 8 Shortest film to win Best Picture (1 hour 31 minutes)
28th 1955 Marty 4 8 First (and only) film based on a television movie or mini-series to win Best Picture
29th 1956 Around the World in Eighty Days 5 8 First film to win Best Picture in a year when all nominees were filmed in color
30th 1957 The Bridge on the River Kwaimarker 7 8 Won the Best Film in the BAFTA, Golden Globe and New York Film Critics Circle Award
32nd 1959 Ben-Hur 11 12 First of only three films to win 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture
33rd 1960 The Apartment 5 10 Last black-and-white film before 1993 (and last entirely in B&W) to win Best Picture
34th 1961 West Side Story 10 11 First of only two Best Picture winners to have more than one credited director (Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise)
34th 1961 West Side Story 10 11 Most Oscar-winning musical (10 wins)
35th 1962 Lawrence of Arabia 7 10 Only Best Picture winner to have credited roles for actors of only one gender
39th 1966 Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? 5 13 First (and only) Best Picture nominee to be nominated for every award category in which it was eligible
40th 1967 In the Heat of the Night 5 7 First (and only) mystery to win Best Picture
41st 1968 Oliver! 6 11 First film with an MPAA rating to win Best Picture
41st 1968 Oliver! 6 11 First (and only) G-rated film to date to win Best Picture
42nd 1969 Midnight Cowboy 3 7 First (and only) X-rated film to win Best Picture
43rd 1970 Patton 7 10 First PG-rated film to win Best Picture
44th 1971 A Clockwork Orange 0 4 Last X-rated film to be nominated for Best Picture
44th 1971 The French Connection 5 8 First R-rated film to win Best Picture
45th 1972 Cabaret 8 10 Best Picture nominee to win the most Academy Awards (8) without winning Best Picture
46th 1973 The Exorcist 2 10 First horror film to be nominated for Best Picture
47th 1974 The Godfather Part II 6 11 First sequel to win Best Picture.
48th 1975 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest 5 9 Second of only three films to win every major Academy Award, including Best Picture
49th 1976 Rocky 3 10 First sports film to win Best Picture
50th 1977 Star Wars IV 6 10 First Science fiction film to be nominated for Best Picture
50th 1977 The Turning Point 0 11 First of two Best Picture nominees to receive 11 nominations without winning any Academy Awards
53rd 1980 Ordinary People 4 6 Last film to date to win Best Picture without a Best Film Editing nomination.
54th 1981 Reds 3 12 Last Best Picture nominee to date to receive nominations in all four of the acting categories
55th 1982 E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial 4 9 Last science fiction film to be nominated for Best Picture
58th 1985 The Color Purple 0 11 Second of two Best Picture nominees to receive 11 nominations without winning any Academy Awards
58th 1985 The Color Purple 0 11 First PG-13-rated to be nominated for Best Picture
58th 1985 Kiss of the Spider Woman 1 4 First Independent film to be nominated for Best Picture
60th 1987 The Last Emperor 9 9 First PG-13-rated film to win Best Picture
61st 1988 Rain Man 4 8 First (and only) film to win Berlin Golden Bear and Best Picture
62nd 1989 Driving Miss Daisy 4 9 Last film to date to win Best Picture without being nominated for Best Director
62nd 1989 Driving Miss Daisy 4 9 Second of only two Best Picture winners to have been adapted for the screen from plays having won the Pulitzer Prize
62nd 1989 Driving Miss Daisy 4 9 Last Best Picture winner to date with a PG rating (or lower)
63rd 1990 The Godfather Part III 0 7 First of only two trilogies to have all three films nominated for Best Picture
64th 1991 Beauty and the Beast 2 6 First (and only) animated film to date to be nominated for Best Picture
64th 1991 The Silence of the Lambs 5 7 Third of only three films to win every major Academy Award, including Best Picture
64th 1991 The Silence of the Lambs 5 7 Last Best Picture winner to date to win both Best Actor and Best Actress
64th 1991 The Silence of the Lambs 5 7 First horror film to win Best Picture
64th 1991 The Silence of the Lambs 5 7 First sequel to win Best Picture without one of its predecessor (Manhunter) also having won or been nominated for Best Picture
66th 1993 Schindler's List 7 12 First (and only) black-and-white film after 1960 to win Best Picture (though with some color sequences)
66th 1993 The Fugitive 1 7 First (and only) film based on a television series to be nominated for Best Picture
68th 1995 Babe 1 7 Last film to date rated G to be nominated for Best Picture
70th 1997 As Good As It Gets 2 7 Last Best Picture nominee to date to win both Best Actor and Best Actress
70th 1997 Titanic 11 14 Second of only two films to receive 14 Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture
70th 1997 Titanic 11 14 Second of only three films to win 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture
70th 1997 Titanic 11 14 First Best Picture winner to be produced, directed, written, and edited by the same person (James Cameron)
70th 1997 Titanic 11 14 First Best Picture winner to gross over $US1,000,000,000, worldwide.
70th 1997 Titanic 11 14 Last film to date to win Best Picture without a screenplay nomination (Adapted or Original)
70th 1997 Titanic 11 14 Highest grossing film of all time, worldwide ($1,842,879,955)
71st 1998 Shakespeare in Love 7 13 Last comedy to date to win Best Picture
71st 1998 Shakespeare in Love 7 13 Most Oscars without a Best Director win
73rd 2000 Traffic 4 5 Last Best Picture nominee to date to have been based on a television movie or mini-series
73rd 2000 Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 4 10 First (and only) martial arts film to date to be nominated for Best Picture
73rd 2000 Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 4 10 Foreign language film nominated for Best Picture to date with the most number of Academy Award nominations
74th 2001 A Beautiful Mind 4 8 Last biopic to date to win Best Picture
75th 2002 Chicago 6 13 Last musical to date to win Best Picture
76th 2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 11 11 Second of only two trilogies to have all three films nominated for Best Picture
76th 2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 11 11 Third of only three films to date to win 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture
76th 2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 11 11 Last film to date to win Best Picture and all of its other nominated categories
76th 2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 11 11 First (and only) film to win more than 10 awards and not receive an acting nomination
76th 2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 11 11 Last (and only) film to date with ten or more nominations (11) to win in every nomination it received including Best Picture
76th 2003 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King 11 11 First (and only) fantasy film to date to win Best Picture
77th 2004 Million Dollar Baby 4 7 Last film to date to be nominated for every major Academy Award, including Best Picture
77th 2004 The Aviator 5 11 Last film to date to win the most Academy Awards (5) without winning Best Picture
77th 2004 Finding Neverland 1 7 Last family film to date to be nominated for Best Picture
78th 2005 Crash 3 6 First (and only) film festival acquisition to win Best Picture
78th 2005 Good Night, and Good Luck. 0 6 Last black-and-white film to date to be nominated for Best Picture
78th 2005 Good Night, and Good Luck. 0 6 Last Best Picture nominee to date with a PG rating (or lower)
79th 2006 Letters from Iwo Jima 1 4 Last foreign language film to date to be nominated for Best Picture (Japanese)
79th 2006 The Departed 4 5 First (and only) remake of a foreign film to win Best Picture
80th 2007 No Country for Old Men 4 8 Last western to date to win Best Picture
80th 2007 No Country for Old Men 4 8 Last Best Picture winner to date to have more than one credited director (Joel and Ethan Coen)
80th 2007 No Country for Old Men 4 8 First (and only) film of the 2000s decade to gross under $2 million in its opening weekend to win Best Picture
81st 2008 Slumdog Millionaire 8 10 Last film to date to win Best Picture without receiving any acting nominations
81st 2008 Slumdog Millionaire 8 10 First (and only) film to win Best Picture with no former Oscar-nominees in its cast
81st 2008 Slumdog Millionaire 8 10 Tied with Gandhi as Best Picture winner with second most Oscars for a British production (behind The English Patient) and second most Oscars for a non-American production (behind The Last Emperor).
81st 2008 Slumdog Millionaire 8 10 Second film since Schindler's List (1993) to win Best Picture, Director and Screenplay at the Golden Globes, BAFTAs and Oscars.


Most nominated movies without Best Picture nominations

Annual

Year

Film

Awards

Noms

Milestone

21st 1948 Joan of Arc 2 7 First film to receive 7 nominations without receiving a Best Picture nomination
22nd 1949 Come to the Stable 0 7
33rd 1960 Pepe 0 7
36th 1960 Hud 3 7
37th 1964 Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte 0 7 First horror film to receive at least 7 nominations
39th 1966 Hawaii 0 7
40th 1967 Thoroughly Modern Millie 1 7
41st 1968 Star! 0 7
42nd 1969 They Shoot Horses, Don't They? 1 9 Film that received the most competitive nominations (9) without being nominated for Best Picture
45th 1972 The Poseidon Adventure 2 8 Film received 8 competitive nominations (won 1) and was awarded a non-competitive Special Achievement Oscar (Visual Effects)
50th 1977 Close Encounters of the Third Kind 2 8 Film received 8 competitive nominations (won 1) and was awarded a non-competitive Special Achievement Oscar (Sound Effects Editing)
54th 1981 Ragtime 0 8
55th 1982 Victor Victoria 1 7
59th 1986 Aliens 2 7
63rd 1990 Dick Tracy 3 7
67th 1994 Bullets Over Broadway 1 7
76th 2003 Cold Mountain 1 7
79th 2006 Pan's Labyrinth 3 6
79th 2006 Dreamgirls 2 8 Only film not nominated for Best Picture to receive more nominations than any other film in its year.
81st 2008 The Dark Knight 2 8 Received more nominations than any other film based on a comic book, comic strip, or graphic novel. First film based on a comic book, comic strip, or graphic novel to win an Academy Award for acting (Best Supporting Actor).
81st 2008 WALL-E 1 6 Tied with Beauty and the Beast for the most nominations received by an animated film.


Superlatives

Before 1951, the award was for the studio or studios which produced the film. Since then, the award has been to the individual producers credited on the film. Note also that until 1943, there were ten rather than five nominated films per year. As of 2009, there are ten nominated films, once again. The first year in which multiple individuals jointly won was 1973, with three winners for The Sting. The most joint winners was five, for Shakespeare in Love in 1998. After this the Academy imposed a limit of three nominated producers per film; however this may be exceeded in "a rare and extraordinary circumstance", such as in 2008 when Anthony Minghella and Sydney Pollack were posthumously included among four nominees for The Reader.

Category Number Producer
Most nominations, pre-1951, company 41 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Most wins, pre-1951, company 6 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Most nominations, pre-1951, person 16 Hal B. Wallis
Most wins, pre-1951, person 3 Darryl F. Zanuck
Most nominations, post-1951, person 6 Kathleen Kennedy, Stanley Kramer, Steven Spielberg
Most wins, post-1951, person 3 Sam Spiegel, Saul Zaentz
Most nominations, overall, person 19 Hal B. Wallis
Most wins, overall, person 3 Sam Spiegel, Saul Zaentz, Darryl F. Zanuck


Category Film Length
Longest Winner Gone with the Wind 3 hours 54 minutes
Longest Nominee Cleopatra 4 hours 2 minutes
Shortest Winner Marty 1 hour 31 minutes
Shortest Nominee She Done Him Wrong 1 hour 6 minutes


See also



References



External links




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