Greatest Moments in Oscar History
The Oscars are unlike any other awards show. They represent some of the best movies and actors, and the Academy Awards show itself has spawned some memorable moments through the years. Here are just a few of the best.
May 16 was the date of the very first Academy Awards show, which makes it one of the greatest moments in the Oscars history. The awards presentation only lasted five minutes, and Douglas Fairbanks was the presenter for all of the awards.
This year marked the first standing ovation for the acceptance of an award in the show’s history. Director D.W. Griffith received a Special Academy Award. He had created many silent films and was a legend in the business.
10 years after the awards show began saw the first black person nominated and the first to win an award. Hattie MacDaniel won Best Supporting Actress for her role in Gone With the Wind. That occasion was historical not only for the Academy, but for the African American culture as a whole.
This was the year the Academy Awards debuted on television. It had previously been broadcast on radio, but after that year it became a staple on television. Today, over a billion people tune in to see what will happen.
This was the year that a black man won best actor. Sidney Poitier took the award for his role in Lilies in the Field, at a time when there was intense friction between the races. It set a precedent for the future and inspired many other leading men and women of color.
This year would be the final appearance for legend John Wayne at the Oscars. He presented the award for Best Picture. He was battling cancer and appeared frail on stage. At the end of the show, several actors joined him on stage as a tribute to his career. It would be two months before he passed away.
Actors from five countries joined via satellite to sing the song “Over the Rainbow,” led by Diana Ross. It showed that the world could be united for one brief moment.
This year marked the 70th anniversary of the Oscars, and in tribute to the historic moment, 70 people stood on stage at one time. They included former leading or supporting actor winners, from recent winners to some of the earliest. As each one was introduced, footage was played of the film that they won for, and the moment when they accepted their award on stage.
This year marked the first time an African American woman won Best Leading Actress. Halle Berry took the award for Monster’s Ball, and it was obvious at the time that it was a historic moment.
Whether you love them or hate them, most people cannot say they ignore the Oscars. It is a night when the biggest names in Hollywood get together and you just never know what will happen. That is where the magic begins.