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Oscar history: The 16th Academy Awards (March 2, 1944)

Tonight the 86th Academy Awards will be airing, so I thought it would be interesting to look at the Oscars when it also aired on this date in 1944. It marked the 16th Academy Awards.

So let's look back at the history of this day:

The Date:

Thursday, March 2, 1944.

The Host:

Jack Benny

The Location:

The Oscars were at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

The Presenters:

Donald Crisp, Howard Estabrook, Sidney Franklin, Y. Frank Freeman, Greer Garson, James Hilton, Carole Landis, George Murphy, Rosalind Russell, Mark Sandrich, Dinah Shore, Walter Wanger, Tessa Wright, and Darryl F. Zanuck.

Most Awards:

The most awards of that year went to "The Song of Bernadette."

The Honorary Oscar:

That year the Honorary Oscar went to George Pal. Pal was an animator and film producer. He did a lot of work in the fantasy and sci-fi genre.

Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award:

The Thalberg Memorial Award went to Hal B. Wallis. Wallis was an producer. He produced such films as "Casablanca," "Dark Victory," "Maltese Falcon," and "Sergeant York."

The Winners:

(The source of the winners comes from Oscars.Org)

Best Director:

Michael Curtiz for the movie "Casablanca."

Best Picture:

"Casablanca" won the Best Picture Award.


Paul Lukas for the movie "Watch on the Rhine."

Actor in Supporting Role:

Charles Coburn for the movie "The More the Merrier."


Jennifer Jones for the movie "The Song of Bernadette"

Best Actress in Supporting Role:

Katina Paxinou for the movie "For Whom the Bell Tolls"

Art Direction (B&W):

"The Song of Bernadette"

Art Direction (Color):

Phantom of the Opera"

Cinematography (B&W):

"The Song of Bernadette"

Cinematography (Color):

"Phantom of the Opera"

Documentary (Feature):

"Desert Victory"

Documentary (Short):

"December 7th"

Film Editing:

"Air Force"

Music (Score of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture):

"The Song of Bernadette"

Music (Score of a Musical):

"This Is the Army"

Music (Song):

"You'll Never Know" from "Hello, Frisco, Hello"

Short Subject (Cartoon):

"Yankee Doodle Mouse" (This is a Tom and Jerry Cartoon!)

Short Subject (One-Reel):

Amphibious Fighters"

Short Subject (Two-Reel):

"Heavenly Music"

Sound Recording:

"This Land Is Mine"

Special Effects:

"Crash Dive"

Original Motion Picture Story:

"The Human Comedy"

Original Screenplay:

"Princess O'Rourke"

Adapted Screenplay:


Fun Fact:

For the first time, supporting actors and actresses took home full-size statuettes, instead of smaller-sized awards mounted on a plaque.

So that's the Oscar history that happened on this exact day in 1944. Don't forget to catch the 86th Academy Awards on ABC Tonight!

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