Since today is the birthday of the man who won this award, I figured it would be an optimal time to pick this one.
1939 is widely considered one of the best single years for movies in the history of Hollywood. You’ll understand why when we get to Best Picture, but just looking at the nominees here, you can get a pretty good understanding of why that is.
Best Picture went to Gone With the Wind, in one of the least exciting races and most deserving (if not most deserving) choices of all time. Best Director went to Victor Fleming, who was the director that lasted long enough on the film to receive the nomination. Really it was David O. Selznick’s film, but, we’ll get to the details of Best Director when we come to it. Best Actress went to Vivien Leigh — once again, probably the most deserving choice of all time there. I’m not even going to sugar coat who I’m voting for in these races. Gone With the Wind is in one of my top ten, if not top five, favorite films of all time, and, I think only a fool would argue against the brilliance that is the performance of Scarlett O’Hara. The interest when I go over them will be what else was nominated, because there is a tendency to just see — “Oh, Gone With the Wind,” and move on. There’s some great stuff nominated in the other areas as well. This wasn’t “the golden year for film” for nothing. Oh, yeah, Best Supporting Actor went to Thomas Mitchell for a little film called Stagecoach. Oh, yeah, The Wizard of Oz was up for Best Picture this year too. Just sayin’. (more…)