1928-1929. The second year of the Oscars. This is the only year that didn’t have any official nominees. That is, people were just given ballots and voted, and whoever won, won. And I think the nominees that were listed were based off of who got the most votes. There are also a couple of issues to deal with for this year, but let’s recap first before we get into that. There were no Supporting categories, so it’ll be quick.
The Broadway Melody wins Best Picture. The first talkie to win, and the first musical to win. Of the nominated films, it was the one that did the most. That is, it used sound to its full effect, and, the industry being in the state that it was, that’s all it took to win. Obviously it wasn’t a particularly strong winner, but it makes sense. They needed to have a sound film win. Best Actress this year was Mary Pickford for Coquette, which — she’s Mary Pickford. She was the biggest female star in the business. Of course they’d give her an Oscar. So that’s fine. And Best Director was Frank Lloyd for The Divine Lady, which seems like a weak choice.
Okay, so now we’re at this category. The problem that gets posed with this one is — The Patriot is a lost film. All we have are some clips from a trailer and stuff that survived. So we have to go in blind on that. That makes it slightly tougher, since — none of the nominees seemed particularly Best Actor-worthy. So, this is one of those where concessions need to be made.
BEST ACTOR – 1928-1929
And the nominees were…
George Bancroft, Thunderbolt
Warner Baxter, In Old Arizona
Chester Morris, Alibi
Paul Muni, The Valiant
Lewis Stone, The Patriot (more…)