Hollywood's Best: The 50s

Oscar Winners and Nominees for Writing

"Everyone criticizes the movies.
Yet everyone seems to continue to go to them."
-- James M. Gillis


Adam's Rib
A woman accused of murdering her husband is defended in court by the wife (Katharine Hepburn) of the prosecutor (Spencer Tracy). Directed by George Cukor. Writing credits: Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin. Cast: Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Judy Holliday, Tom Ewell, David Wayne, Jean Hagen, Hope Emerson.

The African Queen
Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart star in this movie classic about a hard-drinking river trader and a prim missionary. Oscar nominees for Screenplay were James Agee and John Huston.

All About Eve
Youthful actress Eve (Anne Baxter) flatters a star (Bette Davis) and takes her place on Broadway. Also starring George Sanders. The Screenplay Oscar went to Joseph L. Mankiewicz.

Anatomy of a Murder
James Stewart, a Michigan attorney, and his colleague defend an Army officer for murdering his wife's rapist. Directed by Otto Preminger. Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium Oscar nomination went to Wendell Mayes.

The Asphalt Jungle
Sterling Hayden plays an aging criminal intent on gathering together his old pals for one last heist. Adapted from the W. R. Burnett novel. Screenplay Oscar nominees were Ben Maddow and John Huston.

Bad Day at Black Rock
Spencer Tracy stars as a man who comes to the town of Black Rock and causes the townsfolk to be consumed with fear, suspicion, and murder. Nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay was Millard Kaufman.

Ben-Hur
Charlton Heston plays a peace-loving prince of Judea who leads his nation against the wrath of the Romans. Karl Tunberg was nominated for an Oscar for Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium.

Broken Arrow
James Stewart stars as a frontiersman with an Indian wife who meets opposition when he defends the rights of the Apaches. With Jeff Chandler and Debra Paget. Albert Maltz was nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay.

The Country Girl
Adapted from a play by Clifford Odets, this is a story of a broken-down actor (Bing Crosby) who leans on his wife (Grace Kelly). William Holden plays a Broadway director. George Seaton won an Oscar for his screenplay.

The Greatest Show on Earth
A big circus movie directed by Cecil B. De Mille. Starring Betty Hutton, James Stewart, Cornel Wilde, and many others. The Oscar winners for Motion Picture Story were Fredric M. Frank, Theodore St. John, and Frank Cavett.

The Gunfighter
Gregory Peck gives a great performance of a retired gunslinger with a bloody reputation who tries in vain to overcome his past. With Helen Westcott and Karl Malden. William Bowers and Andre De Toth were nominated for an Oscar for Motion Picture Story.

Pat and Mike
Tracy is a sports promoter and Hepburn is an all-around athlete. Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin were nominated for an Oscar for Story and Screenplay.

Peyton Place
From Grace Metalious' steamy novel, this film is about small-town morals and stars Lana Turner. Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium Oscar nominee was John Michael Hayes.

The Quiet Man
John Wayne plays an American prizefighter who returns to Ireland and courts Maureen O'Hara. From Maurice Walsh's short story "Green Rushes." Frank S. Nugent was an Oscar nominee for his screenplay.

Roman Holiday
Audrey Hepburn plays a princess on a tour of Rome who meets dashing Gregory Peck, an American reporter. Ian McLellan Hunter and Dalton Trumbo won an Oscar for Motion Picture Story.

A Streetcar Named Desire
Vivien Leigh as Blanche DuBois and Marlon Brando as Stanley Kowalski. Tennessee Williams was nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay.

Sunset Boulevard
William Holden plays a poor screenwriter who is enthralled by a faded silent film star (Gloria Swanson). Story and Screenplay Oscar winners were Charles Brackett, Billy Wilder, and D.M. Marshman Jr.

Titanic
Unforgettable experience; drama of the 1912 disaster where many celebrities lost their lives in frigid Atlantic waters. Starring Clifton Webb and Barbara Stanwyck. The Oscar winners for Story and Screenplay were Charles Brackett, Walter Reisch, and Richard L. Breen.


A Front Row Seat

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