Congratulations, Birdman! Here Are Four Other Oscar-Winning Theater-Centric Films

first_img 3. All About Eve (1950) There’s more backstabbing understudy drama than Smash wishes it ever had. Of its 14 nominations, (the most any film has ever received, tied with Titanic) four were for its actresses; Bette Davis and Anne Baxter appropriately competed for Leading Role, while Celeste Holm and Thelma Ritter received nods in Supporting. Though the four lost to Judy Holliday and Josephine Hull, the film did receive six Oscars—the most of any film that year. And Davis still got to be flawless while deliving this stellar line. 4. Shakespeare in Love (1998) It’s the most classic love story: Bard meets girl. Girl’s disguised as a boy. Bard writes a different classic love story. The romantic comedy was nominated for 13 categories and won in seven. In addition to Best Picture, the film’s leading lady Gwyneth Paltrow took home an award, as well as Tony and Olivier winner Judi Dench (who is not in the film nearly enough, but has far and away the best line) for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth. The acclaimed stage production continues to play the West End and has its eyes set for the Great White Way for the 2015-16 season. 2. The Great Ziegfeld (1936) The first biopic to take home the top prize at the Oscars explored the life of Florenz Ziegfeld Jr., played here by William Powell. The film’s a rare chance to see so many early 20th century stars, including Ray Bolger, Harriet Hoctor and, of course, Fanny Brice, play fictionalized versions of themselves. Sure, that teary telephone scene (complete with dramatic collapse seconds after hanging up) is one of the most recognizable, but just look at those MGM production numbers…with dogs! Your move, Bill Berloni. View Commentscenter_img 1. The Broadway Melody (1929) The second film to ever take home a Best Picture Award was an original, lavish musical! How often does that happen now? The flick, which follows the flings of the stars of a new Broadway revue, paved the way for such original musical films as The Great Ziegfeld (see below), Going My Way (1945), An American in Paris (1952) and Gigi (1959). The latter two movies, both directed by Vincente Minnelli, will leap from screen to Broadway this spring. With Birdman’s big win at the 87th Annual Academy Awards, we could help but feel giddy that our beloved Broadway was in the center spotlight during Hollywood’s biggest night. The film captures pretty much the entire theatrical experience, from name-dropping Jujamcyn president Jordan Roth to shouting at critics at The Rum House. While many movie musicals, including Chicago, My Fair Lady, The Sound of Music, West Side Story and Oliver! (the ‘60s frickin’ loved musicals) have won the Oscar for Best Picture, so few films that actually celebrate showbiz or explore the Great White Way have taken home the top honor. Here are the four that Birdman now joins.last_img

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