erik lundegaard

Thursday October 14, 2021

Is the Best Story a Gangster Story? In the Early Days of Oscar, Yes

I came across this recently on IMDb and did a double-take. Oscar certainly seemed to like early Cagney:

Three of his first six movies got nom'ed for Best Original Story? Wow. But it turns out, original story was loaded with gangster movies in the early daysó“Underworld” (1927) and “Manhattan Melodrama” (1934) even won. And among Cagney movies, it's the most commonly honored, and in six of the eight he plays a gangster:

  • 8: Original Story: “The Doorway to Hell,” “The Public Enemy,” “Smart Money,” “G-Men,” “Angels with Dirty Faces,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “White Heat,”†“Love Me or Leave Me”
  • 7: Music/Score: “Something to Sing About,” “The Strawberry Blonde,”†“Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Johnny Come Lately,” “West Point Story,”†“Love Me or Leave Me,”†“Ragtime”
  • 4: Picture: “Here Comes the Navy,” “A Midsummer Night's Dream,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Mister Roberts”
  • 4: Cinematography: “A Midsummer Night's Dream,” “Captains of the Clouds,” “One, Two, Three,”†“Ragtime”
  • 4: Supporting Actor:†“Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Come Fill the Cup,” “Mister Roberts,” “Ragtime”
  • 3: Actor: “Angels with Dirty Faces,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Love Me or Leave Me”
  • 3: Art Direction:†“Captains of the Clouds,” “Blood on the Sun,”†“Ragtime”
  • 3: Sound: “Yankee Doodle Dandy,”†“Love Me or Leave Me,” “Mister Roberts”
  • 3: Screenplay:†“Love Me or Leave Me,” “Seven Little Foys,” “Man of a Thousand Faces”†
  • 2: Editing:†“A Midsummer Night's Dream,”†“Yankee Doodle Dandy”
  • 2: Director: “Angels with Dirty Faces,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy”†
  • 2: Song:†“Love Me or Leave Me,”†“Ragtime”
  • 1: Assistant Director: “A Midsummer Night's Dream,”†
  • 1: Supporting Actress:†“Ragtime”
  • 1: Costume Design:†“Ragtime”

Worst among the nominations? Picture for “A Midsummer Night's Dream” or screenplay for “Man of a Thousand Faces.” Most overlooked? What should've been nominated? Cagney for “Public Enemy” and Henry Fonda for “Mister Roberts.”†

Posted at 12:30 PM on Thursday October 14, 2021 in category Movies  
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Twitter: @ErikLundegaard

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