February 16, 2018

The Best Original Story Oscar was given as an award until 1956, where it was combined into the Best Original Screenplay award.

Manhattan Melodrama


Oscar Nominations

Best Original Story-Arthur Caesar

7th Academy Awards® (1935) ~ Arthur Caesar ~ (1892 – 1953) won an Oscar® for Best Writing - Original Story for "Manhattan Melodrama" (1934) (Won 1 Oscar)

The movie that Dillinger saw before he was gunned down.  Also, the first of fifteen films pairing William Powell and Myrna Loy.

One Way Passage


Oscar Winner

Best Original Story-Robert Lord

He’s headed for death row and she’s dying from a bad heart.  What an idea for a love story.

A Guy Named Joe


Oscar Nominations

Best Original Story-David Boehm and Chandler Sprague

A pilot dies and becomes the guardian angel of another pilot who winds up wooing the angel’s left-behind fiancee.  Van Johnson’s breakthrough film.

My Favorite Wife


Oscar Nominations

Best Original Story-Leo McCarey, Samuel Spewack, and Bella Spewack

Image result for samuel spewack

Best Original Score-Roy Webb

Best B&W Art DirectionVan Nest Polglase and Mark-Lee Kirk

Widower declares missing wife dead and re-marries.  The first wife returns.  Oops!

Mystery Street


Oscar Nomination

Best Original Story-Leonard Spigelgass

Leonard Spigelgass Net Worth

CSI: 1950s edition.

White Heat


Oscar Nomination

Best Original Story-Virginia Kellogg


Cody Jarrett tries to make it to the top of the world.  Seriously, only ONE Oscar nod?!!

Action in the North Atlantic


Oscar Nomination

Best Original Story-Guy Gilpatric

The Merchant Marines fight in WWII.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington


Oscar Winner

Best Original Story-Lewis R. Foster

Lewis R. Foster

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (Frank Capra)

Best Director (Frank Capra)

Best ActorJames Stewart as Jefferson “Jeff” Smith

Best Supporting ActorHarry Carey and Claude Rains as President of the Senate and Senator Joseph “Joe” Harrison Paine

Best ScreenplaySidney Buchman

Best ScoreDimitri Tiomkin

Best Art Direction-Lionel Banks

Best Film Editing-Gene Havlick and Al Clark

Best Sound RecordingJohn LivadaryJohn Livadary

We need a Jeff Smith today.

The Champ


Oscar Winner

Best Original Story-Frances Marion

Frances Marion

Best ActorWallace Beery as Andy “Champ” Purcell

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (King Vidor)

Best Director (King Vidor)

Wallace Beery tied with Fredric March for the Best Actor trophy.  The only Best Actor tie to date.

A Star is Born


Oscar Winner

Best Original Story-William A. Wellman and Robert Carson

William Wellman

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (David O. Selznick)

Best Director (William Wellman)

Best ActorFredric March as Norman Maine

Best ActressJanet Gaynor as Esther Blodgett/Vicki Lester

Best AdaptationAlan Campbell, Robert Carson, and Dorothy Parker

Best Assistant Director-Eric G. Stacey

An actress’ career explodes while her husband/mentor’s fades.

Boys Town


Oscar Winner

Best Original Story-Eleanore Griffin and Dore Schary

 Dore Schary

Best ActorSpencer Tracy as Father Edward Flanagan

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (John W. Considine, Jr.)

Best Director (Norman Taurog)

Best Screenplay-John Meehan and Dore Schary

A priest opens a orphanage for wayward boys.  Still in operation today.

Vacation From Marriage


Oscar Winner

Best Original Story-Clemence Dane

Clemence Dane 01.jpg

An unhappily married couple find themselves reenergized by WWII and flings with others.


February 2, 2018

The Best Original Score was first awarded in 1935.  The category was originally called Best Scoring and was a mix of original scores and adaptations of pre-existing material.  Later the category was split into Best Music Score of a Dramatic Picture and Best Scoring of a Musical Picture.  There are so many name changes I can hardly keep up!

Our Town (1940-6am/5am c)

Oscar Nominations

 Aaron Copland

Best ScoringAaron Copland

Best Picture (Sol Lesser)

Best ActressMartha Scott as Emily Webb

Best SoundThomas T. Moulton

Best Art Direction-Lewis J. Rachmil


An adaptation of Thorton Wilder’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play about small-town life in the early 20th century.  Isn’t it weird that Aaron Copland was nominated for Score and Scoring?

This is the Army (1943-7:30am/6:30am c)

Oscar Winner

Best Scoring of a Musical PictureRay Heindorf

Oscar Nomination

Best Sound RecordingNathan Levinson

Best Art Direction, Color-John Hughes (Art Direction), Lt. John Koenig (Art Direction); George J. Hopkins (Set Decoration)

The musical was sung and danced by real American soldiers.  The movie was by Warner Bros. by special arrangement by the War Department to boost morale.

The Old Man and the Sea

(1958-9:45am/8:45am c)

Oscar Winner

Musical Score of a Dramatic or Comedy PictureDimitri Tiomkin

Oscar Nominations

Best ActorSpencer Tracy as The Old Man

Best Cinematography, ColorJames Wong Howe

Spencer Tracy’s sixth nomination for Best Actor.

A Star is Born (1954-11:15am/10:15am c)

Oscar Nominations

Scoring of a Musical PictureRay Heindorf

Best Actress-Judy Garland as Esther Blodgett/Vicki Lester

Best SongThe Man That Got Away” by Harold Arlen (music) and Ira Gershwin (lyrics)

Best Art Direction, Color-Malcolm Bert (Art Direction), Gene Allen (Art Direction), Irene Sharaff (Art Direction); George James Hopkins (Set Decoration)

Best Costume Design, ColorJean Louis, Mary Ann Nyberg, and Irene Sharaff

The magnum opus of Judy Garland’s career.  She only lost the Best Actress award for Grace Kelly by six votes.

On the Town (1949-2:15pm/1:15pm c)

Oscar Winner

Best Scoring of a Musical PictureRoger Edens and Lennie Hayton

The first musical to be shot on location.  Three sailors find adventure and love during a 24-hour furlough in New York.


Annie Get Your Gun (1950-4pm/3pm c)

Oscar Winner

Best Scoring of a Musical PictureAdolph Deutsch and Roger Edens

Oscar Nominations

Best Art Direction, ColorCedric Gibbons (Art Direction) and Paul Groesse (Art Direction); Edwin B. Willis (Set Direction) and Richard A. Pefferle (Set Direction)

Best Film EditingJames E. Newcom

Best Cinematography, ColorCharles Rosher

Boy, what a troubled production!  First, Judy Garland was fired and replaced by Betty Hutton.  Then leading man Howard Keel broke his leg.  Then, Frank Morgan, who was the first choice to play Buffalo Bill, died.  He was replaced by Louis Calhern.  Then director George Sidney was replaced by George Walters, who found out he was the new director in a gossip column!

Now, Voyager (1942-6pm/5pm c)

Oscar Winner

Best Music Score of a Dramatic or Comedy PictureMax Steiner

Oscar Nominations

Best ActressBette Davis as Charlotte Vale

Best Supporting ActressGladys Cooper as Mrs. Windle Vale

I’m surprised this movie only received three Oscar nominations, many considered this to be Bette’s best performance.  This was her fifth consecutive Best Actress nomination.

Limelight (1952-8pm/7pm c)

Oscar Winner

Best Original Score (Dramatic)Charles Chaplin, Raymond Rasch, and Larry Russell

This film was nominated and won an Oscar 20 years after it was made.  You see, the movie was never played in a Los Angeles cinema until 1972 which made it eligible for Oscar consideration.

Fiddler on the Roof


Oscar Winners

Best Original Song and Adaptation ScoreJohn Williams

Best Sound-David Hildyard and Gordon McCallum

Best CinematographyOswald Morris

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (Norman Jewison)

Best DirectorNorman Jewison

Best ActorChaim Topol as Tevye

Best Supporting ActorLeonard Frey as Motel Kamzoil

Best Art DirectionRobert Boyle (Art Direction) and Michael Stringer (Art Direction); Peter Lamont (Set Direction)

Producer/director was brought into the production because the executives thought he was Jewish because his last name was Jewison.  He has gotten this all of his life.

Yankee Doodle Dandy

(1942-1:45am/12:45am c)

Oscar Winners

Scoring of a Musical PictureRay Heindorf and Heinz Roemheld

Best ActorJames Cagney as George M. Cohan

Best SoundNathan Levinson

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (Jack Warner, Hal B. Wallis, and William Cagney)

Best Supporting ActorWalter Huston as Jerry Cohan

Best Original Motion Picture StoryRobert Buckner

Best Film Editing-George Amy

What is this?  Ray Heindorf day?  This is the third movie that he conducted today!  Also, when George Cohan saw the rough cut of the movie, he said, “It was a good movie.  Who was it about?”  The movie had deviated very far from the real Cohan.

Cover Girl (1944-4am/3am)

Oscar Winner

Scoring of a Musical PictureMorris Stoloff & Carmen Dragon

Oscar Nominations

Best Song-“Long Ago and Far Away” by Jerome Kern (music) and Ira Gershwin (lyrics)

Best Art Direction, Color-Lionel Banks (Art Direction) and Cary Odell (Art Direction); Fay Babcock (Interior Decoration)

Best Cinematography, ColorRudolph Mate and Allen M. Davey

Rita Hayworth married Orson Welles during production.  Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen began their fruitful collaboration during this film.

August 28, 2017

The man associated with the gangster film is the SUTS star of the day.  All films I recommend are on TCM on Demand or the WATCH TCM app.

Mariah’s Picks

White Heat (1949)

Top 100 Movie Quotes of All Time white heat top of the world made it ma GIF

March 2, 2017

Wait Until Dark (1967)

Who would terrorize poor, blind, Audrey Hepburn?

Waterloo Bridge (1940)

The personal favorite film of leads Vivien Leigh and Robert Taylor.

West Side Story (1961)

One of the few films to have two Best Directors.

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)

Watch this movie before FX’s Feud premieres on Sunday night.

White Heat (1949)

If you only can see a little bit of this movie, watch this scene.

January 3, 2017

Coming to TCM in January…



Star of the Month: Jane Wyman (Thursdays in January)


The Oscar-winning actress, who had a 57-year career in film and television, is the Star of the Month for January, and would have been 100 years old on January 5.  So sit back and watch 45 of her films, including here Oscar-winning performance in 1948’s Johnny Belinda (airing January 12).

TCM Spotlight: Stars Behind Bars (Tuesdays in January)


TCM presents 31 films featuring some of Hollywood’s biggest stars in the clinker.  Three movies are TCM premieres: 1954’s Riot in Cell Block 11, 1980’s Brubaker, and 1985’s Doin’ Time. The film above will air at midnight January 11.

Guest Programmer: Damian Chazzelle (January 18)


The probable Oscar nominee for the musical La La Land presents four films to the TCM audience: the musicals It’s Always Fair Weather, Meet Me in St. Louis, and The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, and the non-musical silent City Lights.

Next month is the annual 31 Days of Oscar festival!

August 19, 2016


TCM salutes the dancer with 12 films, one of which is a TCM premiere that has to be seen to be believed.  I’ve got my DVR ready to go!  Here are my picks.

Gold Diggers of 1933


Ruby is the ingenue of a group of aspiring actresses.  It was made during the height of the Great Depression and has an unforgettable final number “Remember My Forgotten Man.”

42nd Street (1933)


Ruby is a newcomer to Broadway who must go on and star in the show after the leading lady (Bebe Daniels) breaks her ankle the night before the opening.  Choreography by the legendary Busby Berkely.

Footlight Parade (1933)


Ruby dances with James Cagney.

The Phynx (1970)


I don’t know what this movie is all about, but it sounds like one hell of a ride.