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.



The Best Original Screenplay Oscar was first given out in 1940 as a separate writing award from the Best Original Story Oscar (which select films will air on Day 16).  In 1957, the Story and Screenplay awards were combined to honor only the screenplay.

Interrupted Melody


Oscar Winner

Best Story and ScreenplayWilliam Ludwig and Sonya Levin

Oscar Nomination

Best ActressEleanor Parker as Marjorie Lawrence

Best Costume Design, ColorHelen Rose

The true story of opera star Marjorie Lawrence who career was cut short by polio, then she makes a comeback.

The Naked Spur


Oscar Nomination

Best Screenplay-Sam Rolfe and Harold Jack Bloom

An embittered bounty hunter is the victim of mind games by the man who he has captured.

It’s Always Fair Weather


Oscar Nominations

Best Story and Screenplay-Betty Comden and Adolph Green

Best Scoring of a Musical PictureAndre Previn

This movie was first pitched as a sequel to On the Town.



Oscar Winner

Best Screenplay-Charles Brackett, Walter Reisch, and Richard Breen

Oscar Nomination

Best B&W Art DirectionLyle Wheeler and Maurice Ransford (Art Direction); Stuart Reiss (Set Decoration)

NOT the Leo/Kate movie!

Designing Woman


Oscar Winner

Best Original Screenplay-George Wells

A sportswriter and a fashion designer impulsively marry after a whirlwind romance.

The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer


Oscar Winner

Best Original Screenplay-Sidney Sheldon

An artist is ordered to date a judge’s teenage sister in order to get rid of her crush on him.

Woman of the Year


Oscar Winner

Best Original Screenplay-Ring Lardner, Jr. and Michael Kanin

Oscar Nomination

Best ActressKatharine Hepburn as Tess Harding Craig

The movie where Kate met Spence.

Splendor in the Grass


Oscar Winner

Best Story and Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen-William Inge

Oscar Nomination

Best ActressNatalie Wood as Wilma Dean “Deanie” Loomis

A lesson to be learned-sexual repression: BAD.

Pillow Talk


Oscar Winner

Best Story and Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen-Russell Rouse, Clarence Greene, Stanley Shapiro, and Maurice Richlin

Oscar Nominations

Best Actress-Doris Day as Jan Morrow

Best Supporting ActressThelma Ritter as Alma

Best Music Score of a Dramatic or Comedy PictureFrank DeVol

Best Art Direction, Color-Richard H. Riedel (posthumous-Art Direction); Russell A. Gausman and Ruby R. Levitt (Set Decoration)

The first of the Doris Day-Rock Hudson comedies.  Would you believe that this was Day’s only Oscar nomination?!

The Candidate


Oscar Winner

Best Screenplay Based on Factual Material or Material Not Previously Produced or Published-Jeremy Larner

Oscar Nomination

Best SoundGene Cantamessa and Richard Portman

Why can’t they say Best Original Screenplay?!

The Producers


Oscar Winner

Best Story and Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen-Mel Brooks

Oscar Nomination

Best Supporting ActorGene Wilder as Leo Bloom

A failing producer and an accountant plot to buy and produce a guaranteed flop, then pocket all the investor’s money.  Then play becomes a hit.

Citizen Kane


Oscar Winner

Best Original Screenplay-Herman J. Mankiewicz and Orson Welles

Oscar Nominations

Best Picture (Orson Welles)

Best Director (Orson Welles)

Best ActorOrson Welles as Charles Foster Kane

Best Music Score of a Dramatic PictureBernard Hermann

Best Sound Recording-John Aalberg

Best B&W Art Direction-Perry Ferguson and Van Nest Polgase (Art Direction); Al Fields and Darrell Silvera

Best B&W CinematographyGregg Toland

Best Film EditingRobert Wise

There’s a bit of controversy whether Welles did any work on the screenplay.  He later confessed that he was forced to put his name on the screenplay



Here’s what coming to TCM this November.


Star of the Month: James Stewart (Wednesdays in November)

TCM celebrates the 5-time Oscar-nominated actor with 57 films airing all day Wednesday this month.  One of my favorites.

Mariah’s Picks

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (November 1 @ 9:45pm/8:45pm c)

Besides George Bailey, Jefferson Smith is Jim’s other iconic role.

Destry Rides Again (November 2 @ 12:15am/November 1 @ 11:15pm)

Jimmy is the new sheriff in town who doesn’t like guns and drinks milk.

After the Thin Man (November 2 @ 2am/1am c)

Jimmy’s first significant role is this sequel to The Thin Man.

Vivacious Lady (November 2 @ 4am/3am c)

Jimmy marries Ginger Rogers (who he dated in real life) after a whirlwind courtship.  Pity he forgot to tell his fiancee back home!

The Shop Around the Corner (November 8 @ 8pm/7pm c)

This film is airs frequently during the holidays.  Jimmy and Margaret Sullivan are bickering co-workers at a department store who are pen pals who don’t know each other.

The Mortal Storm (November 8 @ 10pm/9pm c)

Jim who is a pacifist and Margaret Sullivan who is half-Jewish, watch as their friends and family succumb to Nazi hysteria.

The Philadelphia Story (November 9 @ midnight/November 8 @ 11pm c)

The movie Jimmy won the Best Actor Oscar for.  People now think it was a consolation prize for not winning the previous year.  Jimmy voted for best bud Henry Fonda-who didn’t receive another Best Actor nomination for 40 years!

Vertigo (November 15 @ 8pm/7pm c)

Sights & Sound named this movie the greatest film of all time in 2012, knocking off Citizen Kane after 50 years!

Anatomy of a Murder (November 15 @10:30pm/9:30pm c)

Jimmy received the last of his five Oscar nominations for his portrayal of a small-town lawyer who is defending a soldier who killed the man who raped his wife.

Harvey (November 22 @ 10:15pm/9:15pm c)

Jimmy is the adorable Elwood P. Dowd who’s best friend is a seven-foot invisible rabbit named Harvey.

Rear Window (November 23 @ 2:15am/1:15am c)

Jimmy gets in trouble for spying on his neighbors.

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (November 29 @ 5:45pm/4:45pm c)

“When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.”  Also, try to watch fify-something Jimmy play a twenty-something.

Winchester ’73 (November 29 @8pm/7pm c)

This movie is historical in a business sense.  Universal couldn’t afford to pay Jimmy’s usual salary so his agent struck a deal where Jimmy would work for scale and ten percent of the film’s profits.  Jimmy made over half a million dollars on this one film.

The Naked Spur (November 30 @ 1:30am/12:30am c)

Jimmy is a bitter bounty hunter looking to turn in outlaw Robert Ryan.

Noir Alley (Sunday Mornings at 10am/9am c)

Welcome to Noirvember, everybody!  Noir Alley just introduced a new VR experience (note: you don’t have to have VR) Noir Alley 360° .  A new episode will debut every Sunday.

Split Second (November 5)

A killer hides in a ghost town that is a nuclear test site.

The Window (1949-November 12)

Young Tommy has told too many tall tales, so when he witnesses his neighbors commit a murder, no one believes him.  Bobby Driscoll won a special juvenile Oscar for his performance.

Night and the City (November 19)

An American hustler living in London gets involved in the dark world of wrestling.

Strangers on a Train (November 26)

A man makes the mistake of striking up a conversation with a stranger.

TCM Spotlight: The Hollywood Blacklist (Mondays & Tuesdays in November)

On the eve of the 70th anniversary that changed Hollywood forever, TCM presents every Monday and Tuesday evening films focusing on individuals who were affected by the Hollywood Blacklist, some of whom who careers were completely destroyed and a few who died because of the all the drama and heartache. The programming is divided into five categories: Before the Blacklist (The Hollywood Ten); Before the Blacklist (Other blacklisted writers & directors); Before the Blacklist (Actors); During the Blacklist (Working abroad & pseudonyms); and After the Blacklist (Comebacks). It all starts November 6 with a 1976 documentary called Hollywood on Trial narrated by John Huston.

Mariah’s Picks

Our Vines Have Tender Grapes (Dalton Trumbo) (November 6 @ 10pm/9pm c)

This wholesome family drama was the last script by Trumbo before he was blacklisted and started using pseudonyms in order to keep working.  Star Edward G. Robinson, who enjoyed the change of pace from his crime films, was later “graylisted” which while he was not blacklisted from working in Hollywood, his output in the first half of the 1950s was B-film work.

Crossfire (Adrian Scott & Edward Dmytryk) (November 7 @ 2am/1am c)

This was the first B-movie to receive a Best Picture nomination.  Actor Robert Ryan also received a nomination for Best Supporting Actor (his only one!).

Woman of the Year (Ring Lardner, Jr.) (November 8 @12:15am/November 7 @ 11:15pm)

When Hepburn met Tracy.  The first of nine pairings.

Force of Evil (Abraham Polonsky) (November 13@ 8pm/7pm c)

An attorney tries to protect his big brother from the mob.

The Naked City (Jules Dassin) (November 14 @ 2am/1am c)

A veteran cop and his new partner investigate the murder of a young model.  Shot entirely in New York City.

He Ran All the Way (John Garfield & Norman Lloyd) (November 14 @ 8pm/7pm c)

This was Garfield’s last film.  He died of a heart attack on May 21, 1952, partially due to the immense stress of being blacklisted.  Lloyd was more fortunate thanks to Alfred Hitchcock, who employed him on TV series, Alfred Hitchcock Presents.  Lloyd will be 103 on Wednesday, November 8.

Scarface (Karen Morley) (November 15 @midnight/November 14 @ 11pm c)

Before Pacino, there was Muni.  He was just as sadistic.

A Streetcar Named Desire (Kim Hunter) (November 15 @ 3:45am/2:45am c)

Hunter won Best Supporting Actress.

Gun Crazy (Morris Carnovsky) (November 15 @ 8:15am/7:15am c)

A couple goes on a bank-robbing spree.

Rififi (Jules Dassin) (November 21 @ 2am/1am c)

Dassing moved to Europe to continue making movies.  This is the first one he was able to make.

The Bridge on the River Kwai (Michael Wilson & Carl Foreman-Pierre Bouelle solely credited until 1985) (November 21 @ 10:30pm/9:30pm c)

A British colonel and his men build a bridge while they are imprisoned by the Japanese during WWII.  Wilson and Foreman wrote the screenplay in secret and didn’t receive credit until 1985 after both were deceased.

Exodus (Dalton Trumbo) (November 27 @ 8pm/7pm c)

With this film and Spartacus, Trumbo was able to take back his name.

The Front (Zero Mostel & Martin Ritt) (November 28 @ 8pm/7pm c)

Woody Allen plays a clerk who becomes a “front” for blacklisted writers.  Mostel co-stars as an actor who struggles under the pressure from HUAC.

Veterans Day (November 11 & 12)

TCM salutes the brave men and women who have served our country.  Host Ben Mankiewicz will speak with eight veterans who chose a film that has meant something to them.

Mariah’s Picks

The Best Years of Our Lives (November 11 @ 5pm/4pm c)

Three servicemen at different stages in their lives share a flight back home and become intertwined in each other’s dramas.  The Best Picture winner of 1946.

Casablanca (November 12 @ 3:45pm/2:45pm c)

Fathom Events will be showing this movie as part of their TCM Big Screen Classics series.  It will air the 12th and 15th of this month.

Unseen Cinema: Early American Avant-Garde Film (November 5)

TCM salutes the avant-garde and experimental films during the years of 1894-1941.  It includes a 1941 production of Peer Gynt starring a 17-year-old Charlton Heston.

Guest Programmer: Matthew Modine (November 24)

This month’s Guest Programmer is Matthew Modine, who is now starring in Stranger Things (note to self: binge-watch Stranger Things)  Mr. Modine has chosen 1967’s The Dirty Dozen and Cool Hand Luke, 1976’s Network, and 1937’s Grand Illusion.


Vertigo (1958)

Watch Jimmy Stewart get really creepy toward Kim Novak in Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece.

Victor/Victoria (1982)

Watch starving actress Julie Andrews disguise herself as a female impersonator and confuse the heck out of James Garner.

Vivacious Lady (1938)

Jimmy Stewart and Ginger Rogers marry after a whirlwind romance.  Now, all Jimmy has to do is tell his parents and fiancée.


The Philadelphia Story (1940)

Katharine Hepburn’s comeback film.  She was labeled “box office poison” in 1938 and decided to buy out her contract at RKO.  Hepburn went to Broadway to do the play The Philadelphia Story.  The play was a smash hit and she bought the film rights with her starring and she could pick the two male leads.  She wanted Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy, but both were unavailable.  Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart were nice consolation prizes.

The Pink Panther (1963)

This movie wasn’t originally centered on Inspector Clouseau, it was going to be a series of films about a famous jewel thief, played by David Niven.  During production, the director Blake Edwards changed his mind and focused the movie on Peter Seller’s character.  Niven wasn’t too happy about that.

A Place in the Sun (1951)

Boy meets girl.  Boy falls in love with girl.  Boy has pregnant girlfriend who wants him to marry her.  What’s a boy to do?

Poltergeist (1982)

Forget the remake.  Watch this instead.


Harvey (1950)

Only Jimmy Stewart could make us believe he could see a six-foot rabbit.

The Heiress (1949)

Spinster Olivia De Havilland is romanced by gold digger Montgomery Clift.  De Havilland won her second Best Actress Oscar.

Hold Back the Dawn (1941)

Surprisingly timely today, a Romanian dancer/gigolo (Boyer) finds out he cannot become a U.S. citizen for five to eight years, so he romances an American teacher (De Havilland) who is in Mexico on a field trip with her students.

How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)

The movie that made Marilyn Monroe a star.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939)

One of the best adaptations of Victor Hugo’s classic novel.  Maureen O’Hara’s American movie debut.