11th Academy Awards


The 11th Academy Awards were held on February 23, 1939, at the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles, California.[1] It was the first Academy Awards show without any official host. This was also the first ceremony in which a foreign language film (Jean Renoir's Grand Illusion) was nominated for Best Picture.

11th Academy Awards
DateFebruary 23, 1939
SiteBiltmore Hotel
Best PictureYou Can't Take It with You
Most awardsThe Adventures of Robin Hood (3)
Most nominationsYou Can't Take it with You (7)

Frank Capra became the first person to win three Best Director awards, to be followed by John Ford (who would go on to win four) and William Wyler.

This was the first of only two times in Oscar history that three of the four acting awards were won by repeat winners; only Fay Bainter was a first-time award winner. The only other time that this happened was at the 67th Academy Awards in 1994. Fay Bainter also was the first actress in the history of the Oscars to receive two acting nominations in the same year. In addition, Spencer Tracy became the first of only two lead actors to win two years in a row; the other one, Tom Hanks, also did so in 1994. George Bernard Shaw's screenplay win would make him the only person to win both a Nobel Prize and an Academy Award until Bob Dylan received the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2001 and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2016.

Radio coverage was banned at the 1939 ceremony. A reporter, George Fischer from Mutual Radio Network, KHJ, Los Angeles, which had been reporting from the Academy Awards since 1930, locked himself into a booth and was able to broadcast for about 12-minutes before security guards broke down the door. Partial radio coverage was permitted again at the 1942 ceremony.[2]


Frank Capra; Best Picture and Best Director winner
Spencer Tracy; Best Actor winner
Bette Davis; Best Actress winner
Walter Brennan; Best Supporting Actor winner
Fay Bainter; Best Supporting Actress winner
George Bernard Shaw; Best Screenplay co-winner
Erich Wolfgang Korngold; Best Original Score winner
Walt Disney; Honorary Academy Award recipient
Harry Warner; Honorary Academy Award recipient
Deanna Durbin; Juvenile Academy Award recipient
Mickey Rooney; Juvenile Academy Award recipient

Nominees were announced on February 5, 1939. Winners are listed first and highlighted in boldface.

Academy Honorary AwardsEdit

Irving G. Thalberg Memorial AwardEdit

Academy Juvenile AwardsEdit

Academy Juvenile Awards were presented to:

  • Deanna Durbin and Mickey Rooney – "for their significant contribution in bringing to the screen the spirit and personification of youth, and as juvenile players setting a high standard of ability and achievement". (Shared; miniature statuette)

Multiple nominations and awardsEdit

In memoriamEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "The 11th Academy Awards (1939) Nominees and Winners". Oscars.org (Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences). Archived from the original on July 6, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-10.
  2. ^ Dunning, John (1998). On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio (Revised ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. pp. 4–5. ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3. Retrieved 2019-09-10.

External linksEdit

  • Official Website of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences