1959 Academy Awards

Updated September 9, 2022 | Infoplease Staff

The 1959 Academy Awards were presented April 4, 1960 at the RKO Pantages Theatre, Hollywood, Calif.

Best Motion PictureAnatomy of a Murder, Otto Preminger, producer (Columbia)
Ben-Hur, Sam Zimbalist, producer (MGM)
The Diary of Anne Frank, George Stevens, producer (Twentieth Century-Fox)
The Nun's Story, Henry Blanke, producer (Warner Bros.)
Room at the Top, John and James Woolf, producers (Continental)
Best ActorLaurence Harvey, Room at the Top
Charlton Heston, Ben-Hur
Jack Lemmon, Some Like It Hot
Paul Muni, The Last Angry Man
James Stewart, Anatomy of a Murder

Charlton Heston, Ben-Hur
Archive Photos
Best ActressDoris Day, Pillow Talk
Audrey Hepburn, The Nun's Story
Katharine Hepburn, Suddenly, Last Summer
Simone Signoret, Room at the Top
Elizabeth Taylor, Suddenly, Last Summer
Actor in a Supporting RoleHugh Griffith, Ben-Hur
Arthur O'Connell, Anatomy of a Murder
George C. Scott, Anatomy of a Murder
Robert Vaughn, The Young Philadelphians
Ed Wynn, The Diary of Anne Frank
Actress in a Supporting RoleHermione Baddeley, Room at the Top
Susan Kohner, Imitation of Life
Juanita Moore, Imitation of Life
Thelma Ritter, Pillow Talk
Shelley Winters, The Diary of Anne Frank
DirectingJack Clayton, Room at the Top
George Stevens, The Diary of Anne Frank
Billy Wilder, Some Like It Hot
William Wyler, Ben-Hur
Fred Zinnemann, The Nun's Story
Screenplay Based on Material From Another MediumRobert Anderson, The Nun's Story
Wendell Mayes, Anatomy of a Murder
Neil Paterson, Room at the Top
Karl Tunberg, Ben-Hur
Billy Wilder and I. A. L. Diamond, Some Like It Hot
Story and Screenplay Written Directly for the ScreenIngmar Bergman, Wild Strawberries
Ernest Lehman, North by Northwest
Russell Rouse and Clarence Greene, story; Stanley Shapiro and Maurice Richlin, screenplay, Pillow Talk
François Truffaut and Marcel Moussy, The 400 Blows
Black-and-WhiteCharles Lang, Jr., Some Like It Hot
Joseph LaShelle, Career
Sam Leavitt, Anatomy of a Murder
William C. Mellor, The Diary of Anne Frank
Harry Stradling, Sr., The Young Philadelphians
ColorDaniel L. Fapp, The Five Pennies
Lee Garmes, The Big Fisherman
Franz Planer, The Nun's Story
Leon Shamroy, Porgy and Bess
Robert L. Surtees, Ben-Hur
Art Direction
Black-and-WhiteCarl Anderson, art direction; William Kiernan, set decoration, The Last Angry Man
Ted Haworth, art direction; Edward G. Boyle, set decoration, Some Like It Hot
Oliver Messel and William Kellner, art direction; Scot Slimon, set decoration, Suddenly, Last Summer
Hal Pereira and Walter Tyler, art direction; Sam Comer and Arthur Krams, set decoration, Career
Lyle R. Wheeler and George W. Davis, art direction; Walter M. Scott and Stuart A. Reiss, set decoration, The Diary of Anne Frank
ColorJohn DeCuir, art direction; Julia Heron, set decoration, The Big Fisherman
William A. Horning, Robert Boyle and Merrill Pye, art direction; Henry Grace and Frank McKelvy, set decoration, North by Northwest
William A. Horning and Edward Carfagno, art direction; Hugh Hunt, set decoration, Ben-Hur
Richard H. Riedel, art direction; Russell A. Gausman and Ruby R. Levitt, set decoration, Pillow Talk
Lyle R. Wheeler, art direction, Franz Bachelin and Herman A. Blumenthal, set decoration; Walter M. Scott and Joseph Kish, Journey to the Center of the Earth
SoundMGM London Studio Sound Dept., Libel!
MGM Studio Sound Dept. Ben-Hur
Samuel Goldwyn Studio Sound Dept. and Todd-AO Sound Dept., Porgy and Bess
Twentieth Century-Fox Studio Sound Dept., Journey to the Center of the Earth
Warner Bros. Studio Sound Dept., The Nun's Story
Song“The Best of Everything,” The Best of Everything, Alfred Newman, music; Sammy Cahn, lyrics
“The Five Pennies,” The Five Pennies, Sylvia Fine, music and lyrics
“The Hanging Tree,” The Hanging Tree, Jerry Livingston, music; Mack David, lyrics
“High Hopes,” A Hole in the Head, James Van Heusen, music; Sammy Cahn, lyrics]
“Strange Are the Ways of Love,” The Young Land, Dimitri Tiomkin, music; Ned Washington, lyrics
Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy PictureFrank DeVol, Pillow Talk
Ernest Gold, On the Beach
Miklos Rozsa, Ben-Hur
Franz Waxman, The Nun's Story
Scoring of a Musical PictureGeorge Bruns, Sleeping Beauty
Lionel Newman, Say One for Me
André Previn and Ken Darby, Porgy and Bess
Nelson Riddle and Joseph J. Lilley, Li'l Abner
Leith Stevens, The Five Pennies
Film EditingFrederic Knudtson, On the Beach
Louis R. Loeffler, Anatomy of a Murder
Walter Thompson, The Nun's Story
George Tomasini, North by Northwest
Ralph E. Winters and John D. Dunning, Ben-Hur
Costume Design
Black-and-WhiteEdith Head, Career
Charles LeMaire and Mary Wills, The Diary of Anne Frank
Orry-Kelly, Some Like It Hot
Helen Rose, The Gazebo
Howard Shoup, The Young Philadelphians
ColorElizabeth Haffenden, Ben-Hur
Edith Head, The Five Pennies
Adele Palmer, The Best of Everything
Renie, The Big Fisherman
Irene Sharaff, Porgy and Bess
Special EffectsL. B. Abbott and James B. Gordon, visual; Carl Faulkner, audible, Journey to the Center of the Earth
A. Arnold Gillespie and Robert MacDonald, visual; Milo Lory, audible, Ben-Hur
Short Subjects
CartoonMexicali Shmoes (Speedy Gonzales Series) (John W. Burton, producer; Warner Bros.)
Moonbird (Storyboard, Inc.; Edward Harrison)
Noah's Ark (Walt Disney Productions; Buena Vista)
The Violinist (Pintoff Productions; Kingsley International)
Live ActionBetween the Tides (British Transport Films; Lester A. Schoenfeld Films)
The Golden Fish (Les Requins Associes; Columbia)
Mysteries of the Deep (Walt Disney Productions; Buena Vista)
The Running, Jumping and Standing-Still Film (Lion International Films; Kingsley-Union Films)
Skyscraper (Tishman Realty and Construction Co.; Burstyn Film Enterprises)
Short SubjectDonald in Mathmagic Land (Walt Disney Productions; Buena Vista)
From Generation to Generation (Cullen Associates; Maternity Center Association)
Glass (Netherlands Government; George K. Arthur-Go Pictures, Inc.)
FeatureThe Race for Space (David L. Wolper, producer; Wolper, Inc.)
Serengeti Shall Not Die (Okapia-Film GmbH Production; Transocean-Film)
Foreign Language FilmBlack Orpheus, France
The Bridge, Federal Republic of Germany—West
The Great War, Italy
Paw, Denmark
The Village on the River, Netherlands
Jean Hersholt Humanitarian AwardBob Hope
Honorary AwardsTo Lee De Forest for his pioneering inventions that brought sound to the motion picture
To Buster Keaton for his unique talents that brought immortal comedies to the screen

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