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1st Academy Awards
Date Thursday, May 16, 1929
Site Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel
Hollywood, California
Host Douglas Fairbanks
William C. DeMille
Best Picture Wings
Most awards Seventh Heaven (3)
Duration 15 minutes
  Academy Awards 2nd > 
The first Oscar Awards on May 16, 1929

The 1st Academy Awards were presented on May 16, 1929, at a private dinner held at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. Tickets cost $5 and fewer than 250 people attended. The ceremony lasted only 15 minutes. Unlike later events, the winners had been announced months prior to the ceremony. This was also the only Academy Award ceremony not to be broadcast either on radio or television.

Films that had been released between August 1, 1927 and July 31, 1928 were eligible for awards. In some cases nominations were made without reference to a specific film, such as for Ralph Hammeras and Nugent Slaughter who received nominations in the (now defunct) category of "Engineering Effects".

Unlike later ceremonies, awards could be granted to an actor or director for multiple works within a year. Emil Jannings, for example, was given the Best Actor award for his work in both The Way of All Flesh and The Last Command.


Winners & Nominees

Best Picture, Unique and Artistic Production

  • Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans

Best Picture, Production

Best Actor

Best Actress

Best Director, Comedy Picture

Best Director, Dramatic Picture

Best Writing, Original Story

Best Writing, Adaptation

Best Writing, Title Writing

Best Cinematography

Best Art Direction

Best Effects, Engineering Effects

  • Wings – Roy Pomeroy
    • (No specific film) - Ralph Hammeras
    • (No specific film) - Nugent Slaughter (according to AMPAS, Academy records indicate that Nugent Slaughter was "most often mentioned in connection with The Jazz Singer[1].)

Honorary Award

- For versatility and genius in acting, writing, directing and producing The Circus. - Though nominated for best actor, the academy decided to remove Chaplin's name from the competitive classes and instead award him a Special Award.

- For producing The Jazz Singer, the pioneer outstanding talking picture, which has revolutionized the industry.


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