Below is a list of my favorite Academy Awards BEST PICTURE winners in chronological order:
MY TOP FAVORITE BEST PICTURE WINNERS
1. "It Happened One Night" (1934) - Frank Capra won a Best Director Oscar for this screwball comedy about a pampered socialite who runs from her father in order to marry her fiance and falls in love with a roguish reporter. Based on the story, "Night Bus" by Samuel Hopkins Adams, the movie starred Oscar winners Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert.
2. "Mutiny on the Bounty" (1935) - Clark Gable, Charles Laughton and Franchot Tone co-starred in this award winning account of a mutiny aboard the Royal Navy ship, the H.M.S. Bounty. Directed by Frank Lloyd, the movie was based upon the James Norman Hall novel of the same title.
3. "Casablanca" (1942) - Oscar winner Michael Curtiz directed this tale about an expatriate American who must choose between his love for a woman and helping her and her Czech Resistance leader husband escape from the Vichy-controlled Moroccan city of Casablanca to continue his fight against the Nazis. Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Heinreid and Claude Rains starred in this movie based upon the play, "Everybody Comes to Rick".
4. "The Best Years of Our Lives" - William Wyler won an Oscar for directing this drama about about three servicemen trying to piece their lives back together after coming home from World War II. The movie starred Dana Andrews, Myrna Loy, Teresa Wright and Oscar winners Fredric March and Harold Russell.
5. "Gigi" (1958) - Nine Academy Awards went to this delightful adaptation of Collette's 1944 novella about a young Parisian girl being groomed for a career as a courtesan and her relationship with the wealthy cultured man in turn-of-the-century Paris. Oscar winner Vincente Minelli directed this musical that starred Leslie Caron, Louis Jordan, Maurice Chevalier, Isabel Jeans and Hermione Gingold.
6. "The Apartment" (1960) - Billy Wilder won Oscars for his direction and for co-writing with award winner I.A.L. Diamond this comedy-drama about a man who tries to rise in his company by letting its executives use his apartment for trysts, but complications and a romance of his own ensue. Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine and Fred MacMurray starred.
7. "Tom Jones" (1963) - Academy Award winner Tony Richardson directed this delightful adaptation of Henry Fielding's 1749 classic novel. Albert Finney and Susannah York starred.
8. "The Godfather" (1972) - Francis Ford Coppola directed this award winning adaptation of Mario Puzo's novel of the same title about an aging patriarch of an organized crime dynasty who transfers control of his clandestine empire to his reluctant third son. Oscar winner Marlon Brando and Al Pacino starred. Ford and Puzo won Oscars for Best Adapted Screenplay.
9. "The Sting" (1973) - George Roy Hill won an Oscar for his direction of this tale about two professional grifters who set out to con a mob boss with a complicated plot. Paul Newman, Robert Redford and Robert Shaw starred.
10. "The Godfather, Part II" (1974) Francis Ford Coppola finally won his Best Director Oscar for this sequel to the 1972 Best Picture winner about the Corleone crime family. Al Pacino, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton and Oscar winner Robert DeNiro starred.
11. "Forrest Gump" (1994) - Oscar winner Robert Zemeckis directed this adaptation of Winston Groom's novel about a simple Alabama man and his life during the mid and late 20th century. Oscar winner Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinese, Mykelti Williamson and Sally Field starred.
12. "Shakespeare in Love" (1998) - John Madden directed this award winning comedy drama about a fictionalized account of William Shakespeare's romance with a wealthy merchant's daughter during his writing of "Romeo and Juliet". Joseph Fiennes, Geoffrey Rush, Ben Affleck, Colin Firth, and Oscar winners Gwyneth Paltrow and Judi Dench starred.
13. "Gladiator" (2000) - Ridley Scott directed this historical drama about a Spanish-born general loyal to the Roman Empire, who is betrayed by the Emperor's ambitious son, sold into slavery and becomes a popular gladiator in Rome. Oscar winner Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen, Djimon Hounsou, Oliver Reed and Richard Harris starred.
14. "Chicago" (2002) - Rob Marshall directed this award winning adaptation of the Broadway play about two female criminals who find themselves awaiting their trials for murder in 1920s Chicago. Velma, a vaudevillian, and Roxie, a housewife with aspirations of the same profession, fight for the fame that will keep them from the gallows. Renee Zellweger, Oscar winner Catherine Zeta-Jones, Queen Latifah, John C. Reilly and Richard Gere starred.
15. "The Departed" (2006) - Martin Scorcese finally won an Oscar for this remake of the 2002 Hong Kong film, "Infernal Affairs", about two men from opposite sides of the law who are undercover within the Massachusetts State Police and the Irish mob in Boston. Leonardo di Caprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Vera Farmiga, Mark Wahlberg and Martin Sheen starred.