Best Actress Oscar winners since 1970

1970 Academy Awards® Winners and History

The winner is listed first, in CAPITAL letters.

GEORGE C. SCOTT in "Patton", Melvyn Douglas in "I Never Sang For My Father", James Earl Jones in "The Great White Hope", Jack Nicholson in "Five Easy Pieces", Ryan O'Neal in "Love Story"
GLENDA JACKSON in "Women in Love", Jane Alexander in "The Great White Hope", Ali MacGraw in "Love Story", Sarah Miles in "Ryan's Daughter", Carrie Snodgrass in "Diary of a Mad Housewife"
Supporting Actor:
JOHN MILLS in "Ryan's Daughter", Richard Castellano in "Lovers and Other Strangers", Chief Dan George in "Little Big Man", Gene Hackman in "I Never Sang For My Father", John Marley in "Love Story"
Supporting Actress:
HELEN HAYES in "Airport", Karen Black in "Five Easy Pieces", Lee Grant in "The Landlord", Sally Kellerman in "M*A*S*H", Maureen Stapleton in "Airport"
FRANKLIN SCHAFFNER for "Patton", Robert Altman for "M*A*S*H", Federico Fellini for "Fellini Satyricon", Arthur Hiller for "Love Story", Ken Russell for "Women in Love"

The films nominated for Best Picture in 1970 covered a wide range, reflecting the deep divides in society during the Vietnam era with its anti-war protests. There were two competing Best Picture nominees about wartime:

  • director Franklin P. Schaffner's and 20th Century Fox's commercially-successful Patton (subtitled A Salute to a Rebel - to gain the youth market) - the great, multi-faceted film portrait or film biography of the controversial, complex, yet fascinating, flamboyant and temperamental, non-conformist World War II American commander. It took major honors with ten nominations and seven wins - Best Actor, Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay (co-writers Francis Ford Coppola and Edmund H. North), Best Art Direction/Set Decoration, Best Sound, and Best Film Editing. [The big-budget Patton (at about $12 million) was the first war film to win Best Picture since 1962, when Lawrence of Arabia (1962) won the Best Picture award. It was also the first PG-rated film to win Best Picture since the institution of the MPAA rating system.]
  • the outrageously-irreverent, subversive black comedy and bloody anti-war film satire by director Robert Altman - a pre-cursor to the popular TV series, titled M*A*S*H (with five nominations and one win - Best Screenplay Adaptation by Ring Lardner, Jr.) about a group of medical personnel at a Mobile Army Surgical Hospital during the Korean War.

    [Veteran Ring Lardner, Jr.'s win for M*A*S*H, his second Oscar, came 28 years after his first Oscar win for Woman of the Year (1942). Earlier in 1965, Lardner - who had been blacklisted since 1947, was given credit for screenwriting The Cincinnati Kid (1965). His 1970 Oscar was generally regarded as a rectifying 'apology' for the many years that he was blacklisted as one of the original 'Hollywood Ten'. However, very little of his M*A*S*H script was actually used by Altman.]

The other three nominees included:

  • the enormously-successful, manipulative tearjerker, Love Story (with seven nominations and only one win - Best Original Score) about a tragic love affair between a preppie, upper-crust Harvard student and a poor Catholic-Italian student at Radcliffe who succumbs to leukemia
  • the trail-blazing disaster film Airport (with ten nominations - tying Patton! - and one win - Best Supporting Actress) - an old-fashioned smash, box-office hit with a large all-star cast about a doomed passenger airliner
  • Ryan O'Neal (with his sole career nomination) in his star-making role as the preppie Harvard law student Oliver Barrett IV whose girlfriend Jenny (Ali MacGraw) dies in the weepy adaptation of Eric Segal's Love Story
  • James Earl Jones (with his sole nomination) re-creating his Broadway role as boxer Jack Jefferson - the first black heavyweight champion of the world in 1910, based upon real-life Jack Johnson in Martin Ritt's emotional character study and semi-fictional biography The Great White Hope (with two nominations and no wins)
  • Melvyn Douglas (with his second of three career nominations) as Tom Garrison - the aging, selfish and demanding father (of son Gene Hackman) in the powerful...
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