What Should Have won the 1943 Best Picture Oscar?

Welcome to Year Sixteen of the Best Picture discussion, concerning movies released in 1943!

I do wonder if I’m wasting my time even posting this poll, as the Academy (and pretty much everybody else) all agree: the Best Picture of 1943 was Casablanca.

As I said in V.1, “The Academy picked Casablanca; this wisdom covers such a multitude of sins, I’m almost inclined to forgive them for so many bad choices.


Casablanca beat out Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman in For Whom the Bell Tolls, Don Ameche in Ernst Lubitsch’s  Heaven Can Wait, Mickey Rooney in William Saroyan’s  The Human Comedy, Noel Coward’s In Which We Serve, Greer Garson going radioactive with Walter Pidgeon in Madame Curie, Joel McCrea, Jean Arthur, and Charles Coburn in  The More the Merrier, Henry Fonda in The Ox-Bow Incident, Jennifer Jones in The Song of Bernadette, and Paul Lukas with Bette Davis in Watch on the Rhine.

Other possible choices include: Alfred Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt; Olivia de Havilland’s comedy Princess O’Rourke; Howard Hawks’ Air Force; Monty Woolley in Holy Matrimony; Claudette Colbert and Veronica Lake as nurses in So Proudly We Hail!; Joan Fontaine and Charles Boyer in The Constant Nymph; Cary Grant in Destination: Tokyo; Val Lewton and Jacques Tourneur’s I Walked with a Zombie; Claude Rains in the remake of The Phantom of the Opera; Lassie Comes Home; Barbara Stanwyck, Lady of Burlesque; Disney’s Saludos Amigos; Irving Berlin’s This Is the Army; Busby Berkeley and Carmen Miranda, The Gang’s All Here; Vincente Minnelli’s all-black musical Cabin in the Sky, with Ethel Waters, Lena Horne, Eddie Rochester Anderson, Duke Ellington, and Louis Armstrong; Bill Bojangles Robinson, Lena Horne, Cab Calloway, Fats Waller, and the Nicholas Brothers in Stormy Weather; Billy Wilder’s Five Graves to Cairo; Tyrone Power, Crash Dive;  Fritz Lang’s Hangmen Also Die! and Humphrey Bogart in the combat gem Sahara.

As always, I have much more to say in my book: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00OPEELH0

Here’s the poll, although I suspect we’re about to see a landslide:

One comment

  1. Casablanca – everything a movie should be and more. Drama, comedy, music, intrigue, romance. The sets, the costumes, the sharp dialogue, the sound. And of course, the incredible cast – not one false note in the bunch. This is the movie many people think of when they say, “They don’t make ’em like that any more.”

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