“Green Book” just won the Oscar as Best Picture. The Universal release about an Italian-American bouncer (Viggo Mortensen) driving an African-American concert pianist (Mahershala Ali) through the 1960s American South also won Oscars for Best Supporting Actor (Ali) and Best Original Screenplay. It became the 92nd film in history to clinch that prize, beating out “Black Panther,” “BlacKkKlansman,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “The Favourite,” “Roma,” “A Star Is Born,” and “Vice.” Tour our photo gallery above of every Academy Award winner for Best Picture, from the most recent winner to the very first one.
The first film to win the Oscar as Best Picture was “Wings” (1927). That same year, the Academy also handed out a prize for Best Unique and Artistic Production to “Sunrise” (1927), the only movie to ever receive that honor.
Until 1950, the Best Picture award was given to the studio or production company. Since then, it has gone to the credited producers, and after five of them won for “Shakespeare in Love” (1998), a cap of three has been set (although more can compete should they be deemed eligible by the Academy).
The number of nominated films has fluctuated over the years. At the first Oscars, there were three Best Picture nominees. In each of the next three years, five movies competed. The category was expanded to eight in 1931/32, to 10 in 1932/33, and to 12 in 1934, then back to 10 in 1936. In 1944 it was cut to five and stayed that way until going back to 10 in 2009. Since 2011, the number has varied between five and 10, usually ending up around eight or nine.
Take a look back at every Best Picture winner at the Oscars, and see if your favorite films were up to the Academy’s standards.
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