A Best Picture nomination this morning for West Side Story makes producer Steven Spielberg the only person in history to receive 11 nominations in the Academy’s top category. The film’s other nominated producer is Kristie Macosko Krieger.
The achievement puts Spielberg above Scott Rudin, who has 9, and the director’s longtime producing partner Kathleen Kennedy, who has 8.
AMPAS only started naming individual producers for Best Picture in 1951. For instance, David O. Selznick produced consecutive Best Picture winners Gone with the Wind (1939) and Rebecca (1940), but he himself was not awarded statuettes because at that point the hardware went to the studio instead of the producer.
With his 8th Oscar nomination for directing today, Spielberg joins a very select group of four filmmakers who have received 8-plus Best Director nominations. They include Billy Wilder, who also has 8, his contemporary Martin Scorsese, who has 9, and the great William Wyler, who earned 11 total directing nominations.
If he wins for Director this year, Spielberg has the chance to join Wyler, Frank Capra and John Ford as the only filmmakers to take home three Oscars for Best Director. Ford also won a 4th.
Spielberg was also nominated as a director for a Golden Globe for West Side Story. The film won Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy at the Globes this year.
The original West Side Story was nominated for 11 Academy Awards and won 10, including Best Picture and Best Director. It is the record holder of the most wins for a musical in Oscars history.
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