1930 Oscars 2nd Academy Awards

1930 Oscars 2nd Academy Awards

  • The 2nd Academy Awards took place on April 30, 1930.
  • The ceremony was hosted at the Cocoanut Grove of the Ambassador Hotel.
  • William C. DeMille, older brother of the famous Cecil B. DeMille, was the host.
  • The eligibility year for the awards was from August 1, 1928, to July 31, 1929.

Noteworthy Moments:

  • The Broadway Melody won Best Picture, notable for being the first sound film to win this category.
  • The award categories were simplified compared to the first ceremony. For instance, there was only one acting category each for men and women.
  • Warner Baxter won Best Actor for his role in In Old Arizona, playing the Cisco Kid.


  1. This was the first time the Academy used sealed envelopes to announce winners.
  2. The ceremony was broadcast on radio, a significant technological advancement for the time.
  3. The awards recognized both sound and silent films, reflecting the industry’s transition.
  4. Mary Pickford won Best Actress for her talkie debut in Coquette, making her one of the first Hollywood “talkie” stars to win an Oscar.
  5. Despite being a talkie, The Broadway Melody actually had no spoken dialogue, only music and sound effects.
Observation: I wonder if people got susshhh’d in the cinema when only silent movies were around?

1930 Oscar Nominees and Winners

Outstanding Picture:
The Broadway Melody – Irving Thalberg and Lawrence Weingarten for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (WINNER)
Alibi – Roland West for United Artists
The Hollywood Revue of 1929 – Irving Thalberg and Harry Rapf for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
In Old Arizona – Winfield Sheehan for Fox Film Corporation
The Patriot – Ernst Lubitsch for Paramount Pictures
Best Director:
Frank Lloyd – The Divine Lady (WINNER)
Harry Beaumont – The Broadway Melody
Frank Lloyd – Drag
Irving Cummings – In Old Arizona
Lionel Barrymore – Madame X
Ernst Lubitsch – The Patriot
Frank Lloyd – Weary River
Best Actor:
Warner Baxter – In Old Arizona as The Cisco Kid (WINNER)
George Bancroft – Thunderbolt as Thunderbolt Jim Lang
Chester Morris – Alibi as Chick Williams
Paul Muni – The Valiant as James Dyke
Lewis Stone – The Patriot as Count Pahlen
Best Actress:
Mary Pickford – Coquette as Norma Besant (WINNER)
Ruth Chatterton – Madame X as Jacqueline Floriot
Betty Compson – The Barker as Carrie
Jeanne Eagels (posthumous nomination) – The Letter as Leslie Crosbie
Corinne Griffith – The Divine Lady as Emma Hart
Bessie Love – The Broadway Melody as Harriet “Hank” Mahoney
Best Writing:
The Patriot – Hanns Kräly, based on Ashley Dukes’ translation of the play Der Patriot by Alfred Neumann, and the story “Paul I” by Dmitry Merezhkovsky (WINNER)
The Cop – Elliot Clawson
In Old Arizona – Tom Barry, based on the story “The Caballero’s Way” by O. Henry
The Last of Mrs. Cheyney – Hanns Kräly, based on the play by Frederick Lonsdale
The Leatherneck – Elliot Clawson
Our Dancing Daughters – Josephine Lovett
Sal of Singapore – Elliot Clawson, based on the story “The Sentimentalists” by Dale Collins
Skyscraper – Elliot Clawson, based on a story by Dudley Murphy
The Valiant – Tom Barry, based on the play by Halworthy Hall and Robert Middlemass
A Woman of Affairs – Bess Meredyth, based on the novel The Green Hat by Michael Arlen
Wonder of Women – Bess Meredyth, based on the novel Die Frau des Steffen Thromholt by Hermann Sudermann
Best Art Direction:
The Bridge of San Luis Rey – Cedric Gibbons (WINNER)
Alibi – William Cameron Menzies
The Awakening – William Cameron Menzies
Dynamite – Mitchell Leisen
The Patriot – Hans Dreier
Street Angel – Harry Oliver
Best Cinematography:
White Shadows in the South Seas – Clyde De Vinna (WINNER)
4 Devils – Ernest Palmer
The Divine Lady – John F. Seitz
In Old Arizona – Arthur Edeson
Our Dancing Daughters – George Barnes
Street Angel – Ernest Palmer
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