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Tag Archives: Academy Award winning

April 6

April 6, 1959 – Disney Wins Three Academy Awards for Documentary Features

On April 6, 1959, the 31st Academy Awards were held at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, California. At this awards ceremony, Disney won three Academy Awards for features considered live-action documentaries: Best Live Action Short Subject for Grand Canyon, Best Documentary Feature for White Wilderness, and Best Documentary Short Subject for Ama Girls. Disney was also nominated for the Best Short Subject – Cartoons for Paul Bunyon, but lost to the Looney Toons short film Knighty Knight Bugs; White Wilderness was also nominated for Best Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture, but lost to Dimitri Tiomkin’s scoring for The Old Man and the Sea.

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April 2

April 2, 1899 – Sound and Camera Pioneer and Disney Legend Bill Garity is Born

“With his pioneering efforts in sound and camera techniques, he helped set Disney Studios apart from others, while his planning and supervisory expertise resulted in the building of a highly efficient Studio in Burbank.” – Disney Chief Archivist Emeritus, Dave Smith

On April 2, 1899, Bill Garity was born in Brooklyn, New York. After attending the Pratt Institute of Art in New York, he served with the Radio Research and Development sector of the U.S. Signal Corps during World War I. His work in radio continued to flourish when, after the war, he met and worked with Lee DeForest, a pioneer in the field of radio. The pair would work on the development of sound for the earliest films. As Garity was working on the Cinephone motion picture recording system in 1928, he met a young Walt Disney, who was hoping to elevate the animated art form. With Garity’s help, Steamboat Willie became a hit for the fledgling Disney Studios, and Disney bought the Cinephone system with an offer for Garity to come out to Hollywood to install it and train a technician to operate it. Garity officially joined the Walt Disney Studios in 1929 and stayed with the company for over 13 years, leading a department of 18 engineers. At Disney, Garity was instrumental in creating such innovations such as the multiplane camera, which earned the studio an Academy Award in the Scientific and Technical category; the team also invented Fantasound, a unique stereo system that was installed in theaters specifically for the animated feature film Fantasia. Garity left the studio in 1940 to pursue other technical ventures, and ended up serving as the vice president and production manager for the Walter Lantz Studios. He passed away on September 16, 1971, in Los Angeles California. For his groundbreaking technical expertise and ability to help Walt achieve his dream of the elevated animated film, Garity was posthumously honored as a Disney Legend in 1999.

March 25

March 25, 1991 – Dick Tracy Wins Three Academy Awards

“Baby, you’re mine on a platter, I always get my man.”

On March 25, 1991, the 63rd Academy Awards were held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. At this ceremony, the Touchstone Pictures film Dick Tracey, nominated for seven awards, walked away with three: Best Original Song for ”Sooner or Later (I Always Get My Man),” awarded to Stephen Sondheim; Best Art Direction, awarded to Richard Sylbert for Art Direction and Rick Simpson for Set Direction; and Best Makeup for John Caglione Jr. and Doug Drexler.

March 24

March 24, 2002 – “If I Didn’t Have You” from Monsters, Inc. Wins Academy Award

“You and me together, that’s how it always should be, one without the other, don’t mean nothing to me, nothing to me…”

On March 24, 2002, the 74th Academy Awards were held at the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles, California. Although nominated for three awards, the Pixar animated feature film Monsters, Inc. only managed to walk away with one: the Academy Award for Best Original Song, awarded to Randy Newman for “If I Didn’t Have You.” This song beat out the likes of “May It Be” by Enya, Nicky Ryan, and Roma Ryan (written for The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring); “There You’ll Be” by Diane Warren (written for Pearl Harbor); “Until…” by Sting (written for Kate & Leopold); and “Vanilla Sky” by Paul McCartney (written for Vanilla Sky).

March 7

March 7, 2010 – Up Wins Two Academy Awards

“Boy, never did I dream that making a flip book out of my third grade math book would lead to this.”

On March 7, 2010, the 82nd Academy Awards were held at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, California. Nominated for five awards, Pixar’s animated feature film Up walked away with two: Best Animated Feature, and Best Original Score. It was the second animated feature film to ever be nominated for Best Picture, but lost out to The Hurt Locker. For animated feature films, it won against Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and the Frog, and The Secret of Kells.

December 17

December 17, 1958 – The Featurette Grand Canyon Premieres in Theaters

On December 17, 1958, the CinemaScope featurette Grand Canyon premiered in theaters; it would later be released alongside Sleeping Beauty. Grand Canyon was similar in style to the True-Life Adventure documentaries but had a twist: the film had no narration, but was set against the “Grand Canyon Suite” by Ferde Grofé. The featurette would go on to win the Academy Award for Best Live-Action Short Subject.

October 30

October 30, 1906 – Composer and Disney Legend Paul Smith is Born

On October 30, 1906, composer Paul Smith was born in Calument, Michigan to a musical family. The family later moved to Caldwell, Idaho, where Smith’s father taught music at the College of Idaho. Smith’s musical ability emerged at an early age, and his father nurtured this by teaching his son to play a variety of instruments, including piano and violin. Smith enrolled in the Bush Conservatory of Music in Chicago in 1925; after graduation, he taught at Elmhurst College and York High School. He then moved to Los Angeles to attend UCLA and earned a degree in English. After graduating, he wound up at the Walt Disney Studios in 1934, and became a pioneer in music for motion pictures, scoring for animated features such as Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Cinderella, True-Life Adventure films such as The Vanishing Prairie and Perri, and live action features such as The Shaggy Dog and Pollyanna. Smith had over fifty credits to his name, and over the course of his career he scored eight Academy Award nominations, including one win for his work on the score of the film Pinocchio with Leigh Harline and Ned Washington. Smith retired in 1962 after almost thirty years with The Walt Disney Studios. On January 25, 1985, Smith passed away in Glendale, California. He was honored as a Disney Legend for his contributions to the Walt Disney Company in 1994.