Oscar Directors: Leonard, Robert Z.–Background, Career, Awards, Filmography

September 21, 2020

Robert Z. Leonard Career Summation

Occupational Inheritance:


Social Class:



Formal Education:


First Film: 24


First Oscar Nomination: The Divorcee, 1930, 41

Gap between First Film and First Nom:

Other Oscars:

Other Oscar Nominations: The Great Ziegfeld, 1936 (w0n Best Picture); aged 47

Oscar Awards:

Nominations Span: 1930-1936; 6 years

Genre (specialties):


Last Film: Kelly and Me, 1957; aged 68


Career Length: 1916-1857; 41 years

Career Output: 53

Most productive: 1930s and 1940s

Marriage: Star Mae Murray


Death: 78

Robert Zigler Leonard (October 7, 1889 – August 27, 1968) was an American film director, actor, producer, and screenwriter.

He was born in Chicago, Illinois. At one time, he was married to silent star Mae Murray with the two forming Tiffany Pictures to film eight motion pictures that were released by MGM.

He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director for The Divorcee and The Great Ziegfeld. Both were nominated for Best Picture, and the latter won.

Known by his nickname Pop, Leonard was brought in late by MGM as a reliable director who could get its Pride and Prejudice (1940), starring Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier, onto the big screen.

One of the more unusual credits in his filmography is the film noir thriller The Bribe (1949) with its sleazy settings, slippery characters, and steamy atmosphere.

Robert Leonard died in 1968 in Beverly Hills, California of an aneurysm.[2] He is interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale, near his wife Gertrude Olmstead.

On February 8, 1960, Robert Leonard received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Selected filmography

Silent (26)

The Love Girl (1916)
The Sea Urchin (1913)
Shon the Piper (1913)
The Master Key (1914)
Judge Not; or The Woman of Mona Diggings (1915)
Secret Love (1916)
Princess Virtue (1917)
The Bride’s Awakening (1918)
Danger, Go Slow (1918)
The Miracle of Love (1919)
The Scarlet Shadow (1919)
What Am I Bid? (1919)
Heedless Moths (1921)
Peacock Alley (1922)
Fascination (1922)
Jazzmania (1923)
Fashion Row (1923)
Love’s Wilderness (1924)
Mademoiselle Midnight (1924)
Bright Lights (1925)
A Little Journey (1927)
The Demi-Bride (1927)

Sound (27)
The Cardboard Lover (1928)
Marianne (1929) (silent and musical versions)
The Divorcee (1930)
Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise) (1931)
Strange Interlude (1932)
Dancing Lady (1933)
After Office Hours (1935)
Escapade (1935)
Piccadilly Jim (1936)
The Great Ziegfeld (1936)
Maytime (1937)
The Girl of the Golden West (1938)
New Moon (1940)
Pride and Prejudice (1940)
Ziegfeld Girl (1941)
Stand by for Action (1942)
Abbott and Costello in Hollywood (1945) (cameo scene with Lucille Ball and Preston Foster)
Week-End at the Waldorf (1945)
Cynthia (1947)
B.F.’s Daughter (1948)
In the Good Old Summertime (1949)
Duchess of Idaho (1950)
The Bribe (1949)
Her Twelve Men (1954)
Beautiful But Dangerous (1955)
The King’s Thief (1955) (replaced Hugo Fregonese during filming)
Kelly and Me (1957)