Oscar Impact: Dead Man Walking (1995)–Debate about Death Penalty Issue

Dead Man Walking was helmed by Tim Robbins, who received a Best Director Oscar nomination, while Susan Sarandon won the Best Actress Oscar.

Yvonne Koslovsky-Golan, author of The Death Penalty in American Cinema: Criminality and Retribution in Hollywood Film, stated that even though public debate on the death penalty increased for a period after the release of the Dead Man Walking, the film did not result in “real political or legal change.

What the film did, however, is to encourage additional academic study on the controversial issue of death penalty.