Breaking the Sound Barrier (1952): David Lean’s Oscar Winning Film, based on Terence Rattigan Drama, Starring Ralph Richardson

David Lean directed Breaking the Sound Barrier, an Oscar-nominated drama, which benefits from the great aerial cinematography by maestro Jack Hildyard.
Oscar-nominated writer Terence Rattigan (who was an aerial gunner in WWII) is known for penning some of the best British dramas of the 1940s and 1950s.  Many of those plays were made into films, such as “The Browning Version,” starring Michael Redgrave, “The Prince and the Shopgirl,” with Olivier and Marilyn Monroe.
Ralph Richardson plays a manufacturer, who continues to develop experimental planes–even after the death of his son (Denholm Elliott)–while testing one of them.
His daughter (Ann Todd, Lean’s then wife) fears that her husband (Nigel Patrick), a former fighter pilot, would become a victim too of her father’s ambition to achieve supersonic flight.

Oscar Nominations: 2

Story and Screenplay: Terence Rattigan
Sound Recording: London Film Sound Department

Oscar Awards: 1

Sound Recording

Oscar Context

In 1952, the Story and Screenplay Oscar went to another Brit, T.E. B. Clarke for the Alec Guinness comedy, The Lavender Hill Mob.

Playwright Terrence Rattigan received a second Oscar nomination in 1958, for “Separate Tables,” for a script he co-penned with John Gay.

United Artists (UK, London Films)