Oscar 2019: Best Director–Basic Facts You Need to Know

The 91st Oscar show will telecast live on Sunday, February 24, 2019, on ABC.

Here are some basic facts you need to know about the Best Director Oscar, one of the most prestigious and competitive category:

In the first year, 1929, which honored film achievements in 1927 and 1928, two directors were honored, one for drama and one for comedy.

In the 90 year history of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, 69 individuals have won the Oscar award, some more than once.

William Wyler holds the record of the most nominated filmmaker, having received 12 Best Director nominations.

John Ford holds the record as the most awarded filmmaker, having won 4 Best Director Oscars.

In the Academy’s entire history, no African-American has ever won the Best Director Oscar.

Only five women have been nominated for the Best Director, and only one has won, Kathryn Bigelow for The Hurt Locker, in 2009.

The youngest Best Director Oscar winner is Damien Chazelle, 32, who won in 2016 for La La Land.

The oldest Best Director Oscar winner is Roman Polanski, who was 69, when he received the award in 2002 for The Pianist; it was his third nomination.

Martin Scorsese is the only filmmaker who had to wait for his sixth nomination to win the Best Director, in 2006 for The Departed.

Over the past 5 years, Mexican-born helmers have dominated the Best Director category, beginning with Alfonso Cuaron, who won in 2014 for Gravity.

Only one filmmaker has been nominated for directing a documentary, Italian Gillo Pontecorvo, in 1968, for the epic non-fiction The Battle of Algier.

Th oldest living Best Director Oscar nominee was Michael Anderson (Around the World in 80 Days), who was 98, when he died in 2018.

At present, the oldest living Best Director winner is Clint Eastwood, 88.  One of the oldest winners, Eastwood was 62, when he won his first award for Unforgiven, in 1992, and 74, when he won his second, for Million Dollar Baby in 2004.