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46th Academy Awards

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46th Academy Awards
DateApril 2, 1974
SiteDorothy Chandler Pavilion
Los Angeles, California
Hosted byBurt Reynolds, Diana Ross, John Huston and David Niven
Produced byJack Haley Jr.
Directed byMarty Pasetta
Best PictureThe Sting
Most awardsThe Sting (7)
Most nominationsThe Exorcist and The Sting (10)
TV in the United States
Duration3 hours, 23 minutes
Ratings44.7 million[1]

The 46th Academy Awards were presented on Tuesday, April 2, 1974, at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, California. The ceremonies were presided over by Burt Reynolds, Diana Ross, John Huston, and David Niven.

The Sting won 7 awards, including Best Picture and Best Director for George Roy Hill. The Exorcist and The Way We Were were the only other films to win multiple awards. Marvin Hamlisch won 3 awards, making him the third person to achieve this feat and, to date, the only person who has won 3 Oscars in one year without winning Best Picture. As of 2023, it is the most recent ceremony in which the 3 highest-grossing films of the year were nominated for Best Picture (The Exorcist, The Sting and American Graffiti).

Winners and nominees

George Roy Hill, Best Director winner
Jack Lemmon, Best Actor winner
Glenda Jackson, Best Actress winner
John Houseman, Best Supporting Actor winner
Tatum O'Neal, Best Supporting Actress winner
David S. Ward, Best Original Screenplay Winner
William Peter Blatty, Best Adapted Screenplay Winner
Marvin Hamlisch, Best Original Score winner, Adapted Score winner & Best Original Song co-winner

Nominations announced on February 19, 1974. Winners are listed first, highlighted in boldface and indicated with a double dagger (‡).[2]

Best Picture Best Director
Best Actor Best Actress
Best Supporting Actor Best Supporting Actress
Best Story and Screenplay Based on Factual Material or Material Not Previously Produced or Published Best Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium
Best Foreign Language Film Best Documentary Feature
Best Documentary Short Subject Best Live Action Short Subject
Best Animated Short Subject Best Original Dramatic Score
  • Frank Film – Frank Mouris
    • The Legend of John Henry – Nick Bosustow and David Adams
    • PulcinellaEmanuele Luzzati and Guilo Gianini
Best Scoring: Original Song Score and Adaptation or Scoring: Adaptation Best Song
Best Costume Design Best Sound
Best Art Direction Best Cinematography
Best Film Editing

Streaking incident


The 46th Academy Awards ceremony is perhaps best remembered as the one in which a streaker named Robert Opel ran across the stage naked while flashing a peace sign with his hand. In response, host David Niven jokingly quipped, "Isn't it fascinating to think that probably the only laugh that man will ever get in his life is by stripping off and showing his shortcomings?"[3][4][5] Terrence O'Flaherty, a columnist from San Francisco, responded by saying that "there's only one trouble with streaking—the wrong people usually do it. The ones who should have removed their clothes were Cher Bono, Twiggy and Elizabeth Taylor".[5]

The incident would be referenced 50 years later during the 96th Academy Awards in 2024; host Jimmy Kimmel brought up the streaker and asked the audience, "can you imagine a naked man at the Oscars today?" Eventually, a "nude" John Cena, holding the award envelope for Best Costume Design over his crotch, emerged from backstage.[6][7]

Other notable events

  • First-time nominee George Lucas made his debut at the Academy Awards with his nostalgic teen drama American Graffiti. It was nominated for Best Picture (Francis Ford Coppola and Gary Kurtz), Director & Story and Screenplay Based on Factual Material or Material Not Previously Produced or Published (Lucas), Editor (Marcia Lucas) and Candy Clark for Best Supporting Actress.
  • Jack Lemmon bet his friend Walter Matthau $1,000 to $500 that he would lose the Academy Award for Best Actor; he did not win the bet.[5]
  • William Friedkin announced that he would not attend the ball celebrating the Oscars out of enragement that The Exorcist failed to win Best Picture.[5]
  • Katharine Hepburn made her first and only appearance at the ceremony to present The Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award to her longtime friend Lawrence Weingarten. Whenever she won an Oscar, she always had either the presenter or another person associated with her film accept it on her behalf. Upon taking the stage, she received a standing ovation, to which she replied "I'm living proof that a person can wait forty-one years to be unselfish."
  • Coincidentally, Debbie Reynolds, Elizabeth Taylor and Connie Stevens, who were all ex-wives of Eddie Fisher's, each appeared in some form.
  • This was Susan Hayward's last public appearance before she died of brain cancer a year later (1975).
  • At 10 years, 148 days of age, Tatum O'Neal won Best Supporting Actress for her role in Paper Moon. She became the youngest winner of an Oscar, a feat unmatched to this day.
  • During the ceremony, the whole in memoriam tribute was for legendary producer Samuel Goldwyn, who had died at age 94, three months prior to the event. He is the only person to have an Academy Awards ceremony dedicated solely to him.
  • Longtime film veteran/comedian Groucho Marx was presented with an Honorary Academy Award for his contributions to the cinema.
  • Julia Phillips of The Sting became the first female producer to win for Best Picture.
  • With Tatum O'Neal being 10 years old and John Houseman being 71 years old, this was the biggest age gap ever for 2 acting wins.

Multiple nominations and awards

Films that received multiple awards
Awards Film
7 The Sting
2 The Exorcist
The Way We Were

Presenters and performers


The following individuals, listed in order of appearance, presented awards or performed musical numbers:


Name Role
Hank Simms Announcer for the 46th Academy Awards
Walter Mirisch (AMPAS President) Gave opening remarks welcoming guests to the awards ceremony
Linda Blair
Billy Dee Williams
Presenters of the Short Subjects Awards
James Caan
Raquel Welch
Presenters of the Documentary Awards
Jack Valenti Presenter of the Honorary Award to Henri Langlois (with Gene Kelly serving as his English-language interpreter)
Candice Bergen
Marcel Marceau
Presenters of the award for Best Sound
Richard Benjamin
Paula Prentiss
Presenters of the award for Best Film Editing
Alfred Hitchcock Presenter of the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award to Lew Wasserman
Sylvia Sidney
Paul Winfield
Presenters of the award for Best Art Direction
Peter Falk
Presenters of the award for Best Costume Design
Peter Lawford
Cicely Tyson
Presenters of the award for Best Cinematography
Yul Brynner Presenter of the award for Best Foreign Language Film
Donald O'Connor
Debbie Reynolds
Presenters of the award for Best Original Song and/or Adaptation Score
Henry Mancini
Presenters of the award for Best Original Dramatic Score
Marsha Mason
Neil Simon
Presenters of the award for Best Story and Screenplay Based on Factual Material or Material Not Previously Produced or Published
Angie Dickinson
Jason Miller
Presenters of the award for Best Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium
Burt Bacharach
Presenters of the award for Best Song
Ernest Borgnine
Cybill Shepherd
Presenters of the award for Best Supporting Actor
Charles Bronson
Jill Ireland
Presenters of the award for Best Supporting Actress
Shirley MacLaine
Walter Matthau
Presenters of the award for Best Director
Katharine Hepburn Presenter of the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award
Jack Lemmon Presenter of the Honorary Award to Groucho Marx
Susan Hayward
Charlton Heston
Presenters of the award for Best Actress
Liza Minnelli
Gregory Peck
Presenters of the award for Best Actor
Elizabeth Taylor Presenter of the award for Best Picture


Name Role Performed
Henry Mancini Musical arranger and Conductor Orchestral
Liza Minnelli Performer "Oscar"
Academy Awards Chorus Performers "Thank You Very Much" from Scrooge during the Academy Awards' 45th Anniversary montage
Dyan Cannon Performer "All the Love That Went to Waste" from A Touch of Class
Connie Stevens Performer "Live and Let Die" from Live and Let Die
Jodie Foster and
Johnny Whitaker
Performers "Love" from Robin Hood
Peggy Lee Performer "The Way We Were" from The Way We Were
Telly Savalas Performer "You're So Nice to Be Around" from Cinderella Liberty
Academy Awards Orchestra Performers Hooray for Hollywood” (orchestral) during the closing credits

See also



  1. ^ Academy Awards TV Ratings Data, 1953-2008, Nielsen Ratings Data: ©2009 Nielsen Media Research, Inc
  2. ^ "The 46th Academy Awards (1974) Nominees and Winners". oscars.org. Archived from the original on March 15, 2015. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
  3. ^ Boyer Sagert, Kelly (2007). The 1970s. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 129. ISBN 978-0-313-33919-6.
  4. ^ Frawley, Frawley (2004). And the stars spoke back. Scarecrow Press. p. 224. ISBN 0-8108-5157-1.
  5. ^ a b c d Wallechinsky, David; Wallace, Irving (1975). The People's Almanac. Garden City, New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc. p. 847. ISBN 0-385-04060-1.
  6. ^ Fienberg, Daniel (March 11, 2024). "Critic's Notebook: Busy and Eclectic Oscars 2024 Telecast Delivers Many Highlights (and a Few Lowlights)". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on March 11, 2024. Retrieved March 11, 2024.
  7. ^ "Naked John Cena pays tribute to 50th anniversary of Oscars streaker". EW.com. Retrieved March 11, 2024.