A Night of Triumphs: Reflecting on the 53rd Annual Academy Awards March 31, 1981


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Mr. Eighties
Apr 29, 2023

On this day March 31, 1981, "Ordinary People" was awarded Best Picture at the 53rd Annual Academy Awards, held at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, with Johnny Carson as the host. The ceremony was broadcast on ABC. Robert Redford won Best Director for "Ordinary People," while Robert De Niro and Sissy Spacek took home the Best Actor and Best Actress awards for their roles in "Raging Bull" and "Coal Miner's Daughter," respectively. "Ordinary People" led the night with a total of four awards. Both "The Elephant Man" and "Raging Bull" received the highest number of nominations, with eight each.

Fun Fact: Despite his remarkable performance in "Ordinary People," Donald Sutherland was overlooked for an Oscar nomination. Entertainment Weekly ranked it as one of the most egregious oversights in Academy Awards history.
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