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Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award
Awarded forcreative producers, whose bodies of work reflect a consistently high quality of motion picture production.
CountryUnited States
Presented byAcademy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS)
First awarded1938

The Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award is awarded periodically by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences at the Governors Awards ceremonies to "creative producers, whose bodies of work reflect a consistently high quality of motion picture production". The award is named for Irving Thalberg, head of the Production Division of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, who developed the company's reputation for sophisticated films. The trophy itself is a bust of Thalberg rather than the familiar "Oscar" statuette. However, it is still counted as an "honorary Oscar". The award was established in 1937 and was first presented at the 10th Academy Awards, in March 1938. There have been 39 statuettes awarded to date.

Katharine Hepburn made her first and only appearance at the ceremony to present the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award to her long-time 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."

List of recipients

Year Image Honorees Ref.
Darryl F. Zanuck 1964.jpg
Darryl F. Zanuck
1938 Hal B. Wallis
David O. Selznick in 1934
David O. Selznick
Walt Disney in 1946
Walt Disney
Sidney Franklin in 1920
Sidney Franklin
1943 Hal B. Wallis
1944 Darryl F. Zanuck
Samuel Goldwyn in 1919
Samuel Goldwyn
1948 Jerry Wald
1950 Darryl F. Zanuck
1951 Arthur Freed
Cecil B. DeMille circa 1920
Cecil B. DeMille
George Stevens in 1957
George Stevens
1956 Buddy Adler
Jack Warner in 1955
Jack L. Warner
Stanley Kramer circa 1955
Stanley Kramer
Sam Spiegel in 1963
Sam Spiegel
William Wyler circa 1945
William Wyler
Robert Wise in 1990
Robert Wise
Alfred Hitchcock by Jack Mitchell, circa 1972
Alfred Hitchcock
Ingmar Bergman in 1957
Ingmar Bergman
1973 Lawrence Weingarten
Mervyn LeRoy in 1958
Mervyn LeRoy
Pandro S. Berman in 1953
Pandro S. Berman
1977 Walter Mirisch
1979 Ray Stark
Albert R. Broccoli in 1976
Albert R. Broccoli
Steven Spielberg in 2017
Steven Spielberg
Gloria Swanson & Billy Wilder - ca. 1950.JPG
Billy Wilder
David Brown in 2000
David Brown
Richard D. Zanuck in 1990
Richard D. Zanuck
George Lucas in 2009
George Lucas
Clint Eastwood in 2010
Clint Eastwood
1996 Saul Zaentz
Norman Jewison in 2012
Norman Jewison
Warren Beatty in 2001
Warren Beatty
Dino De Laurentiis in 2009
Dino De Laurentiis
2009 John Calley
Francis Ford Coppola in 2011
Francis Ford Coppola
Kathleen Kennedy in 2015
Kathleen Kennedy
Frank Marshall in 2012
Frank Marshall

Other nominees

Other nominees for the 11th Academy Awards (the only year for which non-winning nominations were announced):

See also