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Academy Awards

The film was nominated for several Academy Awards upon its release, including Best Picture and Academy Award for Visual Effects. It lost the award in the Best Picture category to Gone with the Wind (another MGM release), but won in the category of Best Song (Over The Rainbow) and Academy Award for Best Original Score. Although the Best Song award went to E.Y. Harburg and Harold Arlen, the Best Original Score Award went to, not the songwriters, but Herbert Stothart, who composed the background score. Judy Garland received a special Academy Juvenile Award that year, for "Best Performances by a Juvenile" (this meant that the award was also for her role in the film version of Babes in Arms). The Wizard of Oz did not receive an Oscar for its Special Effects - that award went to the 1939 film version of The Rains Came, for its monsoon sequence. Additional nominations were for Cedric Gibbons and William A. Horning for Art Direction and to Hal Rosson for Cinematography (color).

Awards and Honors

The Wizard of Oz is widely considered to be one of the most well known, beloved films of all time, and was one of the earliest films to be deemed "culturally significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. In June 2007, the film was listed on UNESCO's Memory of the World Register.

The film has gained many listings from the American Film Institute (AFI). In 1997, the AFI ranked The Wizard of Oz sixth on its "100 Greatest Movies" list; in its Tenth Anniversary Edition, it was rated tenth. Two songs from the film are on AFI's 100 years, 100 songs list ("Over the Rainbow" at #1 and "Ding, Dong, the Witch is Dead" #82). In 2006, this film ranked #3 on their list of best musicals. In 1999, Entertainment Weekly released a guide celebrating the greatest films ever made, with The Wizard of Oz listed in the top 10. In addition, a 2005 poll by the AFI ranked Dorothy's line "Toto, I've got a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore" as the fourth most memorable line in cinema history. It was also placed at number 86 on Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments.

In 1977, Aljean Harmetz wrote The Making of The Wizard of Oz, a detailed description of the creation of the film based on interviews and research; it was updated in 1989. ISBN 0-7868-8352-9

All of the film's stars except Frank Morgan lived long enough to see and enjoy at least some of the film's legendary reputation after it came to television. The last of the major players to die was Ray Bolger. The day after his death, a prominent editorial cartoonist referenced the cultural impact of this film, portraying the scarecrow running along the yellow brick road to catch up with the other characters, as they all danced off into the sunset. Neither director Victor Fleming, nor music arranger Herbert Stothart, screenwriter Edgar Allan Woolf, and actor Charley Grapewin (who played Dorothy's Uncle Henry) lived to see the film become an icon of cinema and a television tradition. By a curious coincidence, Fleming, Stothart, and Morgan all died in the same year - 1949.