53rd Academy Awards

53rd Academy Awards
53rd Academy Awards.jpg
DateMarch 31, 1981
SiteDorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles
Hosted byJohnny Carson
Produced byNorman Jewison
Directed byMarty Pasetta
Best PictureOrdinary People
Most awardsOrdinary People (4)
Most nominationsThe Elephant Man and Raging Bull (8)
TV in the United States
Duration3 hours, 13 minutes

The 53rd Academy Awards, honoring the best in film for 1980, were presented March 31, 1981, at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles. The ceremonies, which were presided over by Johnny Carson, were originally scheduled for the previous day but were postponed due to the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan.

David Lynch's The Elephant Man and Martin Scorsese's Raging Bull, with eight nominations each, had the most nominations of this year's films. Their nominations included Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director. Michael Apted's Coal Miner's Daughter received seven nominations while Ordinary People and Tess received six.

The year's winner of acting categories also marked as the closest span ever between the four winners, all of whom were under 40 when they won the award. Robert De Niro was 37 when awarded Best Actor, Sissy Spacek was 31 when awarded Best Actress, Timothy Hutton was 20 when awarded Best Supporting Actor, and Mary Steenburgen was 28 when awarded Best Supporting Actress. In addition, Hutton was the youngest ever Best Supporting Actor winner. His award was one of four that Ordinary People won, more than any other movie; the movie also won Best Picture, Best Director for Robert Redford and Best Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium for Alvin Sargent.

The lack of recognition for Christopher Tucker's make-up work on The Elephant Man prompted the creation of the Academy Award for Best Makeup the following year.

Best Supporting Actress nominee Eva Le Gallienne was born in 1899, which made her the last acting nominee to be born in the nineteenth century. As of 2017, this is the earliest Oscars for which all five directing nominees are still living.


Photo of Robert Redford at the US Embassy in London in 2012.
Robert Redford, Best Director winner
Photo of Robert De Niro at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival.
Robert De Niro, Best Actor winner
Photo of Sissy Spacek receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on August 1, 2011.
Sissy Spacek, Best Actress winner
Photo of Timothy Hutton at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival.
Timothy Hutton, Best Supporting Actor winner
Photo of Mary Steenbergen receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on December 16, 2009.
Mary Steenburgen, Best Supporting Actress winner

Winners are listed first, highlighted in boldface and indicated with a double dagger (double-dagger).[1]

Best Picture Best Director
Best Actor Best Actress
Best Supporting Actor Best Supporting Actress
Best Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen Best Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium
Best Foreign Language Film Best Documentary Feature
Best Documentary Short Subject Best Live Action Short Film
Best Animated Short Film Best Original Score
Best Original Song Best Sound
Best Costume Design Best Art Direction
Best Cinematography Best Film Editing

Academy Honorary Award

Special Achievement Award

Other Languages