21CF Oscars Countdown: Best Writing winners Valentine Davies and George Seaton for ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ (1947)

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In the weeks leading up to the 90th Oscars on Sunday, March 4, we’ll take a look at our rich Academy Award history by sharing from our 20th Century Fox Archives. 

20th Century Fox has two nominees this year for writing in the Best Original Screenplay category: Guillermo del Toro and Vanessa Taylor for “The Shape of Water,” and Martin McDonagh for “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Both Guillermo and Martin also directed their nominated written screenplays. 

At the 20th Academy Awards ceremony held in Los Angeles on March 20, 1948, at the Shrine Auditorium, Valentine Davies won the award for Best Writing (Original Story) for “Miracle on 34th Street” for which he also did a novelization of the story. Additionally, George Seaton was awarded the Oscar for Best Writing (Screenplay) that evening.

In 1957, for the 29th Academy Awards, the Academy decided to eliminate the Writing (Original Story) category and change it to the current Best Original Screenplay category. The award for Writing (Screenplay) was also changed to the current Best Adapted Screenplay.  

Below are a few pieces from our Photography and Publicity collections for “Miracle on 34th Street.”

Finally, here are the first pages of the original script:

The Fox Archives is mandated to collect, catalog, preserve and make accessible the following assets of the 20th Century Fox studios: props, set decoration, photographs, art department and publicity materials from our film and television productions, and from the 20th Century Fox studio itself. We work primarily with internal Fox groups but also from time to time with outside organizations such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry.