Sunday, December 27, 2020

1970: The Year In Movies And Television

Looking at the year-end recap of movies and television entertainment, 1970 comes across as quite a bit less than a stellar year.  Unlike other years we've covered recently in the late '60's, there are considerably fewer stand-out, landmark titles on this list ... which, in hindsight, is kind of surprising as I certainly don't remember this as being the case at the time.

In any event, The Top Ten Highest Grossing Films of 1970 were:
1. Love Story Paramount $106,397,186
2. Airport Universal $100,489,151
3. MASH 20th Century Fox $67,300,000
4. Patton $61,749,765
5. Woodstock Warner Bros. $50,000,000
6. Little Big Man $31,559,552
7. Ryan's Daughter MGM $30,846,306
8. Tora! Tora! Tora! 20th Century Fox $29,548,291
10. The Aristocats Disney $20,222,599
(Note:  gross receipts shown are for domestic box office only)

And what's the story with the Academy Award Winners?

NONE of the major award winners were present to accept their awards!  (What's the deal???  Was there some type of actors strike going on at the time?)

That being said, there were a few Oscar "firsts" that night ...

George C. Scott became the first actor to ever refuse or decline an Oscar

When Helen Hayes won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, she became the first performer in Oscar history to win awards in both the lead actress and supporting actress categories.  (Hayes won an Oscar for "The Sin Of Madelon Claudet" 38 years prior!)

The film documentary "Woodstock" was nominated for three Academy Awards, making it the most-nominated documentary film in Oscar history to that point.

And, for only the second time in Oscar history, all five nominees for the Best Actress Award were first-time nominees.  (Glenda Jackson, who took home the award for her role as Gundrun Brangwen in the film "Women In Love," Jane Alexander for "The Great White Hope," Ali MacGraw for "Love Story," Sarah Miles for "Ryan's Daughter" and Carrie Snodgress for "Diary Of A Mad Housewife.")

Other Academy Award Winners include:
Best Picture: Patton − 20th Century Fox 
Best Director: Franklin J. SchaffnerPatton (Darryl F. Zanuck accepted on Schaffner's behalf) 
Best Actor: George C. ScottPatton (declined) - Darryl F. Zanuck accepted on his behalf 
Best Actress: Glenda JacksonWomen in Love  (Anne Francis accepted on Jackson's behalf) 
Best Supporting Actor: John MillsRyan's Daughter  (award accepted by Juliet Mills on his behalf) 
Best Supporting Actress: Helen HayesAirport  (with Rosalind Russell accepting on behalf of Hayes)
(The Academy Awards for 1970's Best Films were presented on April 15th, 1971) 

The Golden Globes told a slightly different story ...

Their big winners included:

Best Actress: Ali MacGrawLove Story 

Comedy or Musical: 


>>>What's the deal???  Was there some type of actors strike going on at the time? (kk)
Hi, Kent:
I pulled my Oscar book off the shelf for this one. 
There was no strike or anything ... just a lot of different situations. 
The Best Actor and Actress were easy: George C. Scott had even declined the nomination. He didn't think much of the Academy or its awards. Glenda Jackson was home in England. 
As for the others, Helen Hayes was not in Hollywood at the time ... my book doesn't say where she was.
Schaffner was making "Nicholas and Alexandra" in Europe.
There are a couple of mistakes in your list ... 
Juliet Mills accepted for Glenda Jackson, not Anne Francis ... and John Mills accepted for himself.
There ya go!
My list came from the ever-reliable Wikipedia!!!
I tried several other sources to corroborate Hil's findings but came up empty.  However, I DID remember that The Beatles won an Academy Award that year for Best Music / Motion Picture Score for "Let It Be" ... and Quincy Jones (who was also the musical director for the Oscars telecast) accepted the award on THEIR behalf, too.  (Man, NOBODY was there!!!)
The Beatles also won a Grammy for "Let It Be" that year ... for which a very casually dressed Paul McCartney showed up (with his wife Linda) to accept the award.

According to The Nielsen Ratings, these were The Top 30 Shows on TV for the 1970-71: 

1 Marcus Welby, M.D.  ABC (29.6)
4 Ironside  NBC (25.7)
5 Gunsmoke  CBS (25.5)
7 Hawaii Five-O  CBS (25.0)
8 Medical Center  CBS (24.5)
9 Bonanza  NBC (23.9)
10 The F.B.I.  ABC (23.0)
11 The Mod Squad   ABC (22.7)
12 Adam-12  NBC (22.6)
15 Mayberry R.F.D.  CBS (22.3)
16 Hee Haw  CBS (21.4)
17 Mannix   CBS (21.3)
18 The Men from Shiloh  NBC (21.2)
19 My Three Sons  CBS (20.8)
20 The Doris Day Show   CBS (20.7)
21 The Smith Family  ABC (20.6)
22 The Mary Tyler Moore Show  CBS (20.3)
23 NBC Saturday Movie  NBC (20.1)
24 The Dean Martin Show  NBC (20.0)
25 The Carol Burnett Show  CBS (19.8)
27 NBC Monday Movie  NBC (19.8)
28 ABC Sunday Movie  ABC (19.7) 
29 The Jim Nabors Hour  CBS (19.5)
30 CBS Thursday Movie CBS (19.3)
Wow!  I don't remember TV being so lame back then!!!  
Out of The Top 30 Shows shown on this list, I can't say that I was a regular viewer of half a dozen of them!  (In fact, there are at least another half dozen shows on this list that I have never even seen a single episode of ... and two or three of those that I've never even heard of!  "The Smith Family"???  A Top 30 show?!?!)

"The Mary Tyler Moore Show" was brand new and hadn't hit its stride yet ... and shows like "Gunsmoke" and "Bonanza" were well past their prime.
Still, "Laugh-In" came across as something new, different and exciting (and folks obviously also seemed to enjoy the poor man's version, "Hee Haw") ... while I looked forward to "The Dean Martin Show."  (Yes, he was one of my mom's favorites ... but I secretly enjoyed it, too!)