Entertainment

Complete List of Every Best Motion Picture Golden Globe Winner Ever

On Feb. 28, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) will reveal the winners of the 78th annual Golden Globe Awards, and we’re already popping popcorn!

But you may notice there are a lot more films in contention than at the Academy Awards. That’s because virtually since the HFPA — a non-profit organization of entertainment industry journalists and photographers that consists of about 90 members — began handing out its signature shiny awards in 1944, they’ve had a different idea about what “best picture” means.

Though the ceremony initially awarded just one prize to one film, in its ninth year the organizers split the idea of a “best picture” into two: One for drama, and one for a musical or comedy. Sometimes, this can confuse us: How, exactly, did “The Martian” get called a musical or a comedy in 2016? And why was there no musical or comedy award given in 1954? (Your guess is as good as the experts’.) And what’s with all those ties for musical/comedy in the 1960s?

Answers or no, we are moving forward to the latest and greatest from the strange year of 2020, in which TV and film had a tendency to overlap. So as we wait to see who’ll take honors like the Golden Globe for best director, actor — and in all those TV categories — let’s look back at every film honored by HFPA as either a comedy, a drama or a musical through the years.

Here’s the full list of last year’s winners, and take note: The year listed is the year the award was given, not necessarily the year the film came out.

The Golden Globes Best Picture Winners List: The Early Years

  • 1944 – “The Song of Bernadette”
  • 1945 – “Going My Way”
  • 1946 – “The Lost Weekend”
  • 1947 – “The Best Years of Our Lives”
  • 1948 – “Gentleman’s Agreement”
  • 1949 – “Johnny Belinda” (tied with) “The Treasure of the Sierra Madre”
  • 1950 – “All the King’s Men”
  • 1951 – “Sunset Boulevard”

Erich von Stroheim (1885 – 1957, left) as Max von Mayerling, and Gloria Swanson (1899 – 1983) as Norma Desmond in the final scene of ‘Sunset Boulevard’, directed by Billy Wilder, 1950.
Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

The Golden Globes Best Picture Winners List: Best Drama

  • 1952 – “A Place in the Sun”
  • 1953 – “The Greatest Show on Earth”
  • 1954 – “The Robe”
  • 1955 – “On the Waterfront”

Richard Davalos standing behind a sitting Julie Harris and James Dean in a scene from the film ‘East Of Eden’, 1955.
Warner Brothers/Getty Images

  • 1956 – “East of Eden”
  • 1957 – “Around the World in 80 Days”
  • 1958 – “The Bridge on the River Kwai”
  • 1959 – “The Defiant Ones”
  • 1960 – “Ben-Hur”
  • 1961 – “Spartacus”
  • 1962 – “The Guns of Navarone”
  • 1963 – “Lawrence of Arabia”
  • 1964 – “The Cardinal”
  • 1965 – “Becket”

SPAIN – 1965: (L-R) Actors Julie Christie and Rod Steiger dancing in a scene from the film “Dr. Zhivago.”
Dmitri Kessel/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images

  • 1966 – “Doctor Zhivago”
  • 1967 – “A Man for All Seasons”
  • 1968 – “In the Heat of the Night”
  • 1969 – “The Lion in Winter”
  • 1970 – “Anne of the Thousand Days”
  • 1971 – “Love Story”
  • 1972 – “The French Connection”
  • 1973 – “The Godfather”
  • 1974 – “The Exorcist”

Swedish actor Max von Sydow and American actress Linda Blair on the set of The Exorcist, based on the novel by William Peter Blatty and directed by William Friedkin.
Warner Bros. Pictures/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images

  • 1975 – “Chinatown”
  • 1976 – “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”
  • 1977 – “Rocky”
  • 1978 – “The Turning Point”
  • 1979 – “Midnight Express”
  • 1980 – “Kramer vs. Kramer”
  • 1981 – “Ordinary People”
  • 1982 – “On Golden Pond”

UNITED STATES – 1981: Actors (L-R) Henry Fonda, Doug McKeon and Katharine Hepburn in a scene from the film “On Golden Pond.”
John Bryson/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images

  • 1983 – “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial”
  • 1984 – “Terms of Endearment”
  • 1985 – “Amadeus”
  • 1986 – “Out of Africa”
  • 1987 – “Platoon”
  • 1988 – “The Last Emperor”
  • 1989 – “Rain Man”
  • 1990 – “Born on the Fourth of July”
  • 1991 – “Dances with Wolves”
  • 1992 – “Bugsy”
  • 1993 – “Scent of a Woman”
  • 1994 – “Schindler’s List”
  • 1995 – “Forrest Gump”
  • 1996 – “Sense and Sensibility”
  • 1997 – “The English Patient”
  • 1998 – “Titanic”

Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio dancing in a scene from the film ‘Titanic’, 1997.
20th Century-Fox/Getty Images

  • 1999 – “Saving Private Ryan”
  • 2000 – “American Beauty”
  • 2001 – “Gladiator”
  • 2002 – “A Beautiful Mind”
  • 2003 – “The Hours”
  • 2004 – “The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King”
  • 2005 – “The Aviator”
  • 2006 – “Brokeback Mountain”
  • 2007 – “Babel”
  • 2008 – “Atonement”
  • 2009 – “Slumdog Millionaire”
  • 2010 – “Avatar”
  • 2011 – “The Social Network”
  • 2012 – “The Descendants”
  • 2013 – “Argo”
  • 2014 – “12 Years a Slave”
  • 2015 – “Boyhood”
  • 2016 – “The Revenant”
  • 2017 – “Moonlight”
  • 2018 – “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
  • 2019 – “Bohemian Rhapsody”
  • 2020 – “1917”

The Golden Globes Best Picture Winners List: Comedy or Musical

Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron performing in a scene from the film ‘An American In Paris’, 1951. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer/Getty Images

  • 1952 – “An American in Paris”
  • 1953 – “With a Song in My Heart”
  • 1954 – (None given)
  • 1955 – “Carmen Jones”
  • 1956 – “Guys and Dolls”
  • 1957 – “The King and I”
  • 1958 – “Les Girls”
  • 1959 – “Gigi” (tied with) “Auntie Mame”
  • 1960 – “Porgy and Bess” (tied with) “Some Like it Hot”
  • 1961 – “Song Without End” (tied with) “The Apartment”

Actress Natalie Wood and Richard Beymer in a scene from the movie “West Side Story” Donaldson Collection/Getty Images

  • 1962 – “West Side Story” (tied with) “A Majority of One”
  • 1963 – “The Music Man” (tied with) “That Touch of Mink”
  • 1964 – “Tom Jones”
  • 1965 – “My Fair Lady”
  • 1966 – “The Sound of Music”
  • 1967 – “The Russians Are Coming, the Russians are Coming”
  • 1968 – “The Graduate”
  • 1969 – “Oliver!”
  • 1970 – “The Secret of Santa Vittoria”

Elliot Gould (left), US actor, talking with a uniformed officer smoking a cigarette, and Donald Sutherland (right), Canadian actor, examining an x-ray in a publicity still issued for the film, ‘M*A*S*H’, 1970. The black comedy, directed by Robert Altman (1925-2006), starred Gould as ‘Captain John Francis Xavier ‘Trapper John’ McIntyre’, and Sutherland as ‘Capt. Benjamin Franklin ‘Hawkeye’ Pierce’.
Silver Screen Collection/Getty Images

  • 1971 – “M*A*S*H”
  • 1972 – “Fiddler on the Roof”
  • 1973 – “Cabaret”
  • 1974 – “American Graffiti”
  • 1975 – “The Longest Yard”
  • 1976 – “The Sunshine Boys”
  • 1977 – “A Star is Born”
  • 1978 – “The Goodbye Girl”
  • 1979 – “Heaven Can Wait”
  • 1980 – “Breaking Away”
  • 1981 – “Coal Miner’s Daughter”
  • 1982 – “Arthur”
  • 1983 – “Tootsie”
  • 1984 – “Yentl”
  • 1985 – “Romancing the Stone”

American actors Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner on the set of Romancing the Stone directed by Robert Zemeckis.
Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via Getty Images

  • 1986 – “Prizzi’s Honor”
  • 1987 – “Hannah and Her Sisters”
  • 1988 – “Hope and Glory”
  • 1989 – “Working Girl”
  • 1990 – “Driving Miss Daisy”
  • 1991 – “Green Card”
  • 1992 – “Beauty and the Beast”
  • 1993 – “The Player”
  • 1994 – “Mrs. Doubtfire”
  • 1995 – “The Lion King”
  • 1996 – “Babe”
  • 1997 – “Evita”
  • 1998 – “As Good as It Gets”
  • 1999 – “Shakespeare in Love”
  • 2000 – “Toy Story 2”
  • 2001 – “Almost Famous”
  • 2002 – “Moulin Rouge!”
  • 2003 – “Chicago”
  • 2004 – “Lost in Translation”
  • 2005 – “Sideways”
  • 2006 – “Walk the Line”
  • 2007 – “Dreamgirls”
  • 2008 – “Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”
  • 2009 – “Vicky Cristina Barcelona”
  • 2010 – “The Hangover”
  • 2011 – “The Kids are All Right”
  • 2012 – “The Artist”
  • 2013 – “Les Misérables”
  • 2014 – “American Hustle”
  • 2015 – “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • 2016 – “The Martian”
  • 2017 – “La La Land”
  • 2018 – “Lady Bird”
  • 2019 – “Green Book”
  • 2020 – “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”

This story first appeared on TODAY.com. More from TODAY:


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