Gone With The Wind’s Hattie McDaniel: 6 Things To Know About The First Black Oscar Winner


Hattie McDaniel's Oscar Win

On February 29th, 1940, at the 12th annual Academy Awards, Hattie McDaniel took home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Gone with the Wind, becoming the first Black Oscar winner in the awards show's prestigious history.

She Was Also The First Black Oscar Nominee

In addition to being the first Black Oscar winner, Hattie McDaniel also had the distinction of being the first Black Oscar nominee for her role in Gone with the Wind.

Hattie McDaniel Was Seated Separately From Her Co-Stars At The Oscars

While this ceremony was a historic evening for the annual awards show, Hattie McDaniel was still facing oppression during this ceremonial evening. The awards show took place at the Ambassador's Cocoanut Grove nightclub, which was whites only. The hotel allowed the actress to attend the event, but instead of sitting with Gone with the Wind‘s cast and crew, McDaniel was escorted to a segregated table, thus not allowing the recognized actress to celebrate with her collaborators on this prestigious evening.

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