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365 Days of Oscar: William Wyler Leads the Pack

William Wyler was born on this day 122 years earlier. He holds the record of twelve nominations for the Academy Award for Best Director. For his oeuvre of work, Wyler was awarded the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, the Directors Guild of America Lifetime Achievement Award, and the American Film Institute Life Achievement Award.

Wyler immigrated to the United States in 1921 where he worked first for Universal Studios in New York before moving to Los Angeles. By 1925, he was the youngest director at Universal, and in 1929 he directed Hell’s Heroes, Universal’s first sound production filmed entirely on location. Wyler went on to win the Academy Award for Best Director three times, for Mrs. Miniver, The Best Years of Our Lives, and Ben-Hur, all of which also won for Best Picture. He was Oscar-nominated for Dodsworth, Wuthering Heights, The Letter, The Little Foxes, The Heiress, Detective Story, Roman Holiday, Friendly Persuasion, and The Collector.

He also directed fourteen actors to win Oscars, the all-time record.

This article is part of a special year-long series of anecdotes, reflections and thoughts about the Academy Awards.