A Look Back at the 1940s & 1950s – John Wayne

A Look Back at the 1940s & 1950s

John Wayne only broke through as a major motion picture star as the 1940’s were about to dawn, and during World War II, he became a prolific performer, mainly focusing his efforts on a series of war pictures designed to boost American morale and entertain at the same time. As the war ended and the decade came to a close, the industry began hurling accolades at Wayne, starting on January 25, 1950, when he placed his footprints into the famous concrete at Sid Grauman’s Chinese Theater, signifying his status as a favorite among critics and audiences alike. That same year, he was given Laurel Award, presented by the Motion Picture Exhibitors organization for being their Topliner Star that year—an award he won again in 1950, 1953, 1954, and again for Best Performance over a Five-Year Period at the Box Office between 1948-53, and several more times over the years. The Motion Picture Herald named him “Star of the Decade” between 1950-1960, and there were several other similar honors. But it was Wayne’s performance as Sergeant John M. Stryker in 1940’s “Sands of Iwo Jima” that caused the biggest celebration of Wayne’s coming-of-age as an actor. That role earned him France’s Victoire du Cinema Award, the Photoplay Magazine Award, and most importantly, his first Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences Academy Award Nomination in 1950. By 1952, the Foreign Press Association had given him their World’s Most Popular Star award, Photoplay Magazine gave him another award for his performance in “The Quiet Man” that year, and he found himself on the cover of Time Magazine in 1952, as well. He also won the Golden Globe’s Henrietta Award in 1953, and was selected the Independent Film Journal’s top money actor for the years 1951-55, among many other accolades.

1949
Received LAUREL AWARD from Motion Picture Exhibitors for Topliner Star

1950-1960
Voted STAR OF THE DECADE by Motion Picture Herald

1950
Received LAUREL AWARD from Motion Picture Exhibitors for Screen King of the Year

1950
Won France’s VICTOIRE du CINEMA AWARD for best performance for “Sands of Iwo Jima”

1950
Nominated by Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences for best performance in “Sands of Iwo Jima” playing the role of “Sergeant John M. Stryker” (1949) – 22nd annual academy awards held on March 23rd, 1950.

1950
Won a PHOTOPLAY MAGAZINE AWARD for his performance in “Sands of Iwo Jima”

1950
Voted number 1 actor by Motion Picture Herald

1950
Won the first official SILVER SPURS AWARD

1952
Received a plaque from Interstate Theatre Circuit for “Outstanding Contribution to Motion Pictures”

1951
Voted number 1 actor by Motion Picture Herald

1952
Won WORLD FAVORITE FILM ACTOR AWARD from Foreign Press Association

1952
Won MOST POPULAR STAR AWARD from Modern Screen Magazine

1952
Won a PHOTOPLAY MAGAZINE AWARD for his performance in “The Quiet Man”

1952
Featured on the cover of Time Magazine March 5, 1952

1948-1953
John Wayne given LAUREL AWARD by Motion Picture Exhibitors for best performance in a five year period for his performance in “Sands of Iwo Jima”

1953
Won LAUREL AWARD from Motion Picture Exhibitors for Best Dramatic Performance for “Hondo”

1953
Won MOST POPULAR STAR AWARD from Modern Screen Magazine

1953
Voted FAVORITE ACTOR OF THE YEAR in Canton, Ohio’s National Poll

1953
Voted MOST POPULAR ACTOR by Independent Theatre Owners Poll of Arkansas

1953
Won Golden Globe’s HENRIETTA AWARD (World Film Favorite Male) at the 11th annual awards presentation

1954
Received a citation for cooperation from the Hollywood Press Association

1954
Won FAVORITE MOVIE ACTOR AWARD from the Woman’s Home Companion Magazine

1954
Voted number 1 actor by Motion Picture Herald

1954
Won LAUREL AWARD from Motion Picture Exhibitors for Best Dramatic Performance for “High and Mighty”

1954
Won STAR OF STARS AWARD from Modern Screen Magazine Awards

1951-1955
Independent Film Journal’s top money actor

1956
Received a CITY PARLIAMENT AWARD in Berlin, Germany for his performance in “The Conqueror”

1958
Received SILVER LIFETIME MEMBERSHIP CARD from the International Actors Guild

1958
Nominated for GOLDEN LAUREL’S Favorite Male Star; came in 7th place

1959
Won an award from the Headliners Club of Austin, Texas for “The Alamo”

1959
Nominated for GOLDEN LAUREL’S Favorite Male Star; came in 8th place