award shows The Best Oscar-Winning Screenplays  

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List Rules Vote up the best screenplays that have won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay

What is best Oscar-winning screenplay? This list includes every film that has won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay, with titles such as “Her,” “Pulp Fiction,” “Annie Hall,” and “Good Will Hunting.” The Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay was created in 1940, first presented at the thirteenth Academy Awards.

Movies have the ability to make us feel. They make us want to believe, be inspired, and live vicariously through the stories we see on screen. It all begins with the words written on the page. Without dialogue that grabs us and an enchanting story, movies fall flat, even with the best actors and directors. The best of these screenplays are often bestowed with an Academy Award nomination, and those that are truly the best take home the Oscar.

Screenplays have the ability to take us places, into the lives of those we’ve never imagined. Screenplays give directors and the actors the framework in which to work. These best Oscar-winning screenplays provide the kind of emotional connection that filmmakers hope people seek in entertainment. They are moving, saddening, and romantic. These screenplays vary in their genre but they all equally fascinating.

Vote up the best Academy Award-winning screenplays below and see how these Oscar winning scripts rank.
list ordered by

1
106 47
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Pulp Fiction 1994 - Quentin Tarantino, Roger Avary

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2
95 40
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Good Will Hunting 1997 - Ben Affleck, Matt Damon

3
84 35
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The Usual Suspects 1994 - Christopher McQuarrie

4
60 20
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Chinatown 1974 - Robert Towne

5
62 22
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Fargo 1996 - Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

6
65 26
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Citizen Kane 1941 - Herbert J. Mankiewicz, Orson Welles

7
52 21
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The Sting 1973 - David S. Ward

8
54 24
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Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid 1969 - William Goldman

9
64 37
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Django Unchained 2012 - Quentin Tarantino

10
50 25
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Rain Man 1988 - Ronald Bass, Barry Morrow

11
50 25
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Network 1976 - Paddy Chayefsky

12
44 21
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The Apartment 1960 - I.A.L. Diamond, Billy Wilder

13
45 22
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Gandhi 1982 - John Briley

14
47 24
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Patton 1970 - Francis Ford Coppola, Edmund H. North

15
51 29
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Dead Poets Society 1989 - Tom Schulman

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16
54 32
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The King's Speech 2010 - David Seidler

17
44 24
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Thelma & Louise 1991 - Callie Khouri

18
46 27
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Little Miss Sunshine 2006 - Michael Arndt

19
40 22
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Sunset Boulevard 1950 - Billy Wilder, Charles Brackett, D.M. Marshman, Jr.

20
40 23
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The Producers 1967 - Mel Brooks

21
38 22
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On the Waterfront 1954 - Budd Schulberg

22
40 26
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Annie Hall 1977 - Woody Allen, Marshall Brickman

23
37 24
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Guess Who's Coming to Dinner 1967 - William Rose

24
44 31
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American Beauty 1999 - Alan Ball

25
33 21
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Dog Day Afternoon 1975 - Frank Pierson

26
39 29
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Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind 2004 - Charlie Kaufman, Pierre Bismuth, Michel Gondry

27
31 22
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Splendor in the Grass 1961 - William Inge

28
30 22
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Witness 1985 - William Kelley, Earl Wallace, Pamela Wallace

29
38 31
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Titanic 1953 - Charles Brackett, Richard Breen, Walter Reisch

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30
38 31
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Juno 2007 - Diablo Cody

31
33 26
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Her 2014 - Spike Jonze

32
43 37
Ghost is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Screenplays
Ghost 1990 - Bruce Joel Rubin

33
31 28
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The Hurt Locker 2008 - Mark Boal

34
22 18
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Birdman 2014 - Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. & Armando Bo

35
28 25
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Chariots of Fire 1981 - Colin Welland

36
23 20
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Coming Home 1978 - Robert C. Jones, Waldo Salt, Nancy Dowd

37
29 27
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Milk 2008 - Dustin Lance Black

38
7 2
Manchester by the Sea is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Screenplays
Manchester by the Sea  Kenneth Lonergan

39
26 24
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Almost Famous 2000 - Cameron Crowe

40
21 19
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The Defiant Ones 1958 - Natan E. Douglas, Harold Jacob Smith

41
23 22
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Woman of the Year 1942 - Michael Kanin, Ring Lardner Jr.

42
23 23
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Hannah and Her Sisters 1986 - Woody Allen

43
23 23
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An American in Paris 1951 - Alan Jay Lerner

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44
25 27
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Moonstruck 1987 - John Patrick Shanley

45
22 24
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How the West Was Won 1962 - James Webb

46
20 22
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Places in the Heart 1984 - Robert Benton

47
19 21
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Tender Mercies 1983 - Horton Foote

48
19 21
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The Piano 1993 - Jane Campion

49
17 19
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Gosford Park 2001 - Julian Fellowes

50
19 24
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Father Goose 1964 - Peter Stone, Frank Tarloff