Entertainment

The Best Oscar-Winning Short Films  

Ranker Film
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List Rules Vote up the best short films to have won an Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film

What is best oscar-winning short film? This list has every film that has won an Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film including titles such as “The Music Box,” “Visas and Virtue,” “The Accountant,” and “Franz Kafka’s It’s a Wonderful Life.” The award has officially been called this since 1974, but this list includes all previous live action short film winners, stretching back to 1932 when the first short films were honored.

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. The best of these movies each year are bestowed with an Academy Award nomination, and those that are truly the best take home the Oscar. Short films are often the most thought provoking as they tell a story so succinctly, and can spend what time they have focusing on one main theme.

These best Oscar-winning short films provide the kind of emotional connection that filmmakers hope people seek in entertainment. They are moving, saddening, or comical. They provide the type of entertainment that is groundbreaking in their amazing yet short Vote up the best Academy Award-winning short films below.

list ordered by
1
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Curfew Fátima Ptacek, Shawn Christensen, Kim Allen
Curfew is a 2012 short drama film written and directed by Shawn Christensen.
2
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Chris Tashima, Diana Georger
Visas and Virtue is a 1997 narrative short film inspired by the true story of Holocaust rescuer Chiune "Sempo" Sugihara, who is known as "The Japanese Schindler". Sugihara ...more
3
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Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Sam Lufkin
The Music Box is a Laurel and Hardy short film comedy released in 1932. It was directed by James Parrott, produced by Hal Roach and distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The film, which depicts ...more
4
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Walton Goggins, Ray McKinnon
The Accountant is a 2001 American short comedy film directed by Ray McKinnon. It won an Academy Award at the 74th Academy Awards in 2002 for McKinnon and his wife Lisa Blount for Best Short ...more
5
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Toyland Matthias Paul, Torsten Michaelis, Julia Jäger
Toyland is a German 2007 short film directed and co-written by Jochen Alexander Freydank. It won the 2009 Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film.
6
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Brendan Gleeson, Rúaidhrí Conroy
Six Shooter is an Irish 2004 live action short film starring Brendan Gleeson and Rúaidhrí Conroy. The film earned several awards, including the Academy Award for Best Live Action
7
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Pierre Danny, Stéphane Fey, Roger Jacquet
As a Confederate spy is about to be hanged, the rope breaks and he falls to the water below. He dodges bullets and heads off for home. He finally reaches it, but as his wife hugs him he ...more
8
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God of Love Luke Matheny, Elizabeth Olin, David Ross
God of Love is a 2010 comedy short film written and directed by Luke Matheny. "Lounge-singing darts champion Raymond Goodfellow learns a surprising lesson about unrequited love when he ...more
9
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Claude Dauphin
Van Gogh is a 1948 short French film directed by Alain Resnais. It won an Academy Award in 1950 for Best Short Subject. It is a remake of a film made the previous year.
10
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Presents Professor Merrell Gage of USC, describing the life and career of Abraham Lincoln as he sculpts a lifelike bust of the 16th president, making physical changes in the subject's hair, ...more
11
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Wings Over Everest is a 1934 British short documentary film directed by Geoffrey Barkas and Ivor Montagu. It won an Academy Award in 1936 for Best Short Subject. It described the 1933 ...more
12
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Beyond the Line of Duty is a 1942 American short drama film directed by Lewis Seiler. It won an Academy Award at the 15th Academy Awards in 1943 for Best Short Subject.
13
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Richard E. Grant, Ken Stott, Phyllis Logan
Franz Kafka's It's a Wonderful Life is a short comic film for BBC Scotland. Written and directed by Peter Capaldi, it stars Richard E. Grant as Franz Kafka and co-stars Ken Stott. The title ...more
14
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Didi Conn, Tom McGowan, Rodney Saulsberry
Violet is a 1981 short film directed by Shelley Levinson. It won an Academy Award in 1982 for Best Short Subject.
15
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Andrea Katzenberger, Stefan Merki, Paul Outlaw
Schwarzfahrer is a 1993 German 12-minute short film directed by Pepe Danquart. It won an Academy Award in 1994 for Best Short Subject. The topic of the film is the daily racism a black man ...more
16
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Danielle Macdonald, Jackson Robert Scott, Jonathan Tucker
Skin is a 2018 short drama film, directed by Guy Nattiv. A destitute young man, raised by racist skinheads and notorious among white supremacists, turns his back on hatred and violence to ...more
17
How to Sleep is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Short Films
Robert Benchley
How to Sleep is a short film by Robert Benchley. Filmed and released by MGM in 1935, it features Benchley as a narrator as well as film subject, discussing four parts of sleep - causes, methods, ...more
18
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Robert Kennedy Remembered is a 1968 American short documentary film produced by Charles Guggenheim. It won an Academy Award in 1969 for Best Short Subject.
19
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Graham McNamee
Krakatoa is a 1933 American short documentary film produced by Joe Rock. It won the Academy Award in 1934 for Best Short Subject. Educational Pictures was the film distributor of the film. This ...more
20
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Wrestling Swordfish is a 1931 American short adventure film produced by Mack Sennett. It won an Academy Award in 1932 for Best Short Subject.
21
Declaration of Independence is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Short Films
John Litel, Rosella Towne
Declaration of Independence is a 1938 American short drama film directed by Crane Wilbur. It won an Academy Award at the 11th Academy Awards in 1939 for Best Short Subject.
22
Speaking of Animals and Their ... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Short Films
Gayne Whitman
Speaking of Animals and Their Families is a 1942 American short comedy film directed by Robert Carlisle and Jerry Fairbanks. It won an Academy Award in 1943 for Best Short Subject.
23
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The Private Life of the Gannets is a 1934 British short documentary film, directed by Julian Huxley, about a colony of Northern Gannet on the small rocky island of Grassholm, off the coast of ...more
24
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Claude Rains, Gale Sondergaard
Sons of Liberty is a 1939 American short drama film directed by Michael Curtiz, which tells the story of Haym Solomon. It won an Academy Award in 1940 for Best Short Subject.
25
The Public Pays is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Oscar-Winning Short Films
Richard Alexander, Barbara Bedford
The Public Pays is a 1936 short crime film directed by Errol Taggart. It won an Academy Award in 1937 for Best Short Subject.