The Santa Monica Civic Auditorium in Santa Monica, California hosted the 34th Academy Awards ceremony on April 9, 1962, recognizing the finest in motion pictures from the previous year. Bob Hope presided over them; this was his thirteenth time doing so.
Although his picture La Dolce Vita did not win the Best Picture nomination, legendary director Federico Fellini did receive his first nomination for Best Director.
Sophia Loren became the seventh person to ever win the Best Actress Oscar for a movie with just one other nomination, a feat that wouldn’t happen again until 1989. She also became the first actor to win an acting Oscar for a non-English speaking part.
The most memorable moment of the evening occurred when Bob Hope was presented with a handmade Oscar by New York City cabbie Stan Berman after making it past security and onto the stage. The Hustlers Jackie Gleason and Judy Garland were both hot favorites to take home the best supporting actor and actress prizes. But as part of the West Side Story victory, George Chakiris and Rita Moreno vanquished them. The musical movie ended up taking home eleven Academy Awards in total, including Best Picture. Until 2007, when Joel and Ethan Coen won No Country for Old Men, two filmmakers had never previously shared the prize in the field of directing.