Academy Awards Acceptance Speeches | Margaret Herrick Library | Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences

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Year: 1993 (66th) Academy Awards

Category: Directing

Film Title: Schindler's List

Winner: Steven Spielberg

Presenter: Clint Eastwood

Date & Venue: March 21, 1994; Dorothy Chandler Pavilion

STEVEN SPIELBERG:
I actually, I have friends who have won this before, but -- and I swear -- I have never held one before. This is the first time I've ever had one of these in my hand. Oh, dear.

Let me just start by saying that this never could have happened, this never could have gotten started without a survivor named Poldek Pfefferberg who Oskar Schindler saved from Auschwitz, from Belsen. He's the man who talked Thomas Keneally into writing the book. I owe him such a debt. All of us owe him such a debt. He has carried the story of Oskar Schindler to all of us. A man of complete obscurity who makes us wish and hope for Oskar Schindlers in all of our lives.

I have to thank, I want to thank Sid Sheinberg for giving me the book. Thank you, Sid. I want to thank Steve Zaillian for a screenplay of inordinate restraint. I have great actors in this movie. Liam, thank you. Ralph, thank you. Ben Kingsley, thank you. I want to thank my wife, who's here with me tonight, for rescuing me ninety-two days in a row in Krakow, Poland, last winter when things got just too unbearable. And my mom who's here, who is my lucky charm, whom I love very, very much. And to the six million who can't be watching this among the one billion watching this telecast tonight. Thank you.

© Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
[Note: All winners are present except where noted; NOT all winners may have spoken.]