Gone with the Wind is a 1939 epic historical romance film adapted from Margaret Mitchell’s Pulitzer-winning 1936 novel. It was produced by David O. Selznick of Selznick International Pictures and directed by Victor Fleming. Set in the 19th-century American South, the film tells the story of Scarlett O’Hara, the strong-willed daughter of a Georgia plantation owner, from her romantic pursuit of Ashley Wilkes, who is married to his cousin, Melanie Hamilton, to her marriage to Rhett Butler.
The movie is set against the backdrop of the American Civil War and Reconstruction era, the story is told from the perspective of white Southerners. The leading roles are portrayed by Vivien Leigh (Scarlett), Clark Gable (Rhett), Leslie Howard (Ashley), and Olivia de Havilland (Melanie).
Hattie McDaniel became the first African-American to win an Academy Award—beating out her co-star Olivia de Havilland who was also nominated in the same category—but was racially segregated from her co-stars at the awards ceremony at the Coconut Grove; she and her escort were made to sit at a separate table at the back of the room.
At the 12th Academy Awards held in 1940, Gone with the Wind set a record for Academy Award wins and nominations, winning in eight of the competitive categories it was nominated in, from a total of thirteen nominations. It won for Best Picture, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Interior Decoration and Best Editing, and received two further honorary awards for its use of equipment and color (it also became the first color film to win Best Picture).