Who was the first actor to receive an Oscar posthumously?
The only actor to win an Oscar posthumously was Peter Finch, who won the Academy Award for Best Actor in 1977 for his role in the movie Network.
The British-Australian actor, who was also nominated for his role in Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971), died of a heart-attack on Jan. 14, 1977, in Beverly Hills, while promoting the movie. His widow, Aletha Finch, accepted the award at the 49th annual Academy Awards.
An Oscar has been awarded posthumously to several non-actors, the first being Sidney Howard, screenwriter of Gone With the Wind in 1939. Others include Edward G. Robinson, who was given a special honorary award by the Academy in 1973. And in 1993, "Hollywood 10" member Dalton Trumbo received a belated, posthumous award for writing the screenplay to 1953's Roman Holiday. The film had won an award for his "front" Ian McLellan Hunter.
—The Fact Monster