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1941 Retro-Hugo Awards

The World Science Fiction Society Constitution allows, but does not require, a Worldcon held 50, 75, or 100 years after a Worldcon at which no Hugo Awards were presented to present Retrospective Hugo Awards for works that would have been eligible for that year’s Hugo Awards if they had been held. (Once Retro-Hugos have been presented for a given year, no future Worldcon may present Retro-Hugos for that year.) The 1941 Worldcon did not present Hugo Awards. MidAmeriCon II elected to present Retro-Hugo Awards for works first published in 1940 that would have been eligible for the 1941 Hugo Awards had there been Awards presented in 1941.

The 1941 Retro-Hugo Awards were presented at a ceremony on Thursday, August 18, 2016 at MidAmeriCon II, the 74th World Science Fiction Convention. Administration of the 1941 Retro-Hugo Awards is exclusively the responsibility of MidAmeriCon II. The Hugo Awards are not administered by the Hugo Awards Web Site.

481 valid nominating ballots (475 electronically-submitted and 6 paper) were received and counted. Members of the 2015, 2016, and 2017 Worldcons as of the end of January 2016 were eligible to make up to five equally-weighted nominations in each category.

After the ceremony, the Award Administrators released detailed voting breakdowns in each category and a list of the top 15 nominees in each category, along with the number of nominations received by each. Direct administrative questions about the 1941 Retro Hugo Awards to the MidAmeriCon II Hugo Administration Subcommittee.

Best Novel (352 nominating ballots)

  • Slan by A.E. Van Vogt (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Dec 1940) - Winner

  • Gray Lensman by E.E. “Doc” Smith (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Jan 1940)

  • The Ill‐Made Knight by T.H. White (Collins)

  • The Reign of Wizardry by Jack Williamson (Unknown, Mar 1940)

  • Kallocain by Karin Boye (Bonnier)

Best Novella (318 nominating ballots)

  • “If This Goes On…” by Robert A. Heinlein (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Feb 1940) - Winner

  • “Magic, Inc.” by Robert A. Heinlein (Unknown, Sept 1940)

  • “Coventry” by Robert A. Heinlein (Astounding Science‐Fiction, July 1940)

  • “The Mathematics of Magic” by L. Sprague de Camp and Fletcher Pratt (Unknown, Aug 1940)

  • “The Roaring Trumpet” by L. Sprague de Camp and Fletcher Pratt (Unknown, May 1940)

Best Novelette (310 nominating ballots)

  • “The Roads Must Roll” by Robert A. Heinlein (Astounding Science‐Fiction, June 1940) - Winner

  • “Blowups Happen” by Robert A. Heinlein (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Sept 1940)

  • “It!” by Theodore Sturgeon (Unknown, Aug 1940)

  • “Farewell to the Master” by Harry Bates (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Oct 1940)

  • “Vault of the Beast” by A.E. Van Vogt (Astounding Science‐Fiction, August 1940)

  • “Darker Than You Think” by Jack Williamson (Unknown, Dec 1940)

Note: “Darker Than You Think” was mistakenly categorized as a novelette and initially announced as a finalist, but later disqualified. The story is a novella, but did not receive sufficient nominations to be a finalist in that category.

Best Short Story (324 nominating ballots)

  • “Robbie” by Isaac Asimov (Super Science Stories, Sept 1940)

  • “Requiem” by Robert A. Heinlein (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Jan 1940)

  • “Martian Quest” by Leigh Brackett (Astounding Science‐Fiction, Feb 1940)

  • “The Stellar Legion” by Leigh Brackett (Planet Stories, Winter 1940)

  • “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius” by Jorge Luis Borges (Sur, 1940)

Best Related Work

  • Category dropped

Best Graphic Story (92 nominating ballots)

  • Batman #1 (Detective Comics, Spring 1940)

  • Flash Gordon: “The Ice Kingdom of Mongo” by Alex Raymond and Don Moore (King Features Syndicate, Apr 1940)

  • The Origin of the Spirit by Will Eisner (Register and Tribune Syndicate, June 1940)

  • Captain Marvel: “Introducing Captain Marvel” by Bill Parker and C. C. Beck (Whiz Comics #2, Feb 1940)

  • The Spectre: “The Spectre”/”The Spectre Strikes!” by Jerry Siegel and Bernard Baily (More Fun Comics #52/53, Feb/Mar 1940)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form (250 nominating ballots)

  • Fantasia written by Joe Grant and Dick Huemer, directed by Samuel Armstrong et al. (Walt Disney Productions, RKO Radio Pictures)

  • The Thief of Bagdad written by Lajos Bíró and Miles Malleson, directed by Michael Powell, Ludwig Berger, and Tim Whelan (London Films, United Artists)

  • Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe written by George H. Plympton, Basil Dickey, and Barry Shipman, directed by Ford Beebe and Ray Taylor (Universal Pictures)

  • One Million B.C. written by Mickell Novack, George Baker, and Joseph Frickert, directed by Hal Roach and Hal Roach, Jr. (United Artists)

  • Dr. Cyclops written by Tom Kilpatrick, directed by Ernest B. Schoedsack (Paramount Pictures)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form (123 nominating ballots)

  • Pinocchio written by Ted Sears et al., directed by Ben Sharpsteen and Hamilton Luske (Walt Disney Productions, RKO Radio Pictures)

  • Merrie Melodies: “A Wild Hare” written by Rich Hogan, directed by Tex Avery (Warner Bros.)

  • Looney Tunes: “You Ought to Be in Pictures” written by Jack Miller, directed by Friz Freleng (Warner Bros.)

  • The Adventures of Superman: “The Baby from Krypton” written by George Ludlam, produced by Frank Chase (WOR)

  • The Invisible Man Returns written by Joe May, Kurt Siodmak, and Lester Cole, directed by Joe May (Universal Pictures)

Best Editor, Short Form (183 nominating ballots)

  • John W. Campbell

  • Frederik Pohl

  • Dorothy McIlwraith

  • Raymond A. Palmer

  • Mort Weisinger

Best Editor, Long Form

  • Category dropped

Best Professional Artist (117 nominating ballots)

  • Virgil Finlay

  • Hannes Bok

  • Margaret Brundage

  • Frank R. Paul

  • Edd Cartier

  • Hubert Rogers

Best Fanzine (63 nominating ballots)

  • Futuria Fantasia by Ray Bradbury

  • Le Zombie by Arthur Wilson “Bob” Tucker

  • Spaceways by Harry Warner, Jr.

  • Voice of the Imagi‐Nation by Forrest J Ackerman and Morojo

  • Novacious by Forrest J Ackerman and Morojo

Best Fan Writer (70 nominating ballots)

  • Ray Bradbury

  • Forrest J Ackerman

  • Bob Tucker

  • H. P. Lovecraft

  • Harry Warner

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