A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a 1945 American drama film that marked the debut of Elia Kazan as a dramatic film director. Adapted by Tess Slesinger and Frank Davis from the 1943 novel by Betty Smith, the film focuses on an impoverished but aspirational, second-generation Irish-American family living in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, in the early 20th century. Peggy Ann Garner received the Academy Juvenile Award for her performance as Francie Nolan, the adolescent girl at the center of the coming-of-age story. Other stars are Dorothy McGuire, Joan Blondell, Lloyd Nolan, Ted Donaldson, and James Dunn, who received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of Francie’s father.
The screenplay was adapted for radio in 1949, for a musical play in 1951, and for a television film in 1974. In 2010, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.