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Know It All
February 23, 2013, 05:00 AM
In 1929, the first year of the Academy Awards, it took host Douglas Fairbanks Sr. (1883-1939) only 10 minutes to hand out the statuettes. There were 12 categories then. There are 24 categories this year, which is the 81st broadcast of the awards show.

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During the 1930s, the winners of the Academy Awards were known prior to the awards ceremony. The winner's names were printed in the Los Angeles Times the day before the event. The tradition of the sealed envelope was started in 1941, adding suspense to the event.

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From 1959 to 1998, the Academy Awards took place on a Monday. Since 1999, the Academy Awards ceremony has been on Sundays.

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The Academy Awards was first televised in 1953 and was first broadcast in color in 1966.

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ABC has televised the Oscars since 1976 and is under contract to air the event through 2020.

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There are 5,755 members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that vote for the winners of the Academy Awards. 

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The Kodak Theatre in Hollywood has been the home of the Academy Awards since 2001. The theater was custom-built for the Academy Awards. It has an area for 1,500 members of the press and a "Winner's Walk" that leads directly from stage to the press area.

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The Kodak Company does not own the Kodak Theatre. They paid $75 million to have their company name on the auditorium that hosts Oscar night.

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Bob Hope (1903-2003) hosted the Oscars 18 times, Johnny Carson (1925-2005) hosted the glamorous event five times, Billy Crystal (born 1947) hosted eight times and Jerry Lewis (born 1926) has hosted the Oscars three times.

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Do you know what three films are tied for winning the most Oscars? See answer at end.

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Katharine Hepburn (1907-2003) has won the most Academy Awards for Best Actress. She won for "Morning Glory" in 1932, "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner," in 1967; "The Lion in Winter," in 1968; and "On Golden Pond," in 1981.

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Ventriloquist Edgar Bergen (1903-1978) received the only wooden Academy Award in history. It was an honorary Oscar for Bergen's creation of dummy Charlie McCarthy. The wooden Oscar, awarded in 1938, had a moveable mouth.

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Walt Disney (1901-1966) has won more Oscars than any other individual person. He had a total of 64 Oscar nominations, and won 26 Academy Awards.

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When an Oscar winner is announced the presenter does not say "And the winner is ..." That phrase was discontinued in 1989 at the 61st annual Academy Awards. Oscar presenters say "And the Oscar goes to ..."

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Shirley Temple (born 1928) presented a special Academy Award to Walt Disney for "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" in 1938. Disney was presented with one full-sized Oscar and seven miniature Oscars.

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The Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, presented during the Academy Awards, recognizes producers with consistent high quality motion picture production. Irving Thalberg (1899-1936) became the vice president of MGM at age 24, and supervised the studio's top productions in its heyday. Thalberg died of pneumonia at age 37. The award is a solid bronze sculpture of his head.

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Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980) never won an Academy Award for Best Director, although he was nominated for the award five times. Hitchcock did receive the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 1967.

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The first year that all five Best Picture nominees were in color was 1956.

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Answer: There are three movies that have won 11 Oscars each: "Ben-Hur," 1959; "Titanic," 1997; and "Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King," 2003.



Know It All is by Kerry McArdle. It runs in the weekend and Wednesday editions of the Daily Journal. Questions? Comments? Email knowitall@smdailyjournal.com or call 344-5200 ext. 114.


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