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Academy Award

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The Academy Awards, commonly known as The Oscars, are the most prominent film awards in the United States. The Awards are granted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, a professional honorary organization which, as of 2003, had a voting membership of 5,816. Actors (with a membership of 1,311) make up the largest voting bloc. The most recent awards were the 84th Academy Awards

HistoryEdit

The Academy Awards were the brainchild of MGM executive Louis B. Mayer in 1927. The industry was in need of a touch of a class and a public-relations coup. The awards served this purpose. The awards were first given at a banquet in the Blossom Room of the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel on May 16, 1929. The evening included a banquet, dancing and the presentation of awards. The winners had been announced three months prior, eliminating all suspense. The whole presentation took five minutes, as there were no speeches.

To qualify, a film had to open in Los Angeles during the twelve months ending on July 31 of the preceding year. The 1934 and later awards have all been based on openings in the previous calendar year. The 1932-33 awards were based on a 17-month qualifying period. The "opened in Los Angeles" clause allowed Charlie Chaplin to win his only voted Oscar for Limelight which was made in 1952, but did not open until 1972. The rules have changed since then so films more than two years old are not eligible.

NameEdit

The official name of the Oscar statuette is the "Academy Award of Merit." Made of gold-plated britannium, it is 13.5 inches (34 cm) tall and depicts a knight holding a crusader's sword standing on a reel of film. The Academy Award statuette was allegedly nicknamed Oscar when Academy librarian Margaret Herrick saw it on a table and said, "it looks just like my uncle Oscar!" The nickname stuck and is used almost as commonly as Academy Award, even by the Academy itself. In fact, the Academy's domain name is oscars.org and the official website for the Academy Awards is at oscars.com.

Awards nightEdit

The awards night itself is an elaborate extravaganza, with the invited guests walking up the red carpet in the creations of the most prominent fashion designers of the day. The ceremony and extravagant afterparties, including the Academy's Governors Ball, are televised around the world.

NominationsEdit

Today, according to Rules 2 and 3 of the official Academy Awards Rules, a film has to open in the previous calendar year (from midnight January 1 to midnight December 31) in Los Angeles County, California, to qualify. [1] Rule 2 states that a film must be "feature-length" (defined as 40 minutes) to qualify for an award (except for Short Subject awards, of course). It must also exist either on a 35mm or 70mm film print OR on a 24fps or 48fps progressive scan digital film print with a native resolution no lower than 1280x1024.

The members of each branch determine the nominees in their respective category, after which the entire membership votes for the winner in all categories. The ballot itself contains just the title of a work – not the persons involved – for all categories except acting.

Less subjectively, it is clear that movie studios spend large amounts of money on campaigning for their films. Around nomination and voting time, film trade publications are filled with ads headed "For Your Consideration". Miramax has been the most widely discussed (and arguably successful) studio to use this technique. An award can give a film a huge boost at the box office and make an artist an industry "power player" overnight. In the past few decades, the advent of VHS and DVD have given Academy Awards a new level of importance, as the attachment of a win or even nomination in a prominent category can dramatically increase sales and rentals. The Academy has made a public effort to crack down on these campaigns, but the results have been mixed. Such influence is nothing new: for example, it is widely believed William Randolph Hearst ran a campaign to ensure that Citizen Kane – a film regarded by many as the greatest of all time – did not receive any Academy Award nominations. The film ended up receiving only one trophy despite nominations in nine categories.

RulesEdit

Academy Award rules are reviewed annually. Recent rule changes include the following:

  • For 2003, the category names for the writing awards were simplified. The "Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published" category was renamed the "Adapted Screenplay" category. The category of "Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen" was renamed "Original Screenplay."
  • For 2002, a new category, Best Animated Feature, was established.
  • As of 2001, a film cannot appear on the Internet before its theatrical release and be eligible for an Oscar.
  • In 2000 (and again in 2003), rules were tightened to restrict Best Picture nominations and awards to producers who actually functioned as producers. Up to three producers are allowed per film. The 1998 Best Picture Oscar went to five producers for Shakespeare in Love.
  • The "Best Original Score" category has been continually tweaked. In the mid 1990s, it was split into two ("Best Dramatic Score" and "Best Comedy or Musical Score"), then merged back into one. The rules as to how much of the score has to be "original" (as opposed to derived from other scores in the series, as with leitmotifs, for example in the Star Wars or Lord of the Rings films) has also been changed many times.

The greatest number of Academy Awards won by a film is 11, a distinction shared by 3 films: Ben-Hur, Titanic, and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.

AwardsEdit

The "Academy Award of Merit" is given in many categories, including the following:

Special Awards, which are voted on by special committees, rather than by the Academy membership as a whole, include:

See alsoEdit

In Wikipedia:

External linksEdit

ReferencesEdit

Gail, K. & Piazza, J. (2002) The Academy Awards the Complete History of Oscar. Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, Inc.


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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Academy Award. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with MOVIEPEDIA, the text of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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