On February 18, 1929, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released their monthly newsletter containing the winners of the first-ever Academy Awards. Though the ceremony would not happen until May 1929, let's mark the occasion with some fun Academy Awards trivia questions.
Who Won "Best Picture" at the First Academy Awards Ceremony? Technically, no one. The First Academy Awards consisted of 12 different awards—just half of what you'll see at this year's ceremony on March 4. Included among the "Best Actor" and "Best Actress" awards were now-extinct nominations like "Best Unique and Artistic Picture" and two separate "Best Director" awards for comedies and dramas. There was also a category known as "Outstanding Picture" which the 1927 film Wings won. Today, this category is known as "Best Picture," and Wings is widely regarded as the first film to win the award.
Why is the Gold-Plated Statuette Known as an "Oscar" Today? After the Academy determined they needed an award to honor the best films each year, MGM art director Cedric Gibbons designed the statuette of a golden knight on top of a reel of film holding a sword. The Academy then had Los Angeles sculptor George Stanley create the statuette, whose official name is "the Academy Award of Merit." The origins of the "Oscar" nickname aren’t entirely clear, though the most popular story is that the Academy librarian, Margaret Herrick (who would eventually become the executive director) remarked that the statuette looked like her Uncle Oscar the first time she saw it. It wasn't until 1939 that the Academy officially adopted the nickname, but even before that, the name was widely known thanks to Hollywood columnist Sidney Skolsky. Skolsky used the name in an article about Katharine Hepburn’s first Best Actress win.
Who Has Hosted the Academy Awards Ceremony the Most Times? This year, Jimmy Kimmel hosts the Oscars for his second time (he hosted in 2017 as well), joining the ranks of the 73 other hosts the show has seen over the years. Several actors and actresses have hosted multiple shows, including Whoopi Goldberg and Jack Lemmon (both four-time hosts), Johnny Carson (five-time host), and Billy Crystal (eight-time host). But none of them even come close to Bob Hope, who hosted the show a record 18 times during his lifetime. The last time he hosted was 1978.
What is the Only Movie to Have Won Every Single Category Where it was Nominated? Nope, it wasn't Titanic. While James Cameron's masterpiece did win eleven Oscars (along with 1959's Ben-Hur), the only movie to make a clean sweep at the Academy Awards is Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings: Return of the King in 2004. Included in the eleven awards were "Best Picture" and "Best Director," but no awards for the actors in the film.