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Empire & Sky Movies present coverage of the Academy Awards
100 Oscars Facts You Need To Know
Academy Award factoids to dazzle and impress friends and admirers!

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The 'unwinningest' actor in Oscar history is Peter O'Toole. He's been nominated eight times but has never won.

According to a 2001 study by the Annals of Internal Medicine, multiple Academy Award winners live up to six years longer than multiple losers. Thankfully no-one has told Peter O'Toole this.

If it wins, The Artist will be only the second silent film to collect an Oscar for Best Film. Howard Hughes' airborne spectacular Wings was the first in 1929.

Three animated films have received Best Picture nominations: Beauty And The Beast (1991), Up (2010) and Toy Story 3 (2011). Note that two of those squeaked in after the nominees for Best Picture increased to ten.

In 2002 John C. Reilly became the fourth person – after Claudette Colbert, Charles Laughton and Thomas Mitchell – to star in three Best Picture nominees in the same year (Chicago, The Hours and Gangs Of New York). They accrued 32 nominations in total.

If the lack of recognition for performance-captured acting seems harsh, it took until 1938 for the Academy to introduce an Oscar for Best Visual Effects. Willis O'Brien's ground-breaking work on King Kong in 1933 went unacknowledged.

The last black and white film to win Best Picture was Schindler's List (1993) and before that Billy Wilder's The Apartment (1960). The last film with a dog in it to win was, um, The King's Speech.

If you think Stephen Daldry has a strong success rate – and with four films made and three Best Picture nominations accrued. West Side Story director-cum-choreographer Jerome Robbins won Best Director for his only film.

John Cazale has appeared in only five films during his brief career and all five – The Godfather, The Conversation, The Godfather: Part II, Dog Day Afternoon and The Deer Hunter – were Oscar nominated.

Oscar voting takes place in two tranches: in the first vote, members of the Academy's 15 branches vote on their area of expertise (e.g. DoPs vote on Best Cinematography), making five picks in order, as well choosing a movie for Best Picture. These need a 5% share of the vote to secure a nomination. In the final round, members vote on every category with the winner arrived at via a first-past-the-post system.

To win a Best Picture, Oscar history says you should make a weighty drama or solemn biopic, rather than a comedy, sci-fi or horror.

If you want to win a Best Director gong, try to be white, male and 46 if at all possible - and follow these guidelines.

To qualify for Best Picture, a film needs to be at least 40 minutes long, have shown at an LA cinema for at least a week in the previous year and have a projection resolution of 2048 x 1080 pixels.

To increase your chances of winning an acting Oscar, your best bet would have been to star in a William Wyler movie. He directed 36 actors and actresses to nominations. These days the actor's guiding light is Martin Scorsese with 20.

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Have Your Say
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Your Comments

1 Fact #18
Posted on Tuesday February 28, 2012, 12:34 by sparkyjcs
Surely Return of the King is a SEQUEL to The Two Towers and Fellowship of the Ring. Didn't that win Best Picture also? Read More

2 #19
Posted on Saturday February 25, 2012, 22:07 by oceandwellers
Are you not forgetting One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest? Read More

3 number 51
Posted on Saturday February 25, 2012, 11:51 by Dropje
I count seven names, not six. Read More

4 meryl
Posted on Saturday February 25, 2012, 08:06 by nz_louise
meryl has 17 nominations to date not 14 Read More

5 No. 43 and 44
Posted on Friday February 24, 2012, 18:37 by hcasner
Raymond Massey was nominated for Abe Lincoln in Illinois; and Barry Fitzgerald was nominated for the same role twice, the same in different categories, but the same role. Read More

6 @ #31
Posted on Friday February 24, 2012, 18:02 by wordscrawl
wings wasn't produced by howard Hughes. that was Hells Angels (1930) i was super excited to read this list, but this is like the 4th wrong fact I've found so far. boo Read More

7 40?
Posted on Thursday February 23, 2012, 22:30 by Pixaroholic
John Williams has 47, not 40, nominations, right?? Read More

8 Spielberg
Posted on Thursday February 23, 2012, 19:19 by sonofliberty1
72 - Spielberg collected his first Oscar in 1987 when he won the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award and then again in 1994 for Schindler's List Read More

9 FACT 101
Posted on Wednesday February 22, 2012, 22:59 by sjessep
Most nominations before winning: Randy Newman won with his 16th nomination before winning for Monsters Inc. He's since won again with Toy Story 3, his 20th nomination. Read More

10 Christopher Plummer
Posted on Wednesday February 22, 2012, 20:31 by Evil_Bob
I suppose you're right Christopher Plummer would be the oldest person to win an Oscar if he wins this year. Although I'm not exactly sure why you're ignoring Max von Sydow who's nominated this year in the same category and is about 8 months older than Plummer. Oh and Return of the King is a sequel. I'm not going with Scream 2's definition of a sequel nor should a respected film magazine. (although arguably Silence of the Lambs is also a sequel) Read More

11 And Godfather II is also technically part-prequel...
Posted on Wednesday February 22, 2012, 19:14 by Porter LOTR: The Return of the King is the only outright sequel winner! God I hate pub quizzes! Read More

12 how can Godfather Part II be the only best picture winning sequel...
Posted on Wednesday February 22, 2012, 19:12 by Porter
...surely LOTR: The Return of the King is a sequel too? And don't give me any of that "it's the concluding part of the same story" horseshit. It's a damn sequel!!! Read More

Posted on Wednesday February 22, 2012, 17:15 by tonyjoedeeks
Judy Garland never won a competative Oscar- she received a special award for The Wizard of Oz.. An Academy gift, not a competative win.. Read More

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