The StatuetteWinners of Hollywood's Academy Awards receive a gold-plated statuette on a black metal base. It is 13.5 in (34 cm) tall and weighs 8.5 lb (3.85 kg).
The statue is a little strange. A knight is holding a crusader's sword. Look closely and you will see that the knight standing on a reel of film with five spokes.
The spokes represent the branches of the Film Academy: Actors, Writers, Directors, Producers, and Technicians.
The original design was by MGM art director Cedric Gibbons. The Academy then commissioned the Los Angeles sculptor, George Stanley to produce a 3D version in 1929. The vaguely art deco style reflects the fashion of the time.
Why 'Oscar'?There is no definitive explanation as to how Oscar became the popular name for an Academy Award.
The name was first publicly used was in an article by Hollywood columnist about Katharine Hepburn's first Best Actress victory at the fifth annual ceremony in 1934. By 1939 the word Oscar was universally known - but there remains confusion regarding its origin.
TheoriesOne theory is that the name came from an early Academy director, Margaret Herrick, in 1931. According to this legend, Herrick thought that the statue looked like her Uncle Oscar.
|Bette Davies collects Oscar for Jezebel (1938)|
Another suggestion is that Bette Davies named her award after her husband. That sounds plausible - but happened in 1936.
A good example of how a nickname can survive long after its source is forgotten.
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