• How the Gold Statue Became Oscar

    by  • March 3, 2010 • Community Sherpa, Freelance Writing Samples, Writing

    Sunday night, literally everyone in the world will be glued to the television to watch the 82nd Academy Awards ceremony, commonly known as the Oscars.

    The Academy Award was officially nicknamed the “Oscar” in 1939. But the origin of the name itself remains a mystery. Some of the possible origin stories include:

    pointertmb55 herrickMargaret Herrick, the Academy’s Executive Secretary allegedly said the statue reminded her of her cousin Oscar.

    113px-Bette Davis in Hell's HousepointerA biography of former Academy President Bette Davis says she called the statue “Oscar” after her first husband, Harmon Oscar Nelson.

    pointerkingoscarAnd Norwegian-American Eleanor Lilleberg, who worked for Louis B. Mayer, allegedly claimed the statue looked like Norwegian King Oscar when she saw it the first time.

    So far, 2,744 of the golden statuettes have been handed out for 1,798 awards. 297 of them went to actors.


    Michael has been writing professionally for print, television and the internet for thirty years. As a Senior Producer at CNN International, he examined the future of technology with dozens of brilliant scientists, philosophers and entrepreneurs on the acclaimed series Future Summit. Before that, in the CNN International newsroom, he helped lead the production of award winning coverage of news like the 9/11 attacks, the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, and the devastating 2004 tsunami in Asia. As a director, he has created a dozen short films in the last seven years. He lives with his wife, dog, four cats and two horses in the suburbs of Atlanta.