Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Did you know...Walt Disney and the Oscars

Since this Sunday is the Academy Awards, I thought I would share some interesting facts about Walt Disney and the Oscars with you.

With 59 nominations, Walt holds the record for receiving the most nominations.
Some of the nominations I am sure you will recognize are:

Mary Poppins
Best Picture Nominee 

 His 32 wins is a record as well.
The winners include:

Flowers and Trees
 Best Short Subject: Cartoon 1932

Walt also won a special Oscar in 1932 for the creation of Mickey Mouse.  He even produced a special Mickey Mouse cartoon for the event, Mickey's Parade of Nominees.  It was the first time Mickey was seen in color.

Mickey's Parade of Nominees 1932

A special Oscar was given to Walt in 1938:
"for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, recognized as a significant screen innovation which has charmed millions and pioneered a great new entertainment field for the motion picture cartoon."
It was presented to Walt by Shirley Temple who exclaimed:
"Isn't it great Mr. Disney? Aren't  you proud of it Mr. Disney?"  Walt's response was "I'm so proud I think I'll bust."

The Oscar itself was a regular size statue accompanied by seven "dwarf" Oscar figures.  It was only the second time that the Academy modified the statuette for a single award. If you would like to see it, it is on display at the Disney Family Museum in San Francisco.

In 1941 a certificate of merit was given to Walt along with William Garity, John N.A. Hawkins and the RCA Manufacturing Company by the Academy for 
"their outstanding contribution to the use of sound in motion pictures through the production of Fantasia."

Walt was awarded the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award in 1941 as well. The award is named for the legendary head of the Production Division of MGM (Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer). The award is a bust of Thalberg rather than the Oscar statuette, it is given periodically during the Academy Awards ceremony to
"Creative producers, whose bodies of work reflect a consistently high quality of motion picture production."
Walt accepting the Thalberg Award

The Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award has been awarded 39 time as of today, the last one being awarded to Francis Ford Coppola at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards.

One final tidbit I found interesting.  No one is exactly sure how the Academy Award came to be known as the "Oscar," the most popular version is that Academy librarian Margaret Herrick thought the statuette looked like her Uncle Oscar, but there is little doubt as to who made the nickname famous.  In 1934, Walt accepted the Academy Award for Best Short Subject: Cartoon for Three Little Pigs.  In his acceptance speech Walt referred to the statue as "the Oscar," up until that time the term was well known within the industry, but not in the general public. 

Hope you enjoyed getting to know a little more about Walt's history with the Academy Awards.

Have a Magical Day!!
Donna Kay

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