Names of the Week
Fact of the Week

Academy Award Winning Names

As we approach the 86th Annual Academy Awards, we thought we'd take a look at some of the legendary greats in motion picture history.

The first Academy Awards were held on May 15, 1929 at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, lasted 15 minutes and had an audience of 270 people. Today, the awards are a lavish affair, presented at the Dolby Theatre in L.A. and televised live to millions of viewers in over 200 countries.

The award itself, presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is known formally as the Academy Award of Merit and affectionately as the Oscar.

The Oscar was designed in 1928 by MGM's art director Cedric Gibbons. An art deco knight holding a crusader's sword atop a film reel, the award was sculpted in clay by George Stanley, from a live model, Mexican actor and film director Emilio "El Indio" Fernandez and then casted in tin and copper by Sachin Smith.

The origin of the nickname Oscar is disputed, but one story claims that the Academy's Executive Secretary, Margaret Herrick, who upon seeing the award in 1931 remarked that the statuette reminded her of her "Uncle Oscar" (a nickname for her cousin Oscar Pierce). Present at that moment, columnist Sidney Skolsky decided to use the name in his byline. No matter what the origin, the trophy was officially dubbed the "Oscar" in 1939 by the Academy.

Walt Disney won the most awards for a man with a wopping 22 Oscars to his credit.

Edith Head won the most awards for a woman, with a toal of eight Oscars, all for Costume Design.

John Ford won the most awards for directing, with four and Katharine Hepburn won the most for acting with four awards for Best Actress.

Three producers tied for the most awards given for producing. Sam Spiegel, Saul Zaentz and Darryl F. Zanuck all won 3 awards.

Only six actors have won more than two awards. Ingrid Bergman (two for Best Actress one for Best Supporting Actress), Walter Brennan (three Best Supporting Actor), Jack Nicholson (two Best Actor and one Best supporting Actor), Meryl Streep (two Best Actress and one Best Supporting Actress) and Daniel Day-Lewis (three Best Actor).

The following actors have won two awards. Marlon Brando, Michael Caine, Gary Cooper, Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, Robert De Niro, Melvyn Douglas, Sally Field, Jane Fonda, Jodie Foster, Gene Hackman, Tom Hanks, Helen Hayes, Dustin Hoffman, Glenda Jackson, Jessica Lange, Vivien Leigh, Jack Lemmon, Frederic March, Sean Penn, Anthony Quinn, Luise Rainer, Jason Robards, Maggie Smith, Kevin Spacey, Meryl Streep, Hilary Swank, Elizabeth Taylor, Spencer Tracy, Peter Ustinov, Christoph Waltz, Denzel Washington, Dianne Wiest and Shelley Winters.

Only a handful of directors have won two or more awards.

Frank Borzage, Frank Capra, Clint Eastwood, John Ford, Milos Forman, Elia Kazan, David Lean, Ang Lee, Frank Lloyd, Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Leo McCarey, Lewis Milestone, Steven Spielberg, George Stevens, Oliver Stone, Billy Wilder, Robert Wise, William Wyler and Fred Zinnemann.

Finally we'd like to salute the 2014 nominees.

Best Actor and Best Actress.

Christian Bale, Bruce Dern, Leonardo Di Caprio, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Matthew McConaughey, Amy Adams, Cate Blanchett, Sandra Bullock, Judi Dench, and Meryl Streep.

Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress.

Barkhad Abdi, Bradley Cooper, Michael Fassbender, Jonah Hill, Jared Leto, Sally Hawkins, Jennifer Lawrence, Lupita Nyong'o, Julia Roberts, and June Squibb.

Best Director.

David O. Russell, Alfonso Cuaron, Alexander Payne, Steve McQueen, and Martin Scorsese.