Wow. Really. That’s the title I’m going with here – “The Only Academy Awards Fun Facts Infograph You’ll Ever Need”? Talk about setting something up to fail. We are, after all, approaching the 87th Academy Awards ceremony. That’s a lot of history to fit into one infograph. Does this one from Berries.com reference Marlon Brando sending up Sacheen Littlefeather to reject his Best Actor Oscar for The Godfather and give a speech denouncing Hollywood’s depiction of Native Americans on film and TV? No, but it does mention that George C. Scott was actually the first actor to decline to accept an Oscar, in that case for his role in Patton. Does it mention how 1939 is considered the Golden Year of Film with such all-time classics as Gone With the Wind (which won), Goodbye, Mr. Chips, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Of Mice and Men, Stagecoach, and The Wizard of Oz all nominated for Best Picture? No, but it does point out that the year prior to that Fay Bainter became the first person to be nominated for two awards in a single year, oddly enough nominated for Best Actress for White Banners and losing to Bette Davis for Jezebel, which is the same film Bainter was nominated and won Best Supporting Actress for.
The point is that while you can’t quite cover everything this infograph ultimately does a fantastic job of hitting all of the biggies and firsts in Oscar history. Due to The Lego Movie and Selma-related snubs in this year’s batch of Oscar nominations, the entire validity of the Academy has come under fire, with sites such as my own pointing to problems in the way voting is handled and the overwhelming old, white male composition of the voting body. However, there was a time when I used to actually carry around a pocket-book which briefly covered every single year of the Academy Awards, offering up loads of trivia and long-forgotten tales of controversies and award speeches run long. I loved that book because I never truly thought of the Academy Awards as the end-all, be-all of film notoriety. Far too many amazing films and filmmakers have been snubbed by the Academy throughout film history to truly give us an idea that their judgement is final. So, to me the Academy Awards served more of a purpose of providing fun trivia on the history of film as well as a roadmap on what films to see, what films not to see, and what films the Academy was totally wrong about. I was reminded of this “Let’s just have fun with it” mentality when looking at this infograph which even contains some nuggets of Oscar trivia not even I knew about. So, check it out below, and if you like head over to Berries.com to give them a pat on the back: