Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 June 2019

Oscars 2019: The best fun facts and trivia to know ahead of the night

From the most-awarded Hollywood stars to the specs of the golden statue, here are a few titbits to get you in the mood before this year's ceremony kicks off

Oscars nominees are set to walk away with holidays, VIP club memberships and plenty of beauty products following this year's Academy Awards. AFP 
Oscars nominees are set to walk away with holidays, VIP club memberships and plenty of beauty products following this year's Academy Awards. AFP 

Hollywood insiders and movie fans are eagerly waiting to hear the names of the Oscar winners on Sunday night.

But the statistical quirks that Tinseltown's biggest night of the year throws up can be as intriguing as tracking which movies get the most golden statuettes.

Here are some fun facts and figures about this year's list of nominees, and a bit of Oscars trivia.

Cuaron reigns supreme

(FILES) In this file photo taken on December 10, 2018 (FILES) In this file photo taken on December 10, 2018, Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón (L), Mexican actress Yalitza Aparicio (C) and Mexican actress Marina de Tavira (R) arrive for the Los Angeles premiere of "Roma" at the Egyptian theatre in Hollywood, California. From a superhero blockbuster to an offbeat royal comedy of manners to an intimate black-and-white ode to 1970s Mexico City, the contenders for this year's best picture Oscar are as varied as ever. Here is a brief summary of the eight films vying for the most prestigious prize at Sunday's Oscars ceremony: Alfonso Cuaron's love letter to his childhood -- and the two women who guided him, his mother and his nanny -- has been the overwhelming favorite to win the top prize on Sunday. If it does win, it will be the first foreign-language film to do so, and the first best picture winner for streaming giant Netflix. / AFP / Robyn Beck / With AFP Story by Javier TOVAR: With 'Roma,' Alfonso Cuaron reinvents how he makes films
'Roma' director Alfonso Cuaron, and actresses Yalitza Aparicio and Marina de Tavira. AFP

Alfonso Cuaron's Roma, a black-and-white cinematic ode to his childhood in 1970s Mexico City - and the mother and nanny who raised him - earned a whopping 10 nominations to lead the contenders.

But the Mexican filmmaker himself scored an impressive feat - four of those nominations are his personally: for best picture as a producer, best director, best original screenplay and best cinematography.

He joins illustrious company with his achievement: Warren Beatty did the same, scoring four nominations in four different categories - twice - for Heaven Can Wait and Reds.

Joel and Ethan Coen did it for No Country for Old Men.

Blockbusters galore

Forever 21 has apologised after using a white model to advertise a Black Panther jumper (Disney via AP)
Lupita Nyong'o, Chadwick Boseman and Letitia Wright in 'Black Panther'. AP

For many moviegoers, the Oscars have become somewhat elitist, often rewarding art-house fare that not many have seen. But those fans cannot complain this year.

Marvel superhero blockbuster Black Panther - the highest-grossing film of 2018 in North America at more than $700 million (Dh2.57 billion) - scored seven nominations including one for Best Picture, becoming the first movie based on a comic book to earn the honour.

Other mainstream box office hits nominated for Best Picture include musical romance drama A Star Is Born (Dh771 million in North America) and Bohemian Rhapsody (Dh782 million).

Heavy prize

Gary Oldman holds his Oscar after getting it engraved Reuters
Gary Oldman holds his Oscar after getting it engraved at the 2018 awards. Reuters

The Oscar statuette is solid bronze and plated in 24-karat gold. It stands 13.5 inches (34 centimeters) tall and weighs 8.5 pounds (3.8 kilograms).

It takes three months for Polich Tallix Fine Art Foundry in New York to manufacture a batch of 50 statuettes. More than 3,140 statuettes have been handed out since 1929.

The trophy represents a knight holding a crusader's sword standing on a reel of film with five spokes that refer to the five original branches of the Academy - actors, directors, producers, technicians and writers.

Acting royalty

HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Meryl Streep arrives at the 84th Annual Academy Awards held at the Hollywood & Highland Center on February 26, 2012 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** al28fe-oscars-fashion-gold05.jpg
Meryl Streep is Academy Awards royalty. Getty Images

Meryl Streep holds the record for the most nominations in the acting categories, with 21. She and Jack Nicholson - the most nominated male actor with 12 nominations - each have two statuettes for lead acting and one for supporting roles.

The movie industry figure with the most Oscars is Walt Disney, who won 22, plus four honorary statuettes.

Katharine Hepburn won the most Oscars for a performer, with four. Daniel Day-Lewis is the only person to have three best actor Oscars.

Snubs and surprises

(FILES) In this file photo taken on September 27, 2018 American singer and actress Lady Gaga (L) and American actor and filmmaker Bradley Cooper pose on the red carpet upon arrival for the UK premiere of the film "A Star is Born" in central London on September 27, 2018. From a superhero blockbuster to an offbeat royal comedy of manners to an intimate black-and-white ode to 1970s Mexico City, the contenders for this year's best picture Oscar are as varied as ever. Here is a brief summary of the eight films vying for the most prestigious prize at Sunday's Oscars ceremony:At the start of Hollywood's awards season, "A Star Is Born" looked like the natural leading contender. The retelling of a classic Tinseltown tale -- an addicted singer on the wane, a young ingenue on the rise and their doomed love affair in the balance -- had Oscars gold written all over it. / AFP / Anthony HARVEY
Bradley Cooper's 'A Star is Born' has netted several nominations - but not one for Best Director. AFP

Industry watchers were shocked that Bradley Cooper was snubbed in the best director category for A Star Is Born - but earned three nominations for Best Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Picture (as a producer).

They were thrilled to see Spike Lee earn his first directing nomination for BlacKkKlansman and first for Best Picture. The American filmmaker earned a lifetime achievement award at the 2016 Oscars.

But many expected Won't You Be My Neighbor? - a critically acclaimed documentary about American children's show host Mister Rogers - to make the cut. It did not.

A happy surprise was a best actress nomination for breakout Roma star Yalitza Aparicio in her debut performance.

Updated: February 24, 2019 11:42 AM

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