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COLUMN: Hooray for Hollywood!

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A look at the upcoming Academy Awards

The Oscar nominations are in, and the 85th annual Academy Awards will be aired on Sunday, Feb. 24, so make sure you watch to see who goes home with the gold.

And by the way, I read that gold 14-inch high statue weighs more than eight pounds and costs $500 to make. 

The Oscars are one of my favorite awards presentations. When my favorite stars walk the red carpet, I can see the worst- and best-dressed in all the latest fashion. I love playing fashion police. 

Joan Rivers and I could have a blast. Her wit is a little quicker than mine, though.

Did you know the first Academy Awards ceremony took place in a private banquet at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel with only 270 people in 1929, and the guests’ tickets were only $5 a piece? And get this, there was no level of anticipation because the recipients already knew three months earlier.

However, the following year, the Academy kept the results a secret until the ceremony but gave the list in advance to newspapers for publication on the night of the awards. That policy continued until The Los Angeles Times broke the rule and published the names of the winners prior to the ceremony. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why they now have a sealed envelope system today.

As the event grew over the years, the ceremony has been held at the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood as well as the Highland Center not far from there. 

It wasn’t until 1953 that  television first broadcast the awards throughout the U.S and Canada. 

With it now being the most highly televised event to date in more than 200 countries, the anticipation is heightened.

If you love the Oscars, there is so much more to know about the history than just how it began. 

Do you know what movies received the most nominations?

It was 1997’s “Titanic” and 1950’s “All About Eve,” receiving 14 nominations each.

The youngest nominee for an Oscar was Justin Henry, who was just 8 years old when he received a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his role in 1979’s “Kramer vs. Kramer,” with his co-star parents, Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep, who also won her first Oscar for Best Actress in that same film.

The oldest person to win an Oscar was Christopher Plummer in 2012 at the age of 82 for his role in the film “Beginners.”

And the only parent-child Oscar family goes to Liza Minnelli, her mother Judy Garland, and father, Vincente Minnelli, who have each won one Oscar, making them the only parent-child combo to achieve this honor.

And if you think this is a long column well, the longest Oscar acceptance speech in history goes to Greer Garson in 1942, when she expressed virtually seven minutes worth of gratitude. Which in Oscar time is most likely 6-1/2 minutes too long.

And with that — see you on the red carpet.