Academy Awards, popularly known as the Oscars,
are presented annually by the Academy of Motion
Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) to recognize
excellence of professionals in the film industry,
including directors, actors, and writers. The
formal ceremony at which the awards are presented
is one of the most prominent film award ceremonies
in the world. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts
and Sciences itself was conceived by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
studio boss Louis B. Mayer.
The 1st Academy Awards ceremony was held on Thursday,
May 16, 1929, at the Hotel Roosevelt in Hollywood
to honor outstanding film achievements of 1927
and 1928. It was hosted by actor Douglas Fairbanks
and director William C. DeMille.
The 81st Academy Awards honoring the best in film
for 2008 was held on Sunday, February 22, 2009
at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood with actor Hugh
Jackman hosting the ceremony for the first time.
first awards were presented on May 16, 1929 at
a private dinner in Hollywood, with an audience
of less than 250 people. Since the first year
the awards have been publicly broadcast, at first
by radio then by TV after 1953. During the first
decade the results were given to newspapers for
publication at 11 p.m. on the night of the awards.
This method was ruined when the Los Angeles Times
announced the winners before the ceremony began;
as a result the Academy has since used a sealed
envelope to reveal the name of the winners. Since
2002, the awards have been broadcast from the
Kodak Theatre. (Credit: