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  Go to Oscar Trivia.


Test Your Knowledge of Academy Award History

By Joe Barber
Special to The Washington Post
Sunday, March 22, 1998

Oscar Trivia So, you call yourself a movie buff. You think you know a lot about the silver screen. Oscar week is the perfect time to put you to the test. Good luck. (The quiz was published before the 1998 Oscar ceremony).

1. This year, Kate Winslet and Gloria Stuart became the first performers ever to be nominated for best actress and best supporting actress for portraying the same character in the same film ("Young" and "Old" Rose in "Titanic"). Name the actors who won best actor and best supporting actor playing the same character in two different movies. Answer

2. In the past 16 years, four actresses have been nominated for best actress and best supporting actress for different movies in the same year. Name them and the movies for which they were nominated. Answer

3. Of the eight nominations in the second question, how many resulted in Oscars, and for whom? Answer

4. What Oscar distinction does the 1969 film "Z" hold? Answer

5. How many of Jack Nicholson's record-setting 11 Oscar nominations have come for best supporting actor? Answer

6. In 70 years, six African American actors have been honored with the golden statuette. Name them and their films. Answer

7. If James L. Brooks's "As Good as It Gets" wins this year's Academy Award as best picture, what surprising Oscar quirk will it share with the 1989 best picture winner, "Driving Miss Daisy"? Answer

8. What best supporting actress winner picked up her Oscar despite having the least number of on-screen lines in her film's script – just 18 – of any acting nominee in history? Answer

9. "Titanic" tied the record for most nominations for a single film with 14. Name the film whose record it shares, and the number of Oscars that film won. Answer

10. Despite his problems, Woody Allen continues to be a favorite with his fellow writers in the Academy. With his nomination for his screenplay for "Deconstructing Harry," whose record for writing nominations did Allen break? Answer

11. Who's the youngest best director nominee in Oscar history: Orson Welles, John Singleton or Steven Spielberg? Answer

12. Has a woman ever been nominated for the best director Oscar? If so, who? Answer

13. At 87 and after more than half a century in the acting business, Gloria Stuart has her first nomination, for her role in "Titanic." What male and female actors share the record for the longest stretch between nominations? Answer

14. Peter Fonda's nomination for "Ulee's Gold" makes him the third member of his family over two generations of talented Fondas to be nominated for an Oscar. What family has spawned three generations of Oscar winners? Answer

15. Which film holds the record for most Oscar wins, "Gone With the Wind," "Ben-Hur" or "Citizen Kane"? Answer

16. Name the musician and the three writer-directors who share the honor of winning three Oscars in a single night. Answer

17. Why was Linda Hunt's best supporting actress win for "The Year of Living Dangerously" unusual? Answer

18. Talk about a "Bad Night at Black Rock" – what two films share the dubious distinction of having 11 nominations without a single Oscar win? Answer

19. What two best picture winners dominated the Oscars in its year of eligibility, with nine awards, without having a single member of its cast nominated? Answer

20. What do these films have in common? "City Lights," "Duck Soup," "The Thirty-Nine Steps," "Show Boat," "Young Mr. Lincoln," "His Girl Friday," "Laura," "Lifeboat," "To Have and Have Not," "My Darling Clementine," "Hud," "Notorious," "Red River," "Rules of the Game," "Adam's Rib," "The Asphalt Jungle," "The African Queen," "Singin' in the Rain," "Sabrina," "Rebel Without a Cause," "Some Like It Hot," "Days of Wine and Roses," "2001: A Space Odyssey," "McCabe and Mrs. Miller," "Mean Streets," "Last Tango in Paris," "Saturday Night Fever," "Brazil" and "Bull Durham." Answer

Bonus question: At the 1959 Academy Awards, something happened that even veteran Oscar-watchers found remarkable. What was it? Hint: It involved a very popular comedian and co-host of that year's show. Answer


1. Marlon Brando (best actor) and Robert De Niro (best supporting actor). Both played Vito Corleone – in "The Godfather" and "The Godfather, Part II," respectively. Back to quiz

2. Jessica Lange in 1982 ("Frances," lead; "Tootsie," supporting); Sigourney Weaver in 1987 ("Gorillas in the Mist," lead; "Working Girl," supporting); Holly Hunter in 1993 ("The Piano," lead; "The Firm," supporting); Emma Thompson, also in 1993 ("The Remains of the Day," lead; "In the Name of the Father," supporting). Back to quiz

3. Two – Lange for best supporting actress for "Tootsie" and Hunter, best actress for "The Piano." Back to quiz

4. It is the only film to be nominated for best picture and best foreign film in the same year. Back to quiz

5. Four: "Easy Rider," "Reds," "Terms of Endearment," "A Few Good Men." Back to quiz

6. Hattie McDaniel, best supporting actress, "Gone With the Wind." Sidney Poitier, best actor, "Lillies of the Field." Louis Gossett Jr., best supporting actor, "An Officer and a Gentleman." Denzel Washington, best supporting actor, "Glory." Whoopi Goldberg, best supporting actress, "Ghost." Cuba Gooding Jr., best supporting actor, "Jerry Maguire." Back to quiz

7. A key one – both will have won the top prize despite the fact that both Brooks and "Daisy's" Bruce Beresford were not nominated for best director. Coincidentally, both films are up for several of the same major awards: best picture, actor, actress, supporting actor and screenplay. Back to quiz

8. Beatrice Straight, who won for playing William Holden's wife in "Network" in 1976. Back to quiz

9. "All About Eve" in 1950. It won six awards, including best picture, supporting actor (George Sanders), director and screenplay (both to Joseph L. Mankiewicz). Back to quiz

10. Writer-director Billy Wilder's, whose honored films include "Some Like It Hot" and "Sunset Boulevard." "Harry" is Allen's 13th screenplay to be nominated. He has received 20 total nominations, including one as a actor and six as a director. He won as a director for "Annie Hall" and as a writer for "Annie Hall" and "Hannah and Her Sisters." Back to quiz

11. John Singleton for "Boyz 'N the Hood" in 1991. He was 24 years old. Back to quiz

12. Two women have – Lina Wertmuller in 1976 for "Seven Beauties" and Jane Campion in 1993 for "The Piano." Back to quiz

13. Jack Palance and the late Helen Hayes. Both waited 38 years between nominations. Palance, nominated for best supporting actor for "Shane" in 1953, wasn't nominated again until his supporting actor win for "City Slickers" in 1991. Hayes won best actress for "The Sins of Madame Claudet" in 1932 and wasn't recognized again until 1970 and her best supporting actress victory for "Airport." Back to quiz

14. The Hustons. Father Walter won best supporting actor for "Treasure of the Sierra Madre." Son John won for best director and adapted screenplay for the same film. Daughter/granddaughter Anjelica was best supporting actress for "Prizzi's Honor." Back to quiz

15. "Ben-Hur" won the chariot race and the title: 11 wins from 12 nominations. Back to quiz

16. Billy Wilder for co-writing, directing and producing "The Apartment." Marvin Hamlisch for adapting Scott Joplin's ragtime tunes for "The Sting," composing the score for "The Way We Were," and co-writing the song. Francis Ford Coppola for co-writing, directing and producing "The Godfather, Part II." James L. Brooks for writing, directing and producing "Terms of Endearment" (the producer of the best picture winner receives that Oscar). Back to quiz

17. She was the first person to win for playing a character of the opposite sex, Billy Kwan. Back to quiz

18. "The Color Purple" (1985) and "The Turning Point" (1977). Back to quiz

19. 1987's "The Last Emperor," directed and co-written by Bernardo Bertolucci; and 1958's "Gigi," directed by Vincente Minnelli. Back to quiz

20. Remarkably, all failed to be nominated for best picture. Back to quiz

Bonus: Believe it or not, the program actually ran short that year, and co-host Jerry Lewis was forced to ad-lib for nearly 20 minutes. Back to quiz

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