Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
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|Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences|
|Formation||May 11, 1927|
|Headquarters||Beverly Hills, California, USA|
|Location||8949 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, California 90211
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) is a professional honorary organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of motion pictures. The Academy's corporate management and general policies are overseen by a Board of Governors, which includes representatives from each of the craft branches.
The Academy is composed of almost 6,000 motion picture professionals. While the great majority of its members are based in the United States, membership is open to qualified filmmakers around the world.
The Academy is known around the world for its annual Academy Awards, informally known as the "Oscars". In addition, the Academy gives Student Academy Awards annually to filmmakers at the undergraduate and graduate level; awards up to five Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting annually; and operates the Margaret Herrick Library (at the Fairbanks Center for Motion Picture Study) in Beverly Hills, California and the Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California.
The notion of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) began with Louis B. Mayer, head of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM). He wanted to create an organization that would mediate labor disputes and improve the industry’s image. So, on a Sunday evening, Mayer and three other studio big-wigs - actor Conrad Nagel, director Fred Niblo, and the head of the Association of Motion Picture Producers, Fred Beetson - sat down and discussed these matters. The idea of this elite club having an annual banquet was tossed around, but there was no mention of awards just yet. They also established that membership into the organization would only be open to people involved in one of the five branches of the industry: actors, directors, writers, technicians, and producers.
After their brief meeting, Mayer gathered up a group of thirty-six people involved in the film industry and invited them to a formal banquet at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles on January 11, 1927. That evening Mayer presented to those guests what he called the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and it was open to those who had contributed to the motion picture industry. Everyone in the room that evening became a founder of the Academy. It wasn’t until later, when Mayer’s lawyers wrote up the charter, that the name changed to "Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences".
Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. was elected as the first president of the Academy. As one of his first acts, he added an activity of bestowing “awards of merit for distinctive achievement.” However, they were on the brink of forming something historical. A year later the voting system for the Awards was established, and the nomination and selection process began. This "award of merit for distinctive achievement" is what we know now as the Academy Award.
In 1929, the Academy, in a joint venture with the University of Southern California, created America's first film school to further the art and science of moving pictures. The School’s founding faculty included Fairbanks (President of the Academy), D. W. Griffith, William C. deMille, Ernst Lubitsch, Irving Thalberg, and Darryl F. Zanuck.
Galleries and theaters 
The Academy’s numerous and diverse operations are housed in three facilities in the Los Angeles area: the headquarters building in Beverly Hills, which was constructed specifically for the Academy, and two Centers for Motion Picture Study – one in Beverly Hills, the other in Hollywood – which were existing structures restored and transformed to contain the Academy’s Library, Film Archive and other departments and programs.
The Academy's main building in Beverly Hills houses two galleries that are open free to the public. The Grand Lobby Gallery and the Fourth Floor Gallery offer changing exhibits related to films, film-making and film personalities.
The Samuel Goldwyn Theater seats 1,012, and was designed to present films at maximum technical accuracy, with state-of-the-art projection equipment and sound system. Located in the headquarters building, the theater is busy year-round with the Academy's public programming, members-only screenings, movie premieres and other special activities (including the live television broadcast of the Academy Awards nominations announcement every January).
The Academy Little Theater is a 67-seat screening facility also located at the Academy's headquarters in Beverly Hills.
The Linwood Dunn Theater is located at the Academy’s Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study in Hollywood and seats 286 people.
The Academy also has a New York-based East Coast showcase theater, the Academy Theater at Lighthouse International. The 220-seat venue was redesigned in 2011 by renowned theater designer, Theo Kalomirakis, including an extensive installation of new audio and visual equipment. The theater is in the East 59th Street headquarters of the non-profit vision loss organization, Lighthouse International.
Membership in the Academy is by invitation only. Invitation comes from the Board of Governors. Membership eligibility may be achieved by earning a competitive Oscar nomination, or an existing member may submit a name based on another significant contribution to the field of motion pictures.
New membership proposals are considered annually. The Academy does not publicly disclose its full membership, although press releases have announced the names of those who have recently been invited to join. Membership in the Academy does not expire, even if a member struggles later in his or her career.
Academy membership is divided into 16 branches, representing different disciplines in motion pictures. Members may not belong to more than one branch. Members whose work does not fall within one of the branches may belong to a group known as "Members at Large". Members at Large have all the privileges of branch membership except for representation on the Board. Associate members are those closely allied to the industry but not actively engaged in motion picture production. They are not represented on the Board and do not vote on Academy Awards.
According to a February 2012 study conducted by the Los Angeles Times (sampling over 5,000 of its 5,765 members), the Academy is 94% white, 77% male, 14% under the age of 50, and has a median age of 62. In addition, 33% of members are previous winners or nominees of Academy Awards themselves.
Members are able to see many new films for free at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater and other facilities within two weeks of their debut, and sometimes before release.
Academy branches 
The 16 branches of the Academy are:
- Art Directors
- Costume Designers
- Film Editors
- Makeup Artists and Hairstylists
- Public Relations
- Short Films and Feature Animation
- Visual Effects
Board of Governors 
The Board of Governors consists of representatives from each of the 16 Academy branches. All branches are represented on the Board by three governors except the Makeup Artists and Hairstylists Branch, created in 2006, which has one representative. The Board of Governors is responsible for corporate management, control and general policies. The Board of Governors also appoints a CEO and a COO to supervise the administrative activities of the Academy.
Original 36 founders of the Academy 
Presidents of the Academy 
Presidents are elected for one-year terms and may not be elected for more than four consecutive terms.
- Douglas Fairbanks 1927–1929
- William C. deMille 1929–1931
- M. C. Levee 1931–1932
- Conrad Nagel 1932–1933
- J. Theodore Reed 1933–1934
- Frank Lloyd 1934–1935
- Frank Capra 1935–1939
- Walter Wanger 1939–1941, 1941–1945
- Bette Davis 1941 (resigned after two months)
- Jean Hersholt 1945–1949
- Charles Brackett 1949–1955
- George Seaton 1955–1958
- George Stevens 1958–1959
- B. B. Kahane 1959–1960 (died)
- Valentine Davies 1960–1961 (died)
- Wendell Corey 1961–1963
- Arthur Freed 1963–1967
- Gregory Peck 1967–1970
- Daniel Taradash 1970–1973
- Walter Mirisch 1973–1977
- Howard W. Koch 1977–1979
- Fay Kanin 1979–1983
- Gene Allen 1983–1985
- Robert Wise 1985–1988
- Richard Kahn 1988–1989
- Karl Malden 1989–1992
- Robert Rehme 1992–1993, 1997–2001
- Arthur Hiller 1993–1997
- Frank Pierson 2001–2005
- Sid Ganis 2005–2009
- Tom Sherak 2009–2012
- Hawk Koch 2012–present
Current administration of the Academy 
- Academy Officers 2012-2013
- President – Hawk Koch
- First Vice President – Cheryl Boone Isaacs
- Vice President – Kathleen Kennedy
- Vice President – Phil Alden Robinson
- Treasurer – Rob Friedman
- Secretary – Robert Rehme
- Board of Governors 2012-2013
|Craig Barron||Visual Effects|
|Ed Begley, Jr.||Actors|
|Jim Bissell||Art Directors|
|Jon Bloom||Short Films and Feature Animation|
|Rosemary Brandenburg||Art Directors|
|Anne Coates||Film Editors|
|Richard Edlund||Visual Effects|
|Leonard Engelman||Makeup Artists and Hairstylists|
|Rob Friedman||Public Relations|
|Mark Goldblatt||Film Editors|
|Gale Anne Hurd||Producers|
|Cheryl Boone Isaacs||Public Relations|
|John Knoll||Visual Effects|
|Bill Kroyer||Short Films and Feature Animation|
|Jeffrey Kurland||Art Directors|
|John Lasseter||Short Films and Feature Animation|
|Marvin Levy||Public Relations|
|Phil Alden Robinson||Writers|
|Michael Tronick||Film Editors|
See also 
- Academy Awards
- Governors Awards
- Academy Film Archive
- Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences of Argentina Awards
- Academy of Television Arts & Sciences
- American Academy of Arts and Sciences
- American Film Institute
- Motion Picture Association of America
- National Film Registry
- "Oscars complicated counting of Best Picture ballots explained". Goldderby.com. 2012-12-18. Retrieved 2013-02-25.
- "Hawk Koch Elected Academy President". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. July 31, 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
- Wiley, Mason, and Damien Bona. Inside Oscar. New York: Ballantine Books, 1986 pg. 2
- Levy, Emanuel. And The Winner Is.... New York: Ungar Publishing, 1987 pg. 1
- Wiley, Mason, and Damien Bona. Inside Oscar. New York: Ballantine Books, 1986 pg. 3
- Lester, Ahren. "HARMAN’s JBL loudspeakers installed at New York’s Academy Theater". Audio Pro International. Retrieved February 18, 2012.
- "Oscar voters aren't always who you might think". Los Angeles Times. February 19, 2012. Retrieved February 26, 2012.
- "Oscar voters overwhelmingly white, male". Los Angeles Times. February 19, 2012. Retrieved February 23, 2012.
- Hammond, Pete (March 26, 2012). "Oscar Voters Last To See ‘Hunger Games’?". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
- Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
- The Official Academy Awards Database of Winners and Nominees
- Margaret Herrick Library
- Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study - Academy Film Archive
- The Oscars at YouTube (operated by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences)
- Hollywood Is A Union Town, The Nation, April 2, 1938, history of the Academy and Screen Actors Guild