January 23, 2024
Melinda Head

The Trifecta of Film Awards

Are Movie Awards Ceremonies in January, February, and March Too Many?

One per month, three months in a row.  Do we need them?

Golden Globe Awards

The Golden Globe Awards was first held in 1944, founded by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association – a group of international journalists who reported on the American entertainment industry. Revenue generated from the Awards was put to good use funding entertainment-related charities and scholarships.

Little would members of the HFPA know that the Invasion of Normandy (aka D-Day) on the other side of the ocean was just around the corner; but, hey, lots of movies about the war were made during the first half of the 1900’s.

The first Golden Globe Awards were held at the 20th Century-Fox studios. “The Song of Bernadette” won best picture, the Best Actor in a Leading Role was Paul Lukas in a war-inspired movie (“Watch on the Rhine”) and the Best Actress in a Leading Role was Jennifer Jones (“The Song of Bernadette”).

The first film awarded a Golden Globe, “The Song of Bernadette” is a biographical drama that portrays the story of Bernadette Soubirous, who reportedly experienced 18 visions of the Virgin Mary. The apparition became known as Our Lady of Lourdes. The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes remains one of the major Catholic pilgrimage sites in the World

Paul Lukas, a Hungarian actor and naturalized American, starred alongside Bette Davis in “Watch on the Rhine”, a movie about the conflict between a man involved in the Nazi resistance movement and his Nazi supporter house-guest

The only child of aspiring-actor parents who toured the American Midwest in a travelling tent show, Jennifer Jones was only 24 when she played the role of Bernadette, earning the first ever Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role

Fast forward 80 years. The Golden Globes is now owned by privately held Penske Media Corp. and its private-equity partners, which owns Variety and Rolling Stone (among other print/digital brands), as well as the American Music Awards, the Academy of Country Music Awards, the Billboard Music Awards and So You Think You Can Dance (among other productions). So much for philanthropy.

Jay Penske, son of billionaire Roger Penske, heads up Penske Media Corp., the organization that now owns the Golden Globe Awards. His wife (left), Elaine Irwin, is a model who was previously married to musician John Mellencamp


Established by a group of directors, including Laurence Olivier, the British Academy Film Awards was first held in 1949. Television, still in its infancy, was added to the mix later.

Laurence Olivier was the son of a clergyman. Co-director of London’s Old Vic Theatre and founding director of Britain’s National Theatre, this 2X Academy Award winner had many accomplishments over the course of his career which, in modern day, included a couple of my favorites, Sleuth and Marathon Man

In its first year, “Odd Man Out” won the award for Best British Film, while “The Best Years of Our Lives” won the award for Best Film (British or Foreign). No awards were given to individuals – Best Actor/Actress in a Leading Role categories were only added in 1968.

“Odd Man Out”, starring the soon-to-be-highly-accomplished James Mason, is the story of an IRA leader who attempts to evade police in the aftermath of a robbery

 “The Best Years of Our Lives” is a film about three WWII veterans facing challenges as they re-enter civilian life

BAFTA is a charity. William, the Prince of Wales, has been the President of the Academy since 2010. Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, was appointed its first President in 1959, followed by the Earl Mountbatten of Burma and Princess Anne.

Prince William, whose wife Catherine, has recently undergone abdominal surgery, will likely not attend the 2024 BAFTA Awards on February 18th. The Royal couple here is pictured at the 2023 BAFTA Awards

Academy Awards

The oldest worldwide entertainment awards ceremony, the Academy Awards (aka the Oscars) was first held in 1929 at a private dinner function. Its second ceremony was the first to be broadcast by radio and in 1953 it was the first to be televised.

In America, the Emmy Awards (for TV), the Tony Awards (for theater) and the Grammy Awards (for music) are all fashioned after the Academy Awards.

Unlike America’s Golden Globes, the Academy Awards remains a nonprofit organization.

The first film ever to win an Academy Award was “Wings”, a movie about two WWI fighter pilots who fall in love with the same woman. Emil Jannings earned Best Actor for his work in “The Last Command” and “The Way of All Flesh”. Janet Gaynor earned Best Actress for her performances in “Street Angel” and “Sunrise”.

Released between WWI and WWII, “Wings” was the first ever film to win an Academy Award

Emil Jannings was the first recipient of an Academy Award for Best Actor. He later starred in a number of Nazi propaganda films, which made him virtually unemployable as an actor

Philadelphian Janet Gaynor, who started her career as an extra in shorts and silent films, was the first recipient of an Academy Award for Best Actress

1929, 1944 and 1949 seem like light-years ago. For people in the film industry (and anyone else), who wouldn’t want to be recognized and given a shiny addition to their mantlepiece? With access to many other sources of legitimate reviews and celeb reportings available by the second, it has become an increasingly tall order to capture the large audiences that for-profit broadcasters demand. Last year, the Golden Globes attracted 9.4 million viewers (compared to a peak of 28 million in 2004), the BAFTA Awards attracted 3.8 million viewers and the Academy Awards attracted 18.7 million viewers (compared to a peak of 57 million in 1998). As Spanish Director/Writer Pedro Almodovar said: “When you are in the ocean, you must swim”. Ladies and gentlemen in the film industry, it’s time to put on your swimsuits.

Now that you’ve read today’s blog, why not take what you’ve learned and play today’s matching quiz on your Quizefy app? Many of the answers can be found right here.

We publish an on-trend, hint-filled blog at www.quizefy.com every Tuesday, along with a matching quiz in your Quizefy app. We think they’re a great combination and a great way to Strut Your Smart.

Coming Up For Quizefy

Every day:  a new trivia Quiz of the Day on continuously changing topics. Available for 24 hours only

Every Tuesday:  our FACT-ory blog on www.quizefy.com, with a matching Quiz of the Day in our Quizefy app. Read our blog for hints that will improve your Quizefy score

Every Sunday:  the Week in Review, our comprehensive review of national and global events in the past 7 days. This would be a great addition to your Sunday routine

Always:  trivia questions on a myriad of topics that you can choose yourself
Tuesday, May 14th: Michael Cohen
Wednesday, May 15th: National Chocolate Chip Day
Thursday, May 16th: National Classic Movie Day
Friday, May 17th: International Drum Month
Saturday, May 18th: National Strawberry Month
Sunday, May 19th: Week in Review
Monday, May 20th: National Streaming Day
Click here to Download Quizefy
About the Author

A serial entrepreneur, Melinda is a sociologist and statistician who believes there is no currency with greater value than knowledge

Join The Conversation