Going for the Gold: Polish Up Your Oscar Knowledge with this Quick Quiz


It’s Oscar time! And, while women make up only 31 percent of this year’s nominations, they account for 100 percent of the answers in this quiz.

The 92nd Academy Awards air at 7 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 9 CT on ABC or at abc.com. Red carpet coverage starts at 5:30 p.m.

And the questions are…

1) Cynthia Erivo is nominated as Best Actress for her portrayal of Harriet Tubman in “Harriet” and for co-writing the film’s song Stand UpWho is the only person to win an Oscar for both songwriting and acting?

2) Actress Greta Gerwig is nominated for her “Little Women” screenplay. Who is the only person to win an Oscar for both acting and for writing a screenplay?

3) Charlize Theron (who already won an Oscar for 2003’s “Monster”) may pick up another Best Actress award this year for “Bombshell”. Who is the only person to win FOUR Oscars for a lead performance? Note: One of these victories was a tie!

4) Scarlett Johansson is nominated twice this year: for Best Actress (“Marriage Story”) and for Best Supporting Actress (“Jojo Rabbit”). This is the 12th time an actor/actress has been nominated in the lead and supporting categories within one year. Name four of the past eight actresses who have earned this distinction.

5) Had Gerwig been nominated for directing “Little Women” (which earned a Best Picture nod), she would have become the first woman to receive two directing nominations, having been honored for “Lady Bird” in 2018. In Oscar history, only five women were nominated for Best Director. Other than Gerwig, who are the female filmmakers recognized in this “boy’s club” category?

And the answers are…

1) Barbra Streisand is the only person to win Oscars for both acting and songwriting. She was named Best Actress for “Funny Girl” (1968) before becoming the first female composer to win an Oscar for Best Original Song for Love Theme (Evergreen) from “A Star is Born” (1976), which she shared with lyricist Paul Williams.

2) Emma Thompson is the only person to win Oscars for both acting and writing. Following her Best Actress victory for “Howard’s End” (1992), she received an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for Jane Austen’s “Sense and Sensibility” (1995).

3) Katharine Hepburn is the only four-time winner in the Academy’s lead acting category. In 1969, she shared her victory for “The Lion in Winter” with Barbra Streisand, who won for “Funny Girl.” To date, it’s the only tie in this category.

Hepburn's Oscar

Katharine Hepburn’s four Best Actress Academy Awards on display at the Smithsonian (Morning Glory, 1933; Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, 1967; The Lion in Winter, 1968; On Golden Pond, 1981)

4) The years in which an actress has been nominated for both a lead and supporting performance include 1938 (Fay Bainter), 1942 (Teresa Wright), 1982 (Jessica Lange), 1988 (Sigourney Weaver), 1993 (Holly Hunter, Emma Thompson), 2002 (Julianne Moore), and 2007 (Cate Blanchett).

5) Throughout the Academy’s 92-year history, only five women have been nominated for Best Director. In addition to Gerwig, they are: Lina Wertmüller, “Seven Beauties” (1977), Jane Campion, “The Piano” (1994), Sofia Coppola, “Lost in Translation” (2004), and the sole winner Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker” (2010).

Photo of Oscar statues courtesy ABC/Adam Rose.

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Ms. Arvia is an online columnist and critic; entertainment ghostwriter reaching nine million visitors per month; award-winning artist; grant-winning filmmaker; and Janet-of-all-trades. She’s interviewed SNL’s Cecily Strong and Julia Sweeney, the travel industry’s Rick Steves and Pauline Frommer, and directors Taylor Hackford and Laurie Anderson. Press releases on Chicago cultural events can be sent to reeljanet@live.com.