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Bruce Davis Takes Readers Behind The Scenes On The Early Days of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

Author photo of Bruce Davis

Perhaps there’s no person better equipped to write a book exploring the tumultuous early days of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science’s existence than Bruce Davis. Davis worked at the Academy for three decades, and was its executive director for over twenty years. With The Academy and The Award, Davis has combined meticulous research with a dynamic narrative to reveal the compelling personalities of the actors, writers, directors, and filmmakers who comprised the Academy during its formative era. Along the way, Davis debunks some long held myths of Academy lore, including the true origins of the Oscar’s name and the actual events of Bette Davis’ supposedly tempestuous term as the Academy’s President. An erudite and witty look at the Academy’s history, The Academy and The Award is a vital chronicle of film history that will be sought after by American history aficionados and film fanatics alike. Critics have lavished praise on the book, with U.S. News and World Report stating, “Film historians and others digging for a deeper vein of Oscar knowledge than mere trivia will turn up many nuggets in The Academy and the Award, which focuses on the initial three decades in the corporate life of the sword-wielding statuette. Oscar would be lucky to have as keen and even-handed a historian as Davis to explore its next era.” Davis spoke with us about his extensive research, television’s influence on the Academy’s prospects, and how a chance remark by Gregory Peck caused Davis to change his office décor.