The big story for Canada last year was in the Best Foreign Language Film category and Denis Villeneuve's Incendies. This year Canada's official entry is Monsieur Lazhar. The touching and emotionally packed film about how an Algerian refugee takes on the doubly difficult task of reaching his distraught students following the suicide of their teacher, while securing his own asylum from past tragedies has also been nominated for nine Genie Awards including Best Picture. Also in the running for a Best Foreign-Language Film Oscar® is the Canada/Poland/Germany co-production, In Darkness directed by Agnieszka Holland.
With Christopher Plummer winning a Golden Globe for his performance in Beginners, there is a great deal of speculation he will also, finally, get an Oscar®. He's nominated for the same role in the Best Supporting Actor category and if that does come to pass he will, at 82 years of age, become the oldest actor to ever win the coveted statuette. The record holder at this time is the late George Burns who won his when he was 80.
Finally, Canadian composer Howard Shore, who is known his work on David Cronenberg's films, has been nominated for Best Original Score for the Martin Scorsese film, Hugo and Canada picked up two more nominations in the Best Animated Short category. One is for the film Dimanche/Sunday from director Patrick Doyon and the other is for Wild Life from Wendy Tilby & Amanda Forbis.
It has now been five years since Canada has won Oscar® Gold. With a total of seven this year, maybe 2012 will bring an end to the Oscar® drought in Canada.
The statuette's nickname of Oscar has unknown origins. The most most popular story involves then Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences librarian and future executive director, Margaret Herrick. As the story goes, Herrick, upon seeing the statuette sitting on a table exclaimed "it looks just like my Uncle Oscar!" The name stuck and it has been called by that name ever since.
Another common story involves actress and two-time Academy Award winner Bette Davis, who reportedly named it after her ex-husband, Harmon Oscar Nelson, Jr. In 1934 Hollywood reporter Sidney Skolsky was apparently the first columnist to use the name when making reference to Katherine Hepburn's win that year. Walt Disney is also reported to have called it by that name in the same year at the Awards ceremony. By 1939 the Academy itself was using the name officially.
For more, visit oscar.com.