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25th Academy Awards

The 25th Academy Awards honoring the best movies of 1952, were held on March 19, 1953, from the RKO Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, California and the NBC International Theatre, New York, New York.

It was the first Academy Awards ceremony to be televised, and the first ceremony held in Hollywood and New York City simulataneously. It was also the only year that the New York ceremonies were to be held in the International Theatre on Columbus Circle, which was shortly thereafter demolished and replaced by the New York Coliseum convention center

Awards issued

James Bacon, writing about the event for the Associated Press, reported that "most experts pick Miss Booth, Gary Cooper and the movie High Noon to win the top three Oscars."

Presenters

Performers

In attendance

Among the 2,800 in attendance at the Pantages Theatre were:

Broadcast

The 25th Academy Awards ceremony was the first to be broadcast on television:
For the first time in history, a television audience estimated at 40,000,000 persons will watch the movie industry's biggest show. It will mark the TV debut for scores of the biggest names in moviedom.

The telecast was prompted by the need to finance the bi-coastal ceremony. When three of the film studios refused to provide their customary financial support, the RCA Victor Division of the Radio Corporation of America agreed to pay AMPAS $100,000 (one source reported $250,000) as a sponsorship fee. NBC telecast the bicoastal ceremony over its 64-station television network and on its 174-station radio system. The Armed Forces Radio Service recorded the proceedings for later broadcast.

The technology used for television at the time meant that Bob Hope had to wear a blue dress shirt with his formal dinner jacket—the traditional white shirt would have been too bright.

Trivia

When Shirley Booth accepted the award for best actress in New York City, she was so excited that she tripped slightly on the way up to accept "one of the most unsurprising awards in Academy history." She thanked "old friends for faith, new friends for hope and everyone for their charity."

The show was broadcast from 10:30 p.m. to 12:00 midnight, switching back and forth from host Bob Hope on the West Coast to Conrad Nagel on the East Coast. The late start was made to accommodate those nominees who were performing that night on the Broadway stage.

References and footnotes

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