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In the 85 years that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences have been giving out Oscars, ties have happened, but they are super rare. Last night’s tie in the Sound Editing category was just the sixth in history.
Mark Wahlberg, who opened the envelope to announce the winners was just as shocked as everyone in the audience and at home. Both Zero Dark Thirty and Skyfall took home the award. It was a big one for Zero Dark Thirty since the one-time frontrunner won no other award last night. Skyfall, the latest James Bond film, did win for Adele’s theme song, though.
The most famous tie in history is the 1968 Best Actress Award. Barbra Streisand won for her breakout role in William Wyler’s Funny Girl, while Katharine Hepburn also won for The Lion in Winter. It was Hepburn’s third win.
The first tie occurred at the 1931/32 Oscars, when both Fredric March (Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde) and Wallace Beery (The Champ) won. March actually did get one more vote than Beery, but rules at the time said that if two nominees were within three votes, they both got the award. (And you thought today’s rules were weird.)
The next tie was for the 1949 documentary short subject, when A Chance to Live and So Much For So Little won.
In 1986, both Artie Shaw: Time Is All You've Got and Down and Out in America won Documentary Feature.
In 1994, Franz Kafka's It's a Wonderful Life and Trevor won live action short film.