Conventional wisdom suggests that there aren’t a whole lot of famous "Oscars" in history besides the nickname of the Academy Awards’ famous award.
That wisdom would be right ... but chances are, you’re familiar with at least a few of them.
In honor of the Oscars and their nine major award categories, here are nine of the most famous Oscars in history.
1. Oscar Dickson:
This 19th century Swedish magnate and merchant worked closely with King Oscar II of Sweden. In his day, he was considered the most affluent of all the Swedes and he spent much of his fortune on conducting the early exploration of the Arctic including the Russian Arctic area and Greenland. It’s no coincidence that Dikson Island in the Kara Sea was eventually named after him.
2. Oscar Peterson:
Eight-time Grammy Award-winning Jazz pianist Oscar Peterson continued to master his craft and play his music publicly until 2006, a year before he died. Though he was primarily a solo artist, the "Maharaja of the Keyboard" performed with countless other musicians throughout his over 60 year Jazz career, and is considered one of the greatest Jazz pianists of all time.
3. Oscar Mayer:
Oscar Mayer was a German immigrant living in Detroit who started his own sausage-making shop in 1883 at 24 years old. Nowadays, his meat product line is far more famous than this hard-working businessman ever was. And why not? We all wish we were an Oscar Mayer weiner, and besides, Oscar Mayer had a way with B-O-L-O-G-N-A.
4. Oscar Pistorius:
The "Blade Runner," um… the real life Blade Runner, was famous for being a double leg amputee Olympic sprinter with bionic legs. His heroic story of overcoming his disability now has a dark cloud, as recent allegations that he shot and killed his wife, if proven true, would turn his fame into infamy.
5. Oscar Robertson:
In 1956, Oscar Robertson became the first African-American to play basketball for the University of Cincinnati. But that would just scratch the surface of his accomplishments. In 1960, he led the men’s Olympic basketball team to a gold medal. By the end of his career, he played 14 NBA seasons and retired as the league’s all-time assist leader. Some argue he’s one of the greatest players of all time.
6. Oscar de la Hoya:
39 wins, 30 by KO. 6 losses. 0 draws. Though now retired, "the Golden Boy" of boxing is still a household name in the world. During his career, de la Hoya defeated 17 world champions and won 10 different titles in six different weight classes. His career's dark spot includes a charge that he raped a woman in 1998, which was eventually settled out of court.
7. Oscar Wilde:
This 19th century Irish writer and poet continues to have influence in the literary world today. When you think literary classics, it’s hard to ignore his novel The Picture of Dorian Gray or his masterpiece The Importance of Being Earnest — both of which are still required reading in many an English class.
8. Oscar the Grouch:
For millions of young kids, Oscar the Grouch is the first character in the world to let them know it’s ok to be a misanthrope ... and love trash. One of the most famous Sesame Street characters of all time was also created to add an aspect of racial and ethnic diversity, since he lives a different lifetsyle than everyone else. Go fig.
9. Oscar de la Renta:
De la Renta may be the second most celebrated Oscar tonight on the red carpet — though some may argue he will even be the first. De la Renta is a household name in the fashion elite world for his elegant and diverse evening wear and red carpet gowns. Even the biggest celebrities compete for the distinction of wearing them. Expect to hear his name on the red carpet.