From the Oscars to the Spirit Awards: A Look at Hollywood's Award Shows

March 26th, 2012

Nothing says glitz and glamour more than the award shows that celebrate the movies. From the Oscars to the MTV Movie Awards, these shows honor the best in film, while providing a taste of the latest fashion trends. The awards season usually begins in January and culminates with the Academy Awards ceremony in February.

MTV Movie Awards

Held every June, the MTV Movie Awards are geared towards teenagers. MTV producers and executives choose the nominees. Viewers can vote online for the winners. The show is known for its odd categories, with awards for best kiss and best jaw-dropping moment being two of the current favorites. Until 2007, the show was shot out of order, giving the illusion of a live presentation. Since then, it has been filmed like a normal awards show in front of a live audience. The host is usually a hot comedian. Eddie Murphy, Mike Myers and Will Smith have all been hosts at some point during their careers. The show's Lifetime Achievement award began as a joke, often rewarding characters like Chewbacca and Godzilla, before morphing into the MTV Generation Award that honors actors like Tom Cruise and Jim Carrey who achieved popularity during MTV's lifetime.

Independent Spirit Awards

Founded in 1984, the Independent Spirit Awards honor the best in independent filmmaking. Presented by Film Independent, the ceremony is held in tents on the Santa Monica Beach on the Saturday before the Oscars. The show features awards that are similar to the Oscars, but it also gives out a Best First Feature and Best First Screenplay award. The John Cassavetes Award is given to the film team with the best film that cost less than $500,000. The show is broadcasted on Bravo and IFC.

Screen Actors Guild Awards

The Screen Actors Guild Awards is an annual event that takes place every January. The nominees are chosen by 4,200 randomly selected SAG members. Once the nominees have been selected, the entire SAG body is allowed to vote on the winners, making it the only awards ceremony where actors vote for their peers. The ceremony distributes awards for both film and television, as well as a Lifetime Achievement award. It is held every January at the Shrine Exposition Center in Los Angeles. The show currently airs on TBS and TNT.

Golden Globe Awards

The controversial Golden Globe Awards is a collection of accolades given to film and television performers by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Considered the first major show of the awards season, the ceremony was first held in 1944 and has been held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel since 1961. Winners of the lifetime achievement honor are presented with the Cecil B. DeMille Award. The show airs on NBC and has been hosted by Ricky Gervais for the past three years.

The ceremony has raised eyebrows due to accusations that studios lobby or pay for nominations. The awards show was even forced off the air from 1968 until 1974 due to an investigation into the misleading practices of the Hollywood Foreign Press by the Federal Communications Commission.

Academy Awards

Since 1929, the Academy Awards have been the premier entertainment awards ceremony. The show is run by the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and is held every February at the Hollywood and Highland Center. The Oscars are usually one of the most watched events on television, with ratings that have rivaled the Super Bowl. The show features a host as well as a number of presenters, musical acts and montages of past films. While shows like the Golden Globes tend to have a casual atmosphere, the Academy Awards presentation is a black tie affair that is known for sticking to tradition. In recent years, attempts have been made to tailor the show to a younger audience, a move that has produced mixed results.