How Oscar History Could Be Made

There’s no box-office giant like "Titanic."

There’s no sweeping epic like "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King."

There’s no cultural phenomenon like "Forrest Gump."

So why watch this year’s Academy Awards?

Despite the absence of any real blockbusters in this year’s Oscar race ("Juno" being the biggest hit among the best picture nominees), and only a few mega-stars (George Clooney, Johnny Depp) in the running, there are still plenty of reasons to pay attention to this year’s awards.

History could be made. Records could be tied. And Oscar trivia questions may have to be re-written.

Here’s how.

1. If Daniel Day-Lewis, Marion Cotillard, Javier Bardem and Cate Blanchett win, this would mark the first time that four non-Americans from four different countries (Great Britain, France, Spain and Australia) took home the four acting Oscars. If Julie Christie or Tilda Swinton (both British) win over Cotillard or Blanchett, this will still be only the second time in history that non-Americans claimed all four acting trophies. (The first was in 1965, when Brits Rex Harrison, Julie Andrews and Peter Ustinov won, along with Russian-French Lila Kedrova.)

2. If "Juno" is named best film, it will share the distinction of shortest-titled best picture winner with 1958’s "Gigi."

3. If "Michael Clayton" wins best picture, it will become the third first/last name movie title to win the top prize, after "Tom Jones" in 1964 and "Annie Hall" in 1978.

4. If Joel and Ethan Coen ("No Country for Old Men") win for picture, director, screenplay and editing, it will be the first time that anyone has won four Oscars in one night for a feature-length film. (Walt Disney won four Oscars in one night in 1954, but all for short subject and documentary categories.)

5. If Joel and Ethan Coen win for best director, it will be only the second time that two people have shared the directing Oscar. (The first was in 1962 when Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise won for "West Side Story.")

6. If Julian Schnabel takes best director for "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly," it will be only the second time in history that a directing Oscar has gone to a film not nominated for best picture. (The first was way back in 1929 when Frank Lloyd won for directing "The Divine Lady.")

7. If Daniel Day-Lewis wins best actor, he’ll become the eighth actor to win two lead Oscars, following Spencer Tracy, Frederic March, Gary Cooper, Marlon Brando, Dustin Hoffman, Tom Hanks and Jack Nicholson.

8. If Julie Christie wins best actress, she’ll become the twelfth actress to win two lead Oscars, following Luise Rainer, Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, Vivien Leigh, Ingrid Bergman, Elizabeth Taylor, Glenda Jackson, Jane Fonda, Sally Field, Jodie Foster and Hilary Swank.

9. If Julie Christie wins best actress, this will mark the longest span of time between two Oscar wins for a performer. (Christie won her for first for "Darling" in 1966, 42 years ago.) Helen Hayes holds the current record, with almost 39 years between her two Academy Award wins in 1932 and 1971.

10. If Marion Cotillard wins best actress, she’ll become the first person to triumph for a French-language film, and only the third to win for a foreign language film. (The others were Sophia Loren for "Two Women" and Roberto Benigni for "Life Is Beautiful," both Italian.)

11. If Ellen Page wins best actress, she’ll become the youngest person to nab a lead Oscar. Page turned 21 on Thursday. (Marlee Matlin was 21 years and seven months old when named best actress for "Children of a Lesser God" in 1987.)

12. If Ellen Page wins best actress, she’ll also become the first Canadian in nearly 60 years to win an acting Oscar. (Walter Huston won for "The Treasure of Sierra Madre" in 1949. Anna Paquin, who won for "The Piano" in 1994, was born in Canada but moved to New Zealand when she was four.)

13. If Javier Bardem wins best supporting actor, he’ll become the first Spaniard to win an acting Oscar.

14. If 82-year-old Hal Holbrook should upset in the supporting actor category, he’ll become the oldest performer of either gender in either category to win an acting Oscar. (The current record-holder is Jessica Tandy, who was 80 when crowned best actress for "Driving Miss Daisy" in 1990.)

15. If Cate Blanchett wins best supporting actress, she’ll become the second person to win for playing someone of the opposite gender. (Blanchett plays Bob Dylan in "I’m Not There." Linda Hunt won best supporting actress for playing a man in 1983’s "The Year of Living Dangerously.")