The Academy Awards, informally known as The Oscars, are a set of awards given annually for excellence of cinematic achievements. The Oscar statuette is officially named the Academy Award of Merit and is one of nine types of Academy Awards. Organized and overseen by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), the awards are given each year at a formal ceremony.
The awards were first given in 1929 at a ceremony created for the awards, at the Hotel Roosevelt in Hollywood. Over the years that the award has been given, the categories presented have changed; currently Oscars are given in more than a dozen categories, and include films of various types. As one of the most prominent award ceremonies in the world, the Academy Awards ceremony is televised live in more than 100 countries annually. It is also the oldest award ceremony in the media.
While the Oscar is under the ownership of the recipient, it is essentially not on the open market. Since 1950, the statuettes have been legally encumbered by the requirement that neither winners nor their heirs may sell the statuettes without first offering to sell them back to the Academy for US$1. If a winner refuses to agree to this stipulation, then the Academy keeps the statuette. Academy Awards not protected by this agreement have been sold in public auctions and private deals for six-figure sums.