Mozart, Salieri and the Oscar Statuette’s Tune-Up

Brooklyn firm has added a gold-plating lifetime guarantee

Headshot of Richard Horgan

There’s a fun detail in Albany-based AP reporter Michael Hill’s look at the pair of New York state vendors responsible for the new-look Oscar statuette.

Beginning with the 2016 ceremony, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences partnered with Polich Tallix in Rock Tavern, N.Y. to get back to casting the statuette in bronze rather than relying on a pewter-like alloy, and with Epner Technology Inc. in Brooklyn to apply the final gold plating. As the latter firm’s president David Epner explains, his company had several earlier brushes with Oscar before being chosen for this prestigious assignment:

Actor F. Murray Abraham and a couple of other award winners had asked Epner to plate gold finishes that were wearing off. He vows that won’t happen under his process, which includes copper plating and nickel plating each statue before gold plating. “The gold is guaranteed–not for the life of the recipient, but for the life of the statue,” Epner said.”

Abraham beat out his Amadeus co-star Tom Hulce for the 1985 Best Actor prize as well as Jeff Bridges (Starman), Sam Waterston (The Killing Fields) and the late Albert Finney (Under the Volcano). Intriguingly, Epner Technology Inc. is older than The Academy and was started in 1910 in a manner most befitting this AMPAS context. The seed money was $600 in gold provided by co-founder Emanual Cohen’s mother.

Image via: Polich Tallix

@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.