Oscar Impact: The Media Stars

The strong correlation among the various awards points to the existence of multi-media stars–celebrities who are successful in all the media.

This small minority genuine media stars, headed by winners of the “triple crown,” the Oscar, the Tony, and the Emmy, includes Helen Hayes, Thomas Mitchell, Ingrid Bergman, Shirley Booth, Melvyn Douglas, Jack Albertson, Paul Scofield, Anne Bancroft, Liza Minnelli, and Judi Dench.

Barbra Streisand

Streisand became “the queen of the entertainment industries,” because, as one observer noted, at “the staggeringly unprecedented age of twentyseven, she accomplished an unheard of, indeed, undreamed of feat. Streisand was the only person, male or female, to have won every major entertainment award.

Early on, Streisand vowed to scoop all major awards, a feat she achieved in only five years. She was nominated for a Tony for playing Fanny Brice in Funny Girl, which provided her screen debut and earned her the 1968 Best Actress. Streisand won a Special Tony in 1970, as “the Actress of the Decade,” then an extensive, multimillion dollar contract, followed by a string of recordings and successful TV specials which earned her Grammys and Emmys.

Henry Fonda

One of America's most beloved and iconic actors, Henry Fonda was a media star in the full sense of the term, though he considered himself primarily a stage actor. One of the first screen stars to make a successful transition to stage and television, Fonda alternated regularly among these media. In 1959, he appeared in the TV series The Deputy, two theatrical films, Warlock and The Man Who Understood Women, and a Broadway play. Fonda's string of prestigious awards included a Tony for Mister Roberts, an Oscar for On Golden Pond, Emmy nominations, and several Career or Lifetime Achievement Awards.