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How to travel when you have an Oscar in your luggage

My interview with Juan Jose Campanella, the director of the Oscar-winning The Secret in Their Eyes, ran in Sunday's paper (you can read it here). I had hoped he'd have the statue with him so I could hold it, but he had locked away in the hotel safe, so I asked him how he travels with it.

Photo_1268084323096-1-0  "I carry it in a Club Monaco bag, wrapped in bubble wrap," he said, adding that he carries it on the plane with him and never lets it out of his sight. When he put the bag through the X-ray machine, the airport security officer told him "Sir, we're going to have to inspect your Oscar" with a perfectly straight face.

Campanella also told me the Academy never ships Oscars to recipients by mail or FedEx or any other means, to prevent thievery. Winners must pick up their statues in person, which meant that the Spanish producers of the film, who received an Oscar of their own, had to fly to Los Angeles to get it.

Oscar winners are also required to sign a contract giving the Academy the right to buy back an Oscar, if a former winner has fallen on hard times and wants to sell it, for the princely sum of one dollar. That prevents Oscar statues from popping up on eBay or being sold on the collectors' market. So if you want an Oscar, you're just going to get it the old-fashioned way: Earn it. 


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