Mexican actor Emilio Fernández was the model for iconic Oscar statue, which he posed for in 1928.
Emilio Fernández was recruited by Mexican actress, Hollywood star, and future wife Dolores del Rio when then MGM chief art director Cedric Gibbons said he was looking for a model to help design the trophy.
At the time Emilio Fernández was living in Los Angeles after a failed military revolt in Mexico.
Dolores del Rio thought he had the perfect physique for Cedric Gibbons’ vision of a Crusader Knight.
Though initially reluctant, Emilio Fernández was eventually persuaded to strip down and pose with a large sword, giving us the famous golden statue coveted by actors ever since.
It wasn’t given the nickname “Oscar” until 1939.
Emilio Fernández was born in Coahuila, Mexico, in 1904 and worked his whole life in films, acting, directing, and writing for the screen.
He appeared in several classic films including 1947’s The Fugitive, 1964’s The Night of the Iguana, and 1974’s Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia.