That’s Our Oscar, Academy Tells Court

LOS ANGELES (CN) – The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences sued an heir of cinematographer Robert Surtees, claiming the right to buy Surtees’ 1953 Oscar for $10, not the $40,500 for which it was offered on eBay.
     The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences sued Carol Surtees aka Carol Buby, on Monday in Superior Court.
     Robert Surtees won three Oscars for cinematography, for “King Solomon’s Mines” (1950), “The Bad and the Beautiful” (1953) and “Ben-Hur” (1959).
     His son, Bruce Surtees, also was an Oscar-nominated cinematographer, known especially for his work with Clint Eastwood. Bruce Surtees died in 2012 and his wife, the former Carol Buby, apparently inherited the Oscar statuette for “The Bad and the Beautiful.”
     The Academy claims that on Dec. 12, Carol Surtees and a person or persons unknown “purported to auction the Surtees Oscar for $40,500” on eBay, to a person or persons unknown, whom the Academy also sues.
     It claims it has right of first refusal to buy the Oscar for $10.
     It is represented by Christopher Taybach with Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan.

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