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Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) is a professional honorary organization ostensibly dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of motion pictures.
The Academy is composed of over 6,000 motion picture professionals. While the great majority of its members are based in the United States, membership is open to qualified filmmakers around the world. As of 2004, the Academy roster included theatrical filmmakers from 36 countries.
The Academy is known around the world for its annual Academy Awards, informally known as the "Oscars." In addition, the Academy gives Student Academy Awards annually to filmmakers at the undergraduate and graduate level; awards up to five Nicholl Fellowships in Screenwriting annually; and operates the Margaret Herrick Library in Beverly Hills, California and the Pickford Center for Motion Picture Study in Hollywood, California, which will expand to include The Museum of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, to open as a tourist attraction by 2012.