Bob Dylan, George Bernard Shaw, and Al Gore

I was a little annoyed when I heard that Bob Dylan had become the second person to win a Nobel Prize and an Oscar – because I'd been under the impression that Al Gore (who was Vice–President of the USA, under Bill Clinton) had also won both. I'm pretty sure I'd previously heard a quiz question to that effect, but it turns out that I (and the setter, if such a question was ever asked) had been guilty of woolly thinking.

Al Gore shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (a quasi–UN organisation), "for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man–made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change".

The winner of the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature in 2007 was An Inconvenient Truth, which documented Al Gore's campaign to educate citizens about global warming by means of a comprehensive slide show. Gore estimates in the film that he had given the slide show more than a thousand times; in the film, he basically presents it in film form. Gore was also credited as the author of the book of the same title, which (by the way) won the Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album in 2009.

The catch of course is that Best Documentary Oscars don't go to the main presenter; they go to the Director – in this case, Davis Guggenheim.

An Inconvenient Truth also won the Oscar for Best Original Song – for Melissa Etheridge's I Need to Wake Up.

George Bernard Shaw won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1925, and in 1938 he was one of four people cited in the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, for Pygmalion (based on his play).

Bob Dylan won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2000, for Things Have Changed – which appeared in Wonder Boys, a comedy–drama starring Michael Douglas and Tobey Maguire.

© Haydn Thompson 2017