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Patrick Stockstill, Oscars historian

Patrick Stockstill, in the archives at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' library in Beverly Hills, Calif. (file 2006/ap)

LOS ANGELES -- Patrick Stockstill, historian for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and backstage "keeper of the Oscars" during ceremonies, died Wednesday of complications following a heart transplant. He was 57.

Mr. Stockstill helped develop the movie academy's database. He started as an assistant librarian at the academy's Margaret Herrick Library in 1982 and was named academy historian a year later.

In 1989, he began overseeing the administration of several Oscar categories, including documentaries, short films, music, and foreign language, but he continued his responsibilities as academy historian.

He was doled out Oscar statuettes backstage during Academy Awards presentations. He kept track of all the serial numbered trophies and originated the database that attempts to record the whereabouts of each of the more than 2,500 Oscars handed out.

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