Oscars Preparations
An Oscar statue waits to be unveiled in the red carpet arrival area during preparations for the 84th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California February 24, 2012. Reuters

The golden moment is just hours away.

The Oscar statuettes, golden men holding the inverted sword, have already lined up the back stage at the Kodak Theatre as the impeccable red carpet waits the turn of the Hollywood A-list.

Actors might have already perfected their acceptance speech, in case they win and the anchors, their acts!

As speculation and expectations mount side by side about whether Meryl Streep would grab her third Oscar for The Iron Lady or The Artist will bag the golden statuette for the best picture, here is a look at the factors that may probably make you a winner.

Portray a real person and bring alive the controversial life

Portraying the life of a person who has etched his or her presence in the annals of history by making a positive change in the lives of people has always attracted the Oscar judges.

Stories of extraordinary courage and calibre of real life heroes like Gandhi, King George VI or Erin Brockovich have helped the actors to get the coveted golden statuette.

Colin Firth won the best actor award for playing King George VI in The King's Speech in 2010; similarly, Julia Roberts for the portrayal of environmental activist Erin Brockovich and Ben Kingsley for Gandhi in 1982 for the title role.

Politicians, royalty and stories of struggles with an addiction

Mass movements which had rewritten the destinies of nations and human miseries during a war or genocide are also an Oscar- aiming theme.

The trend was obvious in the early years of Oscar as one in eight best actor performances was about the life of a politician, leader or member of royalty.

George Arliss as British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli in the 1929/30 movie Disraeli, Charles Laughton as Henry VIII in Private Life of Henry VIII in 1933 and Paul Scofield's Sir Thomas More in A Man for All Seasons in 1960, have all won the prestigious best actor awards, a BBC report pointed out.

Physical and Mental Disability

Physical and mental disabilities and the extra effort the actors take to achieve the perfection of the characters usually impress Oscar judges.

Dustin Hoffman reportedly spent a year interacting with young autistic men and their families to perfect his role in Rain Man. The role brought him the best actor Oscar in 1988.

In 1999, actor Daniel Day-Lewis bagged the award for playing the character Christy Brown, an Irish writer and artist with cerebral palsy in My Left Foot.

He was reported to be so gripped with the character that he used to remain in his wheelchair between takes. Day-Lewis is also said to have formed friendships with several people with cerebral palsy and their families, a BBC report suggests.

Characters such as single parent, mistress or prostitute

Another winning formula would be the portrayal of a struggling single parent especially woman, and her story of conquering the heights against all odds.

The case of prostitutes or mistresses is not different. Nearly 12 per cent of best actress winners have bagged their award for playing a prostitute or mistress, says a BBC report.

Joan Crawford got the best actress award for playing the title character in the 1945 movie, Mildred Pierce which told the story of a struggling mother and her ungrateful daughter.

Undoubtedly, the 84th Academy Awards will also be rewarding the extraordinary as there is more than one lined up for the coveted honours, be it The Iron Lady, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo or The Artist.

Keep your fingers crossed!