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Sunday
Mar062011

Podcast: The Elephant in the Room

For this final podcast of the 83rd Oscar season, we've misplaced Katey. Oops? Where she go? But Nick, Joe and myself (Nathaniel) are back to close out the season.

We had fun chiming in weekly and after a  break will be back with Off-Season cinematic musings.  While we normally have quite a laugh during these, and there's a fair bit of that againe, we do get a bit serious on a couple of topics. "The End" always brings a smidge more sober take-it-all in perspective.

Topics covered include:

  • Kirk Douglas & Melissa Leo. The early peak.
  • Dressing like a winner / Dressing like a nominee
  • Cate Blanchett, Sharon Stone and other fancy dressers
  • Nobody ever likes the hosts of the Oscar show. But Anne Hathaway & James Franco?
  • Ovearching themes and production confusion: Old or Young?
  • Why no visual gags for non-comedian hosts?
  • Colin Firth, Christian Bale and Natalie Portman speeches
  • Awards Fatigue (and strategies for coping)
  • Next?

Listen in and join in the conversation in the comments.

Podcast: The 83rd Annual Oscars. Season Finale

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Reader Comments (31)

I was watching the Oscars on a shitty internet feed that kept coming in and out; drew the Kirk Douglas thing out even better.

March 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarsha Mason

I didn't get what Nick's in-flight movie was.. could someone tell me please?

March 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterConrado

The King's Speech

March 6, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I don't know if it's been suggested, and I'm sure she would never do it, but I think Mo'Nique would be a good Oscar host, or at least an interesting Oscar host.

tbh, while watching the hosts i actually liked what they were doing. i didn't think they were going to get bad reviews but DAYUM am i not intuitive. also, i always feel like a giant piece of crap when i show up here and like the king's speech =/. but that's the nature of the oscars and movies in general, isn't it? so subjective.

March 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterOlivia

Nice podcast! I hadn't heard about Harvey being angry with Hooper for not thanking him... but if I were Hooper, and Harvey edited my R-rated best-picture winning movie down to a PG-13--against my will-- so that he could make more money......... I wouldn't thank him either! haha

March 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBK

I was probably too young to read the day after reviews, but did Billy even get poor reviews after his late 1990's shows?

March 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

John -- i don't remember that at all BUT every show i can remember the host got bad reviews. some of the reviews this year are cracking me up because they keep longing for baldwin and martin who got TERRIBLE reviews. like way worse than Jackman's (though he also got bad reviews. Everyone does.

March 6, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

Can we get a podcast, like, every day? They're so entertaining.

Did Katey talk about "Jane Eyre" once too much? Is that why she's absent?

March 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn

The fact that Sandra Bullock was so interesting going through the Best Actor noms makes me wish that much more Meryl had won last year. Can you imagine?

Hopefully they'll stll be doing it this way the year after she finally gets her next one.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarsha Mason

I agree with bk--Hooper, Carter and Firth have all expressed their opposition to editing the film for a PG-13 rating so why would Hooper want to thank Harvey?

Though I imagine that was just brain-freeze on Hooper's part. There have been times when award recipients have forgotten to thank their spouses.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGabriel Oak

It's because the hosts get progressively worst, so people get nostalgic about the (slightly) worse host. I mean, Jackman > Martin and Baldwin > Franco and Hathaway. Though I blame the producers for being stupid enough to pick Franco at all. Have they ever SEEN Franco on a talk show before? I don't know why everyone was so surprised that Franco appeared "stoned and bored" - that's just how his face is. He always acts that way, in every interview and press conference. Despite an occasional funny role (stoned in Pineapple Express, no less) he's as far from a comedian as possible. They should have learned from Baldwin that funny actor does not translate to good show host material. And bless Hathaway for trying her best, but she doesn't have that natural zing of a pro comedian. Just bring back Martin (by himself) or Billy Crystal. honestlyyyyyy.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercici

Am I the only one who LOVED Ellen Degeneres, Jon Stewart, and Chris Rock? I would die if Margaret Cho or Kathy Griffin did it, though I know there's no way that's happening.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPercy

OMG Joe! I totally thought of the magic mirror too! I might have posted it as a comment somewhere too. :D

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPercy

Percy, I'm with you. I thought Ellen D. and Jon S. were two of the best in memory.

Nathaniel, I'm totally excited about "off season" podcasts.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSan FranCinema

Let me be clear that I loved Whoopi as a host, thought Billy, Steve Martin by himself, and Ellen were very good, and Hugh and Jon did totally fine. I was even okay with Letterman. I only thought Chris Rock and Martin/Baldwin punted. So I personally don't feel bad about the hosts every year, or even most years, though Nathaniel's right that they almost always get a rough time. (Billy didn't, though he started to get the "has he done this too many times?" reviews as things wore on, and he recycled the same schticks a bunch of times.)

Agree that I'd LOVE a Mo'Nique-hosted show, and that it would never, ever, ever happen.

Agree that Hooper is not necessarily in a position to be thanking Weinstein on creative grounds, but then again, neither he nor his movie is any position to be winning on creative grounds, so what're you going to do. Firth has managed to make his feelings about the cutting of TKS known without leaving Weinstein out of his speeches as the person who's allowed the film to connect with so many audiences. But I also agree it probably wasn't on purpose, and that even if it were, Hooper might have his reasons. Just reporting what I'd heard.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNick Davis

I heard someone talking about wanting the oscars to have sound mixers talking about why the sound mixing nominees were good. Well, they kind of did that online. They're youtube page has a few artists on their art things like Lois Burwell of Bravehart makeup fame talking about this years nominees http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AD6b77CCSBQ
There are a few others too.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAlex BBats

I really think the Academy should go back to stand-up comedians instead of regular actors who will never be able to overcome a poorly produced bad script. And PLEASE remember that many of us watch the Oscars very, very, very late at night so please bring all the glitz and excitement possible!!! otherwise we might fall asleep...

Melissa Leo opening the envelope! Funny!

Nathaniel's point is really interesting about limiting the vote. I also get the feeling they don't watch all the movies in the game. If they did, Blue Valentine and Animal Kingdom, just to name a few, would have been real contenders or at least they would haven been nominated in more categories.

PS Oh! I just found out this: http://www.movieline.com/2011/03/about-that-one-time-michael-fassbender-gave-a-horse-a-boner.php

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

As for the oscar speeches my favorite by far was Luke Methany who won for live action short. He was he college kid who came bouncing up on stage and said "J should have gotte. A haircut" Even though he was reading from a paper he wasnt actually reading a la Atwood. Heartfelt, funny and brought one of the few Awwww moments of the nightt when he thanked his significant other.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterK.A.

Sorry..... "i should have gotten a haircut"

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterK.A.

That was kinda deep, guys! Way to go on that. I think the part that I was constantly nodding my head about was the parts about the "old vs. young" disconnect (bad producers!), the kinds of people who watch the Oscars and who they should really be aiming at (like what the Tonys do), and how no one ever likes the current hosts until there's something worse to compare them to. But I did really like some hosts right after I saw them though. Whoopi's first few runs were funny, as well as Steve Martin and Ellen. I'm all for bringing back the comedians. The "get Tom Hanks or Steven Spielberg to host" sentiment would be so painful to me. It would be all reverence with so little comedy or momentum. I hope they learned their lesson with James Franco. Pair up Anne Hathaway with Hugh Jackman maybe one of these days, but other than that, I'd even take Billy Crystal again for a spin.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterOrion

I like this combo to host next year: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=14dAgRjrdXI

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

Oh I do hope you will do more of those especially discussing your opinions on certain movies!

Waltz is filming Carnage in Paris so it would probably be difficult for him to present.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJames T

You warmed my heart with that "30 Rock" reference!

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCarly

I have to say I really love this podcast. I found it because I follow Joe on Twitter (he's hilarious -- I admit I sometimes paste (with attribution) some of his tweets on my FB page, and all my friends think I'm terribly witty as a result). I was looking for something to replace the Creative Screenwriting podcast which went out of business. I would love it if you would keep it up all year long!!

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterps

Nathaniel, your suggestion about limiting the vote is an interesting one and would surely lead to surprises, but don't you think it would lead to mostly bad surprises? Foreign film is always nicely unpredictable because the winner is usually a conservative film that hasn't won any other awards.

Then again, I'm thinking about this year's acting and Best Picture categories and wonder if anything would have changed with your voting rules. Maybe Annette Bening would have won, but I think the others were safe. You do, however, have to wonder about films like The Departed, No Country for Old Men, and The Hurt Locker.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

I think what AMPAS should worry about the whole Franco thing is that it may only be a symptom that younger generations of actors have no intention to become the next Billy Crystal. Why would they? The actors that hosted these past years have continued with their careers intact after hosting, even in spite of the reviews. So it's a win win situation. If it goes well, people will miss you (Jackman) and if it doesn't, it won't kill your career (Hathaway). They can go on with their lives as if it was an audition they didn't pass. So, if they continue hiring actors - and I'm afraid they will, comedians and Tv hosts have much more to lose to accept hosting- it will be a continuous auditioning process to find the right intern, and in the meantime they'll find good professionals and not so good ones.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteriggy

Watch out about that limit the vote thing. The voters that have the time to watch all the foreign language films and the shorts are on average 65+ and retired with much time on their hands. If that's the kind of membership you want voting on best picture, director, the acting categories, etc., the surprises you want to alleviate your boredom will be replaced with probably many more moans and groans, more than you're getting now with the entire membership voting on these categories. If voters were more dillgent in general, there wouldn't be a problem with rewarding deserving nominees, but there have been too many people over the years sayng how they voted for someone not seeing anyone else, refusing to see nominees, only seeing one or two of the five, etc. Those people I automatically don't trust, but leaving it to the kinds of people that screw up foreign language film every year is no better. Unless it made people who are already too busy to do their jobs as Academy members properly all of a sudden more accountable for their votes, a limiting of the vote might do more damage than you think.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterIan

Ian -- i get what you're saying but one of the things that perplexes me about this argument is thfe feeling that academy voters don't have time to see 20 of the most acclaimed movies of each year. They work in the industry. It's like chefs who don't have time to eat or fashion designers who don't pay attention to what people are wearing.i basically don't have much respect for people if they don't know what's going on in their own chosen profession. that totally perplexes me. but you may be right that it would only be people with too much time on their hands. still, i think a vote is only respectable if people know what they're voting on so it is a tough call.

p.s. thanks! we will try.

March 7, 2011 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

What kind of person votes when he hasn't seen everything in the category??? (Did you SEE "Only When I Laugh"?) Ugh, I wonder if making them say they've seen everything in a category would at least shame them into remembering they're voting on performance, and not who schmoozed you the most or who's overdue.

Also, let's make people get some information on Sarah Palin (and Ralph Nader! :)) if they want to vote in US Prez elections.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMarsha Mason

I'd imagine that voters see little to nothing of what they really need to see. It's ten times worse for the Emmys, but then there's thousands of more hours of material to see (though when it gets down to the actual nominations, it's more than manageable). But accepting the reality of who these voters are and how they aren't engaged in their own industry's work throughout the year, limiiting the vote can cause some real troubles that you have to sift through b/c of who's actually voting and not voting.

But I didn't say that I did enjoy the podcast. You guys are very listenable. I missed Katie! Hope she's back for the next one, and yes, do them more often throughout the year. I need something to listen to at work.

The line about Sharon Stone though I thought was in poor taste. She almost died from a brain hemmorage a while back.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterIan
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