Sunday night was Oscar night and, as usual, Hollywood turned out to celebrate another year of the movie industry with their annual awards. While science-fiction and fantasy were very scarce in the nominees for the big awards, the genres was well represented in both the broadcast, and among the overall winners.
The evening started off with the award for Art Direction which was won by Disney's production of Tim Burton's “Alice in Wonderland.” The movie also won again during the night for Costume Design.
One of the great oversights of the nominations this year, in many eyes, was the omission of Christopher Nolan in the catageory for Best Director for his work in “Inception.” Despite this sad failure to acknowledge the director, the movie did win several awards last night, Cinematography, Sound Mixing, Sound Editing, and Visual Effects.
The horror movie genre walked away with the award for Makeup, with that honor going, as many expected, to the remake of “The Wolfman.” Sadly, that was about it as far as awards won for films in any of those genres.
However, there were winners who have previously made science-fiction and fantasy films, and it was nice to see them honored for their recent work. Christian Bale (“Batman Begins,” “The Dark Knight,” “Terminator: Salvation”) won Best Supporting Actor for his role in the movie, “The Fighter,” and the big win of the evening went to Natalie Portman (the Star Wars prequels) who won Best Actress for her work in “Black Swan.”
Along with those winners, there were other places in the show that science-fiction and fantasy was represented. For example, when the music awards were being introduced, the music from Star Wars led off a presentation by the orchestra, along with the theme from ET.
The most heart warming moment of the night for me was that appearance on stage by Kirk Douglas (The Final Countdown, Saturn City) to a thunderous standing ovation by the crowd in attendance. He quickly showed the world that, despite the effects of age and the aftermath of a stroke, he is still the man we all remember from all of his films. With all respect to Andy Whitfield, Douglas is still Spartacus!
There was a moment in the broadcast that got a major laugh from all in attendance. During one scene in the awards show, co-hosts Anne Hathaway and James Franco appeared in costumes, Hathaway in a tuxedo, and Franco in drag as a, sort of, Marilyn Monroe. The big laugh came when he quipped, “...weird part is, I just got a text message from Charlie Sheen.”
As far as hosts go, Franco and Hathaway were okay. However, the Oscars have traditionally been a far better program with a comedian is hosting, a fact that was driven home by appearances by two former Oscar hosts, Billy Crystal, and (thanks to the miracles of visual effects) the late Bob Hope. I hope the producers of the broadcast go back to that tradition next year for nothing helps the awards go better than the antics and comments of a good comedian.
About the Author