Lancelot Links: Oscar Edition
- The most interesting piece I've read this Oscar season is the least-surprising. Three reporters at The LA Times, John Horn, Nicole Sperling and Doug Smith, finally break the cloak on anonymity that has always surrounded the Academy and give us exact numbers ... and it's pretty much as we always suspected: Oscar is old, white and male. Specifically, he's 94% white, 77% male, and with an average age of 62. I once compared the Academy to Gordon Jump on “WKRP in Cincinnati” and it's not far off. The surprise? I always assumed the Academy was made up of past nominees and winners but 64% of its members, including TV stars Erik Estrada and Gavin McLeod, have never been nominated. So how did they get in? We don't really get that from the Times. We don't get a sense of who gets invited and why. Apparently women and non-whites are still vast minorities in terms of even new membership. At the same time, I don't think this kind of rash action is doing anyone any good:
“People of color are always peripheral,” said veteran African American character actor Bernie Casey (“Under Siege”), who said he recently quit the academy because he was disenchanted with its racial makeup.
- The audio of my recent turn talking Oscars on “Karl Show! (Starring Jason)” is up. Love the “Citizen Kane” gif they gave me. What am I trying to get the masses to applaud for there? “Young Adult”? “Tree of Life”? CRITIC LUNDEGAARD FOUND IN LOVE NEST WITH “FILM.”
- “Kids Re-enact the Oscar Nominees” is a cheap laugh but I laughed out loud for the “Moneyball” version.
- More kids: Guyism.com's Ryan Jones interviews kids on the upcoming Oscar ceremonies. LOL line: “What's the favorite movie you've seen over the last year?” “'Dolphin Tale.'” “'Dolphin Tale'? How does that compare with 'The Tree of Life'?”
- Nathaniel Rogers temporarily leaves his Film Experience site to pen an interesting piece, over at Slate, in which he breaks down who and what gets thanked, and when, during Oscar acceptance speeches. Basics: God beats Oprah but loses to Meryl Streep.
- Slate also has a piece, by Elbert Ventura, about how sneakily profound “The Descendants” is, but he doesn't say anything I didn't in my review last November. Oh, except that the movie is as existential and profound as “The Tree of Life.” Because it's not.
- Via the eagle-eyed Uncle Vinny: Dave Weigel breaks down “The Iron Lady.” Cleavage and all.
- A Harvard freshman, Ben Zauzmer, has created a mathematical formula for predicting the Oscars, although—caveat!—he says it's not foolproof. His method would've predicted correctly 19 of 20 in 2009 but only 16 of 20 in 2010. Still, he offers his 2011 predictions. Let's hope he's wrong about Meryl. (So odd to be rooting against Meryl.)
- Meanwhile, FilmJerk.com's numbers cruncher makes his own predictions. And yes, Virginia, there are differences. Jerk goes Clooney over DuJardin, Davis over Streep, Bejo over Davis. Oddly, among his formulations, “hotness” isn't a factor. Which, with the average Academy member, it totally is. I'd stick with the Harvard kid.
- The Seattle Times' Moria Macdonald makes her predictions (and lets her wishes be known) in the eight major categories. For what it's worth, she agrees with young Ben on everything but, well, Meryl.
- Via Le Monde, Césars 2012: le triomphe de “The Artist.” Peut-etre a Hollywood aussi? Question: Why do they use the English version of the title (“The Artist”) in a French newspaper? Do they call it “The Artist” in France? Not “l'Artist”? FWIW: Dujardin lost out on meilleur acteur to Omar Sy, but Bejo won meilleure actrice. So Gordon Jump is alive and well and living in France.
- David Denby has a nice homage to silent film in the latest New Yorker. To which everyone should be subscribing.
- Then Denby goes through the looking glass with fellow critic Richard Brody to talk about silent films via a silent film. Fun.
- Oh, don't forget this: My Oscars page.
- Finally, in 2005, I wrote a piece for MSNBC on who was most due for an Oscar. Among my choices? Martin Scorsese, Jeff Bridges, and Glenn Close. Done, done, and... probably not.
No live-blogging tonight kids. Oscar hosting. But I'm sure I'll have an opinion or two when the night is through...
Oui, vous est tres jolie. Je t'aime, vraiment. Mais... meilleure actrice?
Twitter: @ErikLundegaardTweets by @ErikLundegaard