Ang Lee's "Life of Pi" has picked up its first two Oscars at the 85th annual Academy Awards. The CGI spectacle, which has grossed over $580 million worldwide, won in the categories of Best Cinematography and Best Visual Effects.
Director Ang Lee wanted a 'new visual language' for the film
Pixar picks up its seventh Oscar in the category
Pixar Animation Studio has claimed its seventh Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film to date. "Brave" may have missed the bar the brand has set in the eyes of many (reviews and box office failed to live up to that of recent successes like "Toy Story 3" and "Up"), but it will be walking out of the Dolby Theatre a winner this evening.
The film's co-director Mark Andrews (kilted, in fact) and Brenda Chapman accepted the award.
He last won in 2009 for 'Inglourious Basterds'
Christoph Waltz has kicked off the 85th annual Academy Awards much like he did the 82nd annual Academy Awards: by taking to the stage to accept the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. The "Django Unchained" star came out on top in a fiercely contested category featuring veterans like Alan Arkin ("Argo"), Robert De Niro ("Silver Linings Playbook") and Tommy lee Jones ("Lincoln").
Say what you must about the glitz and the glam
The Oscars red carpet is well underway down at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. It feels weird being this far away from ground zero. And not a bad weird.
There are shows on ABC and E! so we can all ogle the stars as they make their way in. I don't know anything about fashion, sorry. I thought that was just an awesome stuffed animal, not a puppy purse. But hey, I'll say that Jessica Chastain has nailed it a second year in a row. She just looks different at this awards show than she does anywhere else. Rockin' it. But Jennifer Lawrence is owning it, too.
Anyway, here's your space to say what you will on the pre-show shenanigans. We'll be back during the ceremony for various filing throughout. Enjoy the show!
David O. Russell's Oscar nominee wins four, including Best Feature
In a normal year I would have been working on an interesting blood-Jameson content on the beach of Santa Monica today. Film Independent's Spirit Awards are, after all, the great stretch of the legs at the tail end of the season with the big Sunday showdown on the horizon. It's a good party, even if it still seems to be chasing what "independent filmmaking" is in this day and age. (I don't know that they've caught it.)
Nevertheless, it's a good bridesmaid roll call for films like "Beasts of the Southern Wild" and "Silver Linigns Playbook" to have their day while Oscar's heavies go at it the following day. But there is the rare occasion, like a Harvey Weinstein player last year, that dominates both ceremonies and feels like synergy, if for a moment. Could that play out again?
The last big hurrah for Michael Haneke's film?
The César Awards aren't quite the final stop on the circuit for "Amour" ahead of Sunday's Oscars. There is still the Independent Spirits Awards tomorrow. But it was probably the last opportunity for the film to have a big final hurrah of the season, and it seized it.
It's almost over
I think we've covered it, yeah? The season has been recounted, the big expected outcome has been laid out, we've consoled you if that outcome is troublesome and we've offered up our guesses on what to expect otherwise (including our unique crafts category analysis). The season, in so many words, is nearing its end.
Check out the Moore-hosted panel discussion with all the nominees
As Kris has mentioned before, it's a shame that "Searching for Sugar Man" appears to be cruising to such an easy win in the Best Documentary Feature race. That's not because the film, an engaging audience favorite that has won nearly ever major precursor in sight, wouldn't be a respectable Oscar winner, but because the standard of the competition this year merits a bit more of a fight. Someone who hasn't seen any of the films this year might simply look at how little the wealth has been spread and assume that "Sugar Man" stands inarguably apart from the field, and that simply isn't the case.
But he admits his method is a little problematic
There are three ways to predict the Oscars. The first is to go strictly on facts, stats and precedents. The second is to use a mixture of sentiment and psychological projection. The third, and best, combines a bit of both with good old-fashioned gut instinct.
Statistician extraordinaire Nate Silver, unsurprisingly, opts for the first method. His election-style Oscar predictions are based purely on how nominees have fared in previous awards: a system that poses some problems this year, when the Academy's earlier-than-usual deadline for nominations voting resulted in less correlation than usual with several major precursors -- the Actors' and Directors' Guilds in particular. (Stat geeks love to tell us, or example, that Marcia Gay Harden is only person in the 19-year history of the SAG Awards to win the Oscar without a Guild nod -- but there's a strong possibility that number could triple on Sunday.)
Is 'Argo' set to complete its big sweep?
(Welcome to the Oscar Guide, your chaperone through the Academy’s 24 categories awarding excellence in film. A new installment hit every weekday in the run-up to the Oscars on February 24, with the Best Picture finale today, February 22.)
And here we are, the final category after two-and-a-half weeks of the 2013 Oscar Guide. I hope you've enjoyed the entries, which you can click back through in the dedicated section below this post. The Best Picture field proved, in its second year of featuring a slate that could include between five and 10 nominees, to be a full one. Nine films were nominated again, and they ran the gamut from foreign languages to political thrillers, big-scale musicals to epic fantasies, scruffy indies to prestige biopics and romantic comedies.
In the end, one film stood out and showed dominance at a time when it appeared to be at its weakest. Whether that perceived weakness was ultimately a source of sympathy is up for debate, but it asserted its dominance nevertheless. And in this, a year when the stats can absolutely go out the window given the shifting of the Academy's calendar and its introduction of online balloting, "history" was going to be made. And so it shall, no matter what happens.
The nominees are…