AMPAS via Getty Images
1. Sometimes, there is a reason to get things right. Traditionally, Oscar night would end with the announcement of the winner of the Best Picture award. This year, as the producers – including stunt veteran Steven Soderberg – tried to mix it up a bit at their train station party, they decided to change the arrangement. They gave the best picture to Bedouin, Then best actress of Francis McDormand, then best actor by Anthony Hopkins the father. Hopkins was not around, so host Joaquin Phoenix said the Academy accepted the award on his behalf, and because there was no host, that was pretty much it. Good night to all!
There was someone who thought this happened because there was a satirical account that would win for the late Chadwick Bosman Bottom of what renny black, And that a letter – possibly from his wife Taylor Simon Ledward – would be a particularly emotional closing note for such an unusual and difficult year. If true, then it was a very cynical account, and if not, it showed a lack of insight to not realize it might have seemed like it. Whatever the intention, the result was that, instead of ending up with a party on stage, it did with movies like moon light And the parasite And other worthy winners, the full three-hour show ended with a prize awarded to someone who was not there.
Experimentation? Certainly. innovation? Definitely. Breaking the structure without thinking how it happened? This is a dangerous approach.
2. Comfortable speeches … well, it’s more relaxing. Without a live orchestra for people to play, some of the speeches stretched in a way that early on seemed to mean the show would go on all night. Some were a little winding. Some are a little undisciplined. But they were also charming. In some cases, this extra space has allowed for the sharing of deep emotional thoughts without fear of being suddenly interrupted, as when Thomas Winterberg accepted the Best International Feature award for Another tour He touchingly spoke of losing his daughter in a car accident during production. Not only did Winterberg speak, he was able to speak without pressure and without feeling the clock ticking. No matter what future Oscars look like, it would be nice to rethink the format of “Speed across the roll of names before they are cut and don’t forget anyone important or powerful” they often have.
3. Don’t be careless with In Memoriam. The In Memoriam clip is a production challenge: the audience tries to applaud specific people, the music must feel appropriate, and the visuals should give at least a respectable amount of context to each person’s identity. It wasn’t like 2021. Certainly, it was a year that saw an above average number of deaths, especially among the elderly. But the answer to that would have been a longer slide. What they did instead was cram the list into a clip that wouldn’t allow many of the names to show more than just a flash on the screen – not even enough time to read their name. The process of splitting a song or parts of a song to sync it with a set of slides is not her art. This is the beginning. His art is to make sure that you disrespect the people you are trying to honor by mistake.
4. Play clips. The producers ignored the feeling that the Oscars often included being big, goofy, cheerful, and choppy. Instead, they organized the kind of sober banquet as you might see it at the end of a long fundraising drive for a luxury museum, where everyone thanked everyone for their hard work. So, instead of watching clips from the best actress field in particular, we saw presenter (and last year winner) Renee Zellweger personally saying how much I liked each of the shows. This type of live headline can have its place, but clips – especially in categories like short films and makeup – can really give people a sense of the work that is being honored. It’s nice when the presenter tells us that a short film director loves a certain snack, but walking away without any idea what so much of the honoree looks like seems like a failure.
5. Lots of first and almost first steps, but progress is very slow. Become Chloé Zhao The first woman of colorShe is only the second woman to win the Best Director award Bedouin. The cheerful Yuh-jung Youn, who flirts with Brad Pitt as she receives her award the threat, It was The first and second Korean are Asian To win the Best Supporting Actress award. And Mia Neal and Jamaica Wilson who worked Bottom of what renny black, has become The first black woman To win in the makeup and hairdressing category. But to celebrate because a whole second woman won Best Director? It is a difficult request. These things take time. a lot of time.
6. Big trailers are going down. With this Oscar season coming to an end, the next season is really starting to pick up. Trailers for In the heights And Steven Spielberg’s production of West Side Story Prominent place during the television broadcast. Both are expected to garner award attention in the next cycle. Hollywood may have spent this year figuring out how to do without theaters, but it’s eager to get audiences back in it as soon as possible.
7. No one has solved the COVID-19 problem through award shows. All award shows have been a little different this season. In some ways, the Grammys were easier because, as a show focused on musical performances, they were able to take advantage of the rapid progress people have made in learning to record music shows that do well on television, even without the typical awards-hall setup. But for a show like the Oscars, which relies so heavily on some kind of wiggle between seriousness and absurdity – and both benefit from having a crowd – it’s very difficult to solve the underlying problem, which is that when so many people can’t celebrate together easily, there’s nothing else It really replaces a lot of people celebrating together. This Emmys solution with small sub parties for different shows, Globes had different remote controls from different homes and laptops. But as in life, nothing else is quite like a tumultuous company. This TV broadcast discovered how to find some seriousness, and some meaning. She did not find joy. The closest he got to was the rather hard part as Glenn Close ended up improbably reviving the legendary figure “Da Pat”. And dance. (Yes really.)
But, as Frances McDormand says, see: Nothing else is like a roaring company. See you next year.