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Academy Awards 2015: Winners, Highlights, Best Moments & More…

By Fredricka Davis

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You know what’s the best? When you have super high expectations—like we did for the 2015 Oscars red carpet—and they aren’t just meet they are far surpassed.

Oscars host Neil Patrick Harris wasted no time kicking off a stormy 87th Academy Awards and conceding the ceremony’s much-discussed lack of diversity.

You know what's the best? When you have super high expectations—like we did for the 2015 Oscars red carpet—and they aren't just meet they are far surpassed. - 2015 Oscar Divas -- Image credit: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP; Getty

“Tonight we honor Hollywood’s best and whitest — I mean brightest,” said Harris in a Dolby Theater introduction Sunday. Harris’ opening quickly segued into a “Moving Pictures” song-and-dance routine that celebrated a love for movies, complete with dancing Peter Pan-style shadows, classic movie scenes, a Cinderella-style cameo from Anna Kendrick and a villain to his sunny outlook in Jack Black — who jumped on stage to counter that Hollywood wasn’t so fabulous, making movies “opening with lots of zeroes, all we get is superheroes.”

Lupita @ The 2015 Oscars: Image credit: Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP


“After ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’” Black added, referring to this weekend’s top box office draw, “they’ll all have leather whips.”

The night’s first Oscar went to J.K. Simmons, a career character actor widely acclaimed for one of his biggest parts: a drill sergeant of a jazz band instructor in the indie “Whiplash.” Simmons fittingly accepted his supporting acting Oscar with some straightforward advice.

“If I may, call your mom, everybody,” said Simmons. “Call your mom, call your dad. If you’re lucky enough to have a parent or two alive on this planet, call ‘em. Don’t text. Don’t email. Call them on the phone. Tell ‘em you love ‘em, and thank them, and listen to them for as long as they want to talk to you.”

Patricia Arquette accepted the supporting actress Oscar for her role as the mother in Richard Linklater’s 12-years-in-the-making “Boyhood,” and delivered a rousing speech calling for wage equality and equal rights for women that had Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lopez among those cheering in the audience.

Nominee for Best Actress Julianne Moore arrives on the red carpet for the 87th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, Feb. 22, 2015. Credit: Mladen Antonov/AFP/Getty Images

Two of the night’s early awards went to Wes Anderson’s “The Grand Budapest Hotel”: costume design, and makeup and styling. The European caper — released back around last year’s Academy Awards — could be the night’s unlikely leader in trophies, rewarding the hand-made craft of Anderson’s latest confection. Later in the telecast, the film picked up a third prize for best production design.

Disney’s “Big Hero 6″ — based on a Marvel comic about a team of superheroes — won best animated feature, coming out victorious in a category that sparked controversy because of the omission of what many considered a certain nominee: “The Lego Movie.”

The black-and-white Polish film “Ida” took best foreign language film, marking the first such win for Poland despite a rich cinema history. Director Pawel Pawlikowski charmed the audience with a bemused acceptance speech that ran drastically over his allotted time.

Pawlikowski remarked on having made a quiet film of contemplation about withdrawing from the world, “and here we are at the epicenter of noise and attention. It’s fantastic. Life is full of surprises.”

Harris, a frequent Tony Awards host, struck a chipper tone, while slyly mocking the Oscars. The $160,000 gift bags for attendees, he said, came with “an armored car ride to safety when the revolution comes.” The performance by Tegan and Sara and Andy Samberg’s Lonely Island of the Oscar-nominated song “Everything Is Awesome” from “The Lego Movie,” let some live out their Oscar dreams, handing out golden Lego statuettes to Oprah Winfrey and Steve Carell.

Heading into the telecast, the Academy Awards were buzzing with something it hasn’t always had in recent years: genuine intrigue at who the night’s biggest winners will be.

RELATED - ‘EOTM Atlanta Media Mogul,’ Rahn Anthoni Covers The 2015 Oscars

Three of the night’s top honors — best picture, best director and best actor — are tight races proving hard to predict for even the most seasoned experts.

With a co-leading nine nominations, Alejandro Inarritu’s backstage comedy “Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)” has the strongest wind at its back. It topped the acting, directing and producing guild awards, which are often strong predictors of what the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences will vote for. The film also won best feature at Saturday’s Independent Film Spirit Awards, further boosting its momentum.

But the coronation of “Birdman” is far from assured. Many believe the landmark of “Boyhood” will ultimately prove irresistible to academy members. Best director also appears to be a toss-up between Inarritu and Linklater.

Three of the acting winners — Julianne Moore (“Still Alice”), Simmons (“Whiplash”) and Arquette (“Boyhood”) — were virtual locks heading into Sunday’s show, but best actor will be a nail biter. It could be the young British star Eddie Redmayne for his technically nuanced performance as Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything,” or it could be Michael Keaton’s career-topper in “Birdman,” as an actor trying to flee his superhero past.

But whether suspense will be enough to pull viewers to the telecast on ABC remains to be seen. Harris will hope to continue the recent ratings upswing for the Oscars, which last year drew 43 million viewers, making it the most-watched entertainment telecast in a decade.

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This year’s crop of nominees, however, is notably light on box-office smashes. Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper” (six nominations including best picture) is the only best-picture candidate to gross more than $100 million domestically. (A runaway hit, it recently surpassed $300 million.)

SEE ALSO: Carla B. & Teangelo of EOTM TV @ the 84th Academy Awards 2012

Increasingly, ratings are driven by moments that spark social media frenzy, like when John Travolta famously mispronounced the name of singer Idina Menzel as “Adele Dazeem” at last year’s show. Sunday night, he gets a chance for redemption.

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Haneke’s ‘Love’ to compete for Austria at Oscars



Haneke’s ‘Love’ to compete for Austria at Oscars (via AFP)

Austria will send Michael Haneke’s Palme d’Or-winning film “Love” (original title: “Amour”) to compete for next year’s best foreign-language picture Oscar, the Austrian Film Commission has announced. The heart wrenching tale of a man and his dying wife won Haneke his second Palme d’Or at the Cannes…

(more…)

Oprah Winfrey honored with Oscars humanitarian prize at Governors Awards

LOS ANGELES — Oprah Winfrey was honored at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Governors Awards ceremony late Saturday alongside the actor James Earl Jones and the make-up artist Dick Smith.

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Winfrey, 57, won the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the black-tie event held at the Hollywood & Highland Center in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The academy has given out the award intermittently since 1956. The academy said the award is given periodically to an "individual in the motion picture industry whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry."

Past recipients include Bob Hope, Gregory Peck, Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn.

Earl Jones and Smith each received Honorary Awards for their contributions to the film industry.

Wearing a dazzling red dress, Winfrey broke down on stage after receiving three standing ovations in recognition of her humanitarian work in the US and South Africa, the newspaper reported.

"We can all make a difference for how we live a life," Winfrey said.

This year was the third consecutive year that the academy has made the Governors Awards a separate event from the Oscars. Previously, the awards were handed out during the Oscars telecast.

Visit New York Post Online to read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/movies/oprah_winfrey_honored_with_oscars_QHiQgK0hdydL44hFe1IMvM#ixzz1dd9eDNeK

How a Tweet Brought Down Brett Ratner’s Academy Awards® run

D.C. Douglas, an actor and voice-over specialist, first tweeted about Ratner saying “rehearsal’s for fags.” The ensuing firestorm has ended with Ratner and host Eddie Murphy exiting the show and Brian Grazer taking over as producer.

 

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Last Friday night, D.C. Douglas, an actor and voice-over specialist, took his girlfriend to a special screening of Brett Ratner’s Tower Heist at the Hollywood’s Arclight Cinemas. Little did Douglas know that Ratner’s post-show question-and-answer session after the movie—and Douglas’ reaction to it on Twitter—would put him at the center of a controversy that has funamentally changed the 2012 Academy Awards.

The Hollywood Reporter tracked down Douglas, whose tweet noting that Ratner had said “Rehearsing is for fags” during the Q&A prompted the maelstrom of news coverage that eventually led to Ratner (and then host Eddie Murphy) stepping down from the Oscar telecast.

Related News:

Eddie Murphy Exits as Host of 84th Academy Awards®

Douglas tells THR that the second Ratner uttered the line in response to question about how he prepares a scene with actors, he and his girlfriend “exchanged a ‘Did he really just say that?’ look.”

Read more via THR:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/brett-ratner-tweet-oscar-controversy-259473

More on Eddie Murphy:

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Want to go to the Oscar® in 2012?

Oscar® Saves Red Carpet Seats for Fans

Courtesy of the Academy

Movie fans can soon vie for seats at the most glamorous spot on Hollywood Boulevard, Oscar’s Red Carpet.

Beginning on Monday, September 12, at noon ET/9 a.m. PT, and continuing for only one week, fans from around world may apply online for a random drawing for bleacher seats along the 84th Academy Awards® red carpet.

There are only 700 seats available along the 500-foot-long walkway that leads into the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®. Those who are selected will watch and cheer Oscar nominees, presenters and other ceremony guests as they arrive at the 84th Academy Awards on Sunday, February 26, 2012. Following the red carpet arrivals, everyone seated in the bleachers will be invited to watch the Academy Awards telecast at a nearby location.

The application form will be available at www.oscars.org/bleachers. The application process will close on Sunday, September 18, at midnight ET/9 p.m. PT.

To be eligible for the random drawing, an individual must complete the application form in its entirety. Applications may only be submitted online; they may not be returned via any other method.

Applicants may register for themselves and one guest. Duplicate registrations will not be accepted.

Those whose names are selected in the random drawing will be notified in late September. They will then be required to submit additional information for security purposes prior to final approval. Eligible attendees will receive a confirmation letter in early January with information pertinent to the event.

Only those individuals who have been pre-approved by the Academy will have access to the bleachers. Those who wait overnight to attempt admittance will not be granted entry.

The Academy will not be responsible for securing travel and/or hotel accommodations for bleacher fans.

In previous years, as many as 20,000 fans have applied online for the limited number of red carpet seats.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

ABOUT THE ACADEMY
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is the world’s preeminent movie-related organization, with a membership of more than 6,000 of the most accomplished men and women working in cinema. In addition to the annual Academy Awards – in which the members vote to select the nominees and winners – the Academy presents a diverse year-round slate of public programs, exhibitions and events; provides financial support to a wide range of other movie-related organizations and endeavors; acts as a neutral advocate in the advancement of motion picture technology; and, through its Margaret Herrick Library and Academy Film Archive, collects, preserves, restores and provides access to movies and items related to their history. Through these and other activities the Academy serves students, historians, the entertainment industry and people everywhere who love movies. FOLLOW THE ACADEMY
www.oscars.org
www.facebook.com/TheAcademy
www.youtube.com/Oscars
www.twitter.com/TheAcademy

Check out EOTM’s Oscar footage from 2011.

EOTM Media Hosts Carla B and Teangelo @ Oscars 2011

 

 

 

It’s Official – Eddie Murphy to host the 84th Annual Academy Awards

Published by EOTM News Editor on September 6th, 2011 - in Breaking News, Celebrity News, Oscars 2012

I guess there is some truth to entertainment rumors. EOTMblog.com leaked information last week that the Academy was looking at Eddie Murphy to host the 2012 Awards and today the Academy confirmed it.

Below is the official press announcement from the Academy Awards:

  Eddie Murphy to Host 84th Academy Awards®

 

Beverly Hills, CA – Oscar® nominee Eddie Murphy, whose performing career spans movies, television and the stage, will host this year’s Academy Awards show on Sunday, February 26, 2012, telecast producers Brett Ratner and Don Mischer announced today. This will be Murphy’s first hosting stint on the Oscars®.

“Eddie is a comedic genius, one of the greatest and most influential live performers ever,” said Ratner. “With his love of movies, history of crafting unforgettable characters and his iconic performances – especially on stage – I know he will bring excitement, spontaneity and tremendous heart to the show Don and I want to produce in February.”

Commented Mischer, “Eddie is a truly ground-breaking performer, whose amazingly diverse array of roles has won him a devoted audience of all ages. His quick wit and charisma will serve him very well as Oscar host.”

“I am enormously honored to join the great list of past Academy Award hosts from Hope and Carson to Crystal, Martin and Goldberg, among others,” said Murphy. “I’m looking forward to working with Brett and Don on creating a show that is enjoyable for both the fans at home and for the audience at the Kodak Theatre as we all come together to celebrate and recognize the great film contributions and collaborations from the past year.”

Murphy began his career at the age of 15 as a stand-up comedian. In 1980, at the age of 19, he joined the cast of “Saturday Night Live,” becoming the show’s youngest cast member to that point, and bringing to life many of the show’s most memorable  characters. His 1983 album “Eddie Murphy: Comedian” won a Grammy Award for Best Comedy Recording. It included portions of his groundbreaking HBO special “Eddie Murphy Delirious.”  In 1987, “Eddie Murphy Raw” was theatrically released and went on to gross over $50 million. Murphy made his feature film debut in 1982 with the classic “48 Hrs.” and would go on to star in such box-office hits as “Beverly Hills Cop” and the “The Nutty Professor” and “Shrek” franchises. All told, movies in which he has performed have earned in excess of $7 billion worldwide during their theatrical releases.

Murphy earned an Oscar nomination in 2006 for his supporting role in “Dreamgirls.”

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center, and televised live on the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

 

Eddie Murphy to host the 2012 Oscars?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is Eddie Murphy going to host the 2012 Academy Awards? No decision has officially been made, but sources close to the show say the comedian has emerged as the top candidate to do the honors for the February broadcast.

A decision could come as early as this week when producers Brett Ratner and Don Mischer meet with Academy of Motion Pictures President Tom Sherak. Representatives from the Academy declined to comment on Sunday.