Monday, September 05, 2011
well, some surprisingly rather good news for the Oscars!
the Oscar awards themselves have of course, very sadly for film fans, become an absolute joke over the last couple of decades or so. i mean, for every worthy winner, such as The Departed or Heath Ledger, there are some dire winners for complete rubbish films - American Beauty, Forrest Gump and The Hurt Locker all come to mind, in particular as a number of superior films were released and in contention the year they all won.
if the awards themselves tended to lean towards being bad decisions, us film fans could usually count on a pretty good show. that has slowly but surely been taken away from us film lovers too. the start of the decline was really 2009 when it was announced Hugh Jackman would be presenting some sort of "song and dance" presentation for the awards.
a telling sign about how good a bad idea this was can be seen in the absence of the usual 'front row centre' undisputed king of the Oscars, Mr Jack Nicholson. some suggested that he didn't pitch because he wanted to watch the LA Lakers, others because he was "furious" at the celebration of Heath Ledger's portrayal of The Joker, a part he considered his own. i and many other film lovers would prefer to think he was turning his back on a ceremony that was turning its back on what people loved about it.
if alarm bells rang for the 2009 ceremony, the sleep button buzzed for 2010. inexplicably, Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin were selected as co-hosts, presumably so they could plug and with no shame promote their rather (at best) average film that happened to be out at the time of the awards.
as if that wasn't bad enough, the decision to omit much loved actress Farrah Fawcett from the "In Memoriam" section and yet include singer Michael Jackson infuriated many. audiences switched off as fast as they could.
the Academy were concerned with the substantial drop in viewing figures for the ceremony and thus decided to do something about it for the 2011 awards. little did anyone know that what they were going to do was, somehow, contrive to make it worse. the appointment of James Franco and Anne Hathaway, hardly the biggest names in the business, was confusing, their presentation awful.
the jokes they presented just did not work.
so bad was the 2011 ceremony that James Franco has since been quoted as saying he "didn't really want to present the awards anyway", which is kind of a shocking thing for someone in the film business to say, isn't it?
at the least, though, it seems that someone who cares enough about the Oscars to wish to stop the rot has come up with an inspired direction change. apparently, the shortlist for possible hosts consists of one name and one name only.
excellent! Eddie Murphy has to be one of the most loved people in the film industry, with pretty much as close to universal praise and genuine affection you can get. this is saying something considering some of the absolute clangers of films he has made.
if we accept that the awards themselves are unlikely to go to the right people (Sorurce Code, for instance, probably won't get a single nomination), then at least they can do is make sure us film fanatics get a proper, celebratory show for the ceremony. if they manage to persuade Eddie to do it, and most importantly let him "do his own thing" (within certain language restrains, of course), then this could well be one of the best ceremonies since Billy Crystal last hosted it.
we can but hope this story turns out to be true!!
be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!