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Monday, February 28, 2011

What the Oscars mean to me

In 1998 I was in film school in Nashville, TN. I had plans to graduate, move to a major movie-making city somewhere in the world and work in "entertainment" for a living.

Years later, that career was derailed, shifted 90 degrees and then put in a nice little box which I keep in my bed, and trot out every year during the Oscars. But now, I realize what this all really is.

We make fun of what the stars wear, but if you look beyond them you see a dozen frazzled assistants and tradespeople doing their job under pressure to make a great show go off without a hitch.

For me, the Oscars are a window into the world of people who make the magic happen for anyone not too jaded to enjoy mindless, enjoyable and yes, even sometimes thought-provoking "entertainment."

The Academy is an important function of storytelling, and I wish all art forms had such a powerful, glamorous yet practical advocate and organizing body.

The jokes we shared tonight were fun. It's fun to poke fun at what is, admittedly, a lot of pomp and circumstance and just this side of awkward-as-a-high-school-prom writing. Clearly the award show needs some rework. I mean, imagine integrating Twitter in a meaningful way?

In the end, however, the film business, the story business, does well. The people who push the envelope, who make storytelling more powerful, they fill an incredibly important role in our society -- and in humanity as a species. Good for them, this is always their night.

Now let's make winning a Nobel or Pulitzer Prize just as glamorous.

and now...

My selected tweets from the evening:
OMG "end of Oscars" tweets are the funniest. I hope the Library of Congress wears adult diapers to work tomorrow.

Now we can all go back to worrying about when Charlie Sheen became Gary Busey.

You funny bastards out there... YOU are the real winners!
Next year's teleprompter for the Oscars should be crowdsourced.

Fun fact: the Oscar hosts have to stay and help clean up.
Naaahhhh, what'd you think, Hollywood is made of liberal whackos?

Go ahead, hipster bastards, just say something about those adorable kids who have to go back to their shacks in India and beg for food.

Schroedinger totally picked all of the winners this year. But none of you saw the picks until now.

Best Dressing Room goes to... Anne Hathaway's dressing room!

So if I join the academy some day I must outlive Celine Dion to avoid a fate worse than death: her singing at my death montage.

That short subject kid stole my haircut.

Uh oh. Autotune in the Oscars. Expect letters from the bluehairs.

I love Blanchett, but wearing Mr. Bubble was a bold choice.

Thanks for the same Reznor jokes a million times, America.

My kids wanted to stay up and watch the Oscars but I told them I didn't recognize their right to bargain with me as a group.

Just realized Gwenyth Paltrow is wearing John Boehner.

Is this fucking awards show sponsored by

Tonight's the night we trolls award ourselves.

Weird Al needs a haircut.

That Kings Speech guy sure can write a speech.

I'm about to win an award for Adequate Dishwasher!

A body scanner on the red carpet would have been a lot of fun. "Whose panties are you wearing?"

Checking lists! Shouting into headsets! Responding to emails on your Blackberry! Yes, it's the support staff for the Oscars. Glamorous.

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