Sunday, March 05, 2006


Blue Print for Oscar?

Well, tonight's the night. Oscar night. But have we already seen a vision of things to come? Last night, the Independent Spirit Awards were handed out, and with so many of this year's Oscar nominees winning, one has to wonder, "Will the Spirits prove to be a blue print for tonight's Academy Awards?" Best Picture and Best Director both went to Oscar frontrunner Brokeback Mountain. Best First Feature went to Brokeback Mountain's closest competition in the Oscars, Crash, which also picked up the Best Supporting Actor award for (Oscar nominee) Matt Dillon. The Oscar nominated documentary Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room took home the Spirit in that category. And Oscar nominees Phillip Seymour Hoffman (Capote) Felicity Huffman (Transamerica) and Amy Adams (June Bug) won Spirit Awards for Best Actor, Actress and Supporting Actress, respectively. So, this raises a couple of questions. Did all the best work in Hollywood, this year, come from non-studio, independent efforts? Or, are the Independent Spirit Awards, like the Golden Globes before them, trying to behave more like Oscar? (They do, afterall, have corporate sponsorship now. And more celebrities than up-and-comers show up at this event every year.) It will be interesting to see how closely the Spirits map to the Oscars. There's no question that the best moments of the Oscars, every year, are the unexpected ones. These days -- with more and more websites trying to narrow down the possibilities (by cross referencing all the awards a film wins leading up to Oscar) -- there seems to be less and less surprises. Is everything a predictor for the Oscars now? Hell, what's the fun in that? Life (and Oscar ceremonies) would be boring without surprises, don't you think?

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