If the movie industry were a reality show then Tuesday evening would have been the night the telephone lines closed. Voting for the 85th edition of the awards ended, and now all the ballots (including those cast, for the first time, online) will be taken to a secret location and counted by Pricewaterhouse Coopers, who will then take those sealed envelopes to the ceremony on Sunday, revealing the winners in the 24 categories.
In the meantime, final predictions are being made and preparations are underway at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, where the bleachers and special stages are being set up outside the Hollywood & Highland Center. On Wednesday, the red carpet will officially be rolled out (and then covered again before those famous feet walk all over it on Sunday.) I’ve watched this happen every year that I’ve been covering the Oscars and it’s still quite something to see how the middle of Hollywood, which can be quite seedy and grimey at times, dresses up for the awards ceremony of awards ceremonies.
All the campaigning that the film studios have been doing up until now, to gain favour for those nominated, also ended with the closing of the voting. So now there’s no changing the fate of who wins what in the categories.
And with that – here’s my Zero Dark Thirty interview with the director Kathryn Bigelow, screenwriter Mark Boal and actress Jessica Chastain. The film is up for 5 Oscars including Best Picture and Best Actress. Despite the controversy surrounding it, I believe it is a well-made film, gripping and excellently shot, and so, deserving of winning Best Picture – although I don’t think it will take that award.
The strongest contender still seems to be Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, which leads with 12 nominations, followed by Life of Pi, which has 11, Les Miserables and Silver Linings Playbook each have 8, and Ben Affleck’s thriller Argo has 7.