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Academy Award Winners for 2007

Why do I watch the bloated, glamtacular Academy Awards every year? I don’t know. I think it goes back to the first (likely) Oscar telecast I ever watched, as a kid, back in 1978. “Star Wars” didn't have a chance to win Best Picture, but I kept hoping it would somehow win the write-in vote, or something. (It didn’t.) But I’ve continued to watch, largely just because I’m interested in the world of film, but also for the same reason—because I’m ever hopeful something that really should win, actually will. (Like “Pulp Fiction” over “Forrest Gump,” for example.) And, it goes without saying, to see people like Tom Hanks and Halle Berry have total meltdowns.

This year is a little different. As the Academy has been turning some attention away from the bigger Hollywood productions (largely because they suck), we’re seeing smaller, better films get a little love, and folks who ought to be recognized by their peers (at least in nomination) are seeing the limelight. And the quality among said nominees is uniformly good, if varied—so much so that the handicappers in Vegas are nearly at a loss, having to go by interview buzz alone to set the odds.

As you read these words, of course, it’s all over. But I’m writing them while the show is underway. So it’s kind of like you’re watching with me, right? Well, okay, no. But let’s pretend, shall we?… So, here we go, in the order of presentation (and with occasional commentary, just like your favorite DVD)—

  • ART DIRECTION – “Pan’s Labyrinth”
  • MAKEUP – “Pan’s Labyrinth”
  • ANIMATED SHORT – “The Danish Poet”
  • LIVE ACTION SHORT – “West Bank Story”
  • SOUND EDITING – “Letters from Iwo Jima”
  • SOUND MIXING – “Dreamgirls”

SUPPORTING ACTOR – Alan Arkin, for “Little Miss Sunshine.” (For the past several years, the Oscars have opened the show with this award; putting it at the end of the first hour instead should have signaled the upset—most Couch Prognosticators had Eddie Murphy taking this one.)

ANIMATED FEATURE – “Happy Feet,” George Miller, Director

SCREENPLAY, ADAPTED – William Monahan, for “The Departed”

  • COSTUME DESIGN – “Marie Antoinette”
  • CINEMATOGRAPHY –Guillermo Navarro, for “Pan’s Labyrinth”
  • VISUAL EFFECTS – “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest”

FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM – “The Lives of Others” (Germany) (Truly an upset—I would have bet a paycheck that Guillermo del Toro’s “Pan’s Labyrinth” would win. But I guess all bets, as they say, are off tonight.)

SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Jennifer Hudson, for “Dreamgirls” (Oops. One award later, and bets are back on. But still—Abagail Breslin is the best child actress since Mary Badham in “To Kill a Mockingbird.” Maybe it’s best she didn’t win: she’ll have a shot at a longer career).

  • DOCUMENTARY SHORT – “The Blood of Yingzhou District”
  • DOCUMENTARY FEATURE – “An Inconvenient Truth,” Douglas Guggenheim, Director
  • LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT – Ennio Morricone, Composer Extraordinaire
  • ORIGINAL SCORE – Gustavo Santaolalla, for “Babel”

SCREENPLAY, ORIGINAL – Michael Arndt, for “Little Miss Sunshine”

ORIGINAL SONG – Melissa Etheridge, “I Need to Wake Up,” from “An Inconvenient Truth” (Wow. Best song from a documentary, not from a time-tested musical?)

EDITING – Thelma Schoonmaker, for “The Departed”

LEADING ACTRESS – Helen Mirren, for “The Queen” (And—she’s a Stone Cold Fox)

LEADING ACTOR – Forest Whitaker, for “The Last King of Scotland”

DIRECTING – Martin Scorsese, for “The Departed” (We all knew it was Marty’s year… but even the doubters had to see it coming when Francis Ford Coppela, George Lucas, and Steven Spielberg came out to present.)

BEST PICTURE – “The Departed”

And that's a wrap. Of course, you can always make sure I'm not lying by checking the Official Oscar Site. (And at the Main Page there are all sorts of other goodies, in case you're interested in the broadcast itself. I recommend a second look at the Errol Morris film that opened the show.) See you next year!

Posted by on February 26, 2007 12:01 AM
Permalink |

I am especially glad that forest whitaker won the best actor it was well deserved.

-- Posted by: brunhilda at March 10, 2007 12:05 PM

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