92nd Annual Oscars Telecast Live on ABC Sunday; 2019 Winners Olivia Colman, Regina King, Mahershala, and Rami Malek Are Among the Presenters. Expect a Kirk Douglas Tribute
By: Ellis Nassour
February 6, 2020: Once again, this year, there’ll be no host with the mostest on Sunday’s live telecast of the 92nd annual Oscars from Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre. The plan in place is to have the usual extravaganza with literally a zillion presenters from the ranks of celebs and near celebs.
The awards have a worldwide audience in over 225 countries. In an effort not to be last out of the gate, the Awards are a bit early this year. They officially, and not a moment too soon, end the exhaustive 2019 movie season. The fun and anticipation gets underway at 8 P.M./Eastern, but not before the glittering red carpet arrivals of bejeweled fashionistas with plunging necklines and designer loaners. All this, and much more, can be live-streamed.
Presenters gilding the statue include Mahershala Ali, Timothée Chalamet, Olivia Colman, James Corden, Penélope Cruz, Beanie Feldstein, Will Ferrell, Jane Fonda, Josh Gad, Gal Gadot, Tom Hanks, Salma Hayek, Oscar Isaac, Mindy Kaling, Diane Keaton, Regina King, Shia LaBeouf, Brie Larson, Spike Lee, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, George MacKay, Rami Malek, Steve Martin, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Sandra Oh, Natalie Portman, Keanu Reeves, Chris Rock, Ray Romano, Maya Rudolph, Mark Ruffalo, Kelly Marie Tran, Taika Waititi, Sigourney Weaver, Kristen Wiig, and Rebel Wilson.
Nominations: Joker leads the pack with 11 nods. 1917 and Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood are neck-and- neck with 10 each. Highlights:
Best Actor: Antonio Banderous/Pain and Glory; Leonardo DiCarprio/Once Upon a Time in…Hollywood; AdamDriver/Marriage Story; Joaquin Phoenix/Joker; Jonathan Pryce/The Two Popes
Best Actress: Cynthia Erivo, Harriet, Scarlett Johansson/Marriage Story; Saorise Ronan/Little Women; Charlize Theron/Bombshell; Renee Zellweggor/Judy
Supporting Actor: Tom Hanks/A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood; Anthony Hopkins, The Two Popes; Al Pacino, The Irishman; Joe Pesci, The Irishman; Brad Pitt, Once upon a Time…in Hollywood
Supporting Actress: Kathy Bates/Richard Jewell; Laura Dern/Marriage Story;Scarlett Johansson/Jojo Rabbit;Florence Pugh/Little Women; Margot Robbie/Bombshell
Original Screenplay: Rian Johnson /Knives Out; – Noah Baumbach/Marriage Story; Sam Mendes and Krysty Wilson-Cairns/1917; Quentin Tarantino/Once upon a Time…in Hollywood; Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won/Parasite
Adapted Screenplay: The Irishman/Steven Zaillian, from the book I Heard you Paint Houses by Charles Brandt; Jojo Rabbit/ Taika Waititi, from Christine Leunens’ novel Caging Skies; Joker/ Todd Phillips and Scott Silver, based on characters created by Bill Finger, Bob Kane, and Jerry Robinson; Little Women/Greta Gerwig,based on Louisa May Alcott’s novel; The Two Popes/, Anthony McCarten based on his play The Pope
Foreign Language Film: Corpus Christi (Poland); Honeyland (North Macedonia); Les Miserables (France); Pain and Glory (Spain) Parasite (South Korea)
Animated Feature: How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World; I Lost My Body; Klaus; Missing Link; Toy Story 4
Original Score: Joker/ Hidur Guonadottir; Little Women/Alexandre Desplat; Marriage Story Randy Newman; 1917/Thomas Newman; Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker/John Williams
Award-winning composer/conductor Eímear Noone will become the first woman to conduct the Oscar show’s 42-piece orchestra.
Original Song: “I Can’t Let You Throw Yourself Away,” Toy Story 4/ Randy Newman; “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again,” Rocketman/ Elton John, Bernie Taupin; “I’m Standing With You,” Breakthrough/ Diane Warren; “Into The Unknown,” Frozen II/ Kristen Anderson-Lopez,Robert Lopez”Stand Up,” Harriet/Joshuah Brian Campbell, Cynthia Erivo
Newman, John, and Tony winners Idina Mendez and Erivo will perform along with Aurora, Chrissy Metz, Billie Ellish, and Janelle Monnae.
Cinematography: Rodrigo Prieto/The Irishman; Lawrence Sher/Joker; Jarin Blaschke/The Lighthouse; Roger Deakins/1917; Once upon a Time…in Hollywood/ Robert Richardson
It would be unimaginable if there is no tribute to legendary actor/producer/writer Kirk Douglas. He received three Oscar nods, an Oscar for Lifetime Achievement, and is a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Until his death, Douglas ranked 17 on the American Film Institute’s Greatest Male Screen Legends.
Some egregious omissions: Of course, directors slighting women directors in that guild category, notably Greta Gerwig/Little Women; in the Best Actor category, George MacKay/1917, Eddie Murphy/Dolemite Is My Name – perhaps voters were turned off by the marathon profanity, Edward Norton/Motherless Brooklyn, and Adam Sandler/Uncut Gems; in the Best Actress category, 2014 Supporting Actress winner Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave), and Elizabeth Moss in the Supporting Actress field for their dual roles in Jordan Peele’s Us; in the Foreign Language category, Bacurau (Brazil), the edge of the -seat adventure filled with sinister twists and turns and an incredible finale no one saw coming; and, since the expanded Best Film category can have 10 nominees, how did the nominators overlook Queen & Slim, where the audience is yelling “Do not go there!” but not yelling loud enough to be heard. Maybe it’s time for the Academy to expand the acting categories. Are there only five worthy performances annually? There’s been much debate about the nominators bypassing Jennifer Lopez, but some unofficial scuttlebutt reported that many were turned off by Hustlers soft-porn content that leaves little to the imagination.
Special Awards: actress Geena Davis has receivedthe Jean Hersholt Award for her humanitarian work. Honors have also been bestowed on three-time director nominee David Lynch; actor West Studi, who became the first Native American performer to be so honored; and Lina Wertmuller, the first woman to be Oscar-nominated for directing (Seven Beauties/1976).
The 92nd Academy Awards will be directed by Emmy (14)-winning Glenn Weiss, a veteran director/producer of the Tony Awards, Kennedy Center Honors, and Oscars. Producing are Oscar-nominated producer Lynette Howell Taylor ( A Star is Born) and Homegrown Pictures’ Stephanie Allain, a Women in Film board member. There’s more New York-based talent than ever before, highlighted by Emmy-winning production designer is Jason Sherwood, who was nominated for the American Theatre Wing Henry Hewes Design Award. Writers include Amberia Allen, John Hoffman, Jon Macks, Agathe Panaretos, and Beth Sherman. David Rubin is Academy president.
For a complete list of nominations, visit www.Oscars.com. There you’ll find a ballot to cast your votes, Ask the Nominees videos, Backstage at the Oscars photos, posters, photos of the nominees luncheon, and Red Carpet fashions.
The Oscars Red Carpet Show, telecast live at 6:30 P.M. Eastern/3:30 P.M. and hosted by the glamorous Tony winner Billy Porter, ABC-TV talk show host Tamron Hall, supermodel Lily Aldridge, and film critic Elvis Mitchell [later to be joined by Ryan Seacrest, will showcase, well-groomed and jeweled nominees, performers and presenters, all vying to see who can show the most skin.