Oscars

Monkey See
12:36 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Oscars 2014: Low On Laughs, But A Great Speech Or Two

At Sunday's Oscar ceremony, the feel-good win of the night came when 12 Years a Slave star Lupita Nyong'o took home the supporting-actress trophy.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 3, 2014 7:26 am

The big winner was 12 Years a Slave, but there was quite a bit of love to go around at Sunday night's Oscars. What there wasn't, as usual, was a lot of riveting television.

Sure, there was John Travolta squinting at the teleprompter and introducing Idina Menzel (to sing the Oscar-winning Best Original Song "Let It Go," from Frozen) as — no kidding — "Adele Dazeem." And there was a fun dance number featuring Pharrell Williams and his own Oscar-nominated "Happy," which he wore a formal black version of his Grammys hat to perform.

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The Two-Way
11:41 pm
Sun March 2, 2014

'12 Years A Slave,' 'Gravity' Win Big At The Oscars

Red carpet's ready: The rope line awaits at Hollywood & Highland Center.
Christopher Polk Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 3, 2014 9:37 am

After several days of heavy rain in Los Angeles, the sun came out just as the 86th annual Academy Awards got underway at the Dolby Theater.

The big award of the night, for Best Picture, went to 12 Years a Slave. The film tells the harrowing tale of Solomon Northup, a free black man in New York who was sold into slavery. (See the full list of winners below.)

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Code Switch
3:37 pm
Sun March 2, 2014

Latin Pride Swells For Mystery Model Behind Oscar Statuette

Hollywood legend has it the Oscar statuette was modeled after Mexican actor and director Emilio Fernandez.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun March 2, 2014 7:23 pm

The 8-pound, 24-carat-gold-plated statuette that will be handed out at the Academy Awards Sunday night is said to be modeled after a real man.

That man's name is not Oscar.

It might be Emilio, Emilio "El Indio" Fernandez. He was a famous Mexican director and actor who used to live in Hollywood in the 1920s. His nickname, "The Indian," came from the Kickapoo side of his family.

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The 86th Annual Academy Awards
6:08 pm
Sat March 1, 2014

The Human Moments We Miss, Backstage At The Oscars

Every year, Entertainment Weekly writer Anthony Breznick covers the Oscars from behind the scenes.
Christopher Polk Getty Images

Picture this: You're standing on a stage. You're the center of attention in an auditorium filled with over 3,000 people. Roughly 40 million more are watching you on TV.

No, this isn't a nightmare — it's the Academy Awards. Every year, the standout members of the film industry are presented with Hollywood's highest honor: an Oscar.

But what happens after you've won the coveted gold statue? What does it feel like to walk away from the flashbulbs and fans, and step into the quiet darkness behind the curtains?

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Business
8:50 am
Sat March 1, 2014

A Picket Line At The Oscars: Visual-Effects Artists To Protest

Originally published on Sat March 1, 2014 10:37 am

Hundreds of visual-effects artists are planning to picket the Academy Awards on Sunday for the second year in a row. They're hoping to bring attention to what's been happening in their industry.

The field is losing jobs and relocating to countries with bigger subsidies for employers. It's the result of a technical revolution that's changed the profession since it kicked off in the 70s with Star Wars creator George Lucas' visual-effects company, Industrial Light and Magic.

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Monkey See
8:00 am
Sat March 1, 2014

What The Oscars Mean, And What They Don't

In Alfonso Cuaron's Gravity, one of nine best picture nominees in the running on Sunday night, Sandra Bullock plays an astronaut careening through space after an accident.
Warner Bros.

Originally published on Fri February 28, 2014 9:35 pm

On Friday's All Things Considered, Bob Mondello and I — fresh off our run of video salutes to Internet comments — chat with Melissa Block about what, if anything, is satisfying about the Oscars.

Bob points out the difficulty in bringing yourself to care about a contest that so often leaves out the worthiest contenders; I make the best case I can for Oscar season as a potential time of discovery; and we consider a couple of canards about best picture that might help you pick a winner.

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NPR Story
3:30 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Stay-At-Home Mom's 'DrainWig' Invention Included In Oscar Swag Bag

Jennifer Briggs' invention, the DrainWig, which catches hair lost in the shower and prevents drain clogs, will be in the Oscar swag bags for all the nominees at this Sunday's Academy Awards. (DrainWig)

The Academy Award ceremony is Hollywood’s biggest celebration of movie stars. There is some stiff competition in many of the categories this year, and not everyone will leave with a gold statuette — but they will all get a DrainWig.

DrainWig is a daisy-shaped drain ornament attached to a stainless steel chain with rubber whiskers meant to be inserted into a shower drain to prevent hair clogs. It’s one of the many products featured in this year’s Oscar nominee gift bag, which has been valued at $80,000.

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The 86th Annual Academy Awards
8:53 am
Fri February 28, 2014

Oscar Glow, Today's Tech Help Short Films Find Their Fandom

One of this season's Oscar-nominated shorts is Mr. Hublot, a French-language animated film about a reclusive man who must learn to adapt to a new housemate — a robot dog.
Zeilt Productions

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NPR Story
3:37 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Oscar Nominees That Won't Win, But You Might Want to Watch

"Her" is one of the films Ty Burr recommends, even though it's not likely to win in the Best Picture category. (Annapurna Pictures)

Originally published on Wed February 26, 2014 3:37 pm

At this Sunday’s Academy Awards, “12 Years a Slave” and “Gravity” are expected to win in the Best Picture and Best Director categories. Matthew McConaughey, Cate Blanchett and Jared Leto are all front runners in their acting categories.

But Boston Globe film critic Ty Burr says there are many other nominated films and performances that might not win, but are still worth checking out if you haven’t already.

He introduces Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti to some of his favorites.

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Movies
6:17 am
Fri February 21, 2014

Analysis: Who Oscar-Winning Actors Thank

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 4:31 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. We finally have analysis of actors giving thanks at the Oscars. You know, I want to thank my director or some inspiring figure. Twice in recent years, winning actors thanked Oprah; twice, they thanked Sidney Poitier. Three actors name-checked God; four thanked Meryl Streep - and that was the headline: Meryl Streep gets thanked more often than God.

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