Are the Oscars in danger?

Oscars host Jon Stewart with iPhone


Lisa Napoli: The big news about the Academy Awards last night was that they happened at all. Just a few weeks ago, that wasn't a clear bet. Another interesting thing about the show was when the host, Jon Stewart, whipped out an iPhone.

I asked a very hoarse David Carr of the New York Times if product placement had infiltrated the Oscars:

David Carr: You know what, none of us in the press room could really figure out whose ox was getting gored. It's a very modern world we live in. The Oscars is generally the least modern of most places, so it was a little shocking to see it. I went up to Jon Stewart afterwards and talked to him about this show but absent tasering him into telling me the truth, I don't know.

Napoli: What about the writers' strike impact on what happened last night?

Carr: Well, it'll take a lot more than a writers' strike to convince Hollywood that they're not the center of the universe. But one of the things that I think was apparent tonight, if you'll notice in the acting categories, Lisa -- four actors, all of them not Americans. The guys who won for directing a best picture, the Coens, have very little involvement with the whole Hollywood apparatus. So even those this event was conceived as a way to market and promote major studios, it was not a night when the big players got much attention.

Napoli: Right, right. And what do you make of that? What, does that say anything in the picture, is it just how it panned out this year?

Carr: You know, the Oscars is in danger of being sort of impugned on its own good taste. These are not big movies. I mean, Juno did business, but in general these are small movies that not a lot of people saw, and I think that's got implications for studios going forward.

Napoli: David, thank you so much for your time, I hope you feel better.

Carr: All right, enjoy your night.

Napoli: That's David Carr of the New York Times, whose voice was felled by an evening at the Oscars.

About the author

In more then twenty years in journalism, Lisa Napoli has managed to work for almost every major


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