Are the Oscars in danger?

Lisa Napoli Feb 25, 2008
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Are the Oscars in danger?

Lisa Napoli Feb 25, 2008
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TEXT OF INTERVIEW

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.

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