Constant's pations

If it's more than 30 minutes old, it's not news. It's a blog.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Oscar Night 2007

Thank you, Academy, for a wonderful presentation.

Everything flowed smoothly.

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One vivid memory I will hold is looking over Martin Scorsese's shoulder, just after he won his award, as he looked onstage, then into the crowd. He finally had his moment, looking from the wings to those who would follow him backstage. The lighting was perfect, he stood proud, and I thank him for his wonderful contributions.

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Where to start, Ellen, you were wonderful. You seemed more relaxed than on your own show; and at times, I wondered what you would be saying tomorrow night, when the Oscars were presented again. I didn't want the show to end. It was a beautiful performance.

When you interviewed Clint Eastwood, it was right to remind Spielberg what I was thinking -- "Ellen . . ." and you did it.

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Don LaFontaine was as wonderful as ever in his voice over. Thank you for your work and presentation.

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If there was an error in the show, I didn't notice it. If someone said too much, I didn't mind.

I'm glad the gags were there. No Penelope, your dress was not too long.

I most enjoyed the live translation Clint Eastwood provided from Italian. The real-time audio translation system worked flawlessly and came across well.

* * *

The dancers were wonderful; the shadows a delight; and the integration with the music and final forms were seamless.

Celine, you were graceful . . .

I could go on an on, suffice it to say that this is the Best Academy Awards show I have experienced. And being able to be a part of it made it that much more enjoyable.

* * *

I liked the details:

- The spotless, wonderful stage -- everything seemed new, fresh, as if it had never seen the light of day

- The way the colors reflected from the background, how the gold lines on the stage seemed to guide the presenters like Venetian houses lining a canal.

- The camera motion was stunning, graceful, smooth, and well integrated. Thank your production team.

- And I was delighted with the clothes -- the audience. Thank you for your shopping, your care, and the time you took getting ready. I know that many spent quite some time and energy getting ready; and this was something that took considerable thought.

* * *

I especially enjoyed the rotating billboards -- how the nominees were presented; transitioning from their film-pictures to the live pictures: With all five with near-matching eye-lines.

The historical film sequences were integrated well; the music was appropriate; and it was nice to see old friends.

One thing I noticed was the vivid colors. More real than I recall.

* * *

Tom Cruise seemed very relaxed; and Jodie Foster you were as passionate as ever, yet dignified, graceful, and lovely.

It was nice to see some of the nominees act as presenters.

It was nice to see familiar faces, especially when it wasn't clear which way to go: Someone was there moving things along.

Thanks to the security. Looks like the road closure plan worked out.

* * *

There was one thing things I noticed that I wouldn't' consider mistakes or problems. Just a thought about things: The microphones.

I noticed some of the Presenters were leaning into the microphone, as if they didn't realize that they were getting picked up. I had a few ideas, which I'm sure others have thought of: Perhaps the presenters could get some visual cues as to how far they are standing during rehearsal; and get guidance on how things might appear when they are in front of a live audience.

Overall, I sensed that the microphones were picking up the presenters well, even when they weren't near the mic. Perhaps what could be done is to let the Presenters practice with the mics; and let them sit in the production booth to let them know how the adjustments will be made, even if they think they are standing too far away.

My experience is that during a live presentation, with the adrenaline going, the building seems to morph. Perhaps what could be done is:

A. Have a system of adjusting the mics so that tall presenters wold not have to lean over; and the mics would automatically rise and lower with a hidden, small stage at the base just for the stand.

B. Perhaps the Presenters could have a live-audio-feed, not only so they can hear themselves; but get instructions -- if needed -- of what to adjust.

Not to worry, it's not an issue. Just a thought. I would hate to think next year that you spend any time on something like this at the expense of the bigger planning that appeared to go well. If you have the time and want to make it "that much better," that's what I would do.

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I enjoyed the shots of paper at the end, how the orange lights reflected off the fluttering sheets, it looked like a rain storm. The only thing I might have wished for was a rainbow. The gold was where it should have been: In the Kodak Theater -- what a great place.

I can't think of a better night, and I wish there was something more that I could say other than, "Wow, what a wonderful night."

God bless the Academy, and I wish you success in the planning for the 80th. Things clicked for me this year; and I wish you well in continuing with what exceeded my expectations.

Yes, Ellen I'm still crying and am glad you did so much to help bring this off. Great job. No, wonderful job. Thank you.