Another Oscars has come and gone.  It’s funny how everyone looks forward to the ceremony and yet, at least based on the reactions on Twitter, people seem to love dishing out their negativity and cynicism towards the host and the winners.  Ah well.  All part of the fun of the Oscars I guess.

Oscars Competition

Congratulations to Shane Slater who won my 13th annual Pick The Oscars competition.  We had a record number of entries (just under 100) and Shane made history in becoming the first person to pick 6 out of 6 AND pick the exact average age of the best picture presenters.  For those keeping score at home, the best picture presenters were the surprising pairing of Michelle Obama (aged 49) and Jack Nicholson (aged 75).

Honourable mentions go to James Tinniswood and Prue Martin who also managed to score the perfect 6 out of 6.  They were slightly askew with the tie-breaker question however.

Those on 5 out of 6 included myself (yeah, I can enter my own contest), Yvette Atkins, Jake Araullo, Laurence Barber, Andreas Moutsatsos, Chris Turton, Nancy Claus, Allison Kucera and Will Dawson.  The most commonly missed category was that of best supporting actor (always a tough one).

Shane picks up a $100 Amazon voucher for the win and he also earns my utmost respect for his stellar predictions.

Oscar Betting & Tipping

Yeah, for the second straight year, I lost some money.  My tuning fork hasn’t been working too well in recent times and most of bets, which were placed early in the Oscar season, didn’t stand much of a chance.  I lost $500 on the Golden Globes and now blew another $350 on the Oscars for a dismal overall result.  It could have been a lot worse though.  I did manage a minor win (with my smallest bet) on Ang Lee which helped stop the bleeding.

For the record, here’s a complete summary of my depleting Oscar winnings…

1996 – profit of $750 – won on Susan Saranadon
1997 – profit of $300 (cumulative profit $1,050) – won on Frances McDormand
1998 – loss of $250 (cumulative profit $800)
1999 – loss of $250 (cumulative profit $550)
2000 – profit of $620 (cumulative profit $1,170) – won on Kevin Spacey and Michael Caine
2001 – loss of $190 (cumulative profit $980) – won on director Steven Soderbergh
2002 – profit of $480 (cumulative profit $1,460) – won on Halle Berry
2003 – profit of $275 (cumulative profit $1,735) – won on Catherine Zeta-Jones and Adrian Brody
2004 – profit of $150 (cumulative profit $1,875) – won on Sean Penn
2005 – profit of $214 (cumulative profit $2,089) – won on Hilary Swank
2006 – profit of $350 (cumulative profit $2,439) – won on Reese Witherspoon
2007 – profit of $1,463 (cumulative profit $3,912) – won on Eddie Murphy at Globes, Alan Arkin & West Bank Story at Oscars
2008 – profit of $268 (cumulative profit of $4,280) – won on Tilda Swinton and the Coen brothers
2009 – profit of $253 (cumulative profit of $4,533) – won on Mickey Rourke & Kate Winslet at Globes, Kate Winslet at Oscars
2010 – loss of $830 (cumulative profit of $3,703)
2011 – profit of $30 (cumulative profit of $3,733) – won on Social Network at Globes, Tom Hooper & King’s Speech at Oscars
2011 – loss of $640 (cumulative profit of $3,093) – won on Jean Dujardin at Oscars
2012 – loss of $850 (cumulative profit of $2,243) – won on Ang Lee at Oscars

I managed 18 out of 24 with my predictions which is pretty good by my standards.  I think it’s my best year since The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King won everything back in 2004.

Oscar Results

The winners in the major 6 categories were as follows:

Best Picture – Argo
Best Director – Ang Lee (Life Of Pi)
Best Actor – Daniel Day Lewis (Lincoln)
Best Actress – Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook)
Best Supporting Actor – Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained)
Best Supporting Actress – Anne Hathaway (Les Miserables)

It’s not often you see 6 different films picking up these awards.  You have to go back to 2006 to find the last time it happened.  That was also the same year there was a split between best picture & best director.

Since Life Of Pi was my favourite of the awards season contenders, I’m very happy to see Ang Lee get the nod for best director.  His win was one of the few surprises of the night with Steven Spielberg starting as favourite.  Both Lee and Spielberg now have 2 Academy Awards for best director – a nice honour.

The supporting actor category was also going to be tough to pick but I didn’t think Christoph Waltz would be the one, despite being well backed.  Having won the award two years ago for another Quentin Tarantino film, I thought the Academy would honour someone else.  I was wrong.  It’s also a little puzzling given that in my eyes, Waltz’s performance is a leading one, not supporting.

Argo was not my favourite film of the year but I know it was much-loved by many people so I can’t rant too much about its victory.  As a consolation prize for missing a best director nomination, Ben Affleck gets to take home an Oscar anyway (along with pal George Clooney) as both were producers.

To cover a few of other notable categories…

Best Original Screenplay – Django Unchained (Quentin Tarantino)
Best Adapted Screenplay – Chris Terrio (Argo)
Best Animated Feature – Brave
Best Foreign Language Film – Amour

We also had a very unlikely occurrence – a tie!  It hasn’t happened since 1994 and this time around, was in the sound mixing category.  The award was shared between Skyfall and Zero Dark Thirty (its only win of the night).

New host Seth MacFarlane had a surprisingly large presence during the ceremony.  We often see the host start with a big opening number and then quietly slip into the background.  I’d describe his efforts as mediocre.  The opening was a little long but he had a few funny moments.  He also tried a few low-brow jokes (mocking those easy to mock) which were greeted with mixed responses from the audience.

Well that’s it for another year.  I guess 2013 will always be known as the year Argo won best picture and it’s director wasn’t even nominated.  It’s been a fun race full of surprises.  It’s just a shame there weren’t too many during the ceremony.  I look forward to doing it all again in 12 months time!