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article imageOscars: Carpet forms, rehearsals on while gift bag items noted Special

By Tim O'Brien     Feb 22, 2013 in Entertainment
With each passing hour the Oscar red carpet takes shape and forms into a work of art where the best in movies are showcased. And press from all the world gather and take in the spectacle and report on it.
It is also a time for rehearsals. Yes, that is right, rehearsals. On this sun-splashed, 68-degree Friday (Feb. 22), actors and actresses are hired to work, walk, sit and do anything a star might do during the walk. They represent someone who will be walking the carpet. This is needed for timing, lighting and all the rest. It was learned that, on this day, they were to work 7-8 hours on this task.
But, when Kristin Chenoweth Tweeted that she was going to rehearsals, she didn’t mean she had to participate on the carpet, but, did she? She was in the Dolby Theatre getting her routine with Show host Seth MacFarlane down pat. It has grown into one of the highly anticipated numbers, by word of mouth, for the most part. But, note the Grammys had a number at the end and many tuned out, thinking it was over.
Now, either things are running smoothly are a new trend has emerged for this Friday before the show. For the second year in a row, the press conference for director and producers was scrubbed. Read what one wants into that but it meant less press on the carpet today. Not here, though, it meant an opportunity to get those rehearsal shots and others as the carpet continues to transform.
Along the way, items pop up, so here are a few notes
- While many think “Argo” is a slam dunk, it should be noted that all members voted for Best Picture and the Academy boasts many elderly voters, which can vote for “Lincoln.” The other categories are only voted by members in that branch. That is why guild watching usually pays off.
- Michael Feinstein will perform at the Academy's official post-Oscar ® celebration, the Governors Ball.
- Emmanuelle Riva turns 86 on Oscar Sunday.
- Commercials cost $1.71 million per 30-second spot and feature Hyundai, Samsung Mobile (episodic), Diet Coke and Anheuser-Busch will highlight a glass maker. The aim for them to be on the show is to show sophistication.
- Film students and not models will hand the Oscars to presenters during the show.
- The Oscar stage incorporates over 100,000 Swarovski crystals into the stage design and theater decor. Production Designer Derek McLane of Swarovski said: "I have always loved crystal chandeliers, and marveled at the amazing way they act like prisms and refract light when you turn them on. When I was asked to design the 85th Academy Awards, I immediately began to think of ways to use crystals to bring some of that magic to the stage."
- It was the quote about the crystals from Julie Weiss that grabbed attention: Weiss describes, "The Oscars! The Oscars! An evening of the stars. Swirling starts. Their brilliance forming. Comet-like clusters. Dancing against the darkness of evening sky. And I am only speaking of the use of Swarovski crystals illuminating Oscar gowns.” In other words, look for the women to sparkle a lot.
- You always hear about the gift bag. Well, here are some that deserve a mention, too. It includes Condoms , "The Ultimate Fuzz Remover" lint roller, Windex , Laundry bag, Portion-control, dinnerware and a $5,000 "vampire facelift.”
- If Oscar had a taste, it would be Caviar and blinis, says Wolfgang Puck.
Feb 23 parties:
* The Society of Composers & Lyricists Party will have an afternoon bash at a private home in Beverly Hills.
* The Motion Picture & Television Fund's The Night Before Party takes place at the Beverly Hills Hotel. One sponsor of this party is The Hollywood Reporter, where this list can be enhanced further.
* Sony Classics Nominees Dinner takes place at The London Hotel. They were behind nominees "Amour," "The Gatekeepers" and "Searching for Sugar Man," the favorite to win Best Documentary.
* Barry Diller's Luncheon, as it is called is for Vanity Fair’s Carter at a private home.
* Charles Finch and Chanel Pre-Oscar Dinner is at Madeo.
* The Weinstein Co.'s Party iw at Soho House. They have two horses in the race with "Django Unchained" and "Silver Linings Playbook."
* Chateau Marmont Party features WME’s Warren Zavala, Mandate Pictures president Nathan Kahane and Anonymous Content’s Michael Sugar and Doug Wald. The hotel on Sunset Boulevard is always a trendy spot to host a party. Focus Features, distributor of "Anna Karenina" will also be on hand.
- Feb. 23 is a also day for director Ang Lee as he hosts the directors of the motion pictures nominated in the Foreign Language Film category (schedules permitting). They will discuss their work and creative processes. They will also address topics such as art, politics and the challenges of their profession. It is moderated by Oscar-winning producer Mark Johnson.
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