Winning the Award

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The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, have been around for a mere 88 years. A small ceremony that once was held in the Hotel Roosevelt in Hollywood is now a 3,401 person event at the Dolby theater, televised in over 100 countries around the world.

Each year the Oscars draws in about 30 million U.S. viewers. Mckinley Chittenden, Class of 2020, stated that “It is a long 3 hour show, but it’s worth it.” This year the Oscars had about 32.9 million U.S. viewers, dropping 4% from last years 34.4 million U.S. viewers. Sam Stanton, Class of 2020, states, “Yeah I watch the Oscars. I watch the Oscars because I love movies and the emotions they convey. I also want people to be congratulated for their achievements.” The main reason for the creation of the Oscars was to do a year recap on the cinemas’ and actors’ achievements.

This year’s Oscars resembled last year’s Miss Universe pageant, with a little mess up. When Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty, who were celebrating the 50th anniversary of Bonnie and Clyde, presented the winner for Best Picture, something went wrong. When Warren Beatty looked at the card, he showed it to Dunaway to read aloud. On this card the winning title was La La Land; she was almost baffled. This card was actually titled with Actress in a Leading Role.  Sam Stanton, Class of 2020, shares that “obviously the incident was preventable but at the time, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway (the presenters) were required to say what was on their card. Even though it was the wrong thing. The Price Water House Coopers staffer (who handed Warren the wrong card) tweeted about Emma Stone just minutes before the mistake. So obviously he was distracted.” After the mishap the directors apologized and brought out the real letter, which said that Moonlight had won.

Are the Oscars biased or are they rigged? This is one of the biggest questions that people ask during the Oscar season. Sarah Blais, Class of 2020, answered this question saying, “I don’t think the Oscars are biased. The people who won deserved it and were the majority among the nominees and should be recognized. It is fair how they get the winners.”  This is a very controversial topic because many people believe that the Academy Awards are biased towards people of other races and religions. Sam Stanton, Class of 2020, shared “The 6,200+ people who voted definitely have the potential to be biased on who they vote for… although most of the voters are actors themselves. No, I don’t think that the Oscars are biased. To become eligible to vote in the first place, you have to be nominated by two people who are already Academy Voters in addition to paying $380.00”.

There have always been problems with controversy and technical difficulties with any type of award show. Despite a major snafu, this year the Academy Awards brought entertainment to the 32.9 million American screens watching and joy and suspense to the 3,401 people in the seats.