A Time to Talk
Finally it’s here! February always seems to be us movies lovers’ favorite time of year. And why? Well, it’s simple: The Oscars. Yes, it’s the time of year when Hollywood votes on what they deem the most ambitious and artistic films of the year. What started as a simple awards ceremony in 1929 at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel with an audience of less than 300 people has evolved into a multimillion-dollar-production broadcast across the world. And of course, you don’t grow that big without a little controversy along the way.
From Marlon Brando’s infamous refusal to accept his Oscar due to the Industry’s discrimination and mistreatment of Native Americans to the most recent #OscarsSoWhite campaign, The Academy Awards has always reflected the general public discourse of American public life. And that is part of what makes the Oscars such an important part of the Hollywood pop-culture lexicon. Much like Hollywood itself, it serves as a reflection of where we are in America on a cultural and social level and gives the average American a means of which to discuss their thoughts and opinions on such matters. And of course there are the Awards themselves, which gives movies lovers a chance to discuss the artistic and intellectual merits of each film chosen or, more telling, not chosen by the Academy.
Sacheen Littlefeather backstage at the 1973 Oscars reading Marlon Brando’s 15 page speech about Native American representation and the Wounded Knee incident.
What I’m trying to say is one of the reasons I’ve always loved the Oscars is not just for their high priced glitz and glamour, but also for their ability to create meaningful conversation. Sure, the conversation may not always be comfortable and the debates can end up quite biting, but it’s that willingness to simply talk about our current status quo that helps us move forward as a society together.
And, as always, TCM is celebrating the Oscars with its annual “31 Days of Oscar” programming. Be sure to check out some of the films that caused a stir at the Oscar Ceremonies. If you need some help as to what to watch, just look below! Because I love helping.
George C. Scott refused his Oscar, calling it a “Meat Parade.” Do you agree?
What Ever Happened to Baby Jane airs Tuesday February 16th at 2:15AM on TCM.
Knowing her on and off screen rival Bette Davis love for Oscar Gold, Joan Crawford made sure to contact all the Best Actress nominees that couldn’t make it to the ceremonies and offered to accept the award on their behalf should they win. Luckily for Joan, Anne Bancroft won but couldn’t be at the Ceremony. And thus, Joan accepted the Oscar with Bette Davis in the audience, quite livid. Some say Joan has no chill. What do you think?
An American in Paris airs Thursday February 18th at 8:00PM on TCM.
An American in Paris beat both A Streetcar Named Desire and A Place in the Sun for Best Picture. Many call it an Oscars mistake. Do you agree? Let us know in the comments!
Minoo Allen for Classic Movie Hub