Online Oscar Party
Sunday, February 22, 2009; 6:00 PM
Don't watch the Academy Awards alone. Spend Oscar night on washingtonpost.com.
For the sixth year, Jen Chaney -- washingtonpost.com's movies editor -- will host this annual live discussion. She will be joined by resident Celebritologist Liz Kelly during the red carpet portion of the evening; the discussion kicks off on Sunday, Feb. 22 at 6 p.m. ET and lasts until someone finally gets around to announcing what this year's Best Picture is.
Expect the usual detailed play-by-play, awards analysis and, of course, snarky red carpet commentary.
Read the transcript.
Jen Chaney: Welcome to yet another Oscar marathon session, ladies and gentlemen. I hope you've brought your provisions, and by that I mean: water, snacks and the appropriate amount of movie reverence/red carpet snark.
I am joined for the red carpet portion of the evening by the lovely Liz Kelly, who looks just fab in her Max Azria gown. Together, we plan to turn our usual "Lost" dissection skills to another of our obsessions: Hollywood.
Liz, are you totally excited for this chat and, of course, our exciting round of Oscar Bingo?
Liz Kelly: Jen, I am ridiculously excited. Who wouldn't be? I just hope Angelina doesn't get wind of the fact that you're wearing the same gown she chose for tonight. Ah well, I'm sure she'll get over it.
I can't wait to see what trends prevail on this year's red carpet and am just dying to see what Mickey Rourke wears. Also hoping that we get a good head start on the bingo game (if you haven't downloaded your card yet, there's a link in the intro above).
Jen Chaney: Oh, and one more thing: I'll be revealing my Oscar predictions periodically in the time leading up to the show's official start at 8:30 p.m. Liz also may chime in with a few as well.
I'll start with my wildcard call: In the Best Supporting Actress category, I'm going with Viola Davis. I know she wasn't onscreen for very long, but she went toe to toe with Meryl Streep and nearly stole the scenes from her. And we have two African-American contenders in that category, which won't be lost on voters. I think in the year that we elected the first black president, the Academy will want to recognize some diversity as well.
(That said, I would be super-psyched if Taraji P. Henson won. When I recently interviewed her, she said she'd put a little bit of herself into the speech. So I'd love to hear what she does.)
Anyhoo, enough yapping. Bring it, slumdogs.
epjd: So, I have been hearing horrid rumors that Oscar fashions will be toned this year because of the economy. The stars don't want to be seen as flaunting expensive dresses, shoes and jewelry when people are losing their homes. I am of the opinion that most Hollywood stars are too clueless and self-cented to think that way. I am betting on just as much overdoing it as ever. What thinks you both?
Liz Kelly: It's a little late for a prediction since the evening has already kicked off, but I'm skeptical about the economy having an effect on this year's red carpet. Hollywood isn't much known for restraint and, truth be told, I don't think we look to the movie industry or celebrities for restraint. It's all about escapism and it wouldn't be much of an escape to see Jennifer Aniston strutting the red carpet in J. Crew.
Jen, any thoughts?
Jen Chaney: The fact that I've spent the better part of the past four hours watching the folks on E! talk about bling -- seriously, didn't that term die several years ago? -- and gowns and hair styles, restraint doesn't seem to be a buzzword.
But I suspect people may be a little more subtle about flashing their jewelry, or at least conscious of the irony. The smart ones, anyway.
Ladson, S.C.: Why are we celebrating those who are supporting the new Communists that have taken over our goverment?
Liz Kelly: I can't think of an industry that exemplifies capitalism much more than Hollywood. But that's just me. Maybe I drank the Kool-Aid.
Liz Kelly: Okay, looking at Miley Cyrus right now -- the dress is pretty, but a little mature for her, I think. A little, umm, plunging.
Jen Chaney: Liz, you Commie!
I also am not crazy about Cyrus's dress. I don't think the dress is too mature, per se, just a little too much sparkle maybe?
Alexandria, Va.: We don't have a TV, are the Oscars being broadcast live online anywhere??
Jen Chaney: No, they don't stream them online, although please, someone correct me if I am wrong.
Stick here with us, Alexandria. We'll tell you what's happening.
For example: right now E! and TV Guide Channel are in commercials. You're missing ... nothing.
Jen Chaney: No, wait, Miley is talking to Seacrest now. She says her dress weighs more than her. Not surprising.
Baltimore, Md.: Jen, so glad to be spending our 6th year together! I never mind working on Sunday nights when I know I have you to keep me informed of Oscar-ablia between patients.
Jen Chaney: Oh, that's sweet. Thanks, Baltimore.
We will do the very best we can to keep you informed and amused. And, depending on whether Mickey Rourke puts his hands down his pants, potentially briefly horrified.
Liz Kelly: Can I just say that Mickey has a history where this is concerned? Exhibit A
Brangelina and Seacrest: Okay, a minute into the red carpet coverage and Seacrest has already mentioned Brangelina twice. I'm with Liz's prediction that they will make a point to talk to him.
Liz Kelly: Thank you -- see Jen, I make predictions, too. They just have nothing to do with the actual awards.
Jen Chaney: We welcome any and all predictions, Liz. I predict Joey Fatone will get on my nerves ... oh wait, that happened already.
epjd: Miley had to get there early, most of the broadcast is past her bedtime. But, oy, that dress. It weighs more than she does.
Liz Kelly: The girl has a 20-year-old boyfriend who "sleeps over." I'm not sure she has a bedtime.
Miley just told Ryan Seacrest that her blinged out dress weighs more than her and that she'd like to be adopted by Angelina Jolie.
Jen Chaney: Angelina might take her up on it. Doesn't take much.
Liz Kelly: This portion of the red carpet may as well be called dress rehearsal. There's not other way Miley Cyrus would get five minutes with Seacrest if the carpet was more crowded.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, it doesn't get good until 7 to 7:30.
So if you're at home, this is a good time to eat your supper, maybe have a nice glass of wine...
Liz Kelly: And, of course, continue your chat with us. We can practice and get our snark well-honed by 7 p.m.
Jen Chaney: No, of course. You need to get your food and come right back to the chat. I mean, duh.
Arlington Gay: Hey, Jen and Liz,
I've read a LOT of articles today about the Oscars. Most seem to think Sean Penn will get the nod for "Milk." (The gist was Rourke was basically playing himself and the others didn't really even deserve the nominations.) Conversely, "Slumdog" seems to be the favorite for Best Movie as most columnists think it will be a repeat of "Brokeback Mountain" losing to "Crash." Thoughts? "Milk" is one of the finest movies I've seen in a long time. (Also quite enjoyed "Frost/Nixon" but haven't gotten to any of the others yet...)
Jen Chaney: I am very much with you on "Milk." Of the nominees, that was unquestionably the Best Picture in my mind.
I do think "Slumdog" will win (the momentum seems unstoppable at this point), but I'm predicting Penn as Best Actor. I thought it was a more challenging role and I also think that, while many love the Rourke comeback story and he indeed gave a wonderful performance in "The Wrestler," there is probably a contingent that is a little afraid that he'll do something "unbecoming" if he wins.
I also think there is an outside chance that a veteran like Langella or Jenkins could sneak in and win if Penn and Rourke split the vote.
Liz Kelly: Though the Academy is trying everything to stop the huge slippage in viewership they've had the past few years. Maybe a little Mickey is just what they need to get people watching.
I'm still holding out hope for Mickey, though I get Jen's logic. And -- like "Slumdog" - Mickey is an underdog story.
Speaking of "Slumdog," looks like the film's contingent just arrived -- director Danny Boyle and star Dev Patel.
Belle Rose, MAURITIUS : There has been a lot of comments on the British film "Slumdog M.". Mauritians have the unique opportunity to see movies from all round the world. In the opinion of a majority of us, the Bollyood film "Tare Zameen Par" treating the subject of dyslexia should have been selected for the Academy Awards. Just see the film and tell me why it has been rejected.
Liz Kelly: I hear you Mauritius. There are a lot of films that don't make the noms each year -- another international selection that I've heard much buzz around is "Gomorra," the Italian film about the mafia's strangle-hold on Naples.
And Jen has heard me say this before, but if "Benjamin Button" can get 13 noms, well, I would hardly look to the night as a taste-making guide.
Okay, E! has just busted out the John Madden style magic marker to dissect Miley's dress.
Jen Chaney: Also, this just in: CNN is streaming video on their site. Just a cam that will let you see the carpet if you don't have a TV.
So feel free to check it out. Just don't leave us, since our party just got started. I mean, that would be rude.
Arlington Gay: Jen, if Viola pulls it off it'll be a repeat of the Tony Awards. Adriane Lenox won the Best Supporting Actress Tony for a role that was on stage for about 10 minutes.
Liz, who is Andy wearing tonight?
Jen Chaney: There is precedent for that at the Oscars as well, as one of the pieces in today's mammoth Oscar issue of Style pointed out.
Many of the "pundits" are convinced Penelope Cruz will take it. I think Supp. Actress and Actor are two of the most interesting categories of the night. Am hoping for a surprise or two. Those are always fun.
Liz Kelly: Dev Patel is walking the carpet. He looks so excited and not yet jaded. I love it.
Jen Chaney: He's so young and adorable. Agreed.
Jen Chaney: Wow, E! is airing an interview with Hugh Jackman that is dragging on a bit. Clearly filling time. The high profile red carpet walkers must be stuck in traffic.
Currently, Seacrest is talking to Dominic Cooper from "Mamma Mia!"
Liz Kelly: And we're getting B roll of the E! control room -- Jen, you don't suppose the presenters are actually going to hew to the Academy's request not to walk the carpet, do you?
Left out of Noms: For foreign film consideration, each country selects what film will be submitted. Hence Gomorrah being left out. It just plain didn't get submitted.
As for the Indian film that Mauritius mentioned, to be considered for best picture, it must play in Los Angeles. So, if it didn't get at least a week in LA, it is ineligible. The Academy is in LA and it gets to make the rules. Remember, it is the AMERICAN Academy of Motion Pictures, not the WORLD Academy of Motion Pictures.
Jen Chaney: This is all true, thanks for the clarification. Although I think it could play in L.A. or New York for that one-week role. Don't think it's limited to only L.A., but I could be wrong.
Anyway, the point is that there are some wonderful films that often get left out of Oscar consideration for various reasons: Either their country doesn't choose to submit them, or they fly under the radar or the studio doesn't push hard enough for them, whatever. It's a shame.
Kate Winslet: Is she finally going to win an Oscar this year? I adore her. I think she's stunning, and I hope she shows up looking fabulous, wins and then declares her undying love for Leo. Am I wrong?
Liz Kelly: I hope she wins, too. I have the biggest girl crush on her, but I have to admit I saw neither "The Reader" nor "Revolutionary Road" this year -- when they came out I guess I just wasn't in the mood for a bringer-downer.
Though Gene Weingarten gave "The Reader" v. high marks.
Jen Chaney: I thought she was excellent in "The Reader," the Academy was right to honor that performance over "Revolutionary Road," I thought.
Girls, Zac Efron is in the house!
epjd: Either the stars are trying to be fashionably late or they are not coming at all. You know they are desperate when they show the Goodyear Blimp at the Academy Awards.
Jen Chaney: Zac is talking to Ryan Seacrest and refusing to acknowledge he is going to appear in a musical number during the show.
Meanwhile, I am afraid of Jennifer Grey's eyes. She looks like she had a run-in with some Botox.
California: "The Reader" My pick for best pic best director and best actress. Bingo
Jen Chaney: Interesting call. I'll be surprised if it wins Best Picture.
Speaking of Oscar Bingo, I'm playing with card number two. What about you, Liz?
Also, for those of craving a preview of how the show will go down tonight, here is a supposedly accurate schedule, courtesy of the Cinemascope blog. Don't read if you don't want spoilers.
Liz Kelly: I went with no. 1, so if anyone out there wants to man no. 3, that'd be fab. SO far, I have nothing filled in -- but it is early.
Arlington, Va.: Have you noticed that Joey Fatone does this weird thing where if a celebrity doesn't answer his question IMMEDIATELY, he starts nervously rambling until the celeb is forced to cut him off to answer? Anyway...besides him, I LOVE the red carpet!! Bring on the awkwardness!!
Jen Chaney: You know, I'm sticking to E! because of the Fatone factor. I may have to check out the car wreck momentarily though.
Seacret ... just asked Vanessa Hudgens why she and Efron aren't talking together on the red carpet. They did come in together, just doing interviews separately. She seemed ... uncomfortable.
Liz Kelly: Fatone is a bad interviewer -- so is Rinna. Neither of them shut up long enough to allow the interviewees to say anything.
Washington, D.C.: Was it just me or did Zac Efron slip into a British accent at some point during his Ryan Seacrest interview? Or am I already becoming delusional?? Not a good sign, seeing as we're only 33 minutes in..
Jen Chaney: Wow, I didn't notice that. Doesn't mean it didn't happen. Not wild about Efron's dippity doo.
OK, I just tried TV Guide and I couldn't take it. I am back on E!
Phoebe Cates and Kevin Kline are talking to Seacrest. She is ageless. Age-LESS.
Ann Arbor, Mich.: But why is Miley there? Is there an award show she's skipped this season? Considering tickets aren't that plentiful, the fact that she gets one is nuts.
Liz Kelly: I would bet she's part of the Academy's bid to attract younger viewers -- along with Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens, whose dress is horrible. Black with faux feathers covering her chest.
Jen Chaney: Her dress is Marquesa. Not sure how I feel about it either.
epjd: Just so you know, it is either snark with all ya'all or do discovery. Is that even a contest?
Liz Kelly: So I'm guessing multi-tasking is out of the question?
Jen Chaney: I'm not a lawyer so I don't know from discovery. But I think you should stay with us. And I say that from a completely unbiased point of view.
Oh, Amy Adams is here. I can't see her dress in its entirety, but I love the crimson color.
No presenters on the red carpet?!: God I hope not. I can take or leave the actual show (though I will be watching tonight), but I never miss the Red Carpet. It's just a snark goldmine. What fun would it be if there are no presenters?
Jen Chaney: No, clearly some of the participants are walking the carpet, since we just saw Efron and Hudgens. They are just trying to keep some things under wraps. How this will increase ratings, I don't know.
"I have an idea. Let's boost the ratings by not promoting the big stars!"
Liz Kelly: "Revolutionary Road's" Michael Shannon just showed up. He's scary intense, but as I understood -- did a fab job in the movie.
Jen Chaney: He was tremendous in that film. Was very glad to see him nominated. Although ... here comes another prediction ... he doesn't stand a chance against Heath Ledger. That win seems like the surest thing of the evening.
Liz Kelly: And I heard that if Ledger wins, his dad will be accepting the award.
Phoebe Cates!: Thank you, she is just gorgeous. She hasn't aged in about 3 decades. Fab!
Liz Kelly: Seriously, Jen and I were just talking backstage about how she's the female equivalent of Ralph Macchio. She will forever look like a teenager -- which is a better deal for a woman, I think, than a man.
random on the red carpet: Pheobe Cates and Kevin Kline are talking to Seacrest -- they're married? What an odd couple - is this new? Or am I just clueless?
Jen Chaney: I'll be diplomatic and say you were just uninformed rather than clueless. They have been married for many, many years.
Jen Chaney: Okay, can I just say that the ridiculous, over-the-top commercials for "The Girls Next Door" "one-hour event" on E! are just beyond absurd.
"The end of an era?" I'm sorry, it ain't "M*A*S*H*" going off the air.
Liz Kelly: Oh my god -- Lisa Rinna. I just got my first look at her and something disastrous has happened to her lips. Seriously -- she looks like a burn victim.
I'm going to go ahead and mark my first Bingo answer with "Lisa Rinna Embarasses Herself in Some Way."
Jen Chaney: Does that count? I mean, honestly, it's a fair assumption if you aren't even watching TV Guide Channel.
Oh man, Seacrest interviewing these "Slumdog" kids is just painful. One of them just said very slowly about one of the kids in the group ... "He doesn't speak English."
Liz Kelly: Well, she also embarassed herself by conducting the most uninteresting interview with Anthony Hopkins ever captured on tape.
Zac Efron: Should have worn a shirt with an actual collar. And I am not feeling the bow tie. And his sweetie has something weird growing out of her stomach. Not good, Disney Teen Idols, not good.
Jen Chaney: All right, so low marks for Troy and Gabriella then.
The night is still young, and better ensembles surely await us.
Oh look, it's the underpaid little kids from "Slumdog"!
Liz Kelly: I'm still just stunned by Lisa Rinna's lips.
She's talking to Virginia Madsen right now, who just turned up with actor Eddie Mills, 10 years her junior. Not bad.
Washington, D.C.: Finally saw Doubt last night, and I thought Amy Adams was surprisingly good. But I gotta root for hometown girl Taraji. And her necklace is gorgeous.
Jen Chaney: Everyone in "Doubt" was superb. All of those nominations were well deserved.
I haven't gotten a good look at Taraji yet. I did just see Melissa Leo's dress and it's a little ... dowdy. I hate to say that since she was phenomenal in "Frozen River" and I don't want to reduce her to this level...
Somewhere in the South: Ooohhh Seacrest. Let's not say the scary foreign names.
Liz Kelly: And now he's chatting up Dev Patel and Frieda Pinto. He just asked them to send a shout out back to India.
Somewhere in the South: Hey epjd (or whatever) it's "y'all."
Did Zac Efron think that pomade was formal wear?
Liz Kelly: Now now -- let's not fight yet.
By the way -- just saw Viola Davis on the red carpet -- oroh, and there's Taraji P. Henson -- they both look fab., but I think Taraji's creme crepe and diamond collar win the fashion contest.
Jen Chaney: I like the necklace. And she looks great, although I like Viola's color choice more.
Here are the Frieda Pinto and Dev Patel. Pinto is in Jean Galliano and looks lovely.
Wow: Seacrest and the Slumdog kids. Awkward! "She speaks good English" but Seacrest clearly doesn't.
Jen Chaney: Yes, that was horrifying. If I had been eating some naan, I would have spit it up.
(Speaking of, anyone got some naan? Chaney's hungry!)
Liz Kelly: Jen -- you need to get that husband to bring you some food. You're going to need your strength for the next several hours.
Jen Chaney: He's working on it. I'm cracking the whip.
epjd: They moved the Academy Awards a few years ago from March to February to get the ratings into Sweeps Month. Think anyone is regretting that decision?
(I've finished the 'rogs and the rfs, so now I am starting on the G & T)
Jen Chaney: OK, I'll pretend I know what that means.
Why does Ryan Seacrest badger people? He just asked Freida Pinto if men have asked her out since the movie came out. She seemed vaguely mortified.
Dresses, Designers, etc: So is it safe to assume that all the gowns we see on the red carpet have been provided by designers for the free advertising? I just wonder about people like Phoebe Cates who didn't name drop on the dress/shoes/bling.
Liz Kelly: Absolutely. According to E!'s "Answer Bitch," Leslie Gornstein -- who I talked to last month -- even B and C level actresses get free clothes thrown at them.
Jen Chaney: ANd here comes Josh Brolin and Diane Lane. Just got out of their limo. Brolin's got a sizeable goatee, it appears.
Jen Chaney: Robert Pattinson alert! Edward from "Twilight" has arrived, and his hair is appropriately tossled and gelled for the event.
California: The Reader GUY aha, frankly speaking, "The Reader" will win the best director and best actress.
The best pic is in the balance.
Anyway, The Oscar won't go to "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" more than 3 times I promise you.
Liz Kelly: I sure hope not. I couldn't have been nore let down by BB.
Jen Chaney: Agreed, I think "Button" will score some technical awards -- makeup, visual effects -- but get shut out of the major categories.
Heidi and Seal: They are two of the most beautiful people in the world. 99.9 percent of the population would look ludicrous in that color pink, but Heidi actually pulls it off. Her earring are amazing and so is her man candy.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I wasn't sure about the weird angular cut on Klum's dress.
Okay, how cute are Viola Davis and her husband? Too classy for these E! shenanigans, that's for sure.
Knew it would happen: On TV Guide they just talked to Mickey Rooney and I was just waiting for someone to call him Mickey Rourke. And indeed, Chris did it. At least not to his face. That should be on the bingo!
Jen Chaney: Should have been on the card. Maybe you can add your own square.
The E! glamistrator is dissecting Klum's dress. The dude just compared it to origami.
Jen Chaney: Taraji is talking to Ryan Seacrest. She is just a bundle of joy. Love her.
Washington: I can't believe that Seacreast said "What's up my brother" to John Legend.
Jen Chaney: They are actually brothers. You didn't know that?
Liz Kelly: Listen, Ryan is a dork and we all know it. He's a dork who fell [expletive]-backwards into "Idol" and then had the smarts to spin it into media dominance. But, at heart, he is a dork.
Viola Davis just said she's wearing Reem Acra. Lovely choice and her hair is beautiful -- soft and natural, not overdone. Nice job, stylist.
e! guy: Who is the guy with Gulianna (sp) on E!? He's awful.
I will not watch TV guide channel because both host' are beyond awful. They really can't find anyone better for this job? Is Hollywood that short on actual talent?
Liz Kelly: I think that's E! News cohst Jason Kennedy.
And anyone out there familiar with Post personalities, I'd just like to say that "Slumdog" director Danny Boyle is a dead ringer for The Post's Rich Leiby.
Jen Chaney: Dead ringer might be pushing it.
Meanwhile, our Liz? Dead ringer for Diablo Cody.
Liz Kelly: I'll take that as a compliment. I wish my career was a dead ringer for her's, though -- leaving out the past as a stripper, of course.
Alexandria, Va.: What are the white ribbons the "Milk" producers are wearing for?
Liz Kelly: I'm going to guess it has something to do with California's gay marriage ban, but I'm not certain.
And here's Ryan talking to Michael Shannon, who looks singularly unimpressed by Seacrest.
Jen Chaney: And can you blame him?
Jen Chaney: Okay, should I feel bad about myself because Seacrest just asked Taraji P. Henson one of the questions I asked her? Should I question my abilities as a journalist now?
Jen Chaney: And in other news, I love Amy Adams's dress, but don't like that necklace with it.
Arlington Gay: Heidi Klume: Gorgeous dress, hideous jewelry.
Liz Kelly: That's "Klum," darling. And she does look fab. As does Amy Adams, who just turned up in a blood red strapless sheath dress complimented by a jade studded collar. Perfect compliment to her fiar skin.
And there's Marisa Tomei wearing a very Michelle Obama-reminiscent one-shouldered white gown.
Jen Chaney: Here's a sentence I rarely expect to hear from Ryan Seacrest: "I was flipping through the channels the other night and I saw you on this wonderful PBS special." Just said that to Seal.
Okay, now I'm being a little too mean to Ryan.
Marisa Tomei seems to be wearing white or soft pink? I haven't gotten a good look at her yet...
Jen Chaney: Ah, Liz just confirmed its whiteness above.
Amy Adams: I LOVE her dress. Wow. She looks amazing. That color is stunning, and the necklace is so cool.
Jen Chaney: I love the dress. Red and black may be my fave color combination. I like the necklace too, just think it's busy with that dress. Maybe I'm being too harsh.
I'll take a second look...
Arlington Gay: Forgot to mention, Miley Cyrus is there because her animated flick BOLT is nominated to lose to WALL-E. (Is that snarky enough?)
Jen Chaney: See, I forgot all about "Bolt." Not surprising, is it? If anything but "Wall-E" wins in that category, I will force myself to watch "Benjamin Button" eight times in a row. How's that for certainty?
E!: That's actually Ben Lyons, the most hated entertainment critic in the industry. Like there are whole sites devoted to his awfulness. He's only famous because of his dad.
Jen Chaney: Well, he's also famous now because he's on E! and At the Movies now, too, I think? Maybe that's why Richard Roeper bailed.
Liz Kelly: Oh no, Lisa Rinna and Fatone are talking to the "Slumdog" kids. I think they figure her as having been disfigured by Fagan-type guy in "Slumdog" who scooped out the kid's eyes.
Liz Kelly: And Sarah Jessica Parker just showed up wearing a dress reminiscent of her Vivienne Westwood gown in the "SATC" movie, but boy, the girls are pushed up high.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, again, couldn't take that for more than five seconds.
Oh, I missed SJP. Will keep my eyes peeled. Here comes Seth Rogen, who looks even thinner than he did at Golden Globes.
Liz Kelly: And SJP is also rocking a wide belt, much like Miley. Red carpet trend?
Re: the white knot: WhiteKnot.org - Marriage Equality
Jen Chaney: Here's your answer on the "Milk" ribbons.
jes: I love Taraji Hensen's dress. I don't mind the muted color w/her gorgeous skin tone.
Jen Chaney: Yes, she pulls it off.
SJP looks a fairy princess. I kinda like it, even though people on E! don't seem to. Natalie Portman is in bubblegum pink, which you rarely see on the carpet.
Arlington, Va: Re: the white ribbons, yes that's right they are to be symbols of marriage equality. The stars wore them at the Spirit Awards too.
Also love that Viola Davis was a little bit cheeky when she told Ryan that anyone with a brain could interpret for themselves what was happening in Doubt. Hmmm....
Liz Kelly: Agreed -- Amanda Seyfried is totally working the sarcasm with Seacrest. He asked her what she'll be doing tonight for her perofmance and she said, "Oh my god, I totally want to tell you what I'm going to be doing before I do it." Ouch.
And there's Robert Downey Jr., looking quite well.
Washington: Hellloooo, slimmed down Seth Rogen!
And Sarah Jessica Parker just got compared to Miley Cyrus. Ouch.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, her dress is not as busy as Miley's, though.
Clean-shaven Robert Downey Jr. I like it!
Anne Hathaway just arrived. Her skirt is skin tight. Looks like she can just barely walk.
Los Angeles: I have been in LA for about 6 months now (and am leaving to go back home to NY next week), but I still can't get over why everything is tape-delayed out here. It spoils all the fun - I can look online as the event is occurring, so why would I then watch the show at 8 p.m. here. SO annoyed by this!! Glad I am going back to NY soon!! Thanks for letting me vent!
Jen Chaney: They tape-delay the Oscars? Not the ceremony, though, right? That's crazy!
Pattinson is talking to Ryan Seacrest. He is acknowledging how ridiculous it feels to be at the Oscars. I do like the guy's candor.
Silver Spring, Md.: Whoa!! Did you see that? Is there a bingo square for least able to keep ones "shoes" in her dress? (shout out to Lisa De Moraes). Sarah Jessica Parker would win tonight.
Liz Kelly: I think that could count as a "Wardrobe Malfunction" in a pinch.
Liz Kelly: And as for that whole "restraint because of the failing economy" notion someone mentioned earlier, I would just like to mention that Rinna and Fatone are wielding what look to be Swarovski crystal-encrusted microphones.
If TV Guide channel can afford this, things can't be that bad.
Brooklyn, NY: Is Seacrest standing on a box or platform?
Jen Chaney: I don't know, but for those who were wondering, SJP is wearing barely mint.
And Matthew Broderick is rocking some grays.
Liz Kelly: You are kinder than I.
Fairfax, Va.: Could SJP's um, "girls", be perched ANY higher?! It actually looks painful...
Liz Kelly: Nope. And, I'm sorry, but could Matthew Broderick look any shlumpier next to her?
the apple falling not far from the tree: Can Ben Lyons really be more hated than creepy "family values" critic Michael Medved?
Jen Chaney: It's hard for me to assess levels of hatred when I'm still trying to figure out which Crayola qualifies as a barely mint.
washingtonpost.com: Stop Ben Lyons !
Liz Kelly: A link from Producer Paul.
Liz Kelly: Natalie Portman's strapless gown would be lovely, if it wasn't Pepto Bismol pink.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I'm not sure about the pink either.
Anne Hathaway is in some sort of white silvery thing. I like her more in a color. (I know, I know, I keep saying that...)
amazing foresight: Can we get a shout-out for Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, for correctly predicting that Kate Winslet would get an Oscar for a Holocaust movie, even if she didn't actually play a nun, like in Extras?
Jen Chaney: Gervais even acknowledged it during the Globes. Which was hilarious.
Liz Kelly: And as we learned Friday, Gervais helped to write some of Hugh Jackman's lines for tonight's show.
Boston: I'm with you, Jen, on Anne Hathaway. Fair skinned girls like her and Amy Adams need to stick to jewel tones. As a fair skinned girl, myself, I know of what I speak.
Jen Chaney: Thanks, Boston. I too am of the fair-skinned variety. As in, so fair I am nearly invisible. So I know of what I speak, too.
Plus, in HD color just pops. Some of these colors probably look lovely in person but don't have that zing on television.
Liz Kelly: Okay, two more arrivals -- Beyonce in a skintight black dress with huge gold blowers. It's not my favorite look.
And Mickey Rourke, finally -- he's wearing a white tux jacket, black vest and open necked white shirt collar. He looks like a dirtbag. I love him.
Jen Chaney: Sean Penn and Robin Wright, looking very distinguished in all blank.
And speaking of Rourke, did anyone else catch Rourke's speech at the Spirits last night? All I can say is WOW. If that was a prelude to what he may do tonight, it's totally worth tuning in.
Exiled to the South: Um. Evan Rachel Wood's skin, dress, and hair are all the same color. Not the most becoming look against glaring red lips set on a red carpet. Ghastly.
And, Natalie Portman is rocking that pepto-bismol. She is smart so I'm willing to give her the ability to be ironic. Oscars = prom.
Jen Chaney: Fair enough.
Yes, I much, much preferred Wood's teal Globes dress.
Rourke is talking about the lost dog now. Does this count as Bingo even if it's not during his speech?
Arlington, Va.: Willow Bay (wife of Robert Iger) is looking mighty impatient at the red carpet entrance...but what she doesn't realize is that Anne Hathaway is causing the bottleneck. I think Oscar nom trumps media mogul wife in the hierarchy, yes?
Jen Chaney: On this night it definitely does.
Liz Kelly: And Anne looks fabulous. Her dress is a white sleeveless sheath that looks to be beaded with thousands of iridescent white bugle beads. I'm sure it wil turn up in our gallery later this evening.
Chicago: Oh my God did you see Sophia Loren's face? It looks like pasta, it is so orange....Why Sophia??? She has so much natural beauty, does she really need to tan herself like this?
Liz Kelly: Well, she is Italian.
I was trying to go with your spaghetti reference. But if I look like Sofia at 75, I'll be pretty pleased with myself.
Los Angeles again: Hmmm...after reading your comment, Jen, I did a little research and I am thinking now that it might indeed be live here in LA. I read somewhere a while ago that it would be tape delayed, but now I went to the Oscars site and it says 5 p.m. PST, so I guess I am going to see it live!!!!!! ( I had to watch tape- delayed Grammys, so this is indeed exciting).
Jen Chaney: Well, I'm glad we sorted this out. A tape delay would just be wrong.
Liz Kelly: Okay, Rourke is taling to Seacrest now and he has one thumb in his pants -- I need a ruling: does that count?
He's also wearing a picture of his dog Loki around his neck. Says he would have preferred to have Loki for a few more years than an Oscar. I totally get that.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I just noted that the dog comment could be a Bingo option, too. Now we have two conundrums!
Marissa Tomei: Does Seacrest not know who she is? Because I am surprised that she didn't slap him when he said, "So, you've been here before, what 1993?" And she was like... "Yes, and I've been here since"
Jen Chaney: That poor woman has to be tired of the "she didn't really win" jokes that dogged her after she got an Oscar back then. The two nominees she has earned since shut that up. At least, for the people who know what they're talking about.
Seacrest clearly not in that category.
together?: Sean Penn & Robin are together tonight? I thought they got separated...
Jen Chaney: They have since reunited, a few months ago if memory serves, right Liz?
Liz Kelly: Yep, that's right -- we linked to news of their reunion sometime before Christmas.
E! Scores: Overhead shot of Mickey Rourke with his hands down his pants. Almost got to see too much.
Does the man NOT know that pants come with pockets?
Jen Chaney: All right, that's it. That counts as a bingo square.
Jen Chaney: Oh, and Marion Cotillard arrives and her make up is super dark. She almost looks like a Goth "Twilight" fan.
Ron Howard is talking about the "Arrested Development" movie. He says it's happening. Hooray!!
White Ribbons: Stuever exlained in his 'Milk' story: Out of 'Milk,' Perhaps a Little Human Kindness Toward Gay Rights - washingtonpost.com
A group called WhiteKnot is trying to get as many celebrities as possible to pin little white bows on lapels for tomorrow night's ceremony, in support of gay marriage. (Last year it was orange ribbons and bracelets -- a Guantanamo protest -- because there is always a new way for Hollywood to tweak the culture war.)
"It's about equality," says WhiteKnot organizer Frank Voci, who has spent the week making sure that anyone going to the Oscars "at least has access to -a white knot] so they can make the decision to wear it." He really hopes Sean Penn will don one. "He or -director] Gus Van Sant or the producers could really connect the dots so simply to what we're fighting for."
Liz Kelly: And there you go -- Stuever with the scoop, as usual.
Trend spotted, Va.: Is it just me, or are we seeing a lot of one-shoulder straps a la Michelle Obama's inauguration gown?
Jen Chaney: Good call, trend spotter. Also lots of very tight up-dos.
Oh., and I do like Cottillard's dress.
Dear Lord. Seacrest to Even Rachel Wood: "I think I can smell you."
Liz Kelly: The Obama effect is definitely in effect and has also apparently been having some influence on bridal fashions.
Front Royal, VA: Meryl Streep - WOW! She looked sensational exiting the limo. My favorite actress of all time looking good - one more time.
Liz Kelly: Agreed -- I guess I would call her dress's color a pale taupe. But it is soft and lovely and her updo is ideal. I guess she decided the nun's habit would be a little severe.
Jen Chaney: The red carpet is not usually her strong suit (see the pants she wore to the SAGs). But this time she did it right. Nicely done.
jes: Seacrest just shook the hand Mickey stuffs down his pants!
Liz Kelly: Okay, I don't want to touch your comment or Seacrest's hand.
Jen Chaney: Branglina is here!!!
Peter Gabriel: loooovee him ... but he got old!! :(
Jen Chaney: Well, that tends to happen to people. Unless you're Benjamin Button.
Jessice Biel: It's a diaper. A full body diaper with that HUGE drape down the front.
Jen Chaney: Excuse me, it's an expensive, satin diaper. Let's be accurate about this.
woohoo!: Ryan Seacrest somewhat made up for being such a tool by asking Ron Howard about the status of the "Arrested Development" movie!
Jen Chaney: Yes, kudos to him on that one. It's what America really wants to know.
Liz Kelly: Oh no -- what's with Philip Seymour Hoffman and the long scraggly hair and black ski cap? Does the man know he's at the Oscars?
And Celebritology readers will be glad to hear that Daniel Craig has arrived.
And Kate Winslet loks fabulous -- very old Hollywood, but also rocking the one-shouldered look.
Brad and Angie!: So they're here. He's beautiful, and so is she, but she is wearing ANOTHER black dress. Sheesh. Talk about needing to learn about color. I'm so sick of the black dresses.
Jen Chaney: Me? I like black. And at least it's form fitting. She's been going blousy at these events lately and I think she looks much better in what she's wearing tonight. She looks incredible.
washingtonpost.com: YouTube - Mickey Rourke Acceptance Speech Best Male Lead Film ...
Liz Kelly: A little archival footage -- a whole 24-hours old.
Liz Kelly: Angelina looks fab, but singularly non-plussed. I'm wondering if she's in one of those moods again. She looks unhappy.
As for Penelope Cruz -- so cute, but her gown looks like a vintage wedding dress. I'm not sure it is really hitting the right note for the Oscars.
Just Outside the TMZ, CA: to: the LA Visitor The Oscars are the ONLY awards show that is not tape-delayed. All of the others (Globes, Tonys, Emmys) are indeed shown three hours after they actually occurred. Same goes for the network morning and evening news shows and reality show finales. The only things we get live are (most) major sporting events, Presidential speeches, and the Oscars.
Jen Chaney: See, I am never in L.A. for these things, so I didn't realize! Am passing it on as a public service.
Wow, Kate Winslet looks amazing. I love that eggplant color. And the Grace Kelly hair. Perfect.
Arlington, VA: What the bleep is Phillip Seymour Hoffman wearing on his head? He is an Oscar nominee for God sake!!!!
Jen Chaney: He wore a cap to the Spirits, too, but that's a much more casual affair. Not sure why he went that way either.
But look, he's an acting god. So I am willing to give him a pass.
Severn, Md.: Is Philip Seymour Hoffman going to turn into Marlon Brando?
And Kate Winslet looks fabulous.
Liz Kelly: He looks more like a mug shot-era Nick Nolte.
Houston: So, what's the over/under on the number of one shoulder dresses a la Michelle Obama - I think I have at least 5 and I am only watching on and off!
Liz Kelly: Oh, at least.
Jen Chaney: Winslet has done it better than anybody. I am just awestruck by her.
Now if she doesn't win, it's a double crime. Anyone looking that good needs to be up onstage.
Edge of my seat: For a Brad and Angie meets or avoids Jen and John moment.
Jen Chaney: I know. I feel so dirty for thinking it, and yet I continue to let my brain plunge into the muck like the kid from "Slumdog."
jes: Heidi Klum looked gorgeous and so does Angelina. My girl crush dreams are fulfilled.
Liz Kelly: And have you seen Kate? I am in heaven.
The only thing that could make this better is if Jen Aniston parachuted in and wrestled Angelina to the ground.
Liz Kelly: And we should all be on alert for the Ryan Seacrest Brangelina moment. There's a short window and the Bingo game could hang in the balance.
Jen Chaney: Alert duly noted. So far all I've got going for me is Rourke's hand down his pants. Which is nice.
Oh, and the free square.
Severn, Md.: What is with Jessica Biel's black hush puppies and is there a black lining in that satin drape?
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I was terribly confused by the black shoes.
Liz Kelly: Did we hear who she's wearing? Is it William Rast?
And another Bingo square -- Tilda Swinton wearing an unattractive dress. Everyone mark your cards!
Yay! Kate Winslet!: She's so beautiful! I love that dress on her. She's looking fabulous, and now she needs to win.
Jen Chaney: You just said what I said a second ago, we are so on the same page.
And Tilda Swinton is in an unattractive dress. Yes! Another Bingo square.
Oh great, here comes Seacrest to talk to Winslet, who says she's nervous. Probably just about talking to this guy...
Corpus Christi, TX: My husband has control of the remote. Help, how I can convince him we need to watch the awards? Anyway, I appreciate you being here.
Liz Kelly: Do you have more than one TV?
If not, that is unacceptable. This happens one night a year. Explain to him that this is like the Super Bowl and the World Series rolled into one.
If he won't comply, I'm not going to suggest you take his credit card and rent a hotel room or anything, but it could happen...
Jen Chaney: OK, I love Kate Winslet. She has no idea what to say about Seacrest showing this cover of Time magazine to her.
And how cute was the story about her son, who told her to thank everyone who helped her if she wins?
But to your question, you need to stage a remote control coup, ASAP. I echo what Liz said.
WOW!: Kate Winslet is STUNNING! Not that she isn't usually. Definitely in my top 5 best dressed.
Jen Chaney: She's No. 1 for me right now.
Arlington, VA: Kate Winslet...a-ma-zing. Nuff said.
And it's official, just watched a snippet of Hugh Jackman talking to Baba Wawa: I am in love. He choked up a little bit talking about his dad flying from Australia to watch him sing at Carnegie Hall. Sigh!
Jen Chaney: Oh, crud. I can't watch Walters and the carpet. I've got streaming video on my computer, I'm typing, I should probably be doing Facebook updates and Twittering with my toes, too. So much media, so little time.
Thank you for sharing. I am very excited about Jackman. He killed when he hosted the Tonys, so I am hopeful about what he can do tonight.
Liz Kelly: Seacrest's talking to Brad, but only on the way past -- and no Angelina. It's a split decision. I'm gonna call it a snub -- Brad didn't want to stop, he just didn't want to be rude.
Whaddya think, Jen -- snub?
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I think that counts.
Brangie: Angie seems to have warmed up--talking to the Slumdog kids and Taraji she's all smiles.
Jen Chaney: Pitt is talking to Seacrest. He blew by. Does this count as a Bingo snub?
Liz Kelly: I'm calling it as a snub. Angelina blasted past and Brad didn't even stop walking, he just didn't want to be totally rude by not answering at all.
Marcy in Hampton: Bring on Hugh Jackman!!
Liz Kelly: You've got about a half an hour until Hugh time, so pace yourself.
Wilmington, N.C: That necklace that Taraji Henson has on -- I want one. Whose is it?
Jen Chaney: I didn't hear her say. Anyone else know?
All right, we're over at ABC for a red carpet in HD. Oh, how I love high definition.
Winslet looks even better in extra high definition.
Liz Kelly: I missed it, too -- anyone?
Robert Downey, Jr.: Woah! Did he just lose about 20 years? I don't know if it's just that he's clean shaven or what, but he looks incredibly young. Fantastic. He must be drinking the same water as Phoebe Cates.
In other news, Brad did NOT snub Ryan, but it looks like Angie did? Do I get half a square?
Liz Kelly: It's amazing what sobriety can do for a guy.
Jen Chaney: No, we called that a square. Brad clearly didn't want to stop, as Liz astutely noted.
Downey did indeed look excellent.
BW Special - Hugh Jackman: Hubba hubba. Never have I wanted to be Barbara Walters more than ever (the recipient of a SECOND lap dance from HJ). WOW!!!
Liz Kelly: It would take a lot for me to want to be Barbara Walters.
Tim Gunn just asked Amy Adams if it was fair that she -- who had to wear a nun's habit in "Doubt" -- is competing against Marisa Tomei, who was basically naked for most of "The Wrestler." I think Mr. Liz would give the Oscar to Tomei.
Jen Chaney: What is with Gunn's questions, man? So odd.
There's Taraji talking to Robin Roberts. Again, adorable.
I watched "Ocean's 11" again last night. He and Clooney were sooo good.
Liz Kelly: Better than that sappy "Benjamin Button."
And can I say that I am loving Taraji P. Henson's hair? That is the cutest little bob.
Jen Chaney: Her bob is cute, although it does keep getting into her face a little.
Tim Gunn just stopped Branglina. Don't think they wanted to talk to him, but they were gracious.
Awwww: Frank Langella's date is his daughter. Who he says is shy. That's so sweet.
Jen Chaney: It is. High "awww" factor there.
Winsletville, UK: Kate is fabulous, the dress is NOT. Gray, drab, blah 50s number. Does nothing for her.
Liz Kelly: Oh man, I so don't agree. I think Kate looks fab.
Jen Chaney: I clearly don't agree with that, I adore that dress. It's definitely not drab.
I like that the ABC hosts are telling us who's wearing what quickly, them moving on...
Liz Kelly: Agreed -- seriously, ABC has done a good job this year. Their trio of interviewers are doing a fab job compared to the amateur hour we saw on E! and the TV Guide channel. Of course, their moments are a bit more scripted and they had more time to prepare.
Front Royal, VA: Did you just see SJP introduce her husband to the guy on ABC's red carpet show? The guy said something about the handsome guy next to her & SJP replied "Matthew Broderick." Duh! What a waste of airtime that was.
Liz Kelly: Aww, give her a break. She's just saying whatever comes into her head first and I think she was concerned that the interviewer didn't recognize Matthew. Though he obviously did since his next question was directed at Matthew and an upcoming stage engagement.
Jen Chaney: No, Jess Cagle would definitely know who Matthew B. is. He was just being cheeky.
But I suspect SJP is very aware that she tends to get more attention at these things.
Ellicott City, MD: I really don't like Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. Please tell me you secretly don't like them.
Liz Kelly: I am an Angie fan -- as Celebritology readers know. Brad I could take or leave.
Jen Chaney: I like both of them. But sometimes she seems fed up with this whole red carpet thing.
Liz Kelly: And who can blame her?
Tim Gunn!: Wow, that's a surprise! I have to admit that I love him. And he was really nice to Amy Adams and Kate Winslet. 'Nuff said.
Liz Kelly: And Gunn scores Brangelina! Go Tim!
Jen Chaney: Yeah, but as I just said, they totally didn't seem to want to talk, did they? What's that all about?
Liz Kelly: They didn't, but Angie did give him a super-warm smile -- more than she's ever given that box-perching Seacrest.
I think they're just playing the exclusivity game. Angie only likes to talk to NBC's Ann Curry.
commercials: Why don't the Oscars get cool commercials like the Super Bowl?
Jen Chaney: They do. Not of that caliber, but the ads are certainly sold at much higher rates. And a lot of the ads have sort of a movie theme to them.
But to your point, it's not as high profile as the Super Bowl. That's true.
Liz Kelly: The Super Bowl also scores ratings that crush the Oscars broadcast several times over.
Jen Chaney: This is also true.
Again, Rourke is talking about Loki again. He kept it clean. Points for Mickey.
jes: I've switched to ABC and Robin Roberts is there with the wonderful Tim Gunn. She chose the J Crew gown.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I like that one. Although it looked more coral on my TV upstairs. In HD it looks fire engine red.
Liz Kelly: And now she's goit the entire "Slumdog" cast. Nice. They really are making me look at the whole evening with fresh eyes. They are having such a good time.
Liz Kelly: Ick -- that Vanessa Hudgens dress looks like a cast off from "Too Wong Foo." What was she thinking?
Liz Kelly: And the EW interviewer talking to Robert Downey Jr. just asked him who his date was. RDJ looked a bit non-plussed and explained that his "date" was his wife, Susan Downey.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, that was a yikes. This is Cagle's first time at this gig, so you know, he was bound to flub something.
Viola Davis just looks gorgeous.
Anonymous: Why do we spend so much time focused on what clothes stars wear that we'll never have enough money to afford and even if we did wouldn't want to spend on?
Jen Chaney: Because we're shallow and must live vicariously through others?
Or at least that second part?
Liz Kelly: And to be fair, many of these styles end up trickling down to our price range pretty quickly.
Bethesda, Md.: Valentino is charming; although it looked as though (gasp), his pants needed to be hemmed?!
Jen Chaney: How dare you even imply that his pants were not hemmed? You are SO going to Fashion Hell!
Liz Kelly: Maybe he's shrinking. You know the sponges between the disks do deteriorate as we age.
Anne Hathaway: Seemed genuinely pleased that Tim Gunn likes her dress. I do so like her.
Jen Chaney: Yes, it is very pretty. I was middling on it before, but I have reversed course. I can do that, right?
DC: I am watching the Oscars alone tonight...I'm so glad I have you guys to be snarky with! Thanks!
Liz Kelly: Trust me, you are so not alone! Settle in, grab some tea (or a highball) and join the party.
Jen Chaney: Yes, stick around. It'll be a while.
Cagle is talking to Meryl Streep.
Viola Davis: Wow - she looks so fab!! I love her dress.
I am actually surprised because I like a lot of dresses this year (not Miley's) and I don't usually.
Jen Chaney: Me too. People generally did well with the fashion choices.
Liz Kelly: Agree -- there have been some really lovely choices. I have a feeling we're gonig to hear about a "return to classic Hollywood glamour." And it's true -- a lot of classic looks tonight.
Mickey Rourke: I get the clothes, I appreciate his love for his dog, but I am most saddened that he meddled with a face that was basically perfect. He was ridiculously gorgeous 20 years ago.
Jen Chaney: Well, allegedly Rourke did damage to his face during his boxing phase. I have to believe there was some surgery involved as well (although I don't think he's ever confirmed that), but the boxing probably started to do the damage. Plus, he's had a hard life of late.
All that said, he used to be smokin' hot back in the day. I am with you on that.
Liz Kelly: I think he did have surgery to try to correct the damage done in the ring.
But I agree -- I am spellbound by him in movies like "Rumble Fish" and even "Barfly."
Houston: I love Robin Roberts - not a "movie star", but she looks stunning.
And the Slumdog Millionaire kids are wonderful.
And really, you cannot go wrong with Tim Gunn in my opinion.
And poor, Mickey Rourke, he just made me want to cry.
Jen Chaney: Roberts looks great, agreed. I would trade bodies with her right this minute if I could.
The details on Penelope Cruz's dress details are stunning. Still not wild about the color, but it's a beautiful gown.
Jen Chaney: I should say details on the dress. Yeesh. I shouldn't be messing up this early in the evening...
Snicker, "Cagle": I got here late, so I scrolled straight to the end of the chat. Have we had a collective at the repeated mention of cagle? Have I gotten started with the Oscar drinking too early? Thanks for being here, Liz and Jen.
Liz Kelly: Is it ever too early?
NC: It's so fun being snarky for once...Cyrus and Hathaway are the only two so far that look like they know how to act statuesque in a gown !!! geeezzz
Jen Chaney: Jack Black is losing his patience with Jess Cagle. That didn't go well. "Someone more famous is walking up, I feel," Black says.
Liz and I are snarky, like, every day. But I actually think several of the ladies are carrying themselves nicely tonight.
Liz Kelly: Agreed -- most recently Marisa Tomei who just talked to Tim Gunn.
Hampton, Va.: Do Brangelina want to talk to anyone?
Jen Chaney: Not people who interview stars on the red carpet. Especially those who work for E!
Okay, I like Anne Hathaway's dress much better in HD.
Liz Kelly: Listen, Angelina writes Op-eds for The Washington Post. She doesn't have time to be quizzed about her dress.
Tim Gunn: I hadn't been a fan before but he has won me over. I like his interview style as well.
Jen Chaney: Yes, despite the making Kate nervous, he is doing well.
Boston, MA: I'm actually really loving how Robin Roberts and Tim Gunn are handling the red carpet. And major props for that lovely coral gown!
Liz Kelly: As I said above, they're doing a great job. But then they are the officially sanctioned broadcast interviewers, so they have much better conditions -- platforms, lighting and guaranteed interviews.
Washington, DC: I'm really enjoying the Red Carpet show, but I can't escape the sense that it has an Antiques Road Show feel to it. Great fun. Much better than 10 or 20 years ago.
Jen Chaney: Ahh! The Oscars! It's starting in just two minutes!
Pics?: I know a lot of pics will be on-line tomorrow but are there any links now? I'm not getting enough glimpses.
Jen Chaney: Not yet, but we will have galleries up. A red carpet one should hit the site by 10 p.m. or so, if all goes well.
And a ceremony gallery will land sometime in the early Monday a.m. hours, depending on when this sucker actually ends.
Liz Kelly: Okay folks, time for me to peel off and concentrate on my bingo game. I'll be with you in spirit, but I leave you in Jen's capable hands.
Jen Chaney: "In spirit." She's so going to be drunk.
I'm just kidding. Liz, it's been a pleasure as always. Thanks for adding another dose of snark!
Washington, DC: So far, Leslie Mann's disco gown is my favorite. Rarely are there fashion disasters anymore because no one takes risks. That gown is risky, and it looks fantastic.
Jen Chaney: Leslie Mann looked good, agreed.
Here comes Hugh. Looking fashion. I like the set, too. It has, as Michael Giacchino promised, a Louis Prima set.
Interesting, the lights are low in the auditorium too. I can only scarcely see.
Jackman just made a recession joke. Oh boy, and he just announced he's going to start his number ... put together in the garage.
Hampton, VA: Wooo Hooo--IT'S WOLVERINE!!!
Jen Chaney: Yes, this number isn't very X Men.
Hugh is in the audience, singing to Kate about human excrement, this is the "Slumdog" part of his song.
He's clearly taking a page from Billy Crystal.
Here comes a square: I love Hugh Jackman!
Jen Chaney: Me, too. Like, 80 times over.
He's now sticking his head through various holes in a set to simulate the Benjamin Button aging process.
And he's carrying Anne Hathaway onto the stage.
I'm too mesmerized to type...
Hugh Jackman: Um....his singing number...not funny or clever. Meh.
Jen Chaney: Another opinion. I'm kind of liking it. Anne Hathaway didn't quite convince me she was "surprised." But they were still pretty great.
Anne Hathaway: Can sing?! Wow, that was great! I love this.
Jen Chaney: I do, too. It's really fun, and a nice change of pace from the usual stand-up routine.
Jackman just started laughing during "The Reader" part. But he is tremendous. He may be hosting this for the next decade.
Hampton, Va.: Clearly Obama should have picked Hugh Jackman as his running mate
Jen Chaney: Yeah. Very loud cheers. And Jackman is getting a standing O. That. was. AWESOME.
OMG: I think Anne Hathaway just stole the entire show just now!!!
Jen Chaney: Maybe, but Hugh stole it right back.
Anne Hathaway: Just became my new girl crush. I heard she wanted to do Broadway, but DAMN!
Jen Chaney: Jackman just told Rourke that if he wins they switch to a 20-minute delay. He's funny, too!
That was quite the opportunity for Hathaway, no? Bet she'll get some musical offers now.
Wow: I am speechless. Amazing. Did the opening number really just get a standing ovation? Best opening, um, ever.
Jen Chaney: Certainly in the past 20 years, no joke.
Unless they were told to standing O. (I'm so paranoid...)
Eek, they just had some trouble opening the curtain prior to the supporting actress montage. I actually heard someone yell "Open it" from backstage.
_______________________BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Great Falls, VA : This year's Oscars are only ten minutes old and already I think it's the best in years!! What fun! Hugh Jackman is great, and the whole theme of the 'recession' running through the opening number - it's just terrific!
Jen Chaney: I think we all agree -- well, except for that one detractor -- that that was tremendous.
And here come five Best Supporting Actress winners -- Tilda, Whoopi, Goldie Hawn, Eva Marie Saint and Anjelica Huston. More people standing to applaud. Hmmm ... maybe my paranoia is not unfounded.
I like this approach. Each person is honoring a specific nominee.
Wow--loved the opening: Where is Jack Nicholson?
Jen Chaney: I don't know. I also didn't see Aniston on the red carpet, speaking of people who are missing.
Viola Davis is crying. That was sweet.
Okay, am I a sucker for thinking this way of honoring each nominee is just lovely?
Elk River MN: And Tilda's outfit is awful. Goldie needs a role. Will they cut to Jack when they feature Anjelica?
Jen Chaney: Answer to that last question: no. Is it possible Jack isn't there?
I don't know, I think Goldie's dress is a little snug.
Taraji P. Henson is looking moved. Tears in the eyes. They are tugging the heartstrings tonight. With both hands.
Hampton, VA: OK, I like this format--very cool.
Love Angelica Huston. OK, really loved her in "Daddy Day Care"
Jen Chaney: In "Daddy Daycare"? Okay, if you say so.
The Oscar goes to ... Penelope Cruz. So much for my Viola Davis theory.
Herndon, VA: Are they really going to do this for each category? We'll be here til dawn!
Jen Chaney: No, I think they'll just do it for some of the biggies.
Penelope is reading part of her speech. I will let this go because English is not her first language. And also, she seems genuinely nervous.
Cruz just dedicated her Oscar to her parents. Now she is talking about the Oscars being a moment of unity for the world.
And now she is speaking Spanish. I think she essentially said that all of her fellow Spanish actors share this moment and this award with her. You know, more or less.
Falls Church: Actually, I'm not finding this lovely. I'm finding it a way to actually draw out the evening even more...
Jen Chaney: Yes, it did take a long time. But again, I don't think they're doing to do this for, say, the best sound editing category. Not that those people don't deserve special attention, too. But I suspect they'll do it only in the big six categories.
Arlington, VA: You're not a sucker, but at midnight when you're complaining about the show running long, this is why.
Jen Chaney: Fair enough. I like that they're trying new things, and not silly things like having some people accept from the audience like they did a few years ago.
Best Supporting Actress: So if you get dumped by Tom Cruise, your consolation prize is Oscar? Katie! Wake up and revive your career!
Jen Chaney: That is true! Well, three makes a trend. And this is only two.
But you know, we'll count it.
Here come Steve Martin and Tina Fey with a very funny intro.
Fey just got some extra applause. Presenting one of the screenplay awards now...
Aw, Penelope Cruz: She's so cute! Good for her, that was a wide open category.
Jen Chaney: People were saying she had the best shot, but yes, I thought that could have gone in a few directions.
Man, some of the lights are so low you can't see the people in the audience.
And a Scientology joke from Fey and Martin: "No one wants to hear about our religion that we made up."
Hampton, VA: Oh dear God, more Tina Fey.
Jen Chaney: Yes, that was nicely done. A needed dose of dry after the sogginess of the Supporting Actress nomination. (Not that I am protesting the sogginess...)
Tugging heartstrings is fine: But these women didn't save lives. Little over the top (except for Whoopi) no?
Jen Chaney: It was a little over the top, agreed. My husband entered the room, proclaimed it ridiculous, then left.
I still say that I liked it.
Dustin Lance Black just won Best Original Screenplay for "Milk."
NYC: Great tool for best screen play. Finally something creative.
Jen Chaney: Yes. For those unable to watch at home, the script was shown along with scenes so we could actually see the work these people are being honored for. But they kept it briefer than Best Supporting Actress.
Lance Black is referring to gay marriage and getting verklempt.
Herndon, VA: I think we're having our own little moment of unity for the world right here in wapo.com chat-land. Happy to be here with you tonight!
Jen Chaney: Aw, thanks.
Really nice speech by Lance Black. And political, I would argue. So a bingo square, for those still playing at home.
Now Fey and Martin are presenting Adapted Screenplay.
Putting the dialogue on the screen is such a nice use of the space, too.
Count it: Political acceptance speech
Jen Chaney: Yup. Just duly noted that.
"And one day get married": Is that a square?
Jen Chaney: Yes, mark it!
Oscar for Original Screenplay ... "Slumdog Millionaire." Simon Beaufoy is onstage now.
"There are certain places in the universe you never imagine standing," he says. He equates the Oscar stage with the moon and the North Pole.
Arlington Gay: "Milk's" first award. I'll admit to tearing up a little. Loved the acceptance speech. It's not that long ago most networks would have gone to commercial...
Jen Chaney: It was a very nice speech. Concise, meaningful, emotional. I liked it, too.
Everyone's keeping the speeches pretty brief.
Oh, here comes Jennifer Aniston and Jack Black. So far, no cut to Branglina.
Boston: I'm loving the script on the screen. It shows what the writers are actually giving to the actors and the directors. The part they showed for "Doubt" was particularly good. Go writers!
Jen Chaney: I liked that, too. I'm starting to sound like a yes woman, but I agree. Can't help it.
Ah, there we go. They cut to Angelina smiling delightedly while Aniston joked with Jack Black. Aniston looks pretty fab, incidentally.
Such a young screenwriter: This will date me, but his remarks make me think about Rock Hudson. Things have changed and then, they have not.
Jen Chaney: Interesting point.
Okay, now, we're watching a spirited montage salute to the animated films of 2008. This music might make me have a seizure of some kind.
drink a shot - Angie/Jen shot: They actually cut to Angie while Jen was talking - tacky
Jen Chaney: I just drank some Cherry Coke Zero. Does that count?
A little tacky. And yet, it's what we all secretly wanted, isn't it?
Why cut to Angelina...: When Jennifer is speaking? Is it because Brad had his arm around her?
Jen Chaney: "Wall-E" just won Best Animated Feature. Ah, shocker.
And do we really need to explain why they cut to Angie? We all know why. At least they wanted until a moment when Angelina was smiling.
Jack Black: Ha! Pixar does make the better movies, but wow, looks like someone isn't going to be in a Spielberg film. (Also, Anne, that's how you carry off fake surprise.)
Jen Chaney: Again, with Branglina while they're talking.
Jack Black: He plays it dangerous.
And now they're doing animated short.
Wall-E as the main too!: Gotta love their humor - everyone knows Pixar rules
Jen Chaney: Indeed.
Well, except in the animated short category. "Presto" just lost to "La Maison en Petits Cubes."
Fairfax VA: Best Eyebrows: Jack Black
Jen Chaney: Okay, Kunio Kato, the guy who just accepted for animated short? He officially rules. He's Japanese and clearly doesn't know English well. And he closed by saying "Domo origato, Mr. Roboto."
That's just genius acceptance speech making.
Hmmm: Weird that Jack Black was presenting for a category that had one of his films as a nominee. (Okay, that is a mangled sentence)
Jen Chaney: Yes, others noted that, too.
They do usually try to avoid that. Not sure why they went that way. For the sake of the DreamWorks joke?
Domo Aragato Mr. Roboto: I guess it's better than "I'm turning Japanese"
Jen Chaney: Touche.
Hampton, VA: Did he just say the line from the Styx song? Awesome.
Jen Chaney: As I just noted, that was indeed awesome.
It's going to take a lot to give a better acceptance speech than that. I'm not even joking.
I have a feeling that's going to be a YouTube classic, until the Academy makes everyone take it down, that is.
Reston, VA: Wall-e, Eve...Wally, Eve...blech. Hated that movie.
Jen Chaney: Really? Hated it? How come?
Wixom, Mich.: I saw the animated shorts, and La Maison en Petits Cubes definitely deserved to win. It was so beautiful, I wept.
PS--Thanks for doing this chat! I love you both!
Jen Chaney: Oh, nice to know. I haven't gotten to see them all yet.
And we love you! Well, Liz has departed for the night, but I feel comfortable professing love on her behalf.
Gratuitious Angie Shot: I guess I'm naive. I thought they cut to Angie because she co-starred with Jack Black in Kung Fu Panda and they were talking about animated movies. Maybe?
Jen Chaney: Um, nice thought, but ... no.
SJP and Daniel Craig are presenting the Oscar for Best Art Direction. The Oscar goes to ... "Benjamin Button."
U Street: I know I'm a few minutes late with this comment but I am very sick of Jennifer Aniston and especially with the Jen-Ange-Brad saga. She is very mediocre, a bit tragic, and honestly, why is she at the Oscars? Can we stop talking about her???
Jen Chaney: In fairness, Jen has been in a couple of decent films lately, at least box office-wise. She has as much right to be there as, say, Miley Cyrus, no?
That said, you have every right to be sick of her and the saga. It is a bit played out, and yet, as I said earlier, I have this weird desire to see how they would act toward each other in person. Why do I care? Not a clue.
Now, SJP and Daniel Craig are presenting Best Costume on an elaborate set, with signage that looks like it was borrowed from "Moulin Rouge!"
New England transplant: I'm one of the few cable-less people who had to convert to the digital box last week.... The signal keeps cutting in and out (SO annoying) Are others having this problem? Good thing I have a good Internet connection.
Jen Chaney: Oh dear. How frustrating. I'll do my best to keep you apprised.
To that end, "The Duchess" just won for costume design.
SJP: She looks like Glenda the good witch presenting the art direction award. All she needs is the crown & magic wand.
Jen Chaney: Oh, sa-nap! I kind of liked SJP's dress.
Washington, DC: HI Liz,
Why should I care about the Oscars? I have my own favorites. Whether or not they win an Oscar means nothing to me.
Jen Chaney: Well, I'm not Liz, but I'll give respond anyway. If you don't care, then you probably shouldn't watch.
As to why some of us watch, I genuinely do get a charge out of calling the races and seeing who wins what, probably for the same reason people like playing fantasy football or what have you. It's a fun diversion. But I agree with you in the sense that this pomp and circumstance does not always capture the very best film has to offer because so many great works and smaller movies are overlooked.
"Benjamin Button" just won for best make-up, for those marking ballots. And here comes Robert Pattinson and Amanda Seyfried.
There is going to be hell to pay: Button is just getting to be a love feast for the people who never saw Hell Boy.
Jen Chaney: One take on the makeup category...
Richard Pattinson can't stop being Edward: Look at the head-down, glancing up pose. He needs to get out of the Twilight world.
Jen Chaney: I can't get past his hair.
And now we're watching a montage to the year's romantic moments, set to the tune of Coldplay.
Romance 2008: What movie was Cameron Diaz in? I recognize most of them... and why do they keep showing clips of Australia. Is it because of Hugh?
Jen Chaney: They showed what, two?
Oh, wait, there was another.
Diaz was in "What Happens in Vegas." And speaking of her, she completely garbled her presentation at the Spirits last night. For some reason, they assigned her to give the Altman Award to "Synechdoche, New York." She couldn't say Synechdoche, and she botched the pronunciation of Dianne Wiest and Hope Davis. Oy, it was rough.
Is it me...: ...or does the production in general seem to be a little "off"? It seemed that they should have gone to commercial right after "I am Wolverine!" and the music over SJP and 007 is weird, and the extended remix intros to the supporting actress thing was strange. But I did think that Aniston and Black were hysterical.
Jen Chaney: I did notice the music. It seemed a little loud, like any louder and I couldn't have heard what they were saying.
The curtain problem in the beginning was the biggest flub, though. At least so far.
Olduvai Gor,GE: I forgot to buy my converter thing so, um, you're it for me on Oscar Night.
I'm a lone voice in the wilderness calling "'In Bruges'! 'IN BRUGES'!!!"
(No hope, right?)
Jen Chaney: Yeah, it already lost in the screenplay category. Sorry.
Oh boy, Natalie Portman is on stage and Stiller is in character as Joaquin Phoenix. I'm starting to feel sorry for Joaquin at this point.
And yes, courtesy of Liz: That's a Bingo square. It counts.
Houston: Really? THREE shots from High School Musical 3 in that montage? Really?
Jen Chaney: Look, they showed a few films more than once. And they have to play to that young audience they covet, right?
Okay, bas as I feel for Joaquin, Stiller is pretty funny. He is now wandering aimlessly around the stage, while Portman continues talking.
Frederick, MD: Weird thing with audience applause. It doesn't seemed to be mic'ed properly. Sounds like a nightclub where half the people aren't even paying attention. Until some tech hits the right button and all of a sudden we hear the audience.
Jen Chaney: Yes, maybe there are some sound problems all around.
And now the Oscar for Best Cinematography goes to ... "Slumdog"!
For those of you keeping score, it's 9:35 p.m. ET and we've gotten through seven awards so far.
And how are we doing on our predictions? I have gotten four right so far. Not the best track record.
Stiller as Phoenix?: I'm starting to feel like the laughing is inappropriate--poor Natalie up there doing her best to go along with the joke but not give in to the levity . . .
Jen Chaney: How can you help it when the dude is wandering around onstage, though?
Hassidic meth lab: Would it be kosher?
Jen Chaney: Excellent question. Can a rabbi out there make a ruling on this?
Note to Ben Stiller: You're not there to perform or to be the center of attention, you're there to give away an award. Save your performing for your movies and maybe you'll be there one day to get your own award. I'm sure the guy who spent months working to make his movie appreciated getting an Oscar from someone essentially wearing a Halloween costume.
Jen Chaney: Another take from a viewer.
See, here's the problem. If they do it straight, all the home viewers say it's boring. You can't win, really.
Cleveland: This Slumdog cinematographer has been taking hair care tips from Robert Pattinson.
Jen Chaney: Dang.
And if I may quote a previous chat commenter, here is Jessica Biel in her "diaper." She is doing a salute to the scientific and technical Oscars, which she hosted a couple of weeks ago. Presumably in a different diaper.
Washington, DC: Is it me, or are they being really generous with time for speeches this year? People have been rambling like crazy, but I don't think they've played anyone off. Are they going for the record for longest telecast?
Jen Chaney: They aren't cutting off anyone, true. But I think most people have been relatively succinct.
So according to the schedule, live-action short and supporting actor are next. And the awards are pretty close to running as planned as far as timing goes.
Hampton, VA: You're killing tonight Jen--My mom just said "Is that a diaper?"
Jen Chaney: Hey, I give all credit for that to a previous chatter.
Sweet. It's time for the Apatow film. Franco and Rogen in "Pineapple Express" character. Oh man, this is funny. They are laughing hysterically at "The Reader."
oscarland: "Hassidic meth lab: Would it be kosher?"
Just have to have the rabbi recite the correct blessing
Jen Chaney: Good to know.
Wow, how meta. Franco is watching himself in "Milk."
This is amusing. Now he's trying to staple Rogen, a la "The Wrestler."
atlanta, ga: not the lone voice! In bruges was AWESOME. It got NO love. Definitely deserves some.
I saw 'before the devil knows you're dead' a few weeks ago, and boy WAS THAT INCREDIBLE. With Mr. seymour hoffman, and marisa tomei. And NO ONE mentions it at all. It was so incredible. Incredibly acted by all, and still, no mention anywhere.
Jen Chaney: Oh, I'm not saying it didn't deserve it. I'm just saying it didn't get many nominations. Only one, I think.
"Before the Devil Knows You're Dead" was incredible. Very dark, but incredibly well directed and absorbing. Should have gotten more attention last year, I agree.
Franco just presented the Oscar for Best Live Action Short to "Spielzugland," and for some reason, Rogen snorted when he tried to pronounce that. OK, love those guys, but a *little* decorum there would probably have been wise.
OMG: this James Franco-Seth Rogan bit is HILARIOUS!
Jen Chaney: It was very funny. The Januz Kaminski thing at the end was great. I can only imagine his reaction when he got a call from Apatow's people on that.
Man, ANOTHER commercial? This is what the night take so long. Stupid ad revenues.
DC: I want to take Franco home...but not in his Pineapple Express character.
Jen Chaney: You and me both, sister.
You know, if I wasn't married. And I didn't live in reality.
Herndon, VA: Re. HSM 3...they may be playing to a younger audience, but you can't deny the Disney/ABC connection, and the coincidental release of the DVD this week.
It's a business after all.
Jen Chaney: Well, of course. This is all about business. That explains why Disney girl Miley Cyrus was front and center on the red carpet as well.
Hampton, VA: Best Supporting Actor coming up!
So who will accept for Heath? Do we know yet?
Jen Chaney: I am assuming Christopher Nolan. I could be wrong, but that would make sense. Gary Oldman accepted for him at the SAGs, though, so he could do it, too.
I am pretty confident it won't be Christian Bale, since I suspect he is laying way low right now.
Baltimore: Jen, I'm so excited here at work with my Cherry Coke Zero (too) reading these comments. I hope they continue to lengthen the show waaaay past midnight with the same techinques you described in the opening so I can watch the end when I get home!
I have goosebumps in anticipation...keep the descriptions coming!
Jen Chaney: You might be the only person rooting for a longer Oscars. But I am glad you are entertained.
Oh boy, Hugh looks to be priming up for another musical number.
Yup, there he goes, he's tapping. In a tuxedo.
Just to Annoy Hollywood: Shout out to all our men and women in uniform watching this on satellite.
Special shout out to our own dear Dorkus who is in reserve training and probably won't read this until he has a chance to review the archives.
Jen Chaney: Shout out noted.
Beyonce is now on stage with Jackman as part of the salute to the musical. Now they're doing "You're the One That I Want."
Question: Are there eight Beyonces? I could swear there's probably another one of her on TV right at this very moment.
I hate these musical numbers: Waste of time. Waste of time. Waste of time....
Jen Chaney: Maybe it's the fact they just sang a snippet from "Moulin Rouge" and now they're doing "Can't Stop the Beat" from "Hairspray," but I'm liking it.
Beyonce sounds great.
And for those of you who forgot we're watching Disney, per previous reader, Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens are onstage along with the young'uns from "Mamma Mia!"...
No wonder Peter Gabriel was annoyed...: ...65 seconds of the nominated songs but they'll do this cheesetastic homage to movie musicals?
Jen Chaney: Well, THAT is a valid point. They should be able to do the three measly nominated songs in their entirety.
DC: Are Hugh and Beyonce doing a tribute to Grease, or is my flu actually making me hallucinate?
Jen Chaney: No, they sang a bit from "Grease," but it was a tribute to the musical. No hallucination, my friend.
Okay, that's why that number was so splashy. Baz Luhrmann was responsible.
Washington: Is it me or does it seem like Hugh is singing live and Beyonce is lip-sinking? Why can't she sing live?
Jen Chaney: I thought she was live. Anyone else think she was lip synching?
dre7861: Hey Jen and Liz!
My God is this thing over yet? And I'm not saying this because we're on Short Film but because it has to be the worse Oscar show ever! Or perhaps I should be more positive and say that they have found a way to make a slow moving show even s-l-o-w-e-r! And if they do the Supporting Actor like they did the Supporting Actress with the in-business love fest. I think I'll invent a new drinking game and everytime the show or presenters get very inbred with Hollywood swarmyness I gulp a drink but then I would be hammered right now. Other than that I'm doing good. I hope you two wondeful ladies are enjoying yourself. See you on Thirsday for the "Lost" hour.
Jen Chaney: Hi there. Sorry, I was slow getting to this one.
There seem to be mixed feelings about all the singing. I for one like it. But clearly everyone does.
How's this, to keep this thing "Lost"-real: Michael Giacchino is the musical director of the Oscars, and also the composer of the "Lost" score. That make you more interested?
We're about to do Supporting Actor.
chicago: That musical number was dreadful..."let's sing one phrase from 30 songs."
Jen Chaney: And here's another person who hates the musical number ... ironically, from a town that shares the name of one of the musicals they saluted...
_______________________BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Falls Church: Is it wrong that the musical numbers are giving me chills - they are so fun!
Jen Chaney: And someone with a different take on the music.
Now Alan Arkin, Joel Grey, Christopher Walken, Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Kevin Kline are presenting Best Supporting Actor...
Houston: Okay, do you think they are doing this with the "bigger" awards in order to give attention to Heath Ledger even if he doesn't win?
Jen Chaney: I think they are doing it just to mix things up, period. And also to make all the nominees feel "special."
Diane Lane is trying so hard not to laugh during the salute to Brolin.
Wow, asking Cuba to present to Downey. Gutsy.
Washington, DC: Just wanted to note that every time the camera pans to Sean Penn, he seems . . . happy. Actually happy. That might be the most bizarre thing I've seen tonight.
Jen Chaney: Ha! Yes, he does seem genuinely happy, doesn't he?
Okay, CUba is kind of funny.
Wow, weird. Michael Shannon and Christopher Walken have the same hair.
Diane Lane and Josh Brolin: Seem so cute together.
Jen Chaney: They are darling, agreed.
Supporting Actors: Yes, I do like this format. Just in appropriate doses. This is good, and poignant and lovely. In the right places this is a great way to honor the nominees.
Jen Chaney: Thank you. Kevin Kline is talking about Ledger, they are panning to his family. Maybe one of them will accept if he wins.
And he just did. And his family members are getting up.
Cleveland: Christopher Walken: also went to the Robert Pattinson beauty school.
Jen Chaney: No, no the Michael Shannon School of Beauty.
His father is speaking ... pan to Kate Winslet, who looks on the verge of bawling. There is a lot of cutting to people looking moved.
Heath wins.: Not a dry eye. Well done, Academy. As it should be.
Jen Chaney: Now his mom is speaking: "Tonight we are choosing to celebrate and be happy for what he has achieved."
His sister just spoke as well. Very classy, all three of them.
That was nicely done, moving but not too over the top.
Now, wipe your tears, it's on to a best documentary montage.
Where's George Clooney?: Best Supporting Actor without last year's winner? Where is George?
Jen Chaney: Actually, Javier Bardem won last year, but he also was missing. They had Alan Arkin -- who won two years ago -- do it in his place.
Heath Ledger: That was real class, letting all 3 Ledgers speak.
Jen Chaney: Indeed. And they kept it together nicely. Let that be a lesson: If those folks can get through a speech like that without breaking down, you all can.
Bill Maher is on now, presumably to present Best Documentary.
Hampton, Va.: Heartbreaking, especially when they mentioned Mathilde
Jen Chaney: Yes indeed. And while others may disagree, I think Ledger would have won even if he were still with us. Which makes it even sadder.
fabric: Dude, what is Bill Maher's outfit made from? Silly putty?
Jen Chaney: Yes! If you press it against a newspaper, you can see the print!
The Oscar for Best Documentary goes to ... "Man on Wire."
Arlington, VA: Two things:
1) John Mayer is in a Diane Lane-Jennifer Aniston sandwich, lucky guy...
2) Michael Shannon has to be Walken's long-lost child!
Jen Chaney: On 2. I know, right? How random was that?
1. I totally didn't see John Mayer, I was too fixated on Lane and Brolin.
Wow, Philippe Petit just balanced his Oscar on his chin! That guy is a stallion and a half. Nice speech from him, too.
Now on to Documentary Short Subject...
Bill Maher's suit: looks like it is made of leather upholstery fabric.
Jen Chaney: So far we've got Silly Putty and leather upholstery.
My vote is for a rubber-like substance.
Man on Wire Guy: He is so insane. And it's so awesome.
Jen Chaney: Indeed. You have to be a little insane to walk between the twin towers, clearly. "Man on Wire" is fascinating, by the way, totally encourage you to see it if you haven't.
"Smile Pinki" just won Best Documentary Short. I may have miscalculated earlier, so let's revisit: At 10:21 p.m. 13 awards have been given. That means we have 11 left to go.
First magic on stage at the Oscars?: Anyone know?
Jen Chaney: I don't know, I kind of thought it was magic when Jack Palance did that one-armed push-up.
Ugh...: I actually like Bill Maher, but he was being a complete jerk during the presentation. I cringed three times.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, a little. The comment about how everyone was crying seemed a little insensitive.
Tom Cruise in a Jimmy Kimmel ad? His reinvention continues...
Bronx, NY: Was it me or did the camera not quite know who was who, when panning for the nominated documentary directors?
Jen Chaney: You would think they would know where they are sitting.
Now we're back in Montageland, saluting action films. Since, you know, the Academy pretty much ignores them.
Maher's suit: I don't know what it's made out of, but suddenly I feel pressured into buying an '87 LeBaron that "runs like a dream."
Jen Chaney: Okay, this wins the award for comment that made the laugh the hardest tonight.
Well done, sir or madam.
Falls Church, VA: Not quite Oscars, but did you see the Tom Cruise/Jimmy Kimmel commercial. Was that just odd to me? Has Cruise sunk that low? I don't like him, but I thought it may have just been me.
Jen Chaney: Yes, I just remarked on that. I don't think it's sinking. It's not like he's appearing as a special guest on "The Biggest Loser."
Here is Will Smith, talking action films. And I believe he's about to present visual effects.
I have to say, the different sets they're using tonight are pretty impressive.
Random Trivia: These are the silly bits of info that are stuck in my brain...
Did you know that Melissa Leo and Josh Brolin were on a TV show together in the early 90s called The Young Riders? Wonder who will be next from that show to receive a nomination...perhaps Stephen Baldwin?
Jen Chaney: I did know that, because Brolin was super-excited when they both got nominated.
That said, I think Stephen Baldwin may be a stretch.
"Benjamin Button" just won for Visual Effects. Mark it at home, kids.
Washington, DC: Can't wait to see Jerry Lewis. The disability community is very upset that he's getting an award as a humanitarian, and I know they were planning a protest in front of the theater. They feel he treats people with disabilities like children and views them as "half-people." He's even made statements like that. Really sad.
Jen Chaney: Interesting, I hadn't heard about the protest.
I can't say I have heard his statements to that effect, but if he has said things of that nature, that's unfortunate. Odd, since he clearly has spent a lot of time working on their behalf.
Bronx, NY: Will Smith gets the best line of the evening for describing the "Benjamin Button" visual effects as "turning Brad Pitt into a garden gnome."
Bill Maher's suit was mylar.
Jen Chaney: Yes that was nice.
("Dark Knight" just won for sound editing.)
Smith is now presenting sound mixing. This is one way they are saving time, P.S. By having the same presenters rattle through several categories in a row. Which makes sense.
Mylar ... another rock-solid theory.
Lawrence, KS: It seems like they're actually keeping people to a time limit, for once, and without playing music over their speeches. How are the producers pulling this off?
Jen Chaney: "Slumdog" just won for sound mixing.
Yeah, people are keeping it brief.
One of the sound guys is getting impatient. He clearly wanted to talk. And didn't get to. Oh well.
DC: Holy crap I'm bored.
Jen Chaney: No! Say it ain't so.
Can I tap dance, maybe sing a number from "H.M.S. Pinnafore" to keep things interesting?
And ... "Slumdog" just won again for editing. Almost a slamdunk night for them so far.
Arlington, VA: Yipee! I'm thrilled that Smile Pinki won the Oscar. I saw it at Silverdocs last year and fell in love with it. Fantastic story. Both Documentary categories had wonderful films. Two of the Best Documentary Feature films (The Garden, Encounters at the End of the World) are showing during the Environmental Film Fest next month. I recommend that all film lovers check them out.
Jen Chaney: Wow, I totally forgot that it was at Silverdocs. Thanks for the reminder.
Your recommendations have been duly noted.
Hugh Jackman: hasn't been on that much. I don't remember the host having such little time.
Jen Chaney: He comes on to sing, mostly. And be hot.
Bronx NY again: Has "Slumdog" lost for anything yet?
Jen Chaney: Yes, they lost in sound editing. But that's it. Not a bad track record.
Wow, does anyone else need a seventh inning stretch? Anyone?
Hampton, VA: Nice shot of John Mayer. Looking sweet indeed...
Jen Chaney: Are you suggesting his body is, indeed, a wonderland?
Chattanooga, TN: Embarrassing, but here it is. What is the story of Slumdog Millionaire about? I'll admit it--I haven't seen it and just don't know.
Jen Chaney: No need to be embarassed. To briefly summarize: It's about a poor boy in Mumbai who wins on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" but is questioned because the show's producers wonder how a "slumdog" could possibly know all the answers. As he tells his story of struggle and survival, we see it in flashbacks.
A little more complicated than that, but that's basically it.
Wow, Eddie Murphy is presenting to Jerry Lewis? From one Nutty Professor to another? I am surprised Murphy agreed to do this after he lost the Oscar for "Dreamgirls."
Chicago IL: I hate, hate, hate it when a group wins an socar, and some of the award winners don't get to speak on stage because the first speaker takes up all their time. It freaks me out, like listening to nails on a chalkboard or watching somebody kick their dog. Really stresses me out. I wish they'd work that out ahead of time, even if it means everyone just gets 10 seconds.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I always feel bad about that, too. Either decide only one of you gets to talk or something.
Is it me, or is pairing a tribute to Jerry Lewis with Coldplay a little odd?
Also odd: They panned to Jerry Lewis and he wasn't in his seat.
In Memoriam: Have they done that montage yet? Isn't it usually earlier in the evening?
Jen Chaney: No, it's later in the program. Should be around 11:10 Eastern time.
Eddie Murphy for Jerry Lewis?: Odd pairing. But like the old clips. I guess I will stay up long enough to watch this.
Jen Chaney: Here comes Jerry Lewis. Quick, who will say something more uncomfortable and inappropriate: Jerry or Rourke if he wins?
Houston, Texas: Am I the only one who thinks it's strange that Eddie Murphy is giving out this award? I realize they are comedians and all, but still.
And what is up with all the Coldplay?
Jen Chaney: Houston, you are speaking my language.
Hey, has anyone gotten Bingo yet? I'm not even close.
Alexandria, VA: "From one Nutty Professor to another?" HA! Good mind reading, Jen.
Jen Chaney: Yeah! Eddie Murphy stole my line.
Falls Church, VA: Did they just buy Viva La Vida to play in the background of everything?
Jen Chaney: I had that same thought!
"Quick, we need some CDs. Grab The Hives and Coldplay and let's get the heck out of Target!"
Atlanta, GA: Ohhhhhhhh! You called it!
That was cool. You could be writing this show!
Jen Chaney: Well, let's not push it.
I mean, I could not have scripted the banter between Black and Aniston. That was pure gold.
Port St Lucie FL: Jerry Lewis -- short-winded? Amazing!
Jen Chaney: I know, that was surprising. He didn't say anything inappropriate and kept it concise.
And that explains why he wasn't in his seat. He probably needed extra time to get to the stage and got a head start.
Arlington, VA: Yikes! Jerry Lewis looked like the Hunchback of Notre Dame! Not good.
Jen Chaney: Actually, I think he looks much better than he did when he had gained all that weight.
Jerry was surprisingly classy: and brief. I lost a big bet. I was so convinced he'd make a fool of himself.
Jen Chaney: You and me both. Fortunately, I bet no money on it.
Yay, a nod to Giacchino! The orchestra is doing a salute to movie scores, which means the music categories are not far away.
Washington, DC: Jerry Lewis protest: Radar Online : Jerry Lewis Oscar Protest and http://www.thetroublewithjerry.com/ Their motto is "pity isn't progress."
Jen Chaney: Thanks for passing these on.
Bingo: I'm playing with card 3 and I have the center row, horizontally, if we get an indie upset: Brangelina snubbed Seacrest, freebie, Mickey Rourke thanked dog (although it wasn't acceptance speech, I deemed it his "dry run") and early in the night, right after Miley, a girl got tangled up in her hem and kinda did the two-step to avoid falling.
Jen Chaney: Wait a minute, you can't count the dog thanking one! It specifically says "in his acceptance speech" and he hasn't made one.
Referring to dog on the red carpet doesn't count.
Okay, the score part is lasting a little too long now.
I think Goldie Hawn almost yawned.
Now here come Zac Efron and Alicia Keys to present Best Original Score.
Ummm: you do know that Jerry Lewis is suffering from multiple sclerosis right? It was very hard for him to get up there, stand up, and control his mouth so he could speak.
Jen Chaney: Oh gosh, he has suffered from multiple health problems over the years, including that and pulmonary fibrosis, the same disease my father died from. I should have noted that in my previous response and apologize for not doing so.
Thank you for noting this. Whatever you think of Lewis, we shouldn't poke fun at the man because of his health.
So A.R. Rahman just won for Best Score. Now he's onstage performing songs from "Slumdog." He's a machine!
Alicia Keys : should pronounce all the nominees from now on. She has excellent diction on all those foreign names. And she sounds so sexy, too.
Jen Chaney: Her eye shadow makes her look catlike, but in a good way.
Now John Legend is performing Peter Gabriel's song from "Wall-E." Peter Gabriel is probably writhing in his seat. He refused to do it because they wouldn't let him sing the song in its entirety.
Re Jerry or Rourke : I don't know who'd be more likely to, but either way the French will love it. It really is true that they idolize Jerry Lewis, but Mickey Rourke too. (And Sharon Stone.)
Jen Chaney: Well either way, it appears the answer may be Rourke since Mr. Lewis did just fine.
Now we're into "Jai Ho" from "Slumdog." I will be shocked if this doesn't win.
Only Angelina snubbed Seacrest...: ...at the end, he managed to snag Brad.
Jen Chaney: No, we saw that but still deemed it a snub because Brad clearly did not want to talk to him. So mark that square!
Peter Gabriel not signing...: ...his own song from Wall-E? Say wha?
Jen Chaney: Just explained this above, but he refused unless he could do the whole thing.
Too bad. John Legend did fine, but Gabriel should have gotten to do his own song.
No....no...nooooo: They're mashing "down to the ground" with the Slumdog music.
I'm glad Peter Gabriel boycotted this crap.
Jen Chaney: Well, here is someone in Gabriel's camp.
It sure isn't the Academy, who just gave Rahman an Oscar for "Jai Ho," as predicted.
Lip-syncing: I would say there's some pretty clear lip-syncing going on. Beyonce earlier, A.R. Rahman now. The note goes on while their mouths are closed.
Jen Chaney: I'm missing this level of detail with my mad typing, so I'll certainly take your word.
They may also be singing with a backing track, which is sort of like lip synching but not as egregious in my book. But my book is not THE book, of course...
Herndon. VA: Hi Jen: That's it for me tonight...just can't keep my eyes open. Thanks for the chat. I'll look forward to catching up on the transcript tomorrow.
Jen Chaney: Oh no! We're losing 'em!
Thanks for being with us, Herndon. I guess 11 p.m. was your cutoff. Do come back and read the transcript. We'll try to keep things peppy.
Reston, Va.: I am from India and I have to say that dance sequence for best song was tacky. For one they use appropriate clothes for the songs and I think putting those people with those huge drums amidst the audience was silly. The whole thing is mortifying.
Jen Chaney: This is interesting; do you find all the "Slumdog" hype something that makes you proud or not so much?
Port St Lucie FL: Jai Ho as Best Song. Was that only during the closing credits? If so, has that ever happened before?
Jen Chaney: No, it was at the end but it wasn't over the credits. I believe the rules stipulate that songs have to be used as part of the film in order to be nominated.
The dance number was part of the film, technically.
Wow, a surprise. "Departures" just won Best Foreign Language Film. It's a Japanese film.
I totally expected "The Class" or "Waltz With Bashir."
Bingo Card 3: I would agree, except the general consensus in my viewing party (before the bingo-ing started) was to omit that last tidbit, because we all want him to win and don't want to give him bad juju (there was a reasonable explanation, but that went out the window with our soberness). So in this group of 5, we've all checked off that box.
Jen Chaney: As long as you reached a consensus (and are drunk), I'll allow it. I'm much more forgiving of people who make decisions when they are not sober. You know, as long as those people aren't doing anything to hurt anyone else. Friends don't let friends drive drunk, but they totally let them set rules about how to fill out Oscar bingo cards while drunk.
In general, though, I think we can only allow that spot to be marked if Rourke doesn't win. If he does, this will be moot because he's so thanking that dog.
Queen Latifah is now leading us into In Memoriam. Oh, and she's singing "I'll Be Seeing You."
Fo, MA: Peter Gabriel not singing is also known as the Phil Collins snub since he didn't sing it when he was nominated. The Academy must hate Genesis.
Jen Chaney: As far as the Academy is concerned, they do not seem to have an invisible touch.
I'm not sure I like having someone sing live during "In Memoriam." Latifah sounds fine, but it's a little distracting.
Know what this segment needs? The sounds of Coldplay.
Anonymous: Holy Moly! You totally called the 11:10 "in memorandum" segment.....
Jen Chaney: I'm not psychic, people. I'm just looking at this schedule.
But if you want to think I'm a genius, you know, go ahead.
Ellicott City: Frieda Pinto was just onstage presenting an award. She is beautiful and so well spoken. Has she been around or is she new? I like the salute to the musical by the way.
Jen Chaney: She is new, yes. She is lovely. Will probably be seeing more of her now because of her work in "Slumdog," I would think.
A big cheer for Paul Newman from the house. And now ANOTHER commercial.
In Memoriam: I thought I heard (or maybe it was wishful thinking) that producers were going to drown out audience applause for this montage, because it really is the cruelest popularity contest ever.
Jen Chaney: It is. But they didn't.
Falls Church, VA: This is the worst camera work I've seen in a long time. How are we supposed to see who we're honoring when the camera is on Queen?
Jen Chaney: Agreed, I didn't like that either. I want the In Memoriam to take up my whole screen.
Okay, I'm already sick of this Heidi Klum/Diet Coke ad, cute though it may be.
Silver Spring, MD: Ugh. The memorial was terrible. Maybe it looked good if you were in the theater, but looking at the tiny screens was awful watching it on TV. For some of them, I couldn't even read the names at those weird angles.
Jen Chaney: That seems to be the consensus.
Vienna, VA: As someone else who is Indian, I'm proud of all the attention Slumdog is getting, but I am extremely irritated that they keep mispronouncing AR Rahman's name. It's Rah-mahhhn. Really not hard.
Jen Chaney: It shouldn't be that hard, you are correct. And thanks for the feedback.
And here is Reese Witherspoon, in a dress thaty would be lovely if it didn't have two weird straps across the front. I like the blue color and the sparkliness, though.
She is presenting Best Director. I have Danny Boyle, which seems like a solid bet at this point.
Watch, in a surprise move, they'll give it to Phil Collins...
dre7861: Did I miss Heath Ledger's name during the In Memorium film montage? That's kind of rude - we gave you an Oscar but don't expect us to show your face on the In Memorium. I guess they knew ahead of time that he was going to win - if not that would have been a real horrendous snub! For shame Academy
Jen Chaney: Hey, you stick with me! Thanks.
Ledger actually was in last year's montage. He died in January of last year and was added to last year's montage.
Boyle just won and he just jumped up and down. He said he promised his kids long ago that he would receive an Oscar in the spirit of Tigger. How sweet. Boyle deserves this, he's a fine filmmaker and one who isn't afraid to try every genre you can throw at him.
Falls Church, VA: If I was a Project Runway contestant and Heidi was giving me crap, I'd tell her that her commercials said that taste was anything that called attention to itself. Or something like that.
Jen Chaney: Okay then. Runway contestants, feel free to borrow this.
Oy, more commercials. You know what, the last hour of this thing should be commercial free. Will never happen but the ads are fatiguing me more than anything else.
Snark-Free, Maryland: Has snarkiness run its course? Perhaps so, and I can't say I'll miss it.
There's been a human aspect to this show that hasn't been recognized here because of the need to be the, well, snarki-est. Shame.
The peer recognition for the supporting roles and Queen Latifah's willingness to go on stage knowing she will not be the center of attention are indicator of change.
We need to hold each other up. Stop the madness and give credit where credit is due.
Jen Chaney: Honestly, I think we've been pretty laudatory of much of the show. Sure, there is some snark. But much of the show has been well done and I think we've noted that. At least I hope we have.
Speaking of holding each other up, we're about to do Best Actress. With five past winners: Sofia Loren, Shirley Maclaine, Halle Berry, Nicole Kidman and Marion Cotillard.
New York, New York: "Boyle deserves this, he's a fine filmmaker and one who isn't afraid to try every genre you can throw at him."
Totally agree. I loved Slumdog. But I actually think his film Millions was a better film.
Jen Chaney: Indeed.
A standing O for our five lovely actresses.
Shirley is saluting Anne Hathaway. She looks like she is going to weep. Nope, there she goes. Weeping.
Port St. Lucie, FL: Sophia Loren -- still the oldest woman I'd have sex with.
Jen Chaney: Ahem. See, this is the sort of holding each other up I'm talking about.
Okay, my eyes welled because of Hathaway. I am sorry, I'm a sap.
Snarky Squirrel: I guess even having a person singing live in front of them isn't going to stop the audience from their popularity applauding during "In Memorium." I have to say, though it's too short, that song is pretty perfect for it. And really, there was just no way anything was going to hold back the tidal wave of appreciation for Paul Newman -- even I teared up.
Jen Chaney: Indeed. Paul Newman was an exceptional human being.
Sofia Loren is currently praising Meryl Streep.
By the way, I think Kidman's neutral gown can be marked on your Bingo cards...
Presentation to Acting Nominees: I love it, and you can tell the nominees do, too. I wonder if the presenters wrote their own intros.
Jen Chaney: How could you not love it if you're a nominee? I mean they're just lapping on the praise.
Winslet just won. Let the crying begin.
Detroit, MI: Sophia Loren -- not bad for 75!
Jen Chaney: Okay, the one flaw in this multi-presenter thing is the thanking goes on a little long.
She's keeping it together so far. And she's not reading from a piece of paper, which I really appreciate. She just asked her dad to whistle so she'd know where he was. And he did.
South of Baltimore: Since my only knowledge of Melissa Leo is from the TV show Homicide, I gotta say she looks pretty good here.
Jen Chaney: She does and she was terrific in "Frozen River." It's on DVD, and I highly recommend it.
Winslet is racing through a list of people to thank. She said something about Meryl Streep. And she didn't cry, she just seemed genuinely joyful. Yay, Kate!
I just realized - this format kills a bingo box: no inappropriate Adrien Brody/Halle Berry kisses...well, erm...
Jen Chaney: Ah, good point. Although, it is still possible. Same-sex kisses count my friend. Less likely, but they count.
Hey, I have a report that someone has gotten Bingo on Card C!
Adrien Brody, Robert De Niro, Ben Kingsley, Anthony Hopkins and Michael Douglas are about to present Best Actor.
Washington, DC: I really wanted to see Meryl get it, even though I like Kate.
Jen Chaney: I would have been happy to see Streep win, but I was really rooting for Winslet. So well deserved. Six times with no win would have been too much.
Chattanooga, TN: No, I thought Queen Latifah was fabulous, and I was really touched by the whole thing. I love watching it every year because there's always someone who died that I didn't know about--hmm, that sounds a little morbid. This year it was Roy Scheider--I am so sorry he's gone--he was great!
Jen Chaney: Indeed.
De Niro is saluting his "We're No Angels" star, aka Sean Penn.
McLean, VA: Where's Jack? I haven't seen him at all, and he's not presenting.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I have to think he's not there.
Just Outside theTMZ, CA: Any idea why last year's two male acting winners (Bardem and Day-Lewis) weren't among the presenters?
Jen Chaney: No, other than they must not have been able to make it. Which is weird, since it's usually a given that you present the following year, so they had plenty of time to plan.
If anyone has some dirt on this, pass it on.
Falls Church, VA: Nice to see Michael Douglas, I've missed him. He hasn't done anything but CZJones in years.
And where's Jack? I've been playing Facebook Tetris, but I haven't seen him.
Jen Chaney: Facebook Tetris? This is the Oscars, quit fooling around and play Bingo with the rest of us.
We just remarked on the fact that we haven't seen him.
And Rourke just lost! I KNEW it!!! Sean Penn won.
yea sean penn: Fantastic. He truly deserved it.
Jen Chaney: "You Commie, homo-loving, sons of guns," says Penn.
He did deserve it. I was dying to hear what Rourke would say, though.
That's gotta sting Mickey. I think he was expecting it, maybe a little.
Penn is really enjoying himself tonight, as we said earlier. I loved his remark about he makes it hard to appreciate him.
Gburg: Jen Chaney: I would have been happy to see Streep win, but I was really rooting for Winslet. So well deserved. Six times with no win would have been too much.
true, but Meryl hasnt won in 25 years!!!!! I really wanted her to win.
Jen Chaney: True, but she's got two.
Wow, Sean Penn could be causing bingo on his own. He's making political statements. He forgot to thank Robin Wright Penn...
So cute in glasses: I loved the glasses, but will he thank Robin Wright?
Jen Chaney: Nope. Unless that's who he meant by his best friend.
Here comes Steven Spielberg. We are at Best Picture. The evening is almost over, friends. I know, savor the moments while they last.
Houston, Texas: Is this Sean Penn's first Oscar?
Jen Chaney: No, he won for "Mystic River." So this is his second.
Sean Penn: Was he so busy being political that he forgot to thank his wife? Guess that reconciliation is not going that well.
Jen Chaney: Again, maybe he meant her when he said best friend. Probably should have said her name, though.
I like the way they are doing this Best PIcture montage, connecting this year's nominees to the fabric of past nominees.
epjd: Before we go, thanks again Jen for sticking with us to the bitter end. Chatting with you and both you and Liz earlier was fun.
Jen Chaney: You're totally welcome. It's my honor and privilege, seriously.
Penn and Rourke: He mentioned Rourke and I think it was his way of apologizing for winning.
Jen Chaney: Yes, me, too. Clearly he recognized the power of that comeback story.
And Best Picture just went to ... "Slumdog Millionaire!" So no upset whatsoever.
Chicago: I don't like Penn. But I like how much he upsets conservative Republicans like my parents, so I'm glad he won.
Jen Chaney: Ha. Well, if it made your night, then cool.
Good gravy, the stage is crowded with "Slumdog" cast and crew. They should totally break into a Bollywood-style dance number.
I never thought Mickey Rourke would win: Prop 8 was simply too big of a shockwave through the Entertainment industry. It always thought it was going to be Sean Penn.
Jen Chaney: Yeah, I predicted Penn because I thought people would be afraid of Rourke's edginess, shall we say. But there also has been some reticence to honor films with gay themes in the past -- or at least what appeared to be reticence. But maybe the Prop 8 situation paved the way for this, that's an interesting point.
Port St. Lucie, FL: Thanks for a great time! Good night!
Jen Chaney: Thanks to all of you. They are wrapping up with a montage of movies coming in '09. Again, a nice touch, although I have to wonder how they chose what to include and exclude.
Overall, I liked the changes they made this year. Yes, some mistakes (see In Memoriam) but a much stronger show than we've seen in recent years.
As always, it's been a pleasure watching with all of you. Now I'm off to update our Oscar package and publish other assorted goodies. Please join our three Oscar chats tomorrow, beginning at 11 a.m. with Robin Givhan talking red carpet fashion.
Again, I thank you, and whatever material Bill Maher's suit was made out of thanks you, too.
W, DC: Count me in the thanks column. With no TV, this was my connection to awards!! (Can't wait to see the dresses once the go up on the site)
Jen Chaney: You're so welcome. And now, I'm Bollywood dancing my way outta here...
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