It was a late start this morning for the 85th Academy Awards Nominee’s Luncheon, today. Whether it was due to traffic, or last-minute “styling the look” the Nominees all had on their game faces. Only Christoph Waltz and Denzel Washington wore ties that came into the interview room where we were waiting, while the rest of the guys that spoke to the press were much more relaxed with open collars and easy attitudes.
The actresses nominated each represented themselves quite well, Jennifer Lawrence and Anne Hathaway had an unexpected Spy vs Spy look, Anne in simple black, with short hair.
Jennifer with a textured white halter top, with an easy up-do, she looked like she had just come from the beach. Jacki Weaving stood out in orange, Jessica Chastain in an asian inspired floral embroidered black silk top.
The press were allowed only three questions, and the first for “Beasts of the Southern Wild’s” Quvenzhané Wallis, was if she had a nickname, to which she just replied “Q” only to be followed up with “How *is* your name pronounced?” “Kwa-Venge-ah-nay.” For being the youngest Nominee ever, it seems she has a long road of correcting how people say her name ahead of her. The asker of Christoph Waltz’s first question request he answer in both English and German, to which he said quizzically “At the same time?”
Many of the nominees were very careful and well metered in their responses, knowing that this room was hanging on their every syllable. They did not want anything to be misconstrued, while having an ire of light-heartedness they also were being as political as possible, avoiding saying anything bad about their peers, to try to maintain their poise. Except for Ben Affleck. He was the most bon vivant at the podium, second was Hugh Jackman, who opened with jest saying “… Now I gathered you all here…” and chuckled.
Though Ben had nothing to lose, he was very animated and quick to answer all the questions, one from Univision, where the reporter re-asked the question very fast and emphatically in Spanish, Ben started to answer in Spanish, and then back into English jokingly saying “I’m told ‘Cabron’ means ‘friend,'” those in the room familiar with that word laughed. When the reporter from Yahoo identified herself, he said “Now I feel like I’m talking to the whole search engine.” He was on fire. Bradley Cooper however was very somber, although joking with “I know I wouldn’t be here for ‘The Hangover,'” it was hard for anyone to match Ben.
There was an otherwise mixed bag of attitudes, those who’ve been nominated in the past and not won, an easy-going ‘maybe next year’ vibe. Where as some first time Nominees like Jacki Weaver, was stunned she had even got the nod, but wasn’t complaining that people now know
Denzel Washington seemed like he was only brought out to fill a spot in the Best Actor category, stating “Did you see anyone else up here that looks like me?” after an uncomfortable question from the room. Someone shouted “Handsome?” and then the room had trouble pronouncing Quvenzhané, also referring to her as “Q” until a voice said “The little girl from “Beasts of the Southern Wild.” Denzel, sharply, “Well I’ll have to meet her, see if she’ll put me in one of her movies.” Anne Hathaway was also very candid, saying she now hangs out with Steven Spielberg, and doesn’t have any trouble getting into places.
Before you knew it, the time was over and the press left. No clear winners yet, we’ll see who does on February 24th.
Photo credit: Todd Wawrychuk / ©A.M.P.A.S.
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