Friday, December 11, 2015

I'm going to attend an awards gala!

Last week I wrote about my hopes to win a lottery contest to get tickets to sit in the bleachers along the red carpet for next February's Oscar telecast. Well, the winner notification email time frame has come and passed and I did not win the lottery. However, a better opportunity presented itself instead. I'm going to attend the 27th Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) awards gala and after party on January 2nd. Have you ever made such a spontaneous decision and planning within a 72 hour window that could possibly change your life and leave your head spinning? Well that's what I experienced with the last, last, last minute decision to attend this event (Jan 1-4).

I'm going primarily to support my favorite actor, Michael Fassbender, who is being honored with the International Star award by PSIFF and this is literally a once in a lifetime opportunity to be at a public Hollywood and entertainment industry event where he will be there accepting a much deserved honor. I'm excited about attending the event with friends, and dressing up really nice to attend an event where I can network and help lay down some bricks for my future move to LA in late 2016.

This year's roster of honored talent is ever growing and I look forward to meeting, if just for a moment, all of this year's honorees:

PSIFF has announced that Carol actress, Rooney Mara will receive its Spotlight award; Black Mass lead actor Johnny Depp will receive its Desert Palm Achievement Award (Actor); Carol and Truth lead actress Cate Blanchett will receive its Desert Palm Achievement Award (Actress); The Danish Girl and Ex Machina supporting actress Alicia Vikander will receive its Rising Star Award; Room lead actress Brie Larson will receive its Breakthrough Performance Award; Steve Jobs lead actor Michael Fassbender will receive its International Star Award (male); Brooklyn lead actress Saoirse Ronan will receive its International Star Award (female); and Spotlight co-writer/director Tom McCarthy will receive its Sonny Bono Visionary Award. - The Hollywood Reporter

Image from last year's event

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Fingers crossed for Oscar bleacher seats

I promise to look more enthusiastic and happy to be sitting there!

I have been a fan of the Academy awards since the mid-80s, that's when I really started to pay attention to them when I was in my teens. In 1992, when my favorite film of the year, The Silence of the Lambs won five well deserved Oscars, predicting the Oscars and watching the show has been in my blood ever since. In all this time, because I'm such a cinephile, I have been very, very disappointed with decisions that the American Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) has made over the years. Politics/Religion/Sexism/Racism/Intolerance should have no place in truly honoring the best in cinema... but it does, and that's what happens when you have a voter base that is not reflective of the diverse society and world we live in. In response to winners that I was disgusted with, I boycotted watching for a few years. Sure, I kept tabs on predictions, nominations, and the end results, but at an arms length.

Due to my favorite actor, Michael Fassbender, possibly getting his second (should be his third) Oscar nomination for his excellent work in Steve Jobs, I have entered into two lottery contests for the chance to win a pair of tickets to sit in the fan bleacher section along the red carpet at the next Academy Awards, February 28th. One contest via AMPAS just gives you the tickets to attend (after passing a background check), and the other is through People magazine where they will not only give you two tickets, but pay for hotel and airfare. I would prefer the People contest, but if I won the AMPAS lottery, I have already created my AirBnB and Uber accounts to help me enjoy my quick LA visit.

If I won either contest, I'm so there and I'm very excited to take part in this once in a lifetime opportunity. In years past, for people to get into the bleacher seats, they camped out for days. But it was always the same strange fanatics who would camp out, save spots for friends, and sit in the bleachers for years and years and years. But AMPAS put a stop to that in 2011-ish and in an effort to be more fair and give other people from around the country and world a chance to sit in the bleachers, they have this annual lottery contest. I think this is fair and if I win the lottery, what a dream come true for a lover of cinema and the art of fine films and performers!!!

Fingers crossed!