Advertisement

Check It Out: Reading up before the Oscars

February 14, 2013|By Steven Short

On Feb. 24, the 85th Academy Awards ceremony will take place at the Dolby (formerly Kodak) Theatre in Hollywood. The show has grown considerably from its humble origins in 1929 as a private banquet for 270 guests at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.

This year's event is expected to draw around 40 million viewers in the U.S. and will be broadcast live in 200 countries. ABC has announced that commercial time has been sold out at an average price of $1.8 million for a 30-second spot. Film production companies are expecting a big payday also. By one estimate, ticket sales for nominated films in the Best Picture category will increase by an average of one third.

No clear front-runner has emerged in the Best Picture category. Academy voters have several highly acclaimed films from which to choose. "Lincoln," "Les Miserables" and "Zero Dark Thirty" have all garnered attention, although the smart, late money seems to be on "Argo." Dark-horse candidates include "Silver Linings Playbook" and "Life of Pi."

Advertisement

Robert Kline, a film and television producer and longtime Academy member, will offer his perspective on this year's nominees during a special event hosted by the Newport Beach Public Library Foundation at the Port Theater in Corona del Mar at 7 p.m. Wednesday. For information about tickets, visit the foundation's website at http://www.nbplfoundation.org.

This past year has also seen the publication of several notable books on film history. A few of these are mentioned below. All are available to cardholders of the Newport Beach Public Library.

In "The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies," film critic and historian David Thomson gives us a wide-ranging narrative about the role of film in modern life. He discusses the rise and global spread of motion pictures, the development of new technologies for creating movies, and the singular achievements of many influential figures from film history. Thomson poses a central question in this work: Should the purpose of film be to inform or to entertain?

Daily Pilot Articles Daily Pilot Articles
|
|
|