Free lunch for Oscar nominees
With the Oscars just three weeks away, the nominees have been honoured at the annual luncheon at the prestigious Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills. Most of the nominees, from the leading categories attended – including Mickey Rourke (The Wrestler) and Sean Penn (Milk), the frontrunners for Best Actor in a Leading Role – Kate Winslet (hoping to break her Oscar-duck with The Reader) and Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married), up against each other in the Best Actress in a Leading Role.
Supporting nominees in attendance included Josh Brolin (Milk), Michael Shannon (the only acting nomination for Revolutionary Road), Amy Adams (Doubt) and Penelope Cruz (Woody Allen again coming up with the goods in the supporting actress category, this time in Vicky Cristina Barcelona).This year’s luncheon turned out to be a more relaxed event than last year, with less obtrusive security, allowing fans – as well as the professional autograph hunters – to get closer to the stars. Some of them get suspicious when the same burly guys thrust handfuls of prints at them to sign – others are naive to their tactics, thinking “how sweet, they want to have their photograph taken with me” when usually, this is the proof professionals provide to assure buyers that the autographs are genuine.
But it’s not just the stars who get the public screaming. The directors are also highly respected by the fans and autograph hunters alike. Fresh from victory at the Directors’ Guild Award – usually a reliable pointer to the Oscar winner – Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) was in his element, as was the usually more publicity shy David Fincher (The Curious Case of Benjamin Button).The awards will be handed out in a lavish ceremony at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, on Sunday 22nd February.