PopHampton: The Oscars and the Hamptons

The beginning of March will have Hollywood and the Hamptons abuzz with showbiz’s biggest night: the 86th Academy Awards! You can catch the glamorous evening live on ABC on Sunday, March 2 to see who wins, who gets snubbed, who looks hot and who looks…not (sorry, I was going for a rhyme but it didn’t quite work). As usual, there are quite a few Hamptons connections to be found among the nominees, and I’ll get to those, but first, let’s see how much you know about this year’s films!

1. Which Best Picture nominee tells the true story of a controversial figure who spent lots of time doing naughty things in the Hamptons in the 1990s?

2. Which Best Picture nominee features new Amagansett homeowner Scarlett Johansson?

3. In what film will Scarlett Johansson next appear (hint: Read last week’s PopHampton)?

4. Which famous Hamptonite stars opposite Best Actress in a Leading Role nominee Cate Blanchett in the film she’s nominated for this year?

5. Name every film that was screened at HIFF 2013 and received Oscar recognition this year.

Stumped? No worries, here are the answers. 1. The Wolf of Wall Street, directed by Martin Scorsese, tells the story of stockbroker Jordan Belfort, who partied hard in the Hamptons prior to going to jail for his fraud and stock market manipulation. Leonardo DiCaprio is nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his gritty portrayal of Belfort. Also nominated are Scorsese for Best Director and Jonah Hill for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

2. Scarlett Johansson appears as the title role in Best Picture nominee Her, a love story between a lonely man and an operating system with a soul. Director Spike Jonze is nominated for Best Original Screenplay.

3. As for Johansson’s next film? Viewers can catch ScarJo as Natasha “Black Widow” Romanoff in April’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Speaking of Marvel films, congratulations to Iron Man 3 (which starred Hamptonite Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts) for being nominated for Best Visual Effects.

4. Alec Baldwin appears opposite Cate Blanchett in Blue Jasmine, Woody Allen’s latest classic. Blue Jasmine tells the tragic (yet wickedly funny) tale of Jasmine (Blanchett), a former Manhattan socialite who moves to New Orleans after her husband, played by Baldwin, is prosecuted for a scam of Bernie Madoff proportions. Excellent performances by all elevate this Streetcar Named Desire–like story of a selfish woman’s fall from grace to a much more nuanced character study and thought-provoking cautionary tale about money, love and family. Fun fact: Baldwin starred as Stanley Kowalski in a Broadway revival of Streetcar in 1992. Sally Hawkins is nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role as Ginger, Blanchett’s sister, while Allen is nominated for Best Original Screenplay. It will be interesting to see if the recent controversy surrounding Allen and his alleged sexual abuse of his adopted daughter, Dylan Farrow, decades ago (which he denies) will have an impact on the proceedings. Either way, the film was excellent—even our “Keep Fit” columnist Kelly saw it, and we’re always teasing her about her lack of movie prowess (It’s OK. I know nothing about keeping fit).

5. Quite a few films nominated this year were screened in the 2013 Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF). Best Picture nominees include 12 Years a Slave, Nebraska, Her and Philomena. Also screened was August: Osage County, for which the always-wonderful Meryl Streep is nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role. Best Foreign Film
nominee The Broken Circle Breakdown was there, as well.

I’m personally rooting for Blanchett to take home the trophy; her performance in Blue Jasmine was positively riveting. Going up against Streep is a tough one, but August: Osage County hasn’t gotten the massive acclaim that Blue Jasmine enjoyed. We’ll see. And before we go, there’s one film that has just won the first-ever Dan’s Papers Ridiculous Nomination Award—Jackass: Bad Grandpa. Any guesses as to what it’s nominated for?

The 86th Academy Awards air on ABC on Sunday, March 2. Enjoy the show and let us know who you’d like to win in the comments below.

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