How To Improve The Oscars

For all the bitching and complaining we all do (myself included) about the Oscars telecast, it’s amazing that any of us are still watching… and yet we are. I still love the Oscars, weaknesses and all… it’s just an extension of my love for movies I guess. But having said that, there are still some big changes I would personally make if I were to produce the show next year. Here are some of my suggestions:

1) Eliminate the Songs

The “Best Song” category is the most pointless of all the awards handed out at the Oscars (most of the time they’re just songs that are thrown in on the end credits of a movie), and yet… for some reason… they get more screen time than the Best Director nominees. That just defies logic and any sense of reason. Fine, keep the Best Song category, but do NOT dedicate screen and stage time to them each singing the stupid songs. We don’t have an orchestra up on stage performing the score for each of the Best Score nominees.

2) Eliminate all Montages except the In Memorium and Honorary Recipients

There is a LOT of time wasted each year on pointless video montages. “Now, here is a look at american history through film”. WHO CARES??? Move on with the show!!! The two i would keep are the In Memoriums and the montages to honor the lifetime achievement winners. These montages have a POINT. None of the others do.

3) Give a LITTLE more time to acceptance speeches

Bear with me here. This night represents the highlight of many of these people’s creative and professional lives. THE SHOW IS ABOUT THE AWARDS… so give these people a TOUCH more time to relish the moment and the thank people. No, don’t give them 2 minutes each (that’s actually a lot of time), but don’t rush them off the stage so damn fast just so you can get to the next pointless montage.

4) Streamline – Make the show about the Oscars Again

There is just far too much fluff in the show that takes away from what is supposed to be the primary purpose… the OSCARS. Throw away all the fluff. Have a host who does an opening monologue and then does NOTHING else for the rest of the show except bring on the presenters. Give out 3 awards in between each commercial break and throw in the In Memoriums and Honorary awards. Do that, and you can give 20 more seconds to acceptance speeches AND have the show come in under 2 hours. It’s not rocket science.

Someone else said in the comments area that The Oscars would benefit a great deal from “Addition by Subtraction”. You’d actually make the show better, not by thinking up new things to throw in… but rather just by taking a lot of unnecessary stuff out. Just my two cents worth. What changes would you make?

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20 thoughts on “How To Improve The Oscars

  1. I think they could probably do with a little less montages, but I did enjoy the writers one and the foreign film one. The OSCARS are about celebrating the movies, and creating and interest in the show even if most people don’t care about the films nominated. I would agree about the acceptance speeches-longer =better. The only awards that I could see them giving out between commercial breaks would be the Shorts categories (live action/animation) but even then I still think they should be recognized, and with out it this past year we wouldn’t have that awesome introduction by Will Smith’s kid and Abigail Brensen (sp?)

  2. Hey Alfie, if global warming is not a lot of political bullshit, wouldn’t Al Gore have changed his ways?

    According to the Nashville Electrical Service, Gore’s 20 room mansion consumes more electricity in one month than the average American home uses in one year. (I got it off Drudge which goes on to mention his gas consumption as well.)

    In the damn movie, he flies around in a private jet consuming more fuel in one trip than an SUV consumes in a year. A cross country trip consumes 2000 gallons of fuel minimum.

    Question: If Gore really believes the apocalypse is coming, why doesn’t he change his life to stop it?

    Believe the research, not the rhetoric. Predictions are not proof. Science and politics do not mix.

  3. I tottaly agree. Me and my friends watched the borefest last night and basically said the same things you posted here. Give them a little bit more time, cut out the stupid Montages (not the meaningful ones) and have a show about the movies, not the stupid idiotic Ellen stuff.

  4. republicans and right wingers are the ones turning global warming into a political issue…

    It really is an issue that concerns everyone..being a right winger will not save you if it is indeed as bad as environmentalists say…..

    I don’t know enough about it but it seems to me that surely it is a better to work under the impression that it is real than that it isn’t…

    do we really suffer if we change our ways and try to help and it turns out not to be true…but we will really suffer if we all act like it isn’t happening and it is ifyou know what I mean.

    I just can’t believe that we are not hurting thre planet with allof our crap…sure there are natural things affecting the environment too but must be adding to it

    I hate the way people who care about the environment get talked about as if they are wackos and crazy people…there is nothing crazy about not wanting the world to die….

  5. I think they should just cut out the awards that nobody cares about, like animated short subject, sound editing, etc…. or find a way to honor those people that get those awards without giving them so much time.

    I like the montages; I especially liked the one about screenwriters. I dont think they shoud give more time to acceptance speeches eiher, that can get boring very fast. The best speeches are short and to the point.

    BTW I thought Ellen did pretty good. She wasnt real funny, but she was likable. She was one of the better hosts, much better than Letterman and Whoopie. Like I said, the less known awards made it drag though, but overall not too bad a show.

  6. I have to agree about the songs…they are a total waste of time and noone will ever listen to them again.

    I like the montages, but they need to limit them to the honorary awards.

    …the show was pretty boring for the most part this year…if I did not have a book handy, I would have dozed off.

    Making better movies…good luck. I think the documentary category should be eliminated…it has degenerated to political diatribes and winner is the currently politically correct cause.

  7. Sorry John but the best parts are all those great film montages.
    Songs I’m neither here nor there about them. I didn’t care much for Ellen but what did you think of Seinfeld…he should host the awrds.

  8. I agree with Wolfmarauder – nomimate better films. Of course that would mean making better films to start with. The Oscars reflected what a poor year for films 2006 really was.

  9. I agree with you about the songs 1000%. This is the Oscars not the Grammys. Sheesh! The only exception to the rule of title song being for the credits that no one hears outside the end of a flick is Eminem’s title song for 8 Mile (which, if you ask me, was really a recognition for the whole soundtrack he wrote while filming the movie, but I digress).

    As for the deadwood like useless jokes and banter, sometimes it bombs so badly, it brightens up the show for me, but I’m a bitch and that’s neither here nor there. It should be restrained as much as possible.

    The bits they seem to do in the middle of each show every year is more like an intermission to me than a snorefest, but there have been plenty of bits from last night’s show that had me off my ass and doing other stuff like baking cookies. (More interesting to me and my husband benefits. :-))

    And, finally, Ellen was boring last night while on the stage. Get her interacting with the audience (and the band) and you’ve got some goldtone plated material right there.

  10. having each song sung is boring….I remember one year they just got it over with in a medley in the middle of the show…it took about 5 minutes and they had different people sing just a little bit of each song inone sitting..that was great ..

    dedicating nearly half an hour of the show to songs that people in the actual film it is from probably had never heard until the credits rolled at the premiere is boring

  11. Addition by subtraction….wise words spoken by…..ME!

    I can’t wait to hear Campea have a meltdown about the Oscars(and his one true love Ellen)on the Audio edition or whatever the hell you’re calling it these days. Still basking in the Departed win:)

  12. Normally my opinion and yours couldn’t be more different. On this topic I am 100% in agreement. I can’t understand how they keep whittling down acceptance speeches when that is the main reason for the show, and yet there are any vast number of pieces of fluff that could be eliminated to shorten the broadcast. Really, you could increase the length of speeches and still knock a third or more off of the ceremony without a hitch.

  13. While I’d usually agree with everything you said about the Oscars in all years prior, this year was definitely a better awards show, and not becuase of addition through substraction.

    The Jack Black, Will Farrell, and John C. Riley number livened up the night, and the interpretive dance/shadow team (?) behind the white screen were welcomed breaks between awards. The Snakes on a Plane bit was an unexpected treat. Even Ellen D. managed to be funnier than usual; the Scorcese screeplay and Speilberg/Eastwood photo op bits were just cool. Celebrities should be joked around with instead of bored to tears by something like Michael Mann’s tribute to movies. Good frackin’ grief, that was just a mess.

    But yeah, definitely for all the years prior your addition by subtraction theory would’ve worked. Remember that one year when people stood up in a line on stage as they waited for the winner to be announced? I cringed every time! It was like setting my fav celebs up in front of a firing squad.

    I hope the team of writers/planners involved with this year’s Oscars are back for next year’s award show. I have never laughed so much during an Oscars cemermony as I did this year.

  14. The only point of contention I have is that sometimes the montage works. For instance, the Best Foreign Film montage reminded me of several movies I’ve been meaning to see for years and haven’t. Is that the Oscars’ job? Maybe not, but it doesn’t seem entirely inappropriate for the industry to take its single most visible night and use it to encourage active film fandom. Yeah, the history montage was dumb and pointless, but I’m not sure a blanket ban is a good move.

    My suggestions How about getting rid of funny introductions by presenters that aren’t actually funny? That seems like a good move. Also, no more cartoon characters! Jebus, it was interesting the very first time they did it. Then Gorillaz came into existence, and all other live uses of cartoons ceased to be interesting.

  15. While I don’t mind music numbers and disagree with you there, John- I do have to admit skipping out on Celine Dion- a song which wasn’t even nominated, but to my understanding could be in next year’s race?

    The montages (aside from honors and memoriums) were pointless and hokey.

    I would also encourage potential winners to either be ethusiastic about thier fortune, get into the moment, or have a copy of Forest Whittaker’s acceptance speech.

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