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Chicago's rich haul in LA
A correspondent | March 24, 2003 13:57 IST
"It doesn't move in slow motion, but it doesn't ring a bell either. Nor does my name. Does it start with an A?" quipped Adrien Brody at winning the Best Actor Award for his role in The Pianist.
He was the only award-winning artiste at the 75th Annual Academy Awards ceremony, apart from Best Actress Nicole Kidman (The Hours), who admitted having to accept the award at "such a strange time". Brodie expressed his hope for a peaceful resolution to Gulf War II.
Kidman summed it up aptly, when she said many people asked her, " 'Why do you have to come to the Academy Awards when the world is in such turmoil?' Because art is important... because tradition needs to be upheld."
A montage of movie clips changed to the beat of There's no business like show business. War or no, the show must go on, and host Steve Martin kicked off the 75th Annual Academy Awards at the Kodak Theater, Los Angeles. Martin's second year as host of the Awards ceremony also marks 50 years of the Oscars show on television.
The year, though, seemed shorn of the customary glitz and glamour that is a trademark of most Annual Academy Awards ceremonies. Actress Cameron Diaz announced the first award of the evening, Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away for Best Animated Film.
Director Rob Marshall's Chicago, with its 13 nominations 6 of which materialised into awards, won the Best Art Direction (John Myhre and Gordon Sim) and Best Costume Design Oscars (Collen Atwood). Chris Cooper (Adaptation) and Catherine Zeta-Jones (Chicago) won Best Supporting Roles in the Male and Female categories. Earlier in the evening, Zeta-Jones performed I move on with her Chicago costar Queen Latifah, followed by Paul Simon's rendition of Father and daughter from The Wild Thornberry's Movie.
This year's Best Foreign Language Film was Germany's Nowhere In Africa. India's Devdas failed to figure on the foreign films Oscar nominees list, unlike last year when Ashutosh Gowariker's Lagaan made it to the Oscars shortlist, before losing out to Bosnia's No Man's Land.
Peter O'Toole defiantly declared, "Always the bridesmaid, never the bride. My foot!" at winning the Lifetime Achievement Award. The actor of such movies as Lawrence Of Arabia, Becket and For A Few Dollars More accepted the award from two-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep.
The 'winner' (as Oscar winner Kirk Douglas corrected son Michael's prompt for 'And the Oscar goes to') of the evening was Chicago, produced by Martin Richards. The Best Picture Award was preceded by the Best Director Award for Roman Polanski, for The Pianist.