Pete Hammond writes up the “voter confusion” going on in Hollywood. The tidbits offered here include Avatar’s environmental message, The Hurt Locker’s politics, and this and that — my experience has been that these one-offs don’t count for anything but this goes on a website so we report on it — the money quotes after the cut:
“I have read the instructions four times now, and I still don’t know what they want from me,” [an Academy member said] said in total frustration. “I have no dog in this hunt this year, but if I can’t figure this out, how do they expect others to, especially the older ones used to just picking one winner?”
Another voter sent me the actual language and asked me to explain what it means before he votes. The line in question: “You need not place a number beside every one of the titles in order for your ballot to count, but the more preferences you indicate, the more chances you have to influence the outcome of the voting.” Some people actually think by ranking each nominee it means they are getting up to 10 votes, which of course isn’t the case.
I heard at one point the Board Of Governors was concerned enough about older voters understanding how to vote in best picture that they considered producing a special video demonstration and sending it to the membership. They didn’t do it.
Actually a voter I sat with at Saturday’s ACE Eddie Awards said she does have it all figured out.
“I am voting for ‘Avatar‘ for best picture, and that’s it. I am not giving any other choices down the list, although if I did “Precious” would be my No. 2, but I’m not voting for anything other than ‘Avatar’. I can’t believe we are even having a conversation about anything else. That movie is just so far out in front of everything, it’s criminal to be discussing others,” she said.
Another voter e-mailed the following to me Thursday after he read something about Quentin Tarantino being “owed” an Oscar for directing:
“I do not owe Quentin or Harvey (Weinstein) an Oscar. It just drives me nuts when people start saying we owe Peter O’Toole an Oscar or Quentin (who already has one, by the way — for writing) or anyone else for that matter. I don’t owe anyone anything. I just owe it to people to actually SEE the films and judge accordingly.”
This person says they¬†voted the minute they got their ballot and sent it in so as not to be influenced by any advertising or campaigning tactics. Guess “Inglourious Basterds” was at the top of the list.
Elsewhere I heard that¬†a major award-winning actress was discussing her best picture vote at a dinner this week and told the group she went with “Avatar” largely because of what it had to say about the environment. According to the eyewitness this¬†politically¬†active performer also¬†pointedly mentioned that front-runner¬†”The Hurt Locker” did not represent her politics or that of her¬†”friends.” She voted for Tarantino for screenplay, although it’s not clear whether she think she¬†”owes” it to him.