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Oscars 2013: As It Happened
Our minute-by-minute take on the show

25 February 2013  |  Written by Chris Hewitt  

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Read Chris Hewitt's minute-by-minute irreverent take on the entire ceremony. From the red carpet to the last award, scroll through our commentary as we digested it all - as it happened!


Here's a little look at the preparations happening in LA right now...

Photos: Karwai Tang / Alpha Press


If you haven't yet made your predictions in every single Oscar category - as well as finding out how other Empire readers are voting - what are you waiting for?


Hello everyone! Chris Hewitt here, and welcome to Empire's semi-amazing and life-changing coverage of the 85th Academy Awards, which take place tonight in sunny Los Angeles. We're not in sunny Los Angeles, though. Oh, no. We're in our offices at Empire Towers, where the carpet isn't so much red and paved with hope, as dull, dull grey and paved with something unspeakable.

Still... Oscars! Rah rah rah!

Here's how this is going to work - I'll bring you regular updates, watching the show so you don't have to. If you're watching it with us, do send in comments to our Twitter feed - we're @empiremagazine, and use the hashtag #EmpireOscars, or you can email me your thoughts via

Use that address wisely, mind. No spam, please, and no penis enlargement offers. I'm not falling for that again.


Empire Office Oscar Food
Empire's Oscar feast! Pizza delivery on it's way... (Hot and spicy / The Sizzler if you're wondering)


With the pizza ordered, and a selection of artery-hardening snacks to hand, it's time to settle down for the evening. Your Empire Oscars team are James Dyer, Amar Vijay, Phil de Semlyen and myself. Think of us as a slightly more rubbish version of The Hangover's Wolfpack and you're on the right lines, although hopefully we'll be able to remember the night's events come the morning. Imagine forgetting everything that happened during the Oscars - that would be awful.

I should also take this opportunity to say that we would normally be aided by our West Coast Editor, Mr. James White, but given that he won his own award on Friday - the International Media Award at the Publicists' Guild Awards, which EW's Anthony Breznican once likened to 'getting a Junior G-Man badge from the Mafia' - he's probably swanning around with George Clooney. Damn his eyes. Oh, and congratulations too.


So let's talk Oscars, then. It seems to me that tonight might be the most wide-open contest for quite a while, with only a couple of wins absolutely nailed on (we're talking about you, Mr. Day-Lewis), and no one film set to dominate. Certainly, this won't be an Artist-style procession. So, who do you reckon will take the prizes? Here, to maximise our embarrassment, is a guide to Team Empire's picks. You'll notice I'm not on that list. That's because a) I didn't meet the deadline and b) because I don't have a parping clue. Will Argo scoop the big one? Can it possibly beat Lincoln? Will Les Miserables make a late burst for glory?

Frankly, I'm still holding out for a late run from That's My Boy.


And what do we reckon of host, Seth MacFarlane? There are those who think that the creator of Family Guy and Ted is a comedic genius, a good-looking, versatile, sharp-witted hunk of hilarity who'll give the stuffy old Oscars a swift boot up the jacksie.

And then there are those who think he's something of a one-trick pony, that the South Park guys got it right with that episode where they revealed the Family Guy writing process boiled down to a group of manatees in a tank, and that oh God, oh Jesus, he's going to sing and there's not a thing we can do to stop it.

Where do you stand? He's got the chops and the confidence to make this work, and he certainly won't shy away from off-colour jokes. Let's just hope his Oscar manatees are up to the job.


And so we've started watching the build-up to the Oscars on E! That's the channel E!, of course, and not the recreational drug. As former FBI Director, William S. Sessions, would say, 'winners don't use drugs'.

Anyway, we're in the capable hands of Ryan Seacrest, a man who makes the (actually pretty darn tricky, trust me) endless procession of red carpet interviews look effortless. No, really, I won't hear a word against The 'Crest. Things could be a lot, lot worse.


So far, Ryan has interviewed Seth MacFarlane's parents, who are fairly confident that their son is going to deliver. Also, Kelly Osbourne and her fashion critic sidekick, whose name escapes me, have waxed lyrical on Amanda Seyfried's fashion choices this awards season, which means that at least my job isn't the most ridiculous in journalism.


On E!, they're agreeing that Jessica Chastain is knocking it 'out of the park'. We're not sure what 'it' is, but we hope she didn't obtain it via legally dubious methods.

They're now referring to Quvenzhané Wallis as 'Little Q'. It's 'Kwuh-vange-uh-nay', if you want to pronounce the brilliant Beasts Of The Southern Wild star's name correctly. God knows, that pronunciation will be seared into my brain forevermore, after I spectacularly cocked it up during a live Q&A.


Jessica Chastain has brought her grandmother as her date for the second successive year. We're available next year, Jessica, and we'll even hire our own tux. Moss Bros is just down the road.


When our Phil de Semlyen interviewed Little Q for the Empire Podcast last year, her nickname was Mazie. Oh, they change so fast.


Remember, you can get in touch via Twitter - we're @empiremagazine - or you can email me at


Private Eye's Tom Jamieson tweets that 'Jessica Chastain is the best live action Jessica Rabbit EVER!'. I couldn't possibly concur - I'm a professional. Although I'm also a MAN! A man with FEELINGS!


Ah, Seacrest is now talking to Jeffrey Katzenberg. We're sure it'll be a very animated interview. HAHAHAHAHAH... oh God, we're ten minutes in. Ten minutes in.


Re: Quvenzhané Wallis' controversial Little Q nickname. @Britesparc has a theory: does this make Ben Whishaw Big Q?


People are still talking about the dresses, now that the likes of Zoe Saldana and Amy Adams have arrived. I'm not qualified to comment, but in some ways I think the late, great Father Ted Crilly said it best.


Seacrest's hair is amazing tonight. It's layered, it's bouffant, it's early Cliff Richard.


Now they're talking to Reese Witherspoon and asking about her hair secrets, which reminds me of a joke.

Q: How does Reese Witherspoon wash her hair?

A: Witherspoon.

OK, it doesn't make any sense, and doesn't work on any level, but at least it distracted me from the conversation about Reese Witherspoon's hair.


On reflection, with the benefit of hindsight, that Reese Witherspoon joke might have originally asked how she eats her dessert.


If anyone wants to know what I'm wearing, it's a grey cardigan from an outlet store in Northern Ireland, blue jeans and some Adidas trainers. If you want to know who I'm wearing, I won't answer that without my lawyer.


Via Twitter, @mkmswain has a cracking addition to the pantheon of Reese Witherspoon jokes, to wit:

How does Reese run away #witherspoon #oscars

It'll do.


The Oscars themselves kick off at 1.30am, by the way.


While we're waiting for something - anything - to happen other than 'who/what/when/why/what/how/whereareyouwearing', here's a cracking Oscars sketch from the great Peter Serafinowicz.


Daniel Radcliffe has arrived. He's laughing, but deep inside we know he still hasn't got over Dobby.


Frankly, who has? A minute's silence, if you will, for Dobby The House Elf. Yes, he was rubbish. Yes, he had an annoying voice. Yes, he wasn't even a particularly convincing CG effect, but we miss the little bugger.


Jacki Weaver has admitted to wearing $2 million of diamonds tonight. In unrelated news, Jacki Weaver was seen at an airport in Belgiu [LAWYERS' NOTE - no. Stop. Just... no.]


The wonderful Peter Lord, co-founder of Aardman and director of The Pirates! In An Adventure With Scientists, just tweeted this picture from the red carpet. Ah, tolerance.


Bryan Cranston - so good in Argo - has shown up on the red carpet, sporting a full-on Heisenberg goatee. He's talking about butterflies in his chest, which is exactly what I get when I am forced to confront the fact that Breaking Bad is about to end.

Jennifer Lawrence has just arrived, and has declared that she's starving. Jen, we have all kinds of wonderful crap here that we're willing to bike over. Pro Plus and Walkers' Salt & Vinegar crisp sandwich?


Phil has just told me that he interviewed Jennifer Lawrence last year. Cool story, bro. Oh wait, there's more. He says she was talking about her Oscar goody bag from last year, which included a holiday to Belize. Was it any good, asked Phil? "Yes," replied Jennifer Lawrence, "it was unBelizeable."

Give her the Oscar now. That's it. It's all over.


Joseph Gordon-Levitt has revealed that the opening of the show will feature him, Daniel Radcliffe and Seth MacFarlane. He remains tight-lipped about the details, so there's still time to start writing that slash fiction.


"Oh, Seth," said Daniel, his brow glistening with sweat, "that's a huge Oscar."

"Oh, that's nothing," said Seth, nonchalantly undoing his bow tie, "you should see the size of my Golden Glob [LAWYERS' NOTE - that's enough of that]


If you're playing the Empire Oscars blog drinking game at home, remember that you have to drink half a bottle of whiskey every time we trot out an excruciatingly dull fact.

To wit: Melissa McCarthy has arrived, with her husband Ben Falcone, who you might remember as Air Marshal Ben in Bridesmaids.


I'm not allowed to publish any more of my Joseph Gordon-Levitt/Daniel Radcliffe/Seth MacFarlane slash fiction, but let me tell you, it's getting pretty steamy over there. Wands are being tested. Loops are being closed.


E!'s big innovation this year is the addition of a 'mani-cam' which, disappointingly, is not a fixed shot of the Stone Roses bassist watching the Oscars at his gaff, surrounded by cans of Stella and Dominos boxes, but a close-up of the meticulously manicured hands of interviewees. Seriously, this is a real thing. A thing that started life on a whiteboard in an E! meeting room, presumably with three red circles drawn around it. A thing that got Brian from Marketing all kinds of excited. Never listen to Brian from Marketing. That guy's off the chain.


Naomi Watts is currently talking to Ryan Seacrest. She's nominated for Best Actress tonight for The Impossible, that film's only nomination. Which is somewhat surprising, as Ewan McGregor was pretty incredible in that film. The phone call scene, anyone? Dear Lord, the phone call scene!


Over on the Empire Twitter feed, James Dyer has chosen the right phrase to describe Anne Hathaway's dress: 'nippular augmentation'. That's just about right. Move over, Kelly Osbourne.


One hour to go until the Oscars actually begin! Or, to put it in slightly starker terms, four and a half hours until the Oscars actually finish!


Backstage, Seth MacFarlane's manatees have just opened the ball marked 'Lee Majors'.


With NATO unwilling, or unable, to heed our cries for help, our chums at Sky Movies have biked over an emergency package of food, mainly because we couldn't attend their Oscar Party at the Renaissance Hotel. God bless them, and all who sail in them.






Team Heat, who are watching the Oscars IN THEIR ONESIES, have just turned up and are demanding food. Thankfully, we've just run out.


You're not missing anything at the moment. Take these words and rearrange them into a sentence: 'wearing' 'you' 'are' what'. Repeat until the end of time.


E! are now dissecting still pictures of Ben Affleck's beard. On his face. The beard on his face.


Kelly Osbourne and I just made roughly the same joke. This may be the right time for both of us to call it quits.


E! seem to have stopped talking to people, so we're at something of an impasse. We've turned over to Sky's coverage, where - for reasons that we can't entirely fathom - Colin Salmon is sitting on a sofa. Which makes it automatically better than 90% of this year's Best Picture nominees. Yes, Lincoln was great, but did it have Colin Salmon sitting on a sofa? No. Was there a bit in Amour where Colin Salmon sat on a sofa? Nope. The defence rests.


Hugh Jackman has turned up on the red carpet in a full-on, claws out berserker rage. Thank God Liev Schreiber isn't... oh, crap.


Of course Hugh Jackman isn't in a berserker rage. He's the current holder of The Michael Palin Award For Nicest Man In Showbusiness Who's Not Michael Palin Or Sam Raimi.


What's that? Which movie character would I most like to see on the Oscars red carpet? Well, thanks so much for asking. That would have to be Event Horizon's Dr. William Weir.

Seacrest: Great to see you tonight.

Weir : You know nothing. Hell is only a word. The reality is much, much worse.

Seacrest: Who are you wearing?

Weir: Where we're going, we won't need eyes to see.

Seacrest: Umm... What do you think will win Best Picture?

Weir: Do you see? Do you see?

Seacrest: Oh, God.


Event Horizon, Sam Neill


Phil de Semlyen informs me that Anne Hathaway's nipples have already opened up a Twitter account. Those are some talented nipples.


DRAFT JOKE: Did anyone see Anne's nipples? "Yes, they went hathaway!"

Pause for laughter.


Continue to pause.


Jennifer Garner has just announced she's in 'a puddle'. You and me both, dear.


It's only a matter of time before someone starts up a Twitter account called @JenniferGarnersPuddle.


All of the interviewers are now referring to the interviewees as 'my dear friend'. So - hey! - it's my dear friend, George Clooney.*

* We met for 30 seconds three weeks ago. He won't remember me. I made a scrapbook.


AMAZING OSCARS FACT: George Clooney has now been nominated in six different categories (Director, Picture, Original Screenplay, Actor, Adapted Screenplay, Supporting Actor), which is a record. As if being George Clooney couldn't get any more awesome.


Less than fifteen minutes to go. Genuinely excited about this year's ceremony. Steven Soderbergh, on the other hand, says:


And yes, that is Steven Soderbergh's Twitter account.


Best Twitter Account should be an Oscar category.


I'd like to see this man on the red carpet, asking one question in particular:


Daniel Day-Lewis is being interviewed on the red carpet. He's being very gracious and not cackling evilly and yelling, "MINE! IT'S GOING TO BE ALL MINE!". Which, in fairness, he could absolutely do. Because it is. It's going to be all his tonight, as he picks up his third Best Actor Oscar. He's pretty good at this acting lark, that Daniel Day-Lewis.


Right, we're nearly off into the show. For those about to stay with us through the next three and a half hours, we salute you. For those about to go to bed, we envy you.


The Oscars on Sky, sponsored by Moet & Chandon.

The Oscars on Empire, sponsored by Coke Zero and Cadbury's Fingers.


Colin Salmon is still on the Sky sofa, and still wearing an expression that says 'I don't know how I got here, but I'm going to make the best of it'. It's an expression familiar to anyone who's ever seen a Colin Salmon film.




Seth MacFarlane takes the stage. "The quest to make Tommy Lee Jones laugh begins now" is his first quip and... TOMMY LEE JONES LAUGHS.

That's it, Seth. Take the night off.


Tommy Lee Jones last laughed in 1989.


"Argo's story is so top-secret that its director remains unknown to the Academy." - another zinger from Seth, there. The manatees are earning their keep so far.


Tommy Lee Jones is still laughing. He just remembered the joke he heard back in 1989.


Seth MacFarlane has made a slavery joke, a Mel Gibson joke, and a Chris Brown joke already, and getting a lot of 'ooooohs' from the crowd. But he's certainly going for it.


William Shatner has appeared on a video screen to stop the show from being 'a disaster'. This is the first time Seth MacFarlane has ever used Star Trek as a fallback.


MacFarlane's now doing a pre-recorded song called 'We Saw Your Boobs', about the various movies in which, well... you get the picture. If you don't get the picture, the internet can help with that.

Liking this song. Funny, irreverent, and informative.


Now he's singing again. And Channing Tatum and Charlize Theron - the two CTs - have joined him on stage for a bit of a hoof. And they're moving with charm and grace. If Theron had moved like that in Prometheus, she wouldn't have been crushed by that spaceship.


This is a nice post-modern riff on an opening montage, as Shatner comes back from the future to stop MacFarlane wrecking the Oscars. Liking it so far - thoughts? Tweet us. Email me. Semaphore is also accepted.


Now he's brought on Daniel Radcliffe and Joseph Gordon-Levitt to dance and sing High Hopes. This didn't feature in any of my slash fiction. I'm going to have to have a furious rewrite.


Still furiously rewriting.


Now there's a nice skit where Seth hits relentlessly on Sally Field, who accepts that she's not going to win Best Supporting Actress. "What happened?" "Amy Adams ran up and grabbed it. She bit a guy."


I'll say this for Seth - he can sing and dance up a storm. Manatees can't sing. Manatees can't dance. Well, they try, but it gets very sloppy.

And now we have the first Oscar of the night - Best Supporting Actor, presented by last year's winner for The Help, Octavia Spencer.


This category, of course, is composed of five gentlemen who are all former winners of either this or Best Actor: Waltz, Arkin, Jones (who's still chuckling), De Niro and (Seymour) Hoffman.


And the Oscar for BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR goes to...

Christoph Waltz!

Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained


Two nominations, two Oscars, both for QT movies. Not bad at all.


Time to go for the hat-trick, chaps. Waltz is being typically gracious on stage, although there isn't a bit where it's Damo. Strange.


"We scaled the mountain because you're not afraid of it. We slew the dragon because you're not afraid of it." Waltz's message to Quentin Tarantino. And he was played off to - naturally - the theme from ET.

So, what did you think of that? Deserved? Or were you rooting for someone else? One thing's for sure - Tommy Lee Jones has stopped laughing.


Ladies and germs, your Best Supporting Actor winner, in earlier days.


Paul Rudd and Melissa McCarthy are now on stage. They're doing a bit about sound. That'll be for Best Cinematography, then.


As JoBlo pointed out, Paul Rudd has his BRIAN FANTANA hair and beard. Anchorman 2 starts filming on March 4, Burgundy fans!


They're here to present BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM, and the Oscar goes to...




The director of Paperman, John Kahrs, is on stage and looks very composed. If I'd just won an Oscar, I'd be in a Jennifer Garner-style puddle right now.


Rudd and McCarthy remain on stage to present Best Animated Film. Very close one to call, this.


And the BEST ANIMATED FILM Oscar goes to...




Pixar continue to dominate this category like a bekilted giant. Mark Andrews, who's a lovely guy, is being typically verbose and ace on stage. Good to see Brenda Chapman, who originated the project, getting her due as well.


Reese Witherspoon is on stage. Hey, how does Reese present an Oscar? Witherspoon!


Commiserations, by the way, to Peter Lord for The Pirates, and honorary Brit Tim Burton, who missed out for Frankenweenie.


Anyway, Reese Witherspoon is on stage to intro a Best Picture montage, it seems, covering Les Miserables, Life Of Pi, and Beasts Of the Southern Wild. This might be a more expedient way of doing this than the 'one long segment per movie' tradition. Nice one, Oscar.


Seth MacFarlane's back, talking Little Q. "I really hope I don't lose to that old lady... Jennifer Lawrence."


And now he's about to introduce The Avengers. Or, if you're reading this in the UK, the Avengers Assemble.


Five Avengers... no Black Widow, no Thor. Have they been bumped off? They're introducing Best Cinematography.


And the BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY Oscar goes to

Claudio Miranda for Life Of Pi.

Life Of Pi


Claudio Miranda has amazing Gandalf hair. Or, as James Dyer just commented, Steve Zahn in 70 years.


His slightly overwhelmed and very lovably ditsy speech sounds like Steve Zahn now. Well done, sir.


The Avengers are still on stage. They're talking about VFX artists and how they deserve respect. And Best Visual Effects is next up...


And the BEST VISUAL EFFECTS Oscar goes to:

Life Of Pi.

Life Of Pi


Which means that the cast of The Avengers get to present an award to men who did what Loki could not do: defeat The Avengers.


In case you're keeping score, Life Of Pi is leading the way with two Oscars. And now Bill Westernhofer and the four brilliant VFX guys who won the award were played off, in a horrendously unclassy and rather inelegant way, by the theme from Jaws. Let them have their moment, Oscar. What was that about showing VFX guys 'respect'?


Great cutaway there to Nicole Kidman in the audience, head in hands as the Life of Pi VFX guys - Bill Westernhofer, Guillaume Rocheron, Erik De Boer and Donald Elliott - were played off and drowned out. You stay classy, Academy Awards.


The Life Of Pi VFX team should unleash Richard Parker.


Love this from Richard Dreyfuss.


Channing Tatum and Jennifer Aniston are here to present Best Costume Design. Disappointingly, he's not wearing a leopard-skin G-string. In the interests of equality, neither is she.


And the BEST COSTUME Oscar goes to...

Jacqueline Durran for Anna Karenina.

Anna Karenina


Gracious speech - and short, too, thwarting the trigger-happy killjoys.

Channing Tatum and Jennifer Aniston remain on stage to present Best Hair & Make-Up.

And the BEST MAKE-UP Oscar goes to:

Les Miserables

Les Miserable


Lisa Westcott and Julie Dartnell pick up their Oscars - they also won the Bafta a couple of weeks ago, and talked about needing a pee during their speech. No talk of urination this time around, thankfully. No puddles, please - we're British.


Halle Berry is now on stage to introduce this special 50 years Of Bond tribute. There was talk that all six Bonds might reunite here... somehow can't see that happening, given Connery's much-publicised antipathy towards the franchise. But you never know.


Bond montage. Nobody does it better. Except for Monty Montage, of course. He's a beast at montaging.


Not enough Roger in this montage for our liking. A quick bit of slash fiction should sort that right out.


Don't call her Shirley. Call her Dame Shirley.


Yes, Dame Shirley Bassey is now on stage, singing Goldfinger. Rita Coolidge must have been unavailable for a rockin' rendition of All Time High (the second worst Bond theme song of all time, fact fans).


Shirley Bassey's real name is Shirley Trebley.


One for car stereo aficionados, there.


Standing ovation for Shirley Bassey. Wait until Tom Jones comes on and passes out during the last note of Thunderball.


Some slight disappointment here that the much-vaunted Bond tribute did what's known in the business as a Reverse Market Trader. 'It didn't produce six Bonds. It didn't produce five Bonds. Ladies and gents, it didn't even produce four Bonds. Three Bonds? That'd be giving it away. Two Bonds? I'd cut me arm off. A single Bond? You must be joking!'


In the room at the Oscars, they get Dame Shirley Bassey singing. Here at home, we get Colin Salmon attached to a sofa. I know which Bond tribute I prefer. #salmon #sofa #salmonsofa


We're back in the room. Seth MacFarlane is now praising his producers and director. It's not his best material.


Jamie Foxx and Kerry Washington have now appeared - unchained and uncut - to present Live Action Shorts. "Where do you think Scorsese and Spielberg came from?" asks Kerry Washington, who clearly wasn't paying attention in biology.


One day, Kerry, Mr. Spielberg became very excited and... no, it's best we leave it there.


The Oscar for BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT goes to:




Shawn Christensen is the director of Curfew. "I have T-minus 2 seconds to do this," he says, and now he's talking at a thousand words a minute, thanking his beautiful mother and devilishly handsome father. Lovely speech. Must check out Curfew. Anyone seen it?


And now the Oscar for BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT. And it goes to:




Inocente comes from husband/wife team Sean Fine and Andrea Nix Fine, who are making a heartfelt speech about supporting arts in our local communities. Absolutely.


Liam Neeson - freeman of the borough of Ballymena, Liverpool fan and all-round fighting machine - is now here to present the next batch of Best Picture nominees, including Lincoln, a role he eventually passed on.


Ian Paisley also has the freedom of Ballymena. Let's hope he teams up with Liam in Taken 3. Just imagine the shouting!


Seth MacFarlane is back. "The actor who really got inside Lincoln's head was John Wilkes Booth." More groans from the audience. It's a toss-up whether they're mock-groaning, or if it's not entirely working.


Here comes Ben Affleck to present Best Documentary Feature. Very tough category, this.


And the BEST DOCUMENTARY goes to:

Searching For Sugar Man

Searching For Sugar Man


Malik Bendjelloul and Simon Chinn pick up their Oscars for this excellent music documentary, following up their Bafta. In fact, Oscar seems to be hewing fairly closely to Bafta so far.


Choosing the theme from Jaws as the play-off music is kinda callous, guys. Other choices - Jerry Goldsmith's theme from The Omen, Bernard Herrmann's Psycho shower scene score, Friday by Rebecca Black.


Re: that MacFarlane joke about John Wilkes Booth. Ladies and gentlemen, we present to you cinema's greatest JWB, as seen in Zoolander. Yes, it's James Marsden, giving great Blue Steel. Or is it La Tigra?


The Best Foreign Language Film Oscar is on the way. Which means that the Michael Haneke Twitter account is about to go into overdrive lol


Jennifer Garner and Jessica Chastain have arrived to present, and are talking about how foreign films transcend language or something. I wasn't really paying attention.


And the BEST FOREIGN FILM goes to:




You have to admire Haneke's beard. In a room full of cracking facial hair, he really takes the biscuit. Incidentally, his beard could also be used as a receptable for biscuits if, for whatever reason, you don't have a biscuit tin.


Seth is now giving props to the orchestra. Surely instruments would be more useful? #sorry


John Travolta is here! He's doing a bit about musicals - this might well cue up the Les Miserables gang SIIIIIIIIINGGIIIIIING LIIIIIIIIIVE.


Yes, it is. It's the cast of Les Miserables, along with Jennifer Hudson from Dreamgirls and Catherine Zeta-Jones from Chicago - both previous Oscar winners, of course - all singing live. The phone lines go live soon. To vote for Hugh, call 0800 555 555 01. To vote for Russell, call 0800 555 555 02. To vote for Catherine, call...


Louis could take this to Deadlock.


The cast of Les Mis, we get. But we're a little baffled by the inclusion of Hudson and CZJ. Still, they've got cracking pipes, so we mustn't quibble too much.


I have a cracking gag about John Travolta's hair, but I'm not allowed to tell it. To be fair, I have a lot of gags about John Travolta that I'm not allowed to tell.


The cast of Les Mis are now singing live. It's a medley! James Dyer, who's a huge Les Mis fanboy, is losing his mind.


Hey, cast of Les Mis, if you want to go to karaoke with Team Empire, we're totally up for it. Next Friday, Lucky Voice on Poland Street. Deal?


So they can sing live. Well, we knew that already, but yes, they can sing live. No, italics aren't enough. They can sing live. No, wait, still not enough... They can sing live. That'll do it.


The Anne Hathaway Award For Best Supporting Anne Hathaway is up next, say the Sky bods.


The nominees are Anne Hathaway, Anne Hathaway, Anne Hathaway, Anne Hathaway and Amy Adams.


Star Trek stars Chris Pine and Zoe Saldana are up next. As James has pointed out, their walk-on music was the theme from Star Trek... The Next Generation.

They're not here to present Best Supporting Actress, but to talk about breakthroughs in digital technology, and the technical awards, which are traditionally given out at an earlier ceremony. Tough one for the geeks. They don't get to play with the big boys. Pah! Boo!


And hey, it's Mark Wahlberg and Ted up next. How is this possible? We didn't think Mark Wahlberg was real!


MARKY MARK PLUG: He's our guest on the next Empire Podcast, out next Friday. And he was ace.

Anyway, they're here to present Best Sound Mixing.


And the BEST SOUND MIXING goes to:

Les Miserables.

Les Miserables


Andy Nelson, Mark Paterson and Simon Hayes are the three winners of this award. Well done to them.


Ted and Wahlberg are carrying on. "Are you Jewish?" asks Ted. "No, I'm Catholic." "Wrong answer - try again!"

They're here to present Best Sound Editing now.


And yes, I said the previous award was Best Sound Editing, but it was Sound Mixing. Luckily, I edited it.


And the BEST SOUND EDITING goes to... IT'S A TIE!

Zero Dark Thirty is the first one.

Best Sound Editing


"No BS," says Wahlberg, "we have a tie." Wow. This has happened before, but not for a while, I'd wager. My Oscar elves are slaving away to bring us the skinny.

Paul N.J. Ottoson takes the Oscar for Zero Dark Thirty.


The second BEST SOUND EDITING award goes to:




A tie has happened just once before, apparently, in 1969, when Barbra Streisand and Katherine Hepburn tied for Best Actress. The films in question were Funny Girl and A Lion In Winter.

So now you know.


Any thoughts on how a tie should be resolved? I always resort to fisticuffs in a situation like this. Or a really tricksy tiebreaker question. "I would like to win the Oscar because..."


And NOW it's The Anne Hathaway Award For Best Supporting Anne Hathaway, In Association With Anne Hathaway. How do we know this? Because Christopher Plummer is about to come out to present. He won Best Supporting Actor last year, of course.


But first there was a particularly torturous gag about the Sound Of Music that didn't really work. It's best to spare you the details.


"As I know only too well," says Plummer, "perseverance pays." He then goes on to say that he suspects they'll all act until "they are even older than me... but I look forward to the honour of working with any of these ladies in my next 30 films!"

Classy guy.


So the nominees are:

Amy Adams for The Master, Sally Field for Lincoln, Anne Hathaway for Les Miserables, Jacki Weaver for Silver Linings Playbook and Helen Hunt for The Sessions.

If Hathaway doesn't bag this, it'll be a HUGE upset. Tie, anyone?



Anne Hathaway for Les Miserables

Anne Hathaway, Les Miserable

And there we go. She Swansead it over the Bradford that was her fellow nominees. Back of the net.




"it came true," says Hathaway, who even now must be unaware of the internet storm caused by her nipples' Twitter account. She thanks her fellow nominees, and Hugh Jackman, and then "the sound wizards", and pretty much all the powerhouses behind the Les Mis throne. "Thank you for this opportunity." She thanks Josh Lieberman twice just to be safe, and then her husband. "By far and away the greatest moment in my life was the one when you walked into it," she says, eliciting an actual 'aaawwww' from James Dyer, the soppy old sod.


Very nice speech from Anne Hathaway, a worthy winner of the Best Supporting Actress award. As someone pointed out earlier tonight - sorry for forgetting who - she has had plenty of occasion to practice.


We're heading towards the business end of the show, with both Screenplay awards, Actor, Actress, Director and Picture still to come, along with Adele singing Skyfall... crumble... Skyfallllll...


Here comes the Academy President, Hawk Koch. "He sounds like a Russian guy sneezing," quips MacFarlane.

Hey, Hawk has invited everyone around the world to come and visit the new Academy Museum of Motion Pictures when it's finished! Yes! Let's all go! Come out to the coast, we'll get together, have a few laughs.


Here comes Sandra Bullock to present Best Editing. Or Bst Edtng.


Here comes Bullock Best editing.


Here Bullock Editing.




And the BEST EDITING goes to:

William Goldenberg for Argo.



As with the Baftas, he was up against himself for Zero Dark Thirty. Stiff competition.

"I really, really appreciate it," he says, before thanking Chris Terrio for writing an editor's dream of a screenplay. Well done, sir!


Jennifer Lawrence - or J-Law, as I believe we are now legally obliged to call her - is here to introduce Adele for her first live performance of Skyfall.


Sounding pretty damn good...


Nailed it. Give that girl a double-00 number.


That's two live Bond themes tonight. Still holding out hope for a Ben Whishaw/Daniel Craig rap battle.


BREAKING: Hawk Koch says we have to pay our own way to LA. Booooooo! Boo to you, Hawk Koch!

This would never happen with former Academy President, Chaffinch Penis.


Best Pundit: Colin Salmon.


Best Salmon: Colin Pundit.


Nicole Kidman is here to present the final batch of three Best Picture nominees. HOT NICOLE KIDMAN ANECDOTE: I introduced her on stage last weekend, and ballsed up the handshake. Really ballsed it up. Like, the worst handshake in the history of handshakes.

OK, it wasn't hot, and it was barely an anecdote, but it did involve Nicole Kidman, so stow those lawsuits.

Anyway, the final three Best Picture nominees are Silver Linings Playbook, Django Unchained and Amour.


Good news: we're in the home stretch. Bad news: the home stretch is the length of Oxford Street.


The next presenters are Daniel Radcliffe, of Empire Oscars Blog Slash Fiction fame, and Kristen Stewart. They're here to present for Achievement In Production Design.


The PRODUCTION DESIGN Oscar goes to:




Rick Carter and Jim Erickson are the winners here. Erickson can't be there, but Rick Carter accepts for both. This is the first of Lincoln's four score and seven awards.


Well, helloooooo Salma Hayek. She's here to talk about The Governor's Awards, honorary awards for the brilliant Hal Needham, D.A. Pennebaker and George Stevens Jr., and also Jeffrey Katzenberg, who won the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. They were honoured at a previous ceremony.


And the foursome, who have their own box - presumably with waitress service - are given a rousing reception.

Phil confirms that Jeffrey Katzenberg has just won the 'Best Human Ever' award. We're still checking on the exact wording of that.


I've just remembered I have to host Empire's Oscar Breakfast in six hours. That's going to be incoherent at best, and potentially deadly at worst.


Colin Salmon says Ted was his highlight of the night, bringing to an end centuries of animosity between salmon and bears.


Here comes George Clooney, to introduce the In Memoriam montage. Some amazing names here - Borgnine, Ishioka, McQuarrie, Klugman, Yauch, Clarke Duncan, Durning, Rambaldi, Lom, Scott, Hal David, Ephron, Pierson, Bradbury, Zanuck, Hamlisch.


To name just a few... RIP.

Barbra Streisand has come out to pay special tribute to Marvin Hamlisch by singing Memories.


LOVE Carl Reiner:


And now it's time to celebrate 10 years since Chicago won Best Picture, because that's apparently something to celebrate.


And the Oscar for BEST ORIGINAL SCORE, presented by the cast of Chicago, goes to:

Life Of Pi, Mychael Danna

Life Of Pi Score


And now comes Best Original Song...


Does the fact that Adele is the only performer in this category to play tonight hint at where this award is going to end up? Does she have room left on her mantelpiece if she does win?


But wait! Here's Norah Jones to sing Everybody Needs A Best Friend from Ted. Is there a late upset? Is MacFarlane going to win an Oscar? Lummox!


And the BEST SONG goes to:



Silva's nefarious plan is coming together. Unless he didn't plan this. Hang on, what was Silva's plan again?


"Thank you so much! This is amazing!" chirps Adele, who bursts into tears and thrusts co-writer/producer Paul Epworth towards the microphone. He thanks Empire! Well, he thanked someone called Empire, but we'll take it. Don't mention it, Paul.


As the ceremony hurtles into its third year, the finishing line is in sight. If you have a really powerful telescope. That Hubble thingy should do the trick.


Best Actor and Best Actress are coming up, we're reliably informed.


In any other year, Denzel Washington, Joaquin Phoenix, Hugh Jackman and Bradley Cooper would be worthy winners of Best Actor. But this year they're up against DDL as AL, and so have spent much of the last eight weeks practicing their 'gracious losers' face at home in the bathroom mirror. And deep inside, they know that, no matter how hard they practice, Daniel Day-Lewis' gracious loser face would still be better than any of theirs.

Not that he'll need it.


Dustin Hoffman and Charlize Theron have ambled onto stage. "You're a good dancer," says Hoffman, while Theron aw shucks him. Bless.

They're here to present the screenplay awards, and are doing so with lines that, sadly, are pure manatee.

Best Adapted Screenplay is up first.



Chris Terrio for Argo.



Terrio based Argo on a magazine article. His next film, How Much Is A Pint Of Milk?, is out in 2014.


An emotional Terrio thanks Ben Affleck, and cites his Best Original Screenplay win for Good Will Hunting in 1998. And he also thanks Tony Mendez, the CIA agent whose exploits inspired the movie.


BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY is up next. And the Oscar goes to:

Quentin Tarantino for Django Unchained!

Django Unchained


"Charlize is my neighbour - how nice to get this from you!" says DQT. (The D is silent.) He goes on to talk about how he has to cast the right people to get his characters right - "and boy, this time did I get it right!" Then they start to play him off, but he stays on stage. "The writing in both categories is fantastic. This is the writers' year, man! Peace out!"

Love that man.


Looks like the controversy over you-know-what didn't hurt Django's Djances.


We've learned something tonight. You can play off visual effects guys, it seems, but not Quentin Tarantino.


That, of course, was Tarantino's second screenwriting Oscar, following the one he shared with Roger Avary for Pulp Fiction.


Seth MacFarlane: "our next presenters can remember when this town was all cocaine trees, stretching as far as the eye can see." It's Jane Fonda and Michael Douglas!


And they're here to present Best Director. Great names here: Haneke, Benh Zeitlin, Ang Lee, Steven Spielberg and David O. Russell.


And the BEST DIRECTOR Oscar goes to:

Ang Lee!

Life Of Pi


Not a huge shock - that was where the smart money was going over the last couple of weeks.


"I really need to share this with all 3000, everybody who worked with me on Life Of Pi," he says, before thanking Yann Martel, who wrote the book. He calls Suraj Sharma a "miracle". He then thanks his wife, "we'll be married 30 years this summer" and his agent and lawyer. "I have to do that!" He's a wonderful, gracious, hugely talented man. Congratulations.

And it's official - Life Of Pi is the most successful film of last year to feature both Irrfan Khan and a character called Richard Parker, narrowly pipping The Amazing Spider-Man.


Hypothetical situation: would Ang Lee have won had he been up against the likes of Kathryn Bigelow, Quentin Tarantino, Tom Hooper and Ben Affleck, who weren't nominated? Don't answer that. It's hypothetical and rhetorical, an impressive combination at 4.38am.


By my reckoning, Life Of Pi has won the most Oscars tonight so far, with 3.141592653589793238462643383279502 awards in the bag. What the heck, we'll round it up to an even four.


Yes, I know that you should round that down to three. Back off, Professor.


It's Jean Dujardin, who won Best Actor last year. He's here to present Best Actress. And he's being charming and beardy. Everyone's charming and beardy tonight.


The nominees are: Jessica Chastain for Zero Dark Thirty, Quvenzhané Wallis for Beasts Of The Southern Wild, Emanuelle Riva for Amour, Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook and Naomi Watts for The Impossible.


Riva, of course, won the Bafta... will that factor in here?


And the BEST ACTRESS goes to:

Jennifer Lawrence for Silver Linings Playbook!

Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook


Now this speech should be fun.


She fell coming up the stairs. "You guys are just standing up because I fell, and it's so embarrassing..." She goes on, at a thousand words a minute, to thank all those who need to be thanked. You know who you are. And then she remembers to wish fellow nominee Emanuelle Riva a happy birthday!


They're rolling straight into Best Actor, with Meryl Streep doing the presenting honours.


Daniel Day-Lewis has GOT to zipline onto the stage.


The nominees are: Bradley Cooper for Silver Linings Playbook, Denzel Washington for Flight, Hugh Jackman for Les Miserables and Joaquin Phoenix for The Master. The winner will be Daniel Day-Lewis, unless the world has been thrown off its axis. But you never know... you never know...


And the BEST ACTOR goes to:

Daniel Day-Lewis for Lincoln.



I'm not even sure Meryl opened the envelope there. She just knew.


This is an Oscar record, of course - a third Best Actor Oscar for DDL. A standing ovation ensues.


He is, typically, gracious and, as we're seeing more and more, funny. "Three years ago, before we decided to do a straight swap, I had been committed to play Margaret Thatcher... Meryl was Steven's first choice for Lincoln. I'd like to see that version."


He calls his fellow nominees his 'equals' and 'betters' and then says that his wife, Rebecca [Miller, daughter of Arthur Miller], has lived with some very strange men. "And she's been the perfect companion to all of them." We think he's talking about the characters he's played.

He thanks Tony Kushner, Steven Spielberg and the strangely beautiful mind, body and spirit of Abraham Lincoln before finishing, simply, elegantly, with "for my mother".



BTW, spoiler nerds, Denzel's Oscar clip was pretty much the end of Flight. So there you go.


One word: JackNicholson.


And now Jack is introducing Michelle Obama... live from the White House. OK. This is happening. And she's introducing the Best Picture nominees. Maybe she'll throw live to someone else. Jake Humphrey, perhaps? Nick Robinson outside 10 Downing Street?


I want Peter O'Hanraha-hanrahan to introduce Best Picture.


Michelle Obama has thrown it back to Jack Nicholson, who's as cool as ever. Amour, Argo, Beast Of The Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, Lincoln, Life Of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty.

And the Oscar goes to:


Michelle Obama says the BEST PICTURE is:




Argo wins the Big Prize. Best Picture. Ben Affleck, George Clooney and Grant Heslov take the stage.


"I know what you're thinking," says Heslov. "Three sexiest producers alive." The audience loves it. MAKE TRUE LIES 2!


Heslov thanks his partner in crime, George Clooney. "Everybody should be so lucky to have a partner as talented, humourous and who has as much integrity." As he says that, I catch the eye of James Dyer, and I sigh deeply.

"I wanted to speak before Ben because I thought it would be awkward for him to thank himself," says Heslov. "Couldn't be more proud of the film, couldn't be more proud of Ben." Heslov makes it very clear that Affleck is the DIRECTOR of Argo.


Affleck thanks Steven Spielberg and the other nominees. And then he talks very, very, very fast. He's now thanking Canada and Iran and his wife, "who I don't normally associate with Iran!". He thanks her for working on their marriage. "It is work, but it's the best kind of work."


He says that when he was up here for Good Will Hunting, he was just a kid and didn't know that he'd ever be back here. He says, 'you can't hold grudges. It's hard, but you can't hold grudges. You get knocked down in life - all that matters is that you get back up."

Intriguingly, Gorgeous George elects not to speak. He'd probably have been played off by the theme from Batman & Robin.


And there we go, that's the show.

Phil, our Oscar tally man, says Life Of Pi won the most with four, Argo scooped three, including the big one. Les Mis also bagged three. Lincoln, Django Unchained and Skyfall won two Oscars each, and then there were a bunch that came away with one.

So, a fairly even spread then, and a show not entirely packed with surprises. MacFarlane was decent as host, although I believe he's getting hammered on the Twittersphere right now. His irony-conquers-all style meant that the moments that required sincerity didn't sit well, while the script often failed to hit the heights. But he's a charming presence. Maybe, if he does it again, he'll grow into the role.


If you're still here, if you stayed up with us, you have our respect and love. Thanks for reading, and do make sure to listen to our Empire Podcast Oscar Special, which we're about to record now, God help us.


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Your Comments

surprised you left out the fact kristen stewart limped onto the stage and was quite clearly off her tits More

Posted by 7eke at 03:57 on 25 February 2013 | Report This Post

The theme for Star Trek: The next generation is also the theme for Star Trek: The Motion picture so its not entirely incorrect. More

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I dont have sky in my house so thank you Empire and @ChrisHewitt for this!!! More

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I really hope Deakins wins. More

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sky oscars More

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what channel will broadcast it in the UK? More

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