The Oscar Nominee Luncheon is a bizarre tradition where the stars come to mingle and receive their official “certificate of nomination”… The only worthwhile thing that comes out of the event is this annual photograph. It’s a great equalizer for the people at home like us. It doesn’t matter if you make millions of dollars on screen or if you are a 17 year old high school student- Class photos are awkward and unflattering for everyone involved.
Dissecting each person in this picture might be my favorite part of Award Season. This year’s isn’t nearly as good as last year, but it’ll do. As is tradition I will be nice to some people, mean to most, I’ll create some fictional backstories, and I’ll unknowingly disrespect some very impressive people. Such is internet life.
I tried to find the “place to be” among the 100+ people in this photo but to be honest the group kind of sucks this year. There isn’t a runaway hot spot for A-list celebrities, but this pairing is where I’d gravitate towards. The young and beautiful Saoirse Ronan standing with the grizzled veteran Richard Jenkins. Both looking fantastic. I’d like to get a drink and hang out with either one of them, but for entirely different reasons on each.
… I did some googling on the people surrounding Saoirse and I gotta be honest I’m concerned:
Those faces represent 3/4 of the producers of Phantom Thread, a movie so weird it made Daniel Day-Lewis retire from acting. Look at those half-assed smiles. They’re not here for a fucking picture. They’re here to lock down this years hottest talent for their newest art/film project. They’ll turn her into Jennifer Lawrence in mother! and they’ll do it without a smile on their face because art isn’t worth smiling, its worth dying. God I hope she bailed on them.
It’s always good to see the drunk uncles sticking together. This trio has a sleepy drunk, a red-faced drunk, and a silent smiley drunk. Quite the crew.
These guys aren’t related. Stunning.
There is nothing that will surprise me more this award season than these two not being related. Amazing.
I bet you didn’t expect to see Kobe Bryant in this photo. I sure didn’t. Even if you knew he was nominated for his short film “Dear Basketball”, you would’ve assumed he’d avoid the spotlight because of his rape incident a few years ago. You know, because of this year’s “Times Up” movement. But hey I suppose that’s in the past. (but still it’s not)
Either way you’d assume if he was showing up knowing the controversy his nomination caused, that he’d make his way to the back or off to the side. NOPE! this 7 foot tall man took a seat front row, dead center, next to the statue. The balls on this move is nothing short of breathtaking.
A gorgeous blonde woman standing among this crowd means only one thing, it has to be Margot Robbie! But wait, nope. That’s Dana Murray (obviously) she’s a production manager at Pixar. Dana has taken full advantage of her great hair day by positioning herself next to a smiling disaster human on the left, and using the overly tanned guy on the right to accent her perfectly balanced glow. Good on you Dana!
There’s Margot!… kind of underwhelming. I was really looking forward to seeing what she would bring to this photo. Just her usual stunning smile. Yawn.
Not for nothing, but I love the guys on either side of her. One’s cheesing so hard because he knows who he’s standing next to, the other is about to pass out from trying so hard to “be cool”
Somebody tell that man to smile. He’s bringing down the whole vibe. It’s a monumental task to make the moody teen on the right look like he’s full of joy, but this guy did it.
Sitting in the front row is a HUGE responsibility. You better have the good looks combined with the right amount of confidence if you’re going to have any hope of pulling it off. This guy? This guy pulled it off. Dapper AF. Yeah he’s treading on the edge of being a yacht sailing frat boy, but given the situation and moment I’m going to give it to him. Bravo.
I’m saying nothing. But I’m just pointing out the fact that the whitest white lady and the darkest black guy in the room are standing on top of each other.
The front row is the most important, but the edge is a very very close second. Here’s Kumail Nanjiani displaying the right way to do it, and some goober doing it all wrong. I don’t normally say “goober”, but I’ll be damned if that guy doesn’t embody the word.
The guy on the left knows exactly what he’s doing. If you’re on the end you can blame looking short on the steps instead of admitting you’re 5′ tall. Standing next to a short woman helps too. But bad news for this guy, I’m on the case and I see right through his game. Being damn near eye level with the guy two steps in front of him is a tough look.
Who brought Martin Shkreli?
This guy bought the wrong color prosthetic ear. Boom roasted.
(if that’s really a fake ear then I’m sorry but I stand by my comment)
This spot has the most star-power, but the combination of the insufferable Meryl Streep and that douchebag with the cardboard cutout makes it the least desirable area to be. Not even Allison Janney and Willem Dafoe can save the situation.
For those who care, that cutout is the director of the French documentary “Faces Places” and it was brought by her co-director JR. Yes, JR is his full name. Apparently he’s a “french photographer whose identity is unconfirmed” which means I truly hate him.
Boop! If you want to win the Oscar you must become the Oscar.