Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Monday, February 25, 2008

Oscar Go!

As a kid I always loved watching the Oscars. Back when I first started watching Oscar telecasts on Philippine TV, they were shown months afterwards—back then a live via satellite hook-up was too costly for any local TV station to mount. So I’d watch it not to be surprised by the winners but to enjoy the show. I took particular delight in watching the film clips of the different nominations, especially in the major categories. For a time I also looked forward to the live performances of the nominees for best song, until the production numbers got too tedious and overblown (the “For Your Eyes Only” set reached heights of silliness with tacky laser gun fire and onstage explosions). During Billy Crystal’s reign as host, I dared not miss the opening movie montage of him spoofing the nominated films of that year.

But what I particularly enjoyed were the speeches. My favorite types of speeches are: [1] heartfelt speeches, with the winner often genuinely moved to tears and consequently, me too; [2] sharp, funny and witty speeches; it’s especially exciting when the speech is done extemporaneously (or looks like it); [3] a combination of both.

You cannot imagine the number of times when, right after watching the Oscars, I’d imagine receiving one. Yes, that’s one of my secret guilty pleasures—imagining receiving an Oscar. The scene in my head often opens with me hearing the announcement while seated in the audience area; what would my reaction shot be when the camera zooms in on me? Usually it’s disbelief (“What?! Did they really call me?”) mixed with “Good lord, I didn’t prepare a speech!” and a huge dose of “OmigodIwonanOscarIwonanOscarIwonanOscar!”

What category will I be nominated in? I’ve already imagined receiving an award for acting (I always imagine being the supporting role category; lead role seemed too arrogant, even in daydreams), direction, best screenplay and best picture (with me as the producer accepting the award).

And what would my speech be like? I wanted it to be genuinely moving yet witty and memorable enough to be quoted and used as soundbite in a future Oscar montage. Oh, and I would insist on wearing a barong instead of a tuxedo. I’d also have a shout-out to Filipinos everywhere. Have I an actual prepared speech already? Of course not! I don’t know yet for which film and in which category I’ll be nominated in. Heller?

I have also fantasized being a presenter. I have also imagined being the host, although I often get bored with that fantasy easily because the job seems too thankless.

That’s why I still get a kick out of watching the very long and at times very boring Academy Awards. I watch it for those unexpected moments of genuine emotion and wit coming together to form a perfect television soundbite.

And I get to fantasize once again hearing my name called, kissing whoever is beside me (I hope it’s Colin Farrell), receiving that bald, golden man… and accidentally dropping him on my (left) foot just as I’m about to launch into my speech.


palma tayona said...

lol! You took the words EXACTLY right out of my mouth. Now I wonder, how many countless little gay boylets out there think of the very same thing when they watch the Oscars? hmm....


I watch it mostly for the gowns.

How gay of me. Hehe.

the nomad said...

i think your "Cut to the Chase" post would have been a good contender for the Best Picture category.