Share “Final countdown: One more day until the...”

Final countdown: One more day until the Oscars

Associated Press Modified: March 6, 2010 at 7:55 pm •  Published: March 5, 2010
Advertisement

LOS ANGELES (AP) — One. More. Day.

Hollywood's anticipation for Sunday's Academy Awards has been building all week.

The main boulevard is shut down to make room for the stars' grand red-carpet entrance. Tourists are swarming the area to get a peek at Oscar preparations. Show rehearsals keep the Kodak Theatre abuzz with activity. There are gift suites every day and parties every night as Tinseltown gears up for its big celebration. Here's the latest:

___

BEAM ME UP, OSCAR: It takes a starship crew.

The three-person Oscar-nominated makeup team for "Star Trek" were quick to point out that it took dozens of hair and makeup artists to bring the Vulcans, Romulans and other species to life in the reimagined "Trek" during a Saturday afternoon symposium featuring this year's batch of Oscar-nominated hair and makeup artists.

"We're thrilled there were 40-plus makeup artists, 12 of which are out here today, who stood beside us," said "Trek" makeup department head Mindy Hall at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. "They weren't behind us. They were beside us, taking the designs and bringing them to life."

Clips highlighting the work from the three nominated films were shown, and present nominees took questions from the audience. The "Trek" makeup team, which also includes alien designers Joel Harlow and Barney Burman, revealed they went through seven different designs for the villainous blunt foreheaded Romulan race.

"From the get go, we all wanted to do work that was worthy of this," said Burman of their nod.

Other panelists included "Il Divo" hairstylist Aldo Signoretti. ("Il Divo" makeup artist Vittorio Sodano won't be attending the Oscars due to a death in his family. The hair and makeup team from "The Young Victoria," Jon Henry Gordon and Jenny Shircore, missed Saturday's panel because the Brits were stuck at the airport.)

___

GOING FOR THE GOLD: Argentine director Juan Jose Campanella isn't modest about his passion to win his first Oscar.

Campanella, whose crime drama "The Secret in Their Eyes" is nominated in the foreign language category, made no bones about his intense desire to take home a little gold man during a Saturday morning symposium featuring clips and the directors of the five nominated foreign language films.

"You put me in any game, and I want to win," Campanella declared. "There's nothing more boring than playing cards with four people who want to lose."

"The Secret in Their Eyes" is up against France's "A Prophet," Israel's "Ajami," Peru's "The Milk of Sorrow" and Germany's "The White Ribbon," the black-and-white film which took the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival last year. Campanella was nominated in the same Oscar category in 2002 for "Son of the Bride."

The nominations of "The Secret in Their Eyes" and "The Milk of Sorrow," directed by 33-year-old Peruvian filmmaker Claudia Llosa, mark the first time that two films from South American countries have been nominated.

___

STARS ON STAGE: Stars of the year's biggest films stepped out on Oscar's stage late Friday.

Never mind it was just a rehearsal.

First it was Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner of "Twilight." She wore skinny jeans, sneakers and a tan V-neck top. He sported a black shirt, gray pants and a slim tie. A stage manager told them where to go and suggested they walk arm in arm.

They approached the microphone and producer Adam Shankman gently scolded, "No folded arms!" Stewart quickly dropped her arms by her side.

The two teen stars ran through their lines, joking with each other between takes. Stewart chewed gum throughout.

"Love the gum," Shankman joked.

Next was Sigourney Weaver, who wore a striped blouse with jeans — and the towering stilettos she plans to wear Sunday night. The 60-year-old actress practiced making her entrance again and again, concerned about how her long dress might hinder her approach.

"Let me try it pretending I have a dress on," she said, facing an audience of stand-ins and show workers inside the Kodak Theatre.

The three-time Oscar nominee marveled at the view from the stage.

"This is such a nice, small theater," she said. "I don't think I've ever taken this long at rehearsal before."

She was followed by Bradley Cooper and Gerard Butler, who both wore jackets, slacks and credentials. They stepped out confidently, and Cooper seemed genuinely excited when a trophy model handed him the prop Oscar.

"This is great," he said.

Finally, "Avatar" star Sam Worthington took the stage. Wearing a hooded sweatshirt and horn-rimmed glasses, the Australian actor was unflappable. He rehearsed his lines, and the theater went dark. One more day of rehearsals and then the real deal.

___

GETTING CREATIVE: Dana Delany, Kathy Najimy, Ty Burrell and Rachael Leigh Cook were among the celebrities who recorded public service announcements for the Creative Coalition Friday at Haven 360, an Oscar-week suite comprising gifting, parties and support for the arts.

Creative Coalition co-president Tim Daly is directing the public service announcements, which show stars singing the ABC's, as part of the organization's lobbying efforts to increase funding for arts education in public schools.

The videos will be presented at the Creative Coalition's Arts Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. next month, along with a companion book, "Art Soul," that features portraits of actors and their handwritten messages about what art means to them, Daly said.

"This is about keeping the arts in education," he said. "Kids learn their letters by singing. The arts make learning interesting and fun."

Haven 360 guests were also treated to hand massages from Olay, gifted with Elle jewelry and invited to peruse Backstage Creation's "celebrity retreat," where they could pick up a free $5,000 trip to Moorea, Botox and Juvederm treatments worth $900 from celebrity surgeon Dr. Frank Ryan, and luxury luggage from Dooney Bourke.

___

AP Entertainment Writer Derrik J. Lang contributed to this report.

Continue reading this story on the...