The Oscars are a mere five days away! Get ready!
* Is Robert Pattinson really going to be presenting an Oscar? That’s what some folks are saying. Eh, Miley Cyrus presented last year, so we guess the Academy is still trying to appeal to its younger viewers. But are a few moments with this year’s vampire it-boy really enough to help the telecast’s sagging ratings?
* Speaking of it-boys, during election season, FiveThirtyEight founder Nate Silver was eh-eh-eh-everywhere. Now he’s lending his statistics-heavy prediction skills to the Oscar race. According to Silver, there’s a 99 percent chance that Slumdog Millionaire will win Best Picture. The big surprise? Silver says there’s a 51 percent chance that Taraji P. Henson will win for her role in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Huh.
* If the promise of Pattinson won’t make you tune in, perhaps the chance that M.I.A. will perform while reclining on a giant bed will do the trick. Producers are hoping the new mom, who gave birth to a son last week, will be able to perform part of “O Saya,” from Slumdog Millionaire. I actually really, really hope this cockamamie bed thing happens — and not just because I like comically oversized/inappropriate beds, like the one Charlie’s grandparents live in in Willy Wonka, or the one in the so-bad-it’s-hilarious Bedknobs and Broomsticks, or the one Lane rides down the street on that episode of Gilmore Girls. Not only would an awesome and strange M.I.A. Oscar song bed be an important addition to this list, but it would also really liven up what can sometimes be the national bathroom break during the ceremony.
* The Oscar set is getting a whole new look in an attempt emphasize the show’s theatrical qualities. “It’s about celebration. We want to make it less a big, pre-taped package, and more a live show. In a way the Oscars are like community theater on amazing steroids,” says architect David Rockwell, this year’s production designer. Expect a thrust stage (that’s like a stage peninsula for those of you who weren’t in drama club), a mid-century-modern aesthetic, and a curtain covered 92,000 Swarovski crystals.
* Finally, some Oscar advertisers are pulling out of the big event. L’Oreal and General Motors, both major advertisers last year, won’t have any ads during this year’s broadcast.
addCredit(“M.I.A: Michael Buckner/WireImage.com; Pattinson: Kevin Winter/Getty Images”)