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The 82nd Annual Academy Awards


Kathryn Bigelow Wins First Directing Oscar for a Woman

The Hurt Locker and Avatar tied for craft Oscars, each receiving three Academy Awards at the annual glamfest held on March 8, at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood.

The Hurt Locker, a suspense drama about a bomb disposal squad in war-torn Iraq, was the night’s big winner, garnering six Oscars overall. Three were for top line categories including best picture, best director (Kathryn Bigelow is the first woman to win the helmer honor) and best screenplay.

In below-the-line categories, Hurt Locker also received the Oscar for best editing, which was shared by Bob Murawski and Chris Innis; and also in the two audio categories—for best sound editing and for best sound mixing.  Paul N.J. Ottoson was the big individual winner of the night, winning two Oscars—for each of the sound categories for Hurt Locker. He shared the sound mixing award with Ray Beckett.

Director Bigelow gave the editors “a lot of freedom with our cuts,” declared Innis. “So, a lot of those choices you see up on screen were things we figured out how to do.”

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Avatar, director James Cameron’s 3D digital blockbuster about an earthling invasion of the blue planet Pandora, came in with nine nominations and went home with three craft Oscars. The award for best special effects went to Joe Letteri, the film’s VFX supervisor, and the other members of his team—Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham and Andrew R. Jones. “What we did with Avatar, if you really look at it, we took things that are out there in the real world every day, we just made them bigger, shinier, put them together in new ways,” said Letteri afterward. “But all our inspiration comes from the real world.” This was the fifth Oscar for Letteri.

Mauro Fiore, Avatar’s director of photography, won for best cinematography.  The award was somewhat controversial since the lion’s share of the film takes place in the digital realm.  “I think it’s pretty amazing thing for me to be honored in this capacity, especially because this is a 3D film and this is the first time that a film has won that has so much computer-generated imagery and also live action together,” said Fiore. “So this is a huge revolution for the industry.”

And the award for best art direction went to Avatar’s production designers Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg and set decorator Kim Sinclair.  This was the first time in recent memory that two production designers were nominated on a single film, let alone winning the Oscar.  Traditional production designer Carter collaborated with Stromberg who was in charge of the film’s digital vision.  “Visual effects is essentially a form of design and it’s evolving, because we’re creating new tools to allow the next generation of filmmakers to do anything they want,” said Stromberg. In his acceptance he commented on a life-threatening illness he had endured 13 years ago. “The doctors told me I wasn’t going to survive and I thought that this dream of standing here would never come true,” he said.

Sandy Powell won for best costume design for The Young Victoria. In accepting her third Oscar (she had won previously for Shakespeare in Love and The Aviator) the British costume designer, wearing a period art deco dress, said she wanted to “dedicate this one to the costume designers that don’t do movies about dead monarchs or glittery musicals—the designers that do contemporary films and the low-budget ones, that don’t normally get recognized as they should.”

Pixar’s Up won two Oscars. One was for best animated film, the award going to Peter Docter.  And Up composer Michael Giacchino was the winner for best musical score. “Boy, never did I dream that making a flip book out of my third grade math class would lead to this,” said Docter.

The award for best animated short went to Nicolas Schmerkin for Logorama.

The best make-up Oscar went to Barney Burman, Mindy Hall and Joel Harlow for their work on the reboot of Star Trek.

The Oscar winners in the 82nd Annual Academy Awards are:

Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Christoph Waltz
in Inglourious Basterds (The Weinstein Company).

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
Up, Pete Docter, (Walt Disney).

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song)
“The Weary Kind” – Theme from Crazy Heart, (Fox Searchlight), Music and Lyrics by Ryan Bingham and T Bone Burnett.

Best Original Screenplay
Mark Boal
The Hurt Locker, (Summit Entertainment).

Best Animated Short Film
, Nicolas Schmerkin, 
(Autour de Minuit).

Best Documentary Short Subject
Music by Prudence
, Roger Ross Williams and Elinor Burkett

Best Achievement in Makeup
Star Trek
, Barney Burman, Mindy Hall and Joel Harlow,
 (Paramount and Spyglass Entertainment).

Best Adapted Screenplay
Geoffrey Fletcher
for Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire, (Lionsgate).

Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
in Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire, (Lionsgate).

Achievement in Art Direction
, Art Direction: Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg; 
Set Decoration: Kim Sinclair.

Achievement in Costume Design
Sandy Powell
for The Young Victoria, (Apparition).

Achievement in Sound Editing
Paul N.J. Ottosson
, The Hurt Locker, (Summit Entertainment).

Achievement in Sound Mixing
Paul N.J. Ottosson
and Ray Beckett , The Hurt Locker. (Summit Entertainment).

Achievement in Cinematography
Mauro Fiore
for Avatar, (20th Century Fox).

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)
Michael Giacchino
, Up, (Walt Disney).

Achievement in Visual Effects
Joe Letteri
, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham and Andrew R. Jones, Avatar (20th Century Fox).

Best Documentary Feature
The Cove
(Roadside Attractions)

Achievement in Film Editing
Bob Murawski
and Chris Innis , “The Hurt Locker” (Summit Entertainment).

Best Foreign Language Film of the Year
El Secreto de Sus Ojos
(Sony Pictures Classics), 
A Haddock Films Production, Argentina

Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Jeff Bridges
in Crazy Heart, (Fox Searchlight).

Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Sandra Bullock
for The Blind Side, (Warner Bros.).

Achievement in Directing
Kathryn Bigelow
 The Hurt Locker (Summit Entertainment).

Best Motion Picture of the Year
The Hurt Locker
(Summit Entertainment), Kathryn Bigelow.

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