Academy Awards: For the King, Colin Firth and Natalie Portman

Due to the time difference, I was in bed while the big show was going on. So please tell me: how did Anne Hathaway and James Franco do? For me, THE Oscar host will always remain the great Billy Crystal, but I should probably get over the fact that he doesn’t want to do it anymore. Really, Mr. Crystal? I’d stay up all night, time difference or no time difference, to watch you host the ceremony…

Oh, well, anyway Colin Firth (quite deservedly) in The King’s Speech and Natalie Portman in Black Swan were the foregone choices in their categories, and Speech had been building up momentum for Best Picture. Best Original Screenplay? I already expressed my views earlier on the question.

To illustrate this post, here is a photograph (credit: David Barrie) of the room where Lionel Logue received the Duke of York, later George VI, in the film. I naively believed it was a set, but should have known better: one can’t manufacture this frighteningly realistic degree of shabiness. I have been told this indeed a private residence in London’s Marylebone district. One of the touches, with the performances of course, that make the film a pleasure to watch.



Lionel Logue couch, from The King's Speech


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6 Comments to “Academy Awards: For the King, Colin Firth and Natalie Portman”

  1. Stephen, no, I haven’t begun my Byronesque explorations. I need to get my current (French) project done…
    Penny, Isobel, yes, I haven’t heard good things about Franco’s performance. Of course it is all to his credit if he has to finish his dissertation, but maybe the Academy could have picked someone with a less hectic schedule and more time and attention to bestow on the show. Well, we’ll see next year… :)

  2. Penny says:

    Isn’t Franco the one in Yale working on a phd in English? no wonder he looked stoned,
    he is balancing west coast with east coast although Natalie Portman is in Harvard right now so I don’t know how she keeps grounded.

  3. Isobel says:

    Franco appeared to be stoned(I’ve read that he’s actually always like that without use of drugs, but it came in this case to the same thing either way) and Hathaway was in way over her head. It was kind of painful. Billy Crystal actually came out as a presenter and got a standing ovation, and we all wished desperately he’d take over for the rest of the night, but no such luck.

  4. stephen says:


    The show was mostly a yawn. I was pleased that Firth got what he so deserved.
    Franco was out of place – he went straight from the show to the airport back to NYC to finish his paper on Lord Byron!!!!
    Now, have you begun your studies?

  5. Penny says:

    I thought Colin Firth was gracious as well as the director.
    the hosts not as good as Billy Crystal who is still retired. but it went faster than
    I expected, usually they go on and on but this did not so the producers were good etc

  6. Kate Warren says:

    I couldn’t watch it (my house doesn’t get TV reception) but I’ve heard that Franco did not do well. No specific word on Hathaway’s performance, but I would imagine it was better than Franco’s given that the negativity is all toward him.

    Billy Crystal is my favorite Oscar host too.

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