At the press conference, as director David O. Russell was making the
appropriate noises about independent film-making and the dedication it
required from crew and actors alike, Mary Tyler Moore interjects, "We all had
individual rooms" and Tea Leoni segues into, "If you gave me a million
dollars, I assure you I would be just as 'committed' and 'dedicated'."
From that point on, it was a lively free-for-all as Leoni, Moore and
Arquette bantered back and forth as if they were on the stage at the Improv.
So what if the movie is a piffle?
Apart from Anjelica Huston and actress Charlotte Rampling
(the epitome of
true elegance, both), the closing night ceremony was an unqualified disaster.
Unprepared, underrehearsed (to put it generously), with a dearth of ideas and
rhythm that made the Oscar show look like the mother lode of telecasts. None
of us understood why there were tom-toms every time the winners and their
respective hosts paused in front of photographers; most of us gave up when
Spain's enfant-terrible Pedro Almodovar walked on stage accompanied by what
sounded like a flamenco version of "Zorba the Greek"...
Anyway, Mike Leigh's "Secrets and Lies" won the Golden Palm, Lars von Trier's
"Breaking the Waves" got the Grand Jury Award, Joel Coen ("Fargo") was deemed
Best Director, Brenda Blethyn ("Secrets and Lies") was Best Actress, and, as
predicted, the Best Actor award went to Daniel Auteuil in tandem with Pascal
The most unexpected award went to David Cronenberg's "Crash" for
audacity", as president Coppola phrased it, revealing that the jury's
decision had not been unanimous. Looking at each juror's face, one could not
determine who had voted how, but David Cronenberg later quipped: "I don't
know if it's any indication, but I'm the only winner
Coppola hasn't kissed."
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