Five things to watch at Oscar party

Passengers passing through Union Station in Los Angeles this Sunday evening will notice an unusual commotion: fitted out for the occasion due to the health crisis, it will host the 93rd edition of the Oscars.

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The Oscars night will be decidedly like no other: it will indeed be broadcast live from an art deco station in Los Angeles this Sunday, will reward films mainly seen in streaming and bring together Hollywood stars for the first time since start of the pandemic. Between security protocol and social distancing, travelers probably won’t notice much of the ceremony, but here are five things for viewers to follow:

Triumph announced for “Nomadland”

“Nomadland” is the big favorite for the Oscar for best feature film, supreme award in Hollywood. For the experts, except huge surprise, it is especially a question of knowing how many Oscars the film of Chloe Zhao can get. If “Nomadland,” in which most of the actors are amateurs playing their own roles and improvising extensively, wins the award for Best Adapted Screenplay early in the evening, the film could win big.

Chloe Zhao has a good chance of becoming the second woman and the first non-white director to be crowned at the Oscars, and could even tie a historic record. To date, no one has won more Oscars in a single night than Walt Disney, who won four in 1953. Yet Chloé Zhao is in the running for editing, screenplay, directing and also as a producer. in the “best feature film” category.

Finally Glenn Close?

Three Emmy Awards, three Golden Globes, three Tony Awards, memorable roles and recognition from his peers: at 74, Glenn Close has achieved everything in his career. Everything except the Oscars, which have systematically escaped him despite seven nominations.

This year, the eighth may once again not be the right one. If her physical transformation and her performance as a surly matriarch in “An American Ode” were praised – earning her an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress – the film, on the other hand, has been panned by critics. If she fails on Sunday, she will be tied with the late Peter O’Toole as the most unlucky Oscar nominee.

The vintage of diversity

When the nominations were unveiled last year, some felt that years of activism and #OscarsSoWhite campaigning to demand more diversity in the Academy’s selection had gone for naught: 19 of the 20 selected actors were white.

This year, the Oscars are breaking historic records with nine ethnic minority actors among the nominees and the first Asian American to compete for the “Best Actor” award, Steven Yeun (“Minari”).

Also for the first time, two women are among the five Oscar nominees. The American Actors Union recently gave its awards to non-white actors in all four categories, and the quartet (Chadwick Boseman, Viola Davis, Daniel Kaluuya and Youn Yuh-jung) are able to repeat the feat at the Oscars on Sunday.

And three for McDormand?

Frances McDormand is an Oscar Academy sweetheart, who has already honored her twice. His role for “Nomadland”, very unglamorous, a penniless and disillusioned widow surviving in an old motorhome earned him a new appointment. If she wins on Sunday, she will become the second woman to win three Oscars in the Best Actress category, behind all-category champion Katharine Hepburn, who holds four.

She would join at the same time the very closed club of actresses with three golden statuettes, alongside Meryl Streep and Ingrid Bergman who each have two Oscars for best actress and one for best supporting female role.

Masks and sequence shots

Director Steven Soderbergh and the rest of the Oscar night producers announced last week that they will make the ceremony, which has had to reinvent itself due to the pandemic, to look more like a movie movie than a TV show. But they deliberately let the mystery hang out …

Will the rare guest stars be masked, for example?

“The masks will play a very important role in the story of this evening … If it’s enigmatic, it’s done on purpose,” said Steven Soderbergh.

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Five things to watch at Oscar party