Thursday, January 26, 2017

Check This Out: The 2017 Oscar Nominations Announcement Video

While many are likely still mulling over the Oscar nominations, there is one new thing that has already happened this year worthy of further discussion: the announcement presentation. It was billed as an "in house production" that would be different from the familiar rigmarole of presenting the nominees live before a press audience. With a video format highlighting every nomination with heartfelt stories of what it means to be a winner, the worst that can be said is that this year was different. If you're interested in seeing the video, as well as discussing its effectiveness, just click the button and read on.

As someone who gets great joy out of waking up early for Oscar announcement day, I was curious to see how things would go. I am personally a fan of their previous format, which involved usually a triage of hosts (including Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs) introducing the nominees. The reactions were always my favorite part, as they were the most indicative of what Hollywood thought was going to make the cut. Considering that people were shocked that Mel Gibson was nominated for Best Director, I think that there's plenty of value in those gasps, awes, and claps. 

Check out the 18 minute video presentation below:

As a whole, I do think that they did an excellent job. The summarized most of the categories with an interesting sentiment that elevated the overall production. The only question is how useful that extra flair was. Considering that it's for a movie industry, it does make some sense. However, it does make those wanting to just get to the nitty gritty a little impatient. I for one like the format and feel like it's a good use of efforts if this is the future of announcing nominees. I miss the lively reaction that the audiences gave as they discovered who was nominated, but overall it makes for a more intriguing video to watch days later. If nothing else, the camera always knows where it needs to be.

Another thing that I'm not wild about missing is the lack of imagery that goes alongside the nominees. I get that the title card format adds a unification to the procedure, but I like seeing the movies that each of these films were pulled from. To me there's something that feels more representative of the craft in those segments. Admittedly, it would be difficult to make it look uniform and consistently appealing, but it's something that the live production still has over this version. With that said, I'm not entirely opposed to the work done here.

So, what did you think of this year's presentation? Set aside your thoughts on the nominees and discuss if the presentation is the way of the future. Is it possible that we'll never get a live announcement again? I do think that there's value in making something more appealing in a viral video sense with this, but I still feel like the energy is absent. It's nice to know what the crowd thinks as the hosts riff on the surprise. Maybe it's just because I'm into the old style, but I think that this new form has to grow on me a little bit more before I can accept it. 

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