By eug | eugonline February 17, 2011 at 5:30AM
Decked out in one of the many Diane von Furstenberg dresses she'll wear over the next 10 days or so, doc director Lucy Walker (left) was striking in orange last night in SoHo. The night before heading to the West Coast for a trip that will culminate at the Academy Awards next Sunday, the British filmmaker (who now spends a lot of time Stateside) was toasted for her Oscar nominated movie, "Waste Land."
Friend Morgan Spurlock (right), a new member of the Academy's doc branch, moderated a conversation with Walker at a Peggy Siegal event at SoHo's Crosby Hotel in Lower Manhattan. After that, a smaller group of friends made their way around the corner to Gawker head Nick Denton's spacious loft for prosecco and pizza.
The DVF dress was a score for Walker, she said, during informal remarks at the end of a toast inside Denton's home. Raising a glass, he good-naturedly teased his friend a bit before she got serious, saying that she's had to pull many favors to get through Oscar season on a budget. Clearly excited (and maybe a bit tired) after a long run with "Waste Land" that began more than a year ago at Sundance, Walker said she'll be on Oscar's red carpet in a von Furstenberg and alongside Tião, a Brazilian showcased in her doc.
Since her film's debut at Sundance last year, where the doc won the audience award, Lucy Walker has been pounding the pavement for "Waste Land." She was at the fest with two movies and told me more than once that "Waste Land" was a film she was particularly proud of.
While the film faces tough competition this year, against a solid crop of non-fiction movies -- "Exit Through The Gift Shop," "Gas Land," "Inside Job" and "Restrepo" -- it clearly has a good shot at taking home the gold statue. Of course, given the unique nature of AMPAS' documentary category -- voters must vouch for watching all five nominees in a theater before they can vote -- there's no doubt that anything can happen.
Tuesday's celebration was a fun, intimate affair, with The New York Times' Melena Ryzik among those mingling at Nick Denton's after-party. She has more on the night's festivities on her essential Oscar season guide, The Carpetbagger.
photo courtesy dave allocca, starpix