Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Watch: Zac Efron Talks About His Masturbation Techniques In 'The Interview' Segment With James Franco Watch: Zac Efron Talks About His Masturbation Techniques In 'The Interview' Segment With James Franco First Look Images: Patrick Stewart As A Neo-Nazi In 'Blue Ruin' Director Jeremy Saulnier's 'Green Room' & More First Look Images: Patrick Stewart As A Neo-Nazi In 'Blue Ruin' Director Jeremy Saulnier's 'Green Room' & More Watch: Footage From "Sick," Unreleased Marilyn Manson Video, Directed By Eli Roth & Featuring Lana Del Rey Watch: Footage From "Sick," Unreleased Marilyn Manson Video, Directed By Eli Roth & Featuring Lana Del Rey Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar' Twist And Enigmatic Ending Christopher Nolan Talks 'Interstellar' Twist And Enigmatic Ending Review: 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1' Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Philip Seymour Hoffman, And More Review: 'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1' Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Philip Seymour Hoffman, And More Steve McQueen's Next Film Will Be About Paul Robeson Steve McQueen's Next Film Will Be About Paul Robeson Watch: First Trailer For 'The Age Of Adaline' Starring Blake Lively, Ellen Burstyn And Harrison Ford Watch: First Trailer For 'The Age Of Adaline' Starring Blake Lively, Ellen Burstyn And Harrison Ford Listen Up, Christopher Nolan Defends Sound Mix On 'Interstellar' Listen Up, Christopher Nolan Defends Sound Mix On 'Interstellar' Official Soundtrack Details For Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' Revealed Official Soundtrack Details For Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Inherent Vice' Revealed Casting: Shailene Woodley Joins Oliver Stone's Edward Snowden Pic, 'True Detective' Adds Pair & More Casting: Shailene Woodley Joins Oliver Stone's Edward Snowden Pic, 'True Detective' Adds Pair & More Watch: 40-Minute Discovery Channel Special 'The Science Of Interstellar' Narrated By Matthew McConaughey Watch: 40-Minute Discovery Channel Special 'The Science Of Interstellar' Narrated By Matthew McConaughey Review: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway & More Review: Christopher Nolan's 'Interstellar' Starring Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway & More 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies' Will Conclude With A 45-Minute Battle Sequence 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies' Will Conclude With A 45-Minute Battle Sequence Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

5 Ways To Make Next Year's Oscar Show Better

The Playlist By The Playlist Staff | The Playlist March 3, 2014 at 5:22PM

So the numbers are in, and last night’s Oscar telecast raked as the ceremony’s highest viewership stats for a decade, reaching an audience of 43 million. Of course its being hailed as a triumph for host Ellen DeGeneres, but we’re going to suggest that part of that was due to a more open, or rather less decided, race for Best Picture between “Gravity” and eventual winner “12 Years A Slave." Not to mention all the people who tuned in with their kids to hear the one and only Adele Dazim sing “Let it Go.”
21
Oscars

So the numbers are in, and last night’s Oscar telecast raked as the ceremony’s highest viewership stats for a decade, reaching an audience of 43 million. Of course its being hailed as a triumph for host Ellen DeGeneres, but we’re going to suggest that part of that was due to a more open, or rather less decided, race for Best Picture between “Gravity” and eventual winner “12 Years A Slave." Not to mention all the people who tuned in with their kids to hear the one and only Adele Dazim sing “Let it Go.” (Be sure to check out our list of the Best and Worst Moments from the show).


With the figures 6% higher than last year’s, and with no foreseeable fallout along the lines of the sexism accusations that plagued Seth McFarlane’s hosting turn (that grew louder online and in the op-ed pages over the subsequent week) the organizers must be feeling pretty good about themselves. To which, killjoys that we are, we’d say whoa there! Not so fast! This year may have got a few more eyeballs, but there are still a few changes that we think will make next year’s telecast better. Here are five suggestions (along with the permanent, standing suggestion that they ply the celebs with more booze à la The Golden Globes), for your consideration.

Ellen DeGeneres

1. Bring In An Edgier Host
So, we were quite impressed with the job Ellen DeGeneres did last night, with producers opting for a safe, steady pair of hands, and with a hosting style that was that bit more informal, after last year’s diametrically different, wannabe Rat-Pack/Vegas show feel that Seth MacFarlane brought to the stage. But we do hope that the Academy now feels that they have the license to go a bit further next year, and that the hiked-up viewerships figures are not necessarily read as being a direct result of a more conservative hosting choice. In fact, the impulse that seems to have governed recently is “take a risk” followed by “play it safe” on alternate years (Hathaway and Franco were risky and bombed so Billy Crystal came back the next year, then MacFarlane followed by DeGeneres) and by that same logic we should be in for something a bit less, well, cosy in 2015. But we just hope that the fact that so many of the riskier choices of late have turned out badly doesn’t see the Academy retreating back into their shell. Ellen we can take and mildly enjoy for a year, but we can’t see people getting hugely excited for another helping. Also, while the looseness of her off-the-cuff approach was refreshing, it did contribute to the show’s overlength, and the feeling of general sagginess that set in somewhere around hour two. Which brings us to....

McConaughey, Oscars

2. Drastically, Vastly Reduce The Running Time, By At Least An Hour
Last night’s Oscars, at 3 hours 35 minutes were apparently, to the minute, the same length as 2013’s ceremony, but it sure felt longer. Though admittedly that might be because the mean-spiritedness of MacFarlane’s gig exerted its own kind of fascination. But while DeGeneres didn’t help matters by including a tortuous 15-minute bit about ordering pizza which was maybe hilarious if you were there but soon became irritating to the watching millions, a lot of the the dead air and slackness of the telecast was totally not her fault. The sluggish pace was basically down to the whole event not being run crisply. Do the celebrities doing the category presentations have to be introduced with such stately fanfare themselves? And do we really need to see a potted edition of every single Best Picture nomination, introduced by yet another celebrity who needs to be introduced? This sort of thing kind of guarantees the evening can’t ever really build momentum, and instead regularly judders to a halt. There are a bunch of ways the ceremony’s designers could go about tackling this, from reducing the categories they feature to staging in such a way that it’s more designed for the TV audience than for the attendees. But if there was one change we could impose on all future ceremonies, it would be this one: for the love of Mike, lose an hour.

This article is related to: Awards, Academy Awards, Oscars, Features, Feature


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates