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Academy Penalizes Hurt Locker Producer Chartier

by Anne Thompson
March 2, 2010 11:34 AM
4 Comments
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Thompson on Hollywood

As I predicted, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences is penalizing The Hurt Locker producer Nicolas Chartier for violating Academy campaign standards by sending an email to his friends that promoted The Hurt Locker and dissed Avatar. Later at the Academy's behest Chartier sent an apologetic letter. Should the movie win best picture, states AMPAS, Chartier will not be one of the producers ascending the platform to accept his award, because he will not be admitted to the Oscar ceremony. His ticket has been revoked. Three producers, Kathryn Bigelow, Mark Boal and Gregory Shapiro, would accept their gold statues. Chartier would still be able to pick up his award at a later date.

The executive committee of the Academy's producer's branch voted on the penalty at a special session on Monday, and announced their decision Tuesday--the day ballots were due. (Most Academy voters had voted by the time the Chartier news hit media wires, so it's unlikely that it had much impact on the race.) It's also unlikely that Chartier, a foreign sales agent, will be invited to be a member of the Academy any time soon. One minute you're sitting on top of the world, accepting one award after another. The next you're an industry pariah. Chartier was stupid not to check his impulse to hit "send" with someone else, but I can't help feeling sorry for the guy. UPDATE: To make him feel better, WME's Graham Taylor and wife Lynette Howell will host an Oscar night party for Chartier, who has been muzzled by Summit.

On the other hand, other more powerful players have played in this sandbox without getting more than a knuckle-rapping. I know one Academy voter who not only bumped Inglourious Basterds to the bottom of his top ten ballot when he reacted badly to Harvey Weinstein's various media manipulations, but would have done the same with The Hurt Locker after learning about Chartier's email--if he hadn't already voted.

UPDATE: As the perceived front-runner, The Hurt Locker has been the target of several negative spins in the last days of the Oscar campaign. Now comes a lawsuit, filed Tuesday, from a bomb expert who says he's the basis of Mark Boal's fictional screen character, played by Jeremy Renner. Luckily for The Hurt Locker, the Academy ballots were due today.

[Photo: Mark Boal, Gregory Shapiro, Kathryn Bigelow, Nicolas Chartier.]

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More: Awards, Directors, Oscars, Kathryn Bigelow

4 Comments

  • nota15yrold | March 3, 2010 4:49 AMReply

    @Shirt.Locker what is it with people who hate this movie? and I use the word "hate" because they don't DISLIKE it -- which is fine if you do, it's an opinion -- but an actual grudge against anything to do with it, like it's some kind of offender to your life.

    It's fine to express an opinion, but when that opinion is coupled with some kind of self-important crusade to stroke your ego, then it's really juvenile.

  • Shirt.Locker | March 3, 2010 3:44 AMReply

    I really hope The Hurt Locker gets snubbed and wins zero awards, because it doesn't deserve any. When I saw this movie over a year ago, I thought for sure it would be direct to dvd release or win a bunch of razzies. Bigelow has created another steaming pile of nonsense to add to her BS resume.

    That's right, I'm a hater.

  • the.watering.hole | March 3, 2010 2:47 AMReply

    Serves that asshole right. There's nothing i hate more than an asshole whose ego matches his stupidity. Why behave like a child throwing a tantrum just a WEEK before oscars, i mean, how thick can you be? Going around telling everyone how bad a film is because he is insecure about his own film, wow. If I was associated with the hurt locker i'd be ready to bury this guy alive...

  • SADNER | March 3, 2010 2:34 AMReply

    God that is so typical of the academy's prudish mentality...if one has thoughts , one should be able to express them without any repression or punishment, no matter how offensive they might be.
    I'm 100% on Chartier's side , not because I agree with him , but because a principle like freedom of speech shouldn't be flushed down the toilet, just because the Academy can't bear the idea of creating competition between the nominees.
    Now , I do agree that it was certainly not curteous of him to act that way, but the Academy's not here to judge or to educate !! God , I would be infuriated if I were him !

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