Archive for the ‘Cynthia Wade’
At the end of the video and after the break is the answer to this week’s quiz: In winning the Oscar for Short Subject Documentary, Croton native Cynthia Wade actually beat out another Lower Hudson Valley product. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Salim BabaÃ¢â‚¬? director Francisco Bello graduated in 1998 from which local institution?
A. Hendrick Hudson High School
B. Ossining High School
C. Scarsdale High School
There were mixed results from last night’s Oscars as far as local representation was concerned.
North Salem resident and New Rochelle native Alan MenkenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Oscar drought continues. Although he received three Best Song nominations for his contributions to Ã¢â‚¬Å“Enchanted,Ã¢â‚¬? itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s likely his supporters split votes, allowing for a song from the movie Ã¢â‚¬Å“OnceÃ¢â‚¬? to win the trophy. Although he hasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t won an Oscar since 1996, donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t feel too bad for Menken. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s won eight total.
New Rochelle resident Ruby Dee also lost out on an Academy Award this Sunday. The Ã¢â‚¬Å“American GangsterÃ¢â‚¬? actress lost the Best Supporting Actress award to Tilda Swinson, who won for her role in Ã¢â‚¬Å“Michael Clayton.Ã¢â‚¬? And not for her dress.
The Lower Hudson Valley wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t completely shut out, however, as Croton native Cynthia Wade not only won the Short Subject Documentary Oscar for Ã¢â‚¬Å“Freeheld,Ã¢â‚¬? but also was presented the trophy by two-time Oscar-winner Tom Hanks. In doing so, Wade beat out another LoHud product. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Salim BabaÃ¢â‚¬? director Francisco Bello, who graduated in 1998 from Ossining High School.
Aside from Jon Stewart’s monologue and the Jonah Hill/Seth Rogan-Halle Berry/Judi Dench bit, it was kind of like watching “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End”Ã¢â‚¬â€I really wanted to enjoy it, to believe it was worth the hype, but it just seemed to drag and drag. And, of course, it was utterly predictable.
OK, so maybe Marion Cotillard was a surprise, but were any of the others? Maybe I’m a little bitter that Hal Holbrook and Ruby Dee ended up empty-handed (even though I did pick Tilda Swinton), or maybe it’s just that the supposedly “shortened” clip-reels from past ceremonies padded the show with what felt like a half-hour of filler (loved the Jon Stewart tributes to “binoculars and telescopes” and “bad dreams,” though). Bottom line: I’m kinda wishing I’d spent the night watching the latest installment of “The Wire” instead.
A few more random thoughts on the evening:
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ Go Cynthia Wade! The one true silver-lining moment of the evening for me was when the Croton native (pictured here, on the left) won the award for Best Documentary Short Subject. In case you haven’t seen our RNN Oscar Special yet, Karen DePodwin has an outstanding interview and profile of Wade — in full Oscar-preparation mode. Skip about 1/4 of the way through the full video to watch it.
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ Was it just me, or did Denzel Washington look royally pissed off to be presenting Best Picture? And really, can you blame him? The Mount Vernon native got snubbed for not one, but two films (“American Gangster” and “The Great Debaters”). I can’t speak to the latter, but for my money, the former was easily as good as any of the actual Best Pic nominees.
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ Boy, did New Rochelle’s Ruby Dee look shocked after they played the clip of her slapping Denzel in “American Gangster”? As she watched from her seat, the expression on her face seemed to say: “That was me in that movie? Damn, I’m good!”
Ã¢â‚¬Â¢ Nobody was more uncomfortable in their attire than Diablo Cody. As she walked away from the podium after accepting Best Original Screenplay, with the slit in her dress riding up waaay too high, the only thought running through her head: I knew I shoulda worn underwear.
(All photos: AP)
This Friday at 7:30 p.m. EST, Ted Mann and I will join TV reporter Karen DePodwin for a live RNN segment about Sunday’s Academy Awards. I’ll be wearing my tux for only the third time since my senior year in college, so the comedic value of that alone might be worth the tune-in. Here’s a preview of one of the topics slated for discussion.
Stars with a connection to the Lower Hudson Valley have done very well for themselves at the Oscars over the years, and 2008 is no exception.
Eight-time Oscar-winner Alan Menken, a New Rochelle native and North Salem resident, has been nominated three times for his songs from the Disney movie “Enchanted.” He took home his first two trophies for Best Song and Best Score for Ã¢â‚¬Å“The Little Mermaid,Ã¢â‚¬? and his most recent ones were in the same categories for songs from Ã¢â‚¬Å“Pocahontas.Ã¢â‚¬? In total, he’s been nominated for a whopping 18 Oscars, but hasn’t won one since 1996.
First-time nominee and sentimental favorite Ruby Dee, a New Rochelle resident, is nominated for Best Supporting Actress for her part in “American Gangster,” starring Mount Vernon native Denzel Washington and former Nyack dweller Russell Crowe — both of whom are Oscar-winners themselves.
LoHud also has at least two representatives in the Best Documentary/Short Subject category, including Ossining High School alumnus Francisco Bello (for “Salim Baba”) and former Croton-on-Hudson resident Cynthia Wade (for “Freeheld”).
After the break, check out a list of some other prominent current and former residents of the Lower Hudson Valley who have won or have been nominated for an Oscar in the last 30 years. (more…)