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View Full Version : Writers, let us have the Academy Awards


Monotreme
01-05-2008, 04:15 AM
I won't deny it. As much as it can be annoying, political, biased, unfair, not a real judge of quality in the past year's filmmaking... I love the academy awards. I love seeing all my favourite actors, actresses, directors and others in the same place at the same time. I love seeing the movies I enjoyed during the past year compete. I love rooting for my favourites in all the categories. I love trying to guess who will be the winners. I love seeing the nervous faces of my favourite filmmakers, actors and actresses, which goes to show more than anything that at the end of all things they are just regular people like we are. I love the tension of announcing the winners. I love the prestige that an Oscar does for a person's career in this business, that can be felt to the fullest extent in the ceremony.

So this is less of a rant and more of a plea: Writers' Guild of America, let us have our awards show.

Alright, you guys win - you've claimed the Golden Globes. And as much as I enjoy that ceremony as well, for the same reason, there's no doubt that it pales in comparison to the Oscars in terms of its selections and in terms of quality. So fine, you know what? I can live one year without the Globes. Seriously, I can. But please, I'm begging of you - reach a deal in time for the end of February, and don't take the Oscars away from us as well. I'm not even denying it - it is an event that I anticipate on a yearly basis; since late Summer I'm already looking forward to it, taking in the September-December films and making mental notes in my head about how that performance deserves a nomination or how that cinematography deserves an Oscar.

I could also pull out the prestige card. Actors and directors could relate less, but I'm sure that many of the writers in the writers guild can identify with this: It is absolutely uncanny just how much the Oscars can do for somebody's career in this business. And I'm not talking about the heavy hitters who keep coming back for more - Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood, Meryl Streep, and Jack Nicholson won't lose any of their prestige if they miss the exposure of one year's Oscar ceremony. I'm talking about the smaller guys, the first-time nominees, or those in the minor categories. I mean, how many times do you think that a Best Short Film Oscar winner will return to the ceremony with another entry? There are few people in Hollywood who actually make careers out of making short films; in that category, it really is a one-off thing. So imagine all those Best Short Film contenders this year who could miss out on the greatest exposure chance of their lifetime just because the writers and the studios were too stubborn to reach an agreement.

And you know what - fuck their agreement. I frankly don't care if the writers' strike continues - the thing it is doing the most, in my mind, is delaying the production of big, bloated studio-produced movies that would probably end up sucking anyway. So good for you writers - don't give up your struggle, don't back down from your rights. And good for you studios - don't give in to their shit. But writers, I'm asking you - step back for a moment and realize, no, remember, just how important an event the Academy Awards are. And once you come to this conclusion, for the sake of the audience at home, the movie-loving community, and the people trying to make it in the business for whom Oscar night could be the biggest and greatest night of their career - give the Academy special permission to use writers so that the ceremony can go on according to plan in late February. We got your point, the Globes won't happen - but you gave the Screen Actor's Guild special permission, so it isn't a logistics problem but rather an issue of personal vendetta, out of spite, making your point. Well I can assure you - we can get your point even if you let the Oscars go on as planned.

Please, look into your hearts and let us have our show!

RustyRazor
01-05-2008, 09:54 AM
I just heard a number of actors are snubbing the upcoming SAG awards and I wondered how the Academy Awards was going to play out.
Maybe, to prevent stopping a tradition that's spanned decades of honoring movies and the actors and actresses that played in them, the writers should be given what they're asking for and this strike should be ended?

Wonder if that'll matter.

Cronos
01-05-2008, 10:08 AM
Considering how big of a joke last years awards were I couldn't care less if the strike causes them to skip/push it back this year.

thedudeman69
01-05-2008, 10:32 AM
Frankly I am not going to miss the Globes this year because after Tom Hanks repeating that Warren Beatty has "Huge balls" over and over, I think this year isn't going to be that great either.

chasingbanky
01-05-2008, 11:59 AM
George C. Scott would be loving this... Fuck award shows.

bigred760
01-05-2008, 01:02 PM
I like seeing the Golden Globes, but I like the fact that many of the actors will sit it out in favor of the writers' strike. I do hope the Oscars aren't affected by the strike; it is a fun show to watch.

Le_Big_Mac
01-05-2008, 02:28 PM
Honestly, I haven't been that impressed by many movies last year so if there weren't any Oscars this year, it wouldn't be a tragedy.

SkyNet
01-05-2008, 11:14 PM
the writers strike is just getting on my last nerve right now. It seems like the heads of the WGA now, are more interested in flexing their muscle then concluding this shit.

The awards show, ya ok, they may be stupid and boring sometimes (when, lets be honest alot of that fault IS the writers... i dont give a fuck about witty banter between Shannon Elizabeth and Tyrese Gibson)

but what some people fail to realize is that winning these awards is huge, some people have DREAMS of winning one of these awards, and part of that dream is getting in front of a huge crowd of ppl in the theater and on TV and accepting that award, and to have that taken away from them. i just feel thats so shitty.

The WGA can say theyw ont supply writers to the awards... BUT the Awards should go on, and the WGA should not worry about the people who attend, they worked their fucking asses off to be even considered for something like that, and now the WGA heads, wanting to flex their muscle, say they dont want anyone to go. Thats just ridiculous

and in case anyone thinks i am against the writers, i am not, especially since i am a member of the WGA (Student member) and am (obviously) in full support of the demands... but this shit with the awards shows has pissed me off to no end.

mutesaint
01-06-2008, 10:00 AM
They are still going to have the awards, whether there is a show or not. The only difference is that a million people(non movie workers) wont see it happen live. They will still reap the same business benefits that they would. No difference. The only people not having an actual show affects are the host, who wont get paid, and us. Thats it.

bigred760
01-06-2008, 10:44 AM
If the Golden Globes and Academy Awards still televise the awards with the strike still going on and nobody showing up to present or accept, I think I'll look forward to the screenplay awards presentations more than anything.

Digifruitella
01-06-2008, 11:16 AM
Oh they'll have the award shows, it's the picket line outside it they have to worry about, or not, or whatever. :)

Ronaldinho
01-06-2008, 05:20 PM
The Academy Awards show is a HUGE profit center for ABC. It's inexpensive to produce, and often the second-highest rated show of the year.

The producers are refusing to give us (and yes, us - I'm a WGA member) anything approaching a fair deal. They're not negotiating in good faith. (If you want me to go into why this is, I'm happy to.)

Absolutely, an academy award can be a career-making experience. But it can be that for a writer, as well.

If it was a case of the producers engaging in good-faith negotiations and we just weren't there yet, I could see relaxing on what appears to be some of our more punitive measures. But they're not. Not even close. So what are we supposed to do, say, "Here, have you're hugely profitable show, undercut our position ..." does that make any sense at all?

If you're going to be mad any anyone, be mad at the AMPTP for issuing absurd ultimatums and refusing to negotiate.

(And in any event, I'd say there's a 50-50 chance this will be wrapped up in a couple of weeks, depending on what happens with the directors, anyway.)

Scorpio24
01-07-2008, 03:38 PM
I love the awards too. I think everyone does secretly. But i'm more than happy to miss out this year if it means the writers getting a fair deal.

ilovemovies
01-07-2008, 10:35 PM
(And in any event, I'd say there's a 50-50 chance this will be wrapped up in a couple of weeks, depending on what happens with the directors, anyway.)


God, I hope you are right.

If the strike is done within the next two weeks, do you think the rest of the tv season can be salvaged? Or do you think the rest of the season has been destroyed?

I'm particularly worried about my favorite shows: 24, Lost and Prison Break. Especially 24 which isn't even scheduled to be on the air yet because of the strike.

outsyder
01-08-2008, 02:14 PM
Now that I consider it, I'm not necessarily opposed to a guy coming out onto an empty stage and reading names from envelopes for 10 minutes.

Ronaldinho
01-08-2008, 03:58 PM
If the strike is done within the next two weeks, do you think the rest of the tv season can be salvaged? Or do you think the rest of the season has been destroyed?

I'm particularly worried about my favorite shows: 24, Lost and Prison Break. Especially 24 which isn't even scheduled to be on the air yet because of the strike.

I really don't know what'll happen to shows like 24. I suspect that a lot of shows will come back with truncated seasons, but that's a big challenge for a show like 24.

I haven't heard any rumors about the DGA negotiations, yet, so we have to wait and see. I know that all the writers I'm on the line with want to get back to work, but won't do so unless we get a fair deal, so if the DGA takes a reasonable deal (even if it's not quite what we would want on our own) I suspect we'd probably take it.

But if they take a lousy deal, we won't.

DarthWade
01-08-2008, 04:34 PM
Honestly, I don't care if they cancel the Academy Awards. I feel bad for the "grunts" - the regular people who make the show happen and will lose out on a paying job. The celebs will just lose out on a photo op and tv exposure. It's not like their worlds will come crashing to an end.

Kevin Lockard
01-08-2008, 04:51 PM
Every year that comes around, I usually watch the Oscars, but it's more out of habit than anything, so I won't be upset to see it not make it this year.

X-Nightcrawler
01-08-2008, 08:15 PM
Considering how big of a joke last years awards were I couldn't care less if the strike causes them to skip/push it back this year.Although for the most part I agree with the original poster about the Awards being ridiculous but always enjoyable, I'm going to agree with you. Last Oscars were ridiculous.

Shinigami
01-08-2008, 08:38 PM
If you're going to be mad any anyone, be mad at the AMPTP for issuing absurd ultimatums and refusing to negotiate.

Oh come on. If I quit my job because the pay is too low, I don't tell people who are frustrated with my leaving "Blame the company for not paying me more." I think it's great the WGA has gathered together this relentless strike, and I hope they don't settle for any less than they deserve, but take some responsibility. The repercussions of this strike are the WGAs responsibilities. I won't say it's the WGAs 'fault', since fault implies negativity, and this certainly isn't negative in context.
I don't know why I'm making such a big deal over these semantics, but it just bothered me. Maybe I've heard the finger pointing so much in the news and papers that I jumped when you mentioned it in passing. Didn't mean to go all Tom Cruise over your couch. Go figure.

TeeRay
01-10-2008, 12:25 AM
At the risk of sounding like an asshole, do we really need writers for awards shows? The writing at Awards shows always sucks, you can tell the actors are forcing their delivery, and people usually complain that the show is too damn long anyway. Wouldn't an awards show minus writing make the show better? A shortened show would actually help ratings, because they would go right to the awards with no skits or anything, and the only reason people watch is to see who wins.

Just a thought.

bigred760
01-10-2008, 05:10 AM
I don't think they need writers, but I would prefer they had them. Most of the time, I enjoy the opening monologue (where have you gone Billy Crystal?), and there's the writing for the presentations as well.

What they should do is forewarn the nominees that they're not allowed to write any thank you speeches. I'd be for that.

SkyNet
01-10-2008, 03:04 PM
At the risk of sounding like an asshole, do we really need writers for awards shows? The writing at Awards shows always sucks, you can tell the actors are forcing their delivery, and people usually complain that the show is too damn long anyway. Wouldn't an awards show minus writing make the show better? A shortened show would actually help ratings, because they would go right to the awards with no skits or anything, and the only reason people watch is to see who wins.

Just a thought.


i agree 100%.... the "Witty" banter between the celebs is generally horrible and not funny! The funniest stuff is the spontaneity of the awards. After watching a little bit of the Peoples Choice awards the other day, we need ceremonies, they are just enjoyable! Maybe that and the fact that Queen Latifah was a Horrible Horrible host!

we better get some Oscars! Its time for the heads of the Writers guild to quit trying to flex what little muscle they have, and for the AMPTMPUYGHMP to realize that certain things need ot be compensated in all fairness.

Ronaldinho
01-10-2008, 03:18 PM
Oh come on. If I quit my job because the pay is too low, I don't tell people who are frustrated with my leaving "Blame the company for not paying me more."

Well, let's talk about specifics. The entertainment industry is doing great - revenues and profits are up. And yet networks want to replace the residual payment for a first network rerun (which for an hour-long drama is something like $22k) with a right-to-use-on-the-internet-payment of $250.

Seriously. That's their proposal. For a working TV writer, that can amount to a pay-cut of 20-30%.

So let me ask you: if your employer came to you and said, "The company's doing great. Please do the exact same job for 30% less money," what would you do?

Would you say, "Ok?"



I think it's great the WGA has gathered together this relentless strike, and I hope they don't settle for any less than they deserve, but take some responsibility. The repercussions of this strike are the WGAs responsibilities.

Well, the AMPTP is refusing to negotiate with us in good faith. We want to negotiate a deal. They are refusing to come to the table.

Those are the facts.

There isn't one writer I've walked the line with who would rather be striking than working. We haven't received an offer that isn't insulting, and they're refusing to come to the table.

floydtheater07
01-10-2008, 04:53 PM
I look forward to the Academy Awards every year. It's not even a guilty pleasure thing; I simply enjoy the hell out of anything that celebrates movies. I'm already disappointed about waiting a year for Spielberg to get his Cecil B. Demille award at the Globes; I will be really irritated if the Academy Awards are lost too.

By the way, I do support the writers and hope that they get a fair deal. Nothing less, but nothing more either.