The 84th Annual Academy Awards are right around the corner (they air on Sunday, February 26th, in fact) and while everyoneís busy speculating on the winners, we wanted to know who from our neck of the woods is going to make the journey to sunny Los Angeles for their chance to grab a gold Oscar statuette.
It didnít take long to realize that the connections to Beantown at the 2012 Oscars are extensive. Not only was fair Fenway Park the backdrop for scenes in the blockbuster, Moneyball, but countless nominees have roots here.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has made film-making an economic development priority with their tax incentive program, so it's great to see a strong Massachusetts impact on Hollywood's most important evening.
Here are some interesting local ties to check out:
- Robert Richardson, Hugo (nominated for Best Cinematography), was born in Hyannis, MA
- Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life (nominated for Best Director), graduated from Harvard and taught philosophy at MIT
- Bruce Sinofsky, Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory (nominated for Best Documentary Feature), was born in Boston
- Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, Saving Face (nominated for Documentary Short Subject), attended Smith College
- Howard Shore, Hugo (nominated for Best Music: Original Score), attended Berklee College of Music
- Michael Semanick, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (nominated for Best Sound Mixing), attended Berklee College of Music
- Matthew Butler, Transformers: Dark of the Moon (nominated for Best Visual Effects), got his masters degree in Aeronautics and Astronautics from MIT
- Nat Faxon, The Descendants (nominated for Best Writing: Adapted Screenplay), is from Boston
This is, of course, not the first time Bostonians have been up for the top awards! Everyone remembers the awards won by Good Will Hunting (Robin Williams grabbed Best Supporting Actor and Best Original Screenplay went to Boston-area natives Ben Affleck and Matt Damon) back in the Ď90s. What about 2006ís The Departed, set in Boston? Local favorite Mark Wahlberg was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his performance.
(If you want to check out some of the Oscar-nominated short films between now and Sunday, the Institute of Contemporary Art-Boston has several nights of showings you can still get in on.)
Whatís also cool is that the Boston connections arenít just limited to talented individuals. Winning, as you all know, is deeply ingrained in our cityís cultural DNA. Avid, the Burlington, MA-based digital audio and video technology company, is the force behind six of the nine Best Picture nominees this year (The Help, The Descendants, Tree of Life, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Moneyball, and War Horse). But Avidís Oscar legacy extends back beyond this year. For example, at the 2011 Oscars, more than 45 nominees in a variety of categories used Avid systems and for the past 11 years, every nominee for a Sound Editing Oscar has used them, too.
So on the 26th, when you are attending great Oscar parties like the annual Ellie Fund Gala at The Mandarin-Boston (did you know their party is the only one in the state sanctioned by the Academy itself?), donít forget to root, root, root for the home team Ė in many categories, one way or the other, weíve got at least one nominee in the race!
Kate Pokorny is a Director at Version 2.0 Communications, which is how she came upon all of these Boston Oscar ties as Avid is a client. She serves as a Boston World Parternships Connector and likes to crochet.
The author is solely responsible for the content.
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