Martin's Scorsese's film interpretation of Brian Selznick's award-winning graphic novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret received five Academy Awards last night. Pretty impressive. Not the big picture of the year award -- that went to The Artist. But both films received the same number of awards. Actually, Hugo was nominated for 11 awards, the most of any film this year. Curiously, too, both The Artist and Hugo are somewhat wistful film meditations on early cinema.
We were glad to read on School Library Journal that Brian Selznick was in the audience at the (former) Kodak Theater.
"Being on the red carpet, being in the room live as the telecast was underway, hearing the name Hugo called five times..., all of it was an experience I will never forget," Selznick told SLJ. "[I]t was really fun to introduce myself to famous people by saying I wrote the book that inspired Hugo and having them throw their arms around me, thank me for the story, and tell me they've seen the movie more than once... and some of them had even read the book and loved it too!"
In addition, the award for best animated short film went to William Joyce and Brandon Oldenburg's The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. Here's a link to the 15 minute YouTube video. It's also cool that the film was created by a Moonbot, a Shreveport, Louisiana, studio. Good to see animation developed in the U.S. and from a studio in the south. It is also available as an Apple app.
The animated film is "a poignant, potent ode to books," according to the Kirkus Review, which seems ironic to incapsulize in an iPhone app.
William Joyce is another imaginative children's picture book author as well as an Emmy-winning television creator of Rolie-Polie Olie and George Shrinks. Disney's 2007 animated film Meet the Robinsons is based on Joyce's book A Day with Wilbur Robinson.
On the other hand...
As YPulse points out today, last night's Academy Award program was not particularly welcoming to tweens or teens. It began with Billy Crystal putting on Justin Bieber for the "18 - 24 crowd" when, in reality, his core fan base is more 12 - 16 year olds, and primarily girls, too.
Oddly, only two songs were nominated for best song in an era when songs within films, and television shows, are important landmarks to creating a film's environment and atmosphere. But neither song was performed live. Why not? "Man or a Muppet" is such a catchy tune, in an odd way, that even Terri Gross, interviewer of NPR program "Fresh Air," admits she likes it.
Perhaps Justin Beiber could have performed "Man or a Muppet." That might have excited Martin Scorsese's daughter, who was sitting next to him during the awards ceremony and looking a bit bored for most of the night. Or, Why not have Oscar the Grouch present an Oscar?
The final Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 was nominated for three Academy Awards, but did not receive a statue in any of them. Huffington Post's high school blogger Marissa Piazolla understands Harry Potter fan's sadness when the final film failed to recieve an Oscar this time. In the categories that Harry Potter was running against Hugo, I actually thought Harry Potter had the better achievement.
On a final note, did you watch closely the preview for The Hunger Games? Didn't it look like the older sister Catnis is giving the Mockingjay pin to her younger sister Prim before the reaping? But in the book, Catnis receives the pin from the mayor's daughter when Catnis is about to go off to the reaping. Catnis isn't familiar with the importance of the Mockingjay pin at that point. Clearly there are changes afoot.
But we're still going to see the film when it opens.