Column: Whatever happened to the Oscars?

 Leo scooped an Oscar for The Revenant in the 2016 ceremony
Leo scooped an Oscar for The Revenant in the 2016 ceremony

Whatever happened to the magic of Hollywood?

The unattainable glitz, the pride and the old-school, ethereal, glamour,and unreality of the film industry’s finest.

Let’s face it, this year’s Oscars ceremony wasn’t exactly a classic.

Despite the usual sparkle , gazillions of dollars and stratospheric star power all present and correct, it all seemed to go a little bit wrong for the glittering American award ceremony.

The usual build-up and buzz was dogged from the start by allegations that the shortlist was ‘whitewashed’, the debate (in my opinion a very valid one) exacerbated in the media by some famous names refusing to attend or publicly stating their concerns.

When civic rights groups got involved, urging the American public to ‘tune out’, it was that a country more attuned to inclusion than ever before was rebelling.

And while the Oscars has been used as a political platform before, this time – in the era of social media power and judgement – the shine went right off those golden statuettes, if not the actual TV viewing figures.

Meanwhile, here in the UK, we could not claim to be underrepresented as a country with numerous names on the nomination list and an actual winner, in the form of James Bond theme singer Sam Smith.

This was quite the night for Sam, who described it ‘the worst moment of his life’ when he struggled with the pitchy falsetto notes of the theme tune live on stage into front of millions (it really wasn’t that bad Sam) but also his best after scooping an Oscar for the very same song.

But even that moment of glory was not for him to savour for long as he came under fire for his badly researched and emotional acceptance speech – claiming to be the first openly gay winner of an Oscar.

He wasn’t, a fact pointed out to him millions of times and rather cruelly via media social and otherwise.

We couldn’t possibly let one of our own enjoy his win.

Even my favourite bit – the red carpet – failed to wow, with black gowns dominant and signalling difficult days for this film institution.

This first appeared in the Lancashire Evening Post HERE