By RUAN GRILLE
The 91st Academy Awards were broadcast live on ABC last Sunday. It was the first Oscars ceremony since 1989 that did not feature a host, as Kevin Hart withdrew from hosting following a controversy emerging from anti-gay statements he had made in the past. As they do every year, the media covered the event from various angles.
As the event featured many celebrity appearances, special attention was given to the fashion seen at the ceremony. One notable fashion moment was Melissa McCarthy’s bunny dress while presenting the Oscar for Best Costume Design. There were also many opinion pieces that commented on how the Academy Awards are a reflection of current trends in the larger Hollywood film industry, as well as the artistic merit of the films nominated. Notably, there was debate about whether “Green Book” was truly worthy of its Best Picture win.
The music press also reported on the musical performances at the ceremony, especially that of Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s performance of “Shallow”. On the political side, there were articles both praising and deriding the identity politics of the event. Notably, Donald Trump responded harshly to Spike Lee’s acceptance speech after he won an Oscar for “BlacKkKlansman”.
So why do the Academy Awards receive so much coverage?
The easiest answer is that the Academy Awards are arguably the most important and prestigious awards ceremony for film. As such, entertainment reporters cover the event thoroughly in order to gain stronger views. Despite this, the Oscars have been steadily losing viewers every year, despise this year’s viewership increasing 12 percent over last year. Essentially, the entertainment media cover the Oscars in much the same way sports media cover the Super Bowl, although admittedly not as zealously. Among the general public, however, there is an ever-growing antipathy towards the Oscars. Time will tell how the media will react to the Oscars in the years to come.