Awards Weekend

Busy week. So much so that I haven’t had time to blog or to take pictures, which is actually a great feeling. On Sunday night I was playing a big game of charades at my house with Tara, Aaron Katz, his girlfriend Elizabeth, Brendan McFadden, Cris Lankenau, Sarah Hellman, Matt Boese, George Ducker, Keegan DeWitt, Andy Reed and Tara’s friend Michaela and it occured to me that this is what people did before the internet. This was how people had a good time and it sounds stupid but it was a refreshing realization and an even more refreshing night. It came after a big, all evening long Oscar watching party which saw 27 people packed into our tight living room and a heated Oscar pool that eventually ended up going my way. My quick thoughts on the Oscars are that I will always watch them no matter what and I almost always enjoy them. A lot of talk has been sputtering out about how to “fix” the show since the ratings were the worst ever and I can tell you exactly why no one watches anymore. It’s not the host or the low-wattage nominees or the films in any given year. It’s the fact that there are thirteen other award shows that are televised in the two months leading up to this one and so the Oscars are no longer that special. They are still the biggest and brightest award show out there but the fun is no longer in wondering what the winners will say because we’ve already seen them give three speeches. And awards prognostication has turned into a full-fledged business of its own. The very people who track Oscar buzz all year and comment on it every day leading up to the show are the same ones who gripe about predictability the next day and the very perpetuators of that predictability. So, I think the Oscars should move up even further in the year, even if it means they air before the Golden Globes and SAG Awards. Try to elimate the huge gap of time between nominations and awards and see what happens.

Speaking of other award shows, the main attraction for the weekend was the Spirit Awards, which I got to attend in support of Quiet City. We were up for the John Cassevetes Award and literally had no clue if we were gonna win or not (see what I’m saying Oscars?). We got up early and headed for the beach at around 1030am. The red carpet kicked off at 1130am and we started our stroll down it at around 1230pm. None of us had publicists or sexy, famous faces so it was no surprise that hardly any news outlets were itching for our interview. IFC took the bait though and we appeared on their live webcast, which was being watched by my Mom and aunts, who got a real kick out of it.

Then we reached the part of the carpet where you stand still and everyone takes your photo. We were waiting for our turn until an event organizer waved us to just skip it all together and yelled “Keep walking!” Oh well. Once inside, we were able to start drinking and eating and come to terms with how surreal this whole evening was going to be. Our award came right in the middle and saw us lose out to Chris Eska and his film, August Evening. I haven’t seen it but I can’t get too mad since Chris was real nice to me back at the nominee barbeque in January. After that, the drinks flowed even faster and by the time the show was over at 430pm, I was hammered.

Fortunately, I wasn’t driving home just yet and we walked next door to Shutters for the after party. Unfortunately, there was way more free booze and I partaked. Tara met us there and I got to chat with some cool folks like Craig Zobel, Jeff Nichols, David Gordon Green (who is my match in useless box office trivia) and John Carney. The highlight has to be this verbatim conversation between me and Olivia Thirlby.

Chad– Hey. Are you Olivia Thirlby?
Olivia Thirlby– Yes I am.
Chad– Hi. I’m Chad. I loved you in Undertow.
Olivia Thirlby– Really? Thanks. I’m not in that though.
Chad– Really?
Olivia Thirlby– Yeah. I was in another David Green movie, Snow Angels.
Chad– Oh, maybe I really liked you in that trailer.
Olivia Thirlby– Maybe.
Chad– This is really embarrassing, I’m sorry.
Olivia Thirlby– No, at least you said my name right.

Thanks Olivia Thirlby, for being a good sport to a drunk douchebag like me. That was pretty much the day but there were also parties on Thursday and Friday night leading up to the show that were also fun and gave me a chance to catch up with Joe Swanberg, who just released the teaser for his new movie Nights and Weekends and it is really great. Check it.

For someone who has spent a great deal of time in two separate long distance relationships, I have a feeling this flick is gonna hit real close to home. Anyway, here are a few pictures from the festivities.

Brendan, Aaron, me and Keegan at the Thursday night cocktail reception and the last picture of me before an ill-advised $35 haircut

This is the guy that is being called a new voice in independent cinema

Elizabeth getting ready


McFadden looking sharp



Brendan, Aaron, Elizabeth and Keegan in a real blown out photo from the parking lot


My ill-advised $35 haircut


It was a gorgeous day until the show started at least






I should mention that even though I wasn’t a nominee myself, I felt intense emotions throughout the evening. If you ever wondered what those moments before they call a name out of the envelope are like, I will tell you that they are excruciating. And the moment after they call someone else’s name are like slowly falling from a cliff only you weigh as much as a feather and you gently drift from side to side to the floor. And with each sway you try to grasp back to the top of the cliff where it’s still possible you might win.


He may be a loser, but he’s got the love of a good gal


Brendan and Erin Fisher managed to trick some photographers at the afterparty into thinking they were important

That’s that. Marc uploaded a video of our red-carpet interview so if you have any interest in that here it is.

Two other things to mention and the first is that Jean-Michel Bernard somehow stumbled upon my scathing review of Be Kind Rewind below and left a comment about my remarks toward his score. This made me feel real bad real quick since I’m sure he’s a great guy and I actually do like his score for The Science of Sleep. So while I won’t change my opinion about Be Kind Rewind or other films, I may stop posting reviews that could potentially alienate everyone in the movie business before I get a chance to meet them. The other thing to mention is the final Democratic debate that was held in Ohio the other night. I don’t really need to watch the debates because my mind is made up, but to me, the night was won in two simple words. “Sounds good”. Watch the clip below and witness Barack Obama’s response to MSNBC’s video mix-up. That’s the guy I want to be my President.

This entry was posted in events, friends, miscellaneous, parties. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Awards Weekend

  1. jm bernard says:

    don’t feel bad!
    I perfectly understand that you don’t like BKR’s score, many people like it.
    it’s the composer’s life, sometimes it’s good sometimes its not…
    You can’t be loved by everybody especially when you make music with a strong personnality, and with m gondry’s case, it’s very linked to what he is asking for, you can understand that, I am sure.

    Thanks for SOS, maybe you’ll like the next one, one never knows !


    you can respond to me if you want-my address is on my website.
    I am an open guy…sometimes !

  2. Elizabeth says:

    great photo journal! any chance of high res images becoming available somehow?

  3. Pingback: Best of 2008 « Chad Hartigan

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s