Will Ideology Trump Artistry in Oscar Night Speeches?
It's been nine years since Michael Moore delivered an unhinged rant against President George W. Bush while picking up his Best Documentary Film Oscar for "Fahrenheit 9/11." Moore's speech wasn't the only political diatribe heard since, but now that President Barack Obama is in the White House the Oscar night speeches have grown ... tame.
The 2012 presidential elections are still months away, so even politically aware actors like Tom Hanks might not have votes on their minds on the biggest night of the movie year.
Does that mean we can expect another uneventful Oscar broadcast, from an ideological point of view? Could very well be, but here are the five most likely personalities to use the Oscar bully pulpit as their personal message machine:
- Demien Bichir, "A Better Life" - Bichir is the dark horse candidate in the Best Actor category given the film's low profile, but should he win it's a given he'll touch on how the movies ostensibly argues for open border immigration policies. Bichir is an unknown in the U.S., although the film's director used the movie as a launching pad for an offensive assault against those who believe a nation has a right to control the flood of immigrants entering the country.
- George Clooney, "The Descendants" - Clooney is no dummy. And in past years we'd say there's zero chance he'd use Oscar night as a platform for his ideological views. He understands how old school Hollywood works and when it's appropriate to make a statement. But he's so beloved within the industry it might give him the security to throw caution - and better sense - to the wind and waxed poetic on his pet causes.
Christopher Plummer, "Beginners" - Plummer is a near-lock to pick up the Best Supporting Actor Oscar, and his poignant turn as an older man who comes out of the closet opens the door for a same sex marriage monologue of some kind. Plummer is a class act, so it's possible such a speech would be less divisive than some might expect.
- Meryl Streep, "The Iron Lady" - Streep has been talking to the press about playing Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for months in the run-up to Oscar night. She might not be able to stop. And who knows what she might say to describe her conflicted feelings on the British icon?
- Kermit the Frog/Miss Piggy - No, the felt-covered duo won't be taking any acting awards home for their work on "The Muppets." But considering how the pair treated the media maelstrom regarding the film's oil baron villain there's a fair chance a fresh Fox News slam is in the offing.