Monday, February 25, 2008

Irish Notes at the Oscars

The 80th Oscars have ended, and the Irish have walked away with two awards; Daniel Day-Lewis, the Dublin actor, won as Best Actor for his astounding performance in "There Will Be Blood," the movie based on Sinclair Lewis' novel "Oil." This was as he was "knighted" with the golden statue by last year's Best Actress, Helen Mirren; Day-Lewis quipped, "And that's the closest I'll ever come to getting a knighthood, so thank you." The You Tube posted below is one of the last scenes in the movie; it's the milkshake scene. Saying he had been thinking of fathers and sons, Day-Lewis dedicated the award to the memory of his grandfather, father, the writer, Cecil Day-Lewis("The Chronicles of Narnia")and his three sons Gabriel, Ronan and Cashel.

By far the surprise award went to Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová for the lovely ballad "Falling Slowly" from the movie "Once," described as the little movie that could. The duo performed the Best Song earlier in the evening, and beat out three songs from the Disney movie "Enchanted." Markéta made Oscar history when she was led back onstage by host Jon Stewart after a commercial break so that she could give her thank-you speech. Both their performance and acceptance speeches were uploaded very quickly to You Tube, so we have included them here.

Day-Lewis, born in London and now living in County Wicklow, was the favorite to win Best Actor; other winners included Best Actress Marion Cotilliard, born in Paris("La Vie En Rose"), Best Supporting Actor Javier Bardem, born in the Canary Islands and now living in Madrid("No Country for Old Men), and Best Supporting ActressTilda Swinton, born in London and now living in Scotland("Michael Clayton"). - who in an aside to George Clooney, said, " the seriousness and the dedication to your art, seeing you climb into that rubber bat suit from "Batman & Robin," the one with the nipples, every morning under your costume, on the set, off the set, hanging upside-down at lunch, you rock, man!" Both women were surprise choices; both men, expected to win. "No Country for Old Men" was named best picture and the Coen brothers won the Oscar for Directing Achievement; "No Country" also won for adapted screenplay, from Cormac McCarthy's novel.

Patricia Jameson-Sammartano
Culture Editor, WGT

"Take this sinking boat and point it home We've still got time Raise your hopeful voice you have a choice You've made it now ."(chorus of "Falling Slowly")

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