' ' Cinema Romantico: [Insert Oscar Nominee Name Here] #2020

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

[Insert Oscar Nominee Name Here] #2020

In the wake of Oprah Winfrey’s rousing Golden Globes acceptance speech for her lifetime achievement award, the social media was inflamed with an Oprah2020 hashtag, indicating, of course, a Twitter desire for Ms. Winfrey to run for President. This, of course, was nothing more than Twitter, as Twitter will, running amok, no more or less serious, really, than a Saturday morning in the Tweet-verse overrun by stale #TrumpExplainsMoviePlots jokes. I mean, I really do need to know Oprah’s position on, say, campaign finance form before I walk myself down to the ballot box and write her name in. Even so, in these times #Oprah2020 was bound to be think piece-d, or met with incisive ripostes like “It’s just an awards show, people” [nods thoughtfully], and so it was.

Us? It got us to thinking about what potential Oscar winners might suddenly be transformed into non-viable Presidential candidates at the upcoming Academy Awards. Here are a few possibilities.


Washington has a fairly underrated Disinterested Awards Show Face and so what if he deployed it coming to the stage to present immediately after, say, the Animated Short winner has just given an impassioned geopolitical speech and Washington looks at the teleprompter which wants him to read a joke involving a terrible pun on the name of the character for his Oscar nominated role – Roman J. Israel – and so he shakes his head and lowers the envelope he’s carrying and says some variation of the old SNL Elvis Costello line about there being no reason to do this joke here and then he just launches into his own version of Peter Finch’s I’m Mad As Hell, And I’m Not Going To Take It Anymore speech.


If Twitter had existed in February of 2006, it’s entirely possible that #Blige2020 would have actually swept Mary J. to office two years later on the strength of her Grammys “No More Drama” performance. Arguably the greatest What If? of the 21st Century.


The Green Party Candidate.


Remember at the Globes when she won Best Dramatic Actress, swaggered to the stage like Laila Ali from her corner to the center of the ring, and then said she had some things to say even though she chooses to keep her politics private? Well, what if at the Oscars she did not keep her politics private, and with Joel Coen dispatched to shut down the broadcast delay so that whatever she says makes it in, unleashes a fiery social screed that causes everyone to rise from their seats and charge into the streets for a spontaneous, if vaguely defined, protest, like when everyone on “30 Rock” ran out of their TGS holiday party to go chop down the Rockefeller Christmas Tree. 


Perhaps I’m absurdly conflating, but it seems to me that anyone who can manage to keep the Magic Castle Inn and Suites afloat could at least succeed in jerry-rigging democracy back into some spackled over sense of normalcy.

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