Oscar Extravaganza!

February 26, 2014

We celebrate a few non-traditional holidays in our house like they are Christmas. The Superbowl and the Oscars. As a diehard Broncos fan, the Superbowl this year was devastating, and embarrassing, and something I’d like to forget. We can only hope that the 86th Annual Academy Awards this Sunday turns out better.
We have a group of equally nerdy, movie-buff friends who gather for Oscar night every year. We crowd around our 70” Sony TV—usually reserved for Sunday football and weeknight basketball games—to watch from the first red carpet interview to the final sign-off from Ellen.
We each cook up an appetizer, main dish or a dessert and throw together an elegant potluck dinner to feed our appetite for all things cinematic. In the past we’ve tried to theme the food—everything must be black, gold and white, or has to be somehow related to the Best Picture nominees. There’s an actual menu from Epicurious that offers up ideas. Who knew there was such a thing as a Gravity-related entrée? But that got a little overwhelming, even for us foodies with a Pinterest addiction. This year we’re keeping it simple, just serving all of the food on white dishes with simple black and gold napkins and décor. Our one indulgence is that we’re each making a different flavor of popcorn, inspired by our friend Natalie’s famous white chocolate popcorn which is sinfully delicious. Check it out here if you are interested.
We found a couple of cool trivia games to download and share during the party along with a ballot that we’ll fill out with our predictions for the award winners. The person with the most correct guesses wins the pool of money in Superbowl style and, even better, bragging rights for the year to come.  
As usual, it seems like I’m scrambling to see all of the Best Picture nominees before Sunday night’s broadcast. I’ve been camped out in our home theater for the past couple of days watching Captain Phillips (amazing to think that Barkhad Abdi the chauffer-turned-Oscar contender nabbed the nomination over Tom Hanks. I blame Tom’s bad Boston accent, personally.), Dallas Buyers’ Club (who knew Matthew McConaughey is a serious actor; I mean I love his abs and his Texas accent and any rom-com with him and Kate Hudson but this was an impressive, hopefully career-changing performance) and Wolf of Wall Street (bleep! It was so bleeping bleep-bleep! You’ve gotta be bleeping me!). I still haven’t been able to track down copies of Her and Philomena yet but I haven’t given up. After all, there are still 5 days before the show starts. [cue music] Wait! Not yet! I wasn’t done reviewing the other movies I’ve seen, including my personal pick for Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave