Ultra Culture liveblogs The 2011 Oscars

Sunday February 27th 2011


11:00pm – Hello, and welcome to the first ever Ultra Culture ‘liveblog’. I’m at London’s simultaneously awful and brilliant Soho House for the Grey Goose Oscar Party, a gathering of half a dozen Very Important Film Bloggers being drip-fed Grey Goose vodka for six hours on the trot. I’m slightly overdressed with my clip-on bow tie: most people have gone down the smart-casual route.

We’ve got E! on in corner but the sound is down so it’s kind of hard to tell precisely what Ryan Seacrest is saying to the woman in the red dress with the blonde hair and the breasts. I imagine she enjoyed The King’s Speech and really wants to see Natalie Portman take home the Best Actress award, but of course I could be wrong.

11:20pm – They’ve put the sound on now, and when I say ‘on’ I mean ‘DEAFENINGLY ON’. Still, at least we can hear Ryan Seacrest’s amazing red carpet patter. Some highlights:

  • ‘I’m peering inside Michelle Williams’ vehicle.’
  • To Hailee Steinfeld: ‘Were you always this grown up?’
  • ‘Hello Baps, I’m Ryan, nice to see you.’

Meanwhile, Armie Hammer is winning at suave:

11:35pm – More invaluable insights from our man Ryan. Apparently Blue Valentine is not suitable for Michelle William’s five-year-old daughter.

11:45pm – All the celebs seem to be tweeting this year (HOMG SO 2011), which at least gives Ryan something to talk about. Elsewhere, Kelly Osbourne and a woman with a very pointy face are discussing how boring Florence from off of the Machine is.

11:56pm – Geoffrey Rush has arrived but his hair hasn’t.


12:00am – It’s February 28th 2011 and Kevin Spacey is still a cunt.

12:09am – The urinals at Soho House are absolutely epic. Each flush consists of ONE GALLON of water. ONE GALLON. It almost makes up for all the trendy media types who think it’s acceptable to unload half a pint of drool into the sink while they wash their hands.

12:14am – An extract from the hastily-prepared Soho House ‘Oscar Party Menu’:

Cheeseburger £11.00

This is an expensive cheeseburger.

12:21amThis is making me laugh.

12:30am – Picturehouse Podcast hosts and friends of Ultra Culture, Sam Clements and Simon Renshaw are ‘videocasting’ throughout the night RIGHT HERE and you should watch because they’re funny and that. And they’ve got guests like The Incredible Suit (pictured above, smiling maniacally).

12:46am – So I was ABSOLUTELY BANG ON about Christian Bale’s ludicrous accent. What a man, what a man.

12:53am – Amazing ‘fun facts’ on E!. Christian Bale met his wife when she was his assistant or something.

12:58am – Here’s a video of where I am if you’re mad enough to care.


1:00am – The show should be starting any moment now. I’m quite excited. Ryan Seacrest informs me that ‘the world is watching’.

1:08am – .gif of the night so far…

1:10am – I’ve just found out we have a tab at the Soho House bar. That £11 cheeseburger will be mine before the night is out.

1:19am – So it looks like the show actually kicks off at 1:30am, which is making this half hour of red carpet repeats feel a bit slow.

1:24am – News of the World critic Robbie Collin looks hilariously oversized on the Sky Movies discussion panel. They missed a trick by not sitting him next to tiny Alex Zane though. It would’ve been like Twins.

1:27am – I just ordered the cheeseburger. The night is going well.

1:30am – The show is about to start. I’m so excited about Alex Zane going away for half an hour.

1:35am – So Anne Hathaway and James Franco’s opening video (see left) is vaguely funny, if a little route one. Anne Hathaway’s joke about the microphones in The King’s Speech being quite big is almost as funny as the joke in Wall Street 2 about mobile phones in the 80s being quite big.

1:38am – Why are they in Back to the Future?

1:40am – Personally I liked Anne Hathaway’s performance in Love and Other Drugs.

1:42am – It’s all feeling a little stilted. They’re doing an ironic ‘Hi Mum’ bit. The atmosphere at Soho House is one of disappointment and cheeseburger-anticipation.

1:43am – Someone should have shown Hathaway and Franco today’s brilliant Oscar vlog from Billy Eichner. It’s a masterclass is Oscar-based ROFLs…

You might remember Mr. Eichner from his equally brilliant coverage of last year’s Oscars.

1:48am – LOL Wally Fister.

1:52am – IT’S HERE! SO HAPPY RIGHT NOW!

1:57am – I’ve had my first bite and I can confirm that it’s a nice cheeseburger. Not £11 nice, but nice all the same. The chips are too salty though. Oh, and Melissa Leo won Best Supporting Actor as if anyone cares.


2:07am – I have nommed the burger. I’d give it a 6/10.

2:08am – Lee Unkrich ‘can’t believe’ he’s accepting the award for Best Animated Feature. Because it’s not like him and EVERY OTHER PERSON ON THE PLANET knew it was going to win or anything. Also, Justin Timberlake has set the Obvious Bar pretty high with jokes about Banksy and iPhones within a single introduction. You’d think he could at least mention Egypt.

2:17am – Sorkin does a typically charming speech but gets played off midway through giving David Fincher a verbal handjob. The King’s Speech writer David Seidler unjustly takes home Best Original Screenplay, where ‘original’ here means ‘exactly the same as every other film ever’. Still, nice speech.

2:27am – Anne Hathaway sung. Russell Brand did a funny.

2:31am – It had to happen…

2:32am – Tumblrite DirkDigglr points out the A-BLOODY-MAZING work taking place on Kirk Douglas’ Wikipedia entry (see right).

2:35am – I’m popping to the loo. Let me know if I miss anything. Apart from this bloody Dustin Hoffman Sky Atlantic ad obviously.

2:44am – This is pretty exciting…

2:56am The Wolfman takes home makeup, which is fair enough. I think I’m the only person who quite liked that film.


3:00am – Christ, it’s 3am.

3:01am – They’re asking ‘the man on the street’ what his favourite movie songs are. Black people seem to like rap music and white people seem to like folk music.

3:02am – Kevin Spacey IS STILL A MASSIVE TWAT.

3:07am – Best Original Song Round-up:

– Randy Newman doesn’t look anything like I thought he did.
– Zachary Levi looks exactly like I thought he did.

3:12am – Someone’s drawn facial hair on Alex Zane.

3:13am – James Franco and Anne Hathaway really aren’t very good.

3:17am – Some guy called Luke Matheny wins Best Live Action Short and also the night with an effortlessly charming speech and the best opening line ever:

‘I should have got a haircut.’

3:22am – Inside Job beats Exit Through the Gift Shop. But it’s not just a win for Inside Job, it’s a win for mediocre, smug, forgettable documentaries everywhere.

3:28am – Billy Crystal gathers a few chuckles.

3:33amInception wins yet another award that won’t be on the homepage of BBC News tomorrow morning. Visual effects guy FINALLY makes the night’s first ‘is this a dream like in Inception?’ joke.

3:42am – I’m pretty sure Jennifer Hudson just introduced ‘A.R. Walkman’.

3:47am – Gwyneth Paltrow sings her little heart out but Randy Newman takes home the prize. He looks a bit like John Goodman’s spritely cousin.

3:52am – Celine Dion is here. At the ceremony, not at Soho House. Not that either makes much sense given that it’s TWENTY BLOODY ELEVEN.


4:00am – We’re on the home straight now. Just a few prizes for The King’s Speech left to go and then we can all go home and forget it ever happened.

4:04am – Someone dial 911. David Fincher just got robbed.

4:16am – Portman wins.

4:23am – Firth wins.

4:26am – Typically beautiful speech from the man who nonetheless didn’t deserve to beat Jesse Eisenberg.

4:29am – Just Best Picture to go. If you need a reminder of the nominees, here’s my rundown.

4:36amThe King’s Speech wins. Aaaaaaand we’re done. It’s been fun if slightly lacklustre show but (I think we can all agree) A RUDDY MARVELLOUS LIVEBLOGGING EXPERIENCE. See you all next year!

P.S. This is what Shaftesbury Avenue looks like at 5am – creepy.