A night at the CCMAs

Posted by · 10:11 am · January 15th, 2011

It was a good time.  The evening started off with a bit of a surprise as “The Fighter” took in the award for Best Ensemble.  I happened to be seated with Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Melissa Leo, David O. Russell and, a real treat, Jack McGee, so it was an exciting pop to start things off.  No one at that table expected to win that award so they were quite exhilarated.

Speaking of Bale, I thought he gave the night’s best speech, a touching, loose monologue that is certain to be repeated throughout the season.  And watching Hailee Steinfeld accept for Best Young Actor/Actress, I couldn’t help but picture her with an Oscar in her hand.  Despite Melissa Leo’s strong showing so far, the Best Supporting Actress category is still somewhat up in the air, I think (which Anne and I discussed in yesterday’s podcast).

I bounced around here and there during the commercial breaks.  Naturally the first thing Darren Aronofsky said when he saw me was, “I finally made your list!  Next time you’ll listen to me.”  Maybe there’s a future in Oscar prognostication for him.  I also exchanged words with Colin Firth for the first time since our lengthy sit-down in Telluride.  Charming as ever.  But most exciting for me?  Honestly?  Meeting Ice Cube.  No, seriously.

Before the show I spoke at length with Michael Arndt once again, who’ll be taking some time to work on original projects in the near future, galvanized by his Pixar experience but happy to move to the next stage.  He’s also quite content sitting back and watching Aaron Sorkin win pretty much every adapted screenplay award in site.  No pressure.  And, to hear it from him, who better to lose to?  “He made movies about smart people safe again,” he told me.

Christopher Nolan’s “Inception” was the big winner of the evening, though you wouldn’t know it since five of its six wins weren’t televised beyond the montage of below-the-line victors.  “The Social Network” won the expected trio of top honors (Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay), but it was “The Fighter,” I think, that benefited from the exposure as McGee, Bale and Leo really nailed their acceptance speeches.

Oh, speaking of Leo, the cameraman asked her if she was going to stay seated for the next award when Best Supporting Actress was coming up, reminding her that her category was on the way.  Amy Adams leaned over to her and said, “When I won for ‘Junebug,’ they said the same thing to me.  That’s how I know you’re winning!”  Of course, I think all cameramen do the same for the other nominees, but it was a funny moment nevertheless.

And Natalie Portman’s baby bump was, naturally, a major topic of discussion.  Her speech was really warm and nicely conveyed as well.

Anyway, like I said, a good night.  The BFCA isn’t shy about exerting itself as THE competition for the HFPA’s Golden Globes (which happen Sunday night).  When I got home to watch the production on VH1, I was rather impressed.  It was a nice mixture of extravagance and intimacy.  It was also my chance to catch up on Matt Damon’s nicely delivered speech in acceptance of the Joel Siegel Award, as I was in the lobby getting a real drink at the time.  But I have to admit, even if the point was to keep things light, the whole Jimmy Kimmel thing was a bit of an unfortunate way to go about something quite serious (i.e. Damon’s work with water.org).

The night’s winners have been noted by Guy in his analysis.  Onward to the rest of the season…

[Photo: BFCA]

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42 responses so far

  • 1 1-15-2011 at 10:36 am

    the other mike said...

    Ll Cool J, Ice Cube? kris let the younger ones on here know about these legends man. And with Ice Cube it ain’t even just music. Friday? one of those movies that never gets old.

  • 2 1-15-2011 at 10:36 am

    Kevin K. said...

    Agreed on Bale. The guy is charming beyond measure. Gald to see him as goofy and jovial as ever these days. Really happy for him and it will be awesome to see Batman get on the Kodak stage and accept his Oscar.

    Quick trivia question, if Bale wins the Oscar, that makes two actors who have played Batman Oscar winners (Christian Bale and George Clooney). Has any other actor who has played a superhero gone on to win an Oscar afterwards? There are some previous winners who played superheroes after winning, but Clooney aside, has anyone ever gone from superhero to Oscar?

  • 3 1-15-2011 at 10:59 am

    Paul Outlaw said...

    Does Sean Connery count?

  • 4 1-15-2011 at 11:05 am

    Katie said...

    What kind of Real Drink did you get?

    (Isn’t it that stupid that of all the things I’m curious about, that’s it?)

  • 5 1-15-2011 at 11:14 am

    americanrequeim said...

    I can see that oscar to kris. If it has to be a woman from the fighter Im still in Amy Adam’s camp.

  • 6 1-15-2011 at 11:15 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Something with rum in it, Katie.

  • 7 1-15-2011 at 11:16 am

    John said...

    Were was Wahlberg? I’m surprised he wasn’t there.

  • 8 1-15-2011 at 11:23 am

    Maxim said...

    Kris, FYI the Best Score Category for BFCA mention at the Circuit is royally screwed up.

  • 9 1-15-2011 at 11:28 am

    Maxim said...

    You also might wan to add the Denver Film Critics to the Circuit as they have recently announced their nominees.

  • 10 1-15-2011 at 11:29 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    What’s screwed up about it? I adjusted the Inception error.

  • 11 1-15-2011 at 11:30 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Denver critics were already added, FYI.

  • 12 1-15-2011 at 11:36 am

    red_wine said...

    Michael Arndt shouldn’t be content in sitting back and watching Sorkin win. Sorkin wrote a very good screenplay but IMO, Arndt wrote the more beautiful and humane of the two screenplays and would be my personal pick out of all the screenplays in Oscar contention.

  • 13 1-15-2011 at 11:38 am

    JJ1 said...

    Geez, Maxim.

    Kris, I also thought Bale gave, far and away, the best speech.

    And do you have any info on vote total ‘leaks’ that some other sites are mentioning; that Portman barely won, etc.. ?

  • 14 1-15-2011 at 11:42 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    I’ve heard nothing about that. They used to reveal the totals but then they stopped.

  • 15 1-15-2011 at 11:43 am

    Silencio said...

    So you gotta tell us what you and Cube talked about…

  • 16 1-15-2011 at 11:44 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    I also see no sites reporting it, by the way.

  • 17 1-15-2011 at 11:44 am

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Silencio: Boyz N the Hood and Quentin Tarantino.

  • 18 1-15-2011 at 11:48 am

    JJ1 said...

    Oh, sorry, “site” – awardsdaily. It’s in one of the forums. No link yet. So I suppose it could all be hot air.

  • 19 1-15-2011 at 11:57 am

    Maxim said...

    “What’s screwed up about it? I adjusted the Inception error.”

    I wasn’t referring to that, at the time I wrote my post it said: “Welcome to The Circuit. Here we keep track of the many (and there are many) awards shows, etc.”

    Weird. Anyway, I can see that it’s fixed now.

  • 20 1-15-2011 at 12:00 pm

    Alex in Movieland said...


    did Noomi Rapace attend the ceremony? Just curious… I’m more and more undecided about that 5th Best Actress nomination.

  • 21 1-15-2011 at 12:06 pm

    Maxim said...

    , “I finally made your list! Next time you’ll listen to me.”

    That’s right. “The Wolverine” for the win!

  • 22 1-15-2011 at 12:17 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    JJ: Oh…meh.

  • 23 1-15-2011 at 12:18 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Alex: Didn’t see her, but she might have been there.

  • 24 1-15-2011 at 12:36 pm

    Meli said...

    I’m happy for the attention given to The Fighter. I did like the film, and feel like it could easily be left eating the dust of those films getting the hardest promotional push.

  • 25 1-15-2011 at 12:48 pm

    Robert Hamer said...

    Anyone who rolls their eyes or dismisses Ice Cube’s status as an actor needs to watch that final scene in Boyz N the Hood.

  • 26 1-15-2011 at 12:50 pm

    JJ1 said...

    Kris, gotcha.

    Meli … I, too, am happy for The Fighter’s success last night. I think it’s a very good film; but being left in the dust, a bit, by True Grit, Black Swan, & The King’s Speech buzz-wise.

  • 27 1-15-2011 at 12:55 pm

    Graysmith said...

    Ice Cube.. Ice Cube.. That’s the guy from those Are We There Yet movies, right?


  • 28 1-15-2011 at 1:00 pm

    Graysmith said...

    Bale really sealed the deal with his speech. His (past) reputation as being overly serious and kind of difficult felt like the only thing that could be holding him back (i.e. the likeability factor) and he blew that away with such a lovely speech last night.

    Other than that, the only kind of “shocker” was The King’s Speech taking home Original Screenplay over Inception, especially when the latter later on won nearly every tech category. I mean, Inception beat The Social Network for Editing, and still The King’s Speech managed to beat it for screenplay.

  • 29 1-15-2011 at 3:52 pm

    DRM said...


    Why are you shocked by that? Inception’s actors even said they were confused by the script, so I would say the editing and directing are what kept it from being a mess.

  • 30 1-15-2011 at 3:53 pm

    Mike said...

    I don’t know why on earth The Fighter winning ensemble of The King’s Speech winning screenplay would come as shocks to anyone.

    Also, why the heck were Ice Cube and the Kardashians there.

  • 31 1-15-2011 at 4:02 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Fighter winning ensemble over Social Network is a legitimate surprise. Not a profound one, maybe, but a legitimate one.

  • 32 1-15-2011 at 4:24 pm

    JJ1 said...

    It’s funny. I watched the awards show last night with someone who isn’t craaaaazy into awards discussion. And when they were about to announce Best Ensemble Acting (and he’s seen The Socal Network, The Fighter, Kids are All Right, etc.), he said “Oh, that’s a no brainer … The Fighter”.

  • 33 1-15-2011 at 4:44 pm

    Mike said...

    Kris: It’s odd that you think it was a surprise. The Fighter seemed like the obvious frontrunner to me.

    Also, I can easily see The Social Network winning Best Original Score. Maybe the music branch wants to show that they’re hip and modern. That would put The Social Network’s win count at 5 (pic, director, screenplay, editing, score). And I really don’t think Inception will win more than two awards. Visual Effects and Sound Editing and that is it.

  • 34 1-15-2011 at 5:17 pm

    lENA said...

    Actually, I didnt think the Fighter should have won best ensemble. Each actor was playing to the camera, not each other .. Or maybe I don’t understand what they mean by ensemble. Well, at least it didn’t win best screen play. That cake scene was horrible

  • 35 1-15-2011 at 5:19 pm

    john t. said...

    I finally saw “The Fighter”, what a wonderfully gritty film. Also, I enjoyed how intimate & understated this movie is- the primary focus is always on the acting & the dialogue ( not many great shots or an over-embelished scenes).

    It was such a nice unexpected surprise to see Christian Bale loosen up and convey his heart and soul with his lovely acceptance speech. This is going to get him the Oscar.

    In the past couple of years , I enjoyed watching CCMA’s . This award show has nice pacing , it is actually entertaining , fun , a joy to watch.

  • 36 1-15-2011 at 5:48 pm

    Speaking English said...

    ***It’s funny. I watched the awards show last night with someone who isn’t craaaaazy into awards discussion. And when they were about to announce Best Ensemble Acting (and he’s seen The Socal Network, The Fighter, Kids are All Right, etc.), he said “Oh, that’s a no brainer … The Fighter”.***

    Makes sense to me. Out of all the nominees it is the one with the most expansive, and yes, “showy” ensemble. Mark Wahlberg, Christian Bale, Melissa Leo, Amy Adams, Jack McGee, the seven sisters, and so many more all create such jubilant, raucous energy on screen. “The Social Network” or “The King’s Speech” on the other hand are pretty limited to two or three characters.

  • 37 1-15-2011 at 6:32 pm

    Meli said...

    john t., I hope you’re right. I think the only way we won’t be hearing Bale’s acceptance speech at the Oscars is if Geoffrey Rush wins by a small margin. Wasn’t the deadline for vote submissions for the Oscars on Friday, though?

    Colin Firth’s speech last night was a thing of beauty, as well.

  • 38 1-15-2011 at 7:24 pm

    Aaron said...

    I really thought the men gave the best speeches last night. I was really impressed by both Christian Bale and Coln Firth…they were both very humble and gracious and I liked how they seemed to speak on the cuff, unlike other rehearsed-sounding speeches (cough Natalie Portman).

  • 39 1-15-2011 at 9:19 pm

    sosgemini said...

    Was I the only one bored to death by last night’s show? The show usually is a lot looser and even crazier than the Golden Globes but it felt like everyone took their meds last night and acted like this was their audition for the Oscars which made for boring as hell TV. :sigh:

  • 40 1-16-2011 at 4:25 am

    Dominik said...

    Nice article, Kris.

    And does anyone know if I can see some of the acceptance speeches on the internet? Would be especially charming to see Natalie Portman on the podium…oh wait, I guess I should just watch the Globes next night (they are broadcasted on german TV, the BFCA weren´t), she probably will deliver a very similar speech. ;-)

  • 41 1-16-2011 at 6:06 am

    ninja said...

    It`s completely unfortunate and downright stupid that Nolan`s wins weren`t televised. The guy is gorgeous to look at and is a superstar in his own right with a huge fandom.

    That said, I hope he wins something at the Oscars, Editing and/or Original Script since it`s a forgone colcusion that Picture and Director will go to unstoppable Fincher.

  • 42 1-16-2011 at 12:48 pm

    sp said...

    Christopher Nolan’s speech was televised. And, yes, he is stunning to look at . Also, Chris is incredibly cool & collected.