Academy Awards

The Oscar gods were good to artists over 50 on Sunday with Birdman director Alejandro G. Iñárritu,  Whiplash star J.K. Simmons and Julianne Moore of Still Alice taking home top awards, plus a surprise appearance by 79-year-old acting icon Julie Andrews brought the star-studded audience to its feet.
The most nominated actress in Oscar history, Meryl Streep, did not take home a fourth Academy Award Sunday night, but she looked every bit a winner in an evening suit that was a stand out in a crowd of  extravagant ball gowns. As the graphic below demonstrates, Streep's style has evolved since her first nomination in 1978. She attended the ceremony 18 of the 19 times she was nominated, missing the festivities in 1991 when she was pregnant with her fourth child.
As a Broadway producer, Martin Richards had a string of successes, including Sweeney Todd, which won eight Tony awards in 1979, and Grand Hotel, which won five a decade later. But the project that Richards, who died on Nov. 26 at age 80 in New York City, will be best remembered for is bringing the stage musical Chicago to the big screen, where it grossed $307 million worldwide and won the 2003 Oscar for best picture, in addition to a best supporting actress statuette for Catherine Zeta-Jones.
            Every year my extended family and I have a nationwide Academy Awards Pick 'em. We sit through the ceremony, dutifully checking off actual winners versus our predictions, and then we honor the most accurate prognosticator with congratulatory e-mails.
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