Everything you need to know about the Oscars


So, the Oscars are on Sunday, which means that your friends, family, co-workers, acquaintances, and strangers will try to talk to you about the language in Django Unchained while you're in an elevator somewhere. Things are going to get uncomfortable.

In case you aren't a pretentious hack who digested all of this culture because of a demented belief that it makes you a better, more relatable person, here's everything you need to know about the upcoming Academy Awards.

The Show

It starts at 8:30 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. It'll air on ABC, where the red carpet show starts at 4 p.m in some select regions, but goes national at 7. At some point, after all the awards are doled out, it's hypothesized that the show might end so that we can all get an hour or two of sleep before work on Monday.

The Host

Oscars host Seth MacFarlane is the man behind Family Guy. He's also responsible for Ted (eh) and the Comedy Central Roast of David Hasselhoff. And Donald Trump. And Charlie Sheen. MacFarlane is nominated for Best Original Song this year and was named by Barbara Walters as one of the 10 most fascinating people of 2012. People have watched this video nearly 70 million times and it's all his fault. This is his first time hosting and, really, he could do the whole show on bath salts and probably be more impressive than James Franco.

Adele Is Performing

Say what you will about the Academy's lavish, self-aggrandizing night of the year, but any excuse to get everyone's favorite British songstress on stage to perform on live television is a worthwhile cause.

Russell Crowe Is Performing

So make sure that you're familiar with the mute button's placement on your remote. He'll be a part of a big musical number to start the show with the rest of the Les Mis cast, Jennifer Hudson doing Dreamgirls and Catherine Zeta-Jones doing Chicago.

Controversial Talking Points

  • The Ben Affleck Snub
    • Ben Affleck—that guy from Gigli that used to go by "Matt Damon's Sidekick"—has turned out to be one hell of a director. He helmed The Town, the criminally underrated Gone Baby Gone, and now Argo, for which he won a Golden Globe this year. The Academy didn't nominate Affleck in the Best Directing category, which has caused a buzz in Hollywood as the year's biggest snub.
  • Language in Django Unchained
  • Anne Hathaway's Insufferability
    • It seems that most people—to one degree or another—find Anne Hathaway to be pretty insufferable. Her rambling award speeches and last year's Oscars don't help much, either. She's looking to sweep the awards circuit this year and likely will because she killed it in Les Mis, specifically by nailing "I Dreamed a Dream." Everything you need to know about Hathaway is contained in this single parody video:
  • Torture in Zero Dark Thirty
    • You can debate the merits and humanity of torture, but also be sure to thoroughly enjoy the greatest torture joke ever, thanks to Amy Poehler at this year's Golden Globes (skip to 2:30).
  • Russell Crowe's Singing in Les Misérables

Best Picture Nominees


Rotten Tomatoes rating: 93

Box Office: $3.9 million


Rotten Tomatoes rating: 96

Box Office: $126.8 million

Beasts of the Southern Wild

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 86

Box Office: $12.3 million

Django Unchained

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 89

Box Office: $157 million

Les Misérables

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 70

Box Office: $145.5 million

Life of Pi

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 88

Box Office: $110.9 million


Rotten Tomatoes rating: 89

Box Office: $176.2 million

Silver Linings Playbook

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 92

Box Office: $98.6 million

Interesting fact: The most attractive any one person has ever been is when Jennifer Lawrence rattles off Phillies stats in this film. It's true. Look it up.

Zero Dark Thirty

Rotten Tomatoes rating: 94

Box Office: $87.9 million

Best Director Nominees

  • Michael Haneke - Amour
  • Ang Lee - Life of Pi
  • David O. Russell - Silver Linings Playbook
  • Steven Spielberg - Lincoln
  • Behn Zeitlin - Beasts of the Southern Wild

Best Actress Nominees

  • Jessica Chastain - Zero Dark Thirty (Won Golden Globe)
  • Jennifer Lawrence - Silver Linings Playbook (Won Golden Globe and SAG award)
  • Emmanuelle Riva - Amour
  • Quvanzhané Wallis - Beasts of the Southern Wild
  • Naomi Watts - The Impossible

Best Actor Nominees

  • Bradley Cooper - Silver Linings Playbook
  • Daniel Day-Lewis - Lincoln (Won Golden Globe and SAG award)
  • Hugh Jackman - Les Misérables (Won Golden Globe)
  • Jaquin Phoenix - The Master
  • Denzel Washington - Flight

Best Supporting Actor Nominees

  • Alan Arkin - Argo
  • Robert De Niro - Silver Linings Playbook
  • Tommy Lee Jones - Lincoln (Won SAG award)
  • Phillip Seymour Hoffman - The Master
  • Christoph Waltz - Django Unchained (Won Golden Globe)

Best Supporting Actress Nominees

  • Amy Adams - The Master
  • Sally Field - Lincoln
  • Anne Hathaway - Les Misérables (Won Golden Globe and SAG award)
  • Helen Hunt - The Sessions
  • Jacki Weaver - Silver Linings Playbook

Vegas Favorites (Courtesy of Johnny Avello of Wynn Las Vegas)

  • Best Picture - Lincoln (1 to 2)
  • Best Director - Steven Spielberg (2 to 5)
  • Best Actor - Daniel Day-Lewis (1 to 9)
  • Best Actress - Jennifer Lawrence (Even)
  • Best Supporting Actress - Anne Hathaway (1 to 3)
  • Best Supporting Actor - Tommy Lee Jones (4 to 5)

Wolfgang Puck's Feast

After the show finally ends around 3 a.m., 1,600 important people/people who know important people will attend the Governors Ball, where Wolfgang Puck's multi-course feast awaits.

Your Oscar Ballot

Vulture is running a contest. Fill out a ballot and—if you select more correct winners than anyone else—win $500.