LOS ANGELES — The annual Academy Award nominees luncheon on Monday is a chance for this year’s Oscar hopefuls to come together for photos, hugs and congratulations.
The luncheon is a warm, feel-good, egalitarian affair where little-known first-time nominees in categories like best animated short get to rub shoulders and share tables with acting nominees like Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone.
The centerpiece of the event in Beverly Hills, California, is a class photo of the entire group of nominees. Nearly all of them usually attend, both as part of the Oscars experience and as part of their unspoken campaigns for votes.
Before the luncheon proper began, nominees including Cillian Murphy, a favorite for best actor for “Oppenheimer,” a favorite for best supporting actress for “The Holdovers,” made the rounds of media outlets whose reporters are set up in cabanas around the Beverly Hilton pool.
Steven Spielberg, nominated for best picture as a producer of “Maestro,” chatted with a small group on the patio.
Less famous nominees packed into the ballroom and posed for group pictures.
They’ll later be seated for a vegetarian menu of king oyster mushrooms and wild mushroom risotto.
The event is also a chance for the leadership of the Academy, including President Janet Yang to give speeches and address their prominent members in person.
She used last year’s luncheon to address what she called the Academy’s “inadequate” response to Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the previous year’s ceremony.
The leaders may address some serious issues this year, but it’s likely to have a lighter tone.
This year’s invited guests include director Christopher Nolan and stars Cillian Murphy, Robert Downey Jr. and Emily Blunt of ” Oppenheimer,” the most nominated film with 13 nominations and the favorite in many key categories.
Other top nominees include “The Holdovers,” “Killers of the Flower Moon” and “Poor Things.”
And while ” Barbie ” director Greta Gerwig and star Margot Robbie were snubbed in their main categories, both will be among the invitees – Gerwig as an original screenplay nominee, Robbie as a producer of a best picture nominee.
March 10 is Oscar Sunday! Watch the 2024 Oscars live on ABC.
Red carpet coverage starts at 1 p.m. ET 10 a.m. PT with “Countdown to Oscars: On The Red Carpet Live.” At 4 p.m. ET 1 p.m. PT, live coverage continues with “On The Red Carpet at the Oscars,” hosted by George Pennacchio with Roshumba Williams, Leslie Lopez and Rachel Brown.
The 96th Oscars, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, begins at 7 p.m. ET 4 p.m. PT, an hour earlier than past years.
The Oscars are followed by an all-new episode of “Abbott Elementary.”
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