The Review/ Feature/
Want to bet that the Oscars will be boring?
Prop bets will keep you occupied until Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway give it a second go
As a reader of The Review, we understand that you’re a sophisticated cinephile with an encyclopaedic knowledge of Oscars history who — at a minimum — makes a point of watching every Best Short Film (Animated) nominee and has perversely strong opinions about who should win the award for Best Sound Mixing.
But what you’ve likely forgotten is that the Oscars can be boring. Even though Moonlight took home Best Picture (arguably the most exciting thing to ever happen at the Oscars), last year’s ceremony had the worst TV ratings in nine years, and Chrissy Teigen was caught sleeping in the crowd. Or ask your friends, who feel their tastes are not represented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (no Jumanji? No Daddy's Home 2?). So you have to throw a party, on a Sunday (the most underappreciated school night, and the Oscars always run long), spend money on snacks (vegan and gluten-free options are essential), watch the dog-and-pony red carpet show. And you absolutely have to gamble.
If an Oscar pool no longer seems like enough, you’ve got prop bets too. Below are some suggestions (made with a little help from our friends at TIFF Long Take) — a simple starting point for you and your Oscar party. So please add more, and (try to) enjoy the show.
How It Works
There is no limit to the number of players that can participate. Each participant draws a number out of a hat to determine the order of selection. Once the order is determined, players choose from a list of scenarios that they would like to guess on. No two players can select the same scenario. Each scenario has a point value associated with it. A player receives pre-determined points based on the likelihood that the scenario will unfold on Oscar night. The goal is to stay awake, stay reasonably sober, and to have the highest number of points at the end of the 90th Academy Awards.
The Prop Bets
— All Best Actress nominees wear black. (300 pts)
— Sufjan Stevens will wear either a floral print or will arrive on a bicycle made of recycled tuba parts. (400 pts)
— Jimmy Kimmel will venture into the crowd during the show at least five times. (100 pts)
— Kimmel's opening monologue will address harassment within the first two sentences. (150 pts)
— Donald Trump will be mentioned at least four times in the opening monologue. (300 pts)
— Jimmy Kimmel and Seth Rogen will re-enact a version of the Call Me By Your Name peach scene. (400 points)
— “Oprah for President” is mentioned at least once. (200 pts)
— James Franco and Casey Affleck will NOT be in attendance. (0.0005 points)
— A higher power will be thanked by award winners at least six times. (200 pts)
— Both the Best Actress and Supporting Actress winners reference #MeToo or #TimesUp. (150 pts)
— The Shape of Water will win at least five awards. (250 pts)
— There will be at least three standing ovations. (100 pts)
— The two Solos (Harrison Ford and Alden Ehrenreich) will make an onstage appearance together. (400 pts)
— At least six acceptance speeches will be interrupted by the “get off the stage music.” (200 pts)
— Confirmed presenter Dave Chappelle will pull out his vape pen. (150 points)
— Mahershala Ali will say something to emotionally devastate you. (100 points)
— Someone will mispronounce Saoirse Ronan. (100 points)
— Viola Davis will speak truth. (100 points)
— Confirmed presenter Laura Dern will go off script. (100 points)
— Daniel Kaluuya will thank the TSA. (300 points)
— Gael García Bernal’s mic will be much lower than Natalia LaFourcade’s and Miguel’s during their performance of “Remember Me.” (150 points)
— Kumail Nanjiani will raise his left eyebrow at least twice. (100 points)
— At least 10 people will be on stage to accept Best Picture. (250 pts)
— The Best Picture presenter will reference last year’s mix-up. (200 pts)
— Frances McDormand will smile on camera (must be sincere). (500 points)
— Kimmel will be unjustifiably booed at least twice. (200 points)
— The show will end no later than 11pm EST. (800 pts)