The 81st Academy Awards were held tonight, and Star Trek was all over the place, albeit indirectly. For starters, a few Trek alumni walked home with a golden statuette. Not only that, but several Trek veterans were on hand to co-present a few awards. Oh, and then there’s the fact that the show’s orchestra was conducted by the man who wrote the score this year’s Star Trek. Check it out below.
Trek vets win the Button gold
For those of you who don’t remember our report from January, the Academy nominated ten individual Trek vets this year (I know I said nine before, that was a mistake, sorry). Of those ten, three walked away with the Oscar, all for their work on Paramount’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Veteran Trek effects supervisor Craig Barron and Star Trek 2009 special effects coordinator Burt Dalton both won in the Visual Effects category and Star Trek: The Undiscovered Country makeup effects designer Greg Cannom won in the Makeup category.
(L-R) Visual effects artists Burt Dalton, Craig Barron, Eric Barba and Steve Preeg accept the Best Visual Effects award for “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Makeup Artist Greg Cannom accepts the award for Best Makeup award for “Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
More Trek vets at the Oscars
The Oscars introduced a new presentation format for the acting categories this year. Rather than simply having the previous year’s winner of a category present all the nominees of that category, this year they had five past Oscar-winners co-presenting, with each introducing one of this year’s nominees. Whoopi Goldberg (TNG’s Guinan) was among the five actresses who presented this year’s nominees in the Best Supporting Actress category (having won in the same category for Ghost back in 1991). Goldberg introduced nominee Amy Adams (Doubt), explaining Adams’ role and why she was being nominated. Joel Grey (Caylem in VOY’s “Resistance”) did the same thing for Josh Brolin (Milk) in the Best Supporting Actor category, having won that Oscar himself back in 1973 for Cabaret.
Goldberg, second from left, presents Best Supporting Actress award
Grey , far left, presents Best Supporting Actor award
Although Frank Langella (Minister Jaro Essa on DS9) lost the Best Actor Oscar to Sean Penn for Milk, the Frost/Nixon nominee received some special attention from host Hugh Jackman early in the show. This culminated in Jackman, tired from the recent dance number, momentarily sitting on Langella’s lap. Another Oscar-nominated Trek acting alum who was somewhere in the audience was Virginia Madsen (Kellin in VOY’s “Unforgettable”). Also in the audience was Wrath of Khan computer graphics artist Ed Catmull, the recipient of the Academy’s Gordon E. Sawyer Award.
Jackman sits on Langella’s lap
Gordon E. Sawyer Award recipient Ed Catmull at the 81st Academy Awards’ Scientific And Technical Awards ceremony (held February 7th)
Trek music at the Oscars + Trek vets In Memoriam
Conducting the music throughout the entire ceremony was Michael Giacchino, the composer who recently scored the music for 2009’s Star Trek. Giacchino at one point received a special shout-out from Hugh Jackman just before he began conducting a special showcase featuring excerpts from the five film scores that were nominated in the Original Score category. Giacchino’s orchestra also played a brief ‘sting’ of the original Star Trek theme earlier the show.
The Academy’s In Memoriam sequence — presented to us with a camera annoyingly hovering around the stage as the names scrolled by on various screens — featured a few of the Trek vets who died in the past year. The first was Star Trek IV composer Leonard Rosenman, himself a winner of two Oscars. He was shortly followed by Khan actor Ricardo Montalban, who was practically a shoe-in for the reel. One of the more surprising inclusions was that of character actor Robert DoQui, who played Nogga in the DS9 episode “Sons of Mogh.”
This video clip shows both the musical sting and an appearance by Giacchino, along with the Trek vets being remembered. (thanks Kelvington)
No Star Trek 2009 preview
At the end of the broadcast, there were a number of clips from upcoming movies for 2009, including a few Summer tent poles, however Paramount’s big two (Star Trek and Transformers) were not in the mix.