Diablo Cody’s Oscar weekend
Somehow, I just won an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. At the time of this writing, I have been in possession of the golden icon for less than 48 hours. My captors at EW have (kindly) asked me to write a column summarizing my Oscar weekend. I apologize for any incoherence, dementia, temporal confusion, or tonal inconsistency, as I am still trying to process this event. That said, let’s go to Hollywood!
Friday: I drive to the Dior boutique in Beverly Hills to see my Oscar gown for the first time. Since I’m no longer permitted to dress myself, the Frock of Overexposure has been chosen by my studio-approved stylist. Upon arriving at Dior, I am shoehorned into a beautiful dress that evokes butterscotch, leopards, and Jesus. It is totally mega-swish. I ask if I can have the itty-bitty side buttons replaced with a convenient Velcro closure, and am met with shocked silence.
Friday night: Even though I have an apartment in the yuppie-choked wilderness of Laurel Canyon, I venture below Sunset and check into a hotel. It seems like the thing to do. There is an insane amount of porn available for purchase on TV, but a surprisingly limited selection of legit theatrical releases. It’s like you have two choices: (a) Good Luck Chuck or (b) 87 movies in which someone inevitably spits on their fingers.
Saturday afternoon: 2008 Film Independent’s Spirit Awards in Santa Monica. I win, am thrilled with said win, and use the opportunity to shriek ”motherf—er” on live television. This act is a direct response to a half-serious dare posed by Jason Reitman moments before the ceremony begins. The food at the Spirits reminds me of an unpleasant picnic, but booze flows as freely as the tears of the IFC censors.
Sunday morning: Five people arrive at my hotel room. One to coat my fingernails with death-proof acrylic, one to sand my hooves, one to make sure I get the dress on properly, one to prep my face for the merciless HD telecast, and one to make my self-cut, home-dyed hair look pretty. At one point, they’re all on me at once, assessing their respective sectors with identical furrowed brows. Then the dress comes on, and it’s slit so high you can see my utilitarian flesh-colored thong. Unfortunately, this is the Oscars and not a stripper convention. (I’ve been to both!) The stylist’s assistant begins stitching the slit while the makeup artist frantically sponges concealer onto my scraped knees and bruised calves. I am not merely flawed; I am one giant flaw that has manifested itself as an ambulatory being.
Sunday, 3:30: We’re creeping toward ecstasy in our DiCaprio-approved eco limo. There are throngs of sign-wielding protesters on Highland Avenue who would like us to know, among other things, that HOLLYWOOD IS FULL OF PHONIES PROFITING FROM SIN. When we arrive at the Kodak Theatre, my manager spots me and says, “Hey! Did you hear we’re phonies profiting from sin?”
Sunday, 4:30: I’m drinking a pink cocktail called The Envelope, Please in the lobby of the Kodak. I am not remotely scared, and by that I mean I am petrified. An usher tries to bully me and my date into our seats early, and I almost punch him. No one gets between me and an open bar. I’m going to require about five more Envelopes, a Patrón chaser, and perhaps some donkey steroids. General anesthesia, maybe. There are a lot of plastic surgery enthusiasts here; does anyone have a drip?
Sunday, 5:30: The show begins. Refer to your TiVo.
Sunday, 8:25: Han Solo gives me an Oscar. I get something stuck in my eye and am widely misinterpreted as weeping. Yeah, like I would cry in that situation. You punks obviously don’t know me. I’m tough. I would never break into ragged sobs on live television, and I would also never run off stage immediately afterward and blubber in front of the entire production crew and Helen Mirren.
Sunday (Earth time has ceased to exist): I’m being herded down a corridor into a press room. I pass a beaming Daniel Day-Lewis, who congratulates me. I almost bust out my Daniel Plainview impression, but reason prevails. For once.
So that’s how it happened. There were parties afterward — including the famed Governors Ball where chocolate Oscars were symbolically gobbled by the empty-handed — but I don’t remember much of it. I know I ended the night surrounded by the people I love, snapping endless photos of my friends gripping the statuette. (I highly recommend this experience.) Now I’m planning to go back to work and most likely squander any credibility I may have just earned. That’s cool with me. I’ve got this shiny gold thing on my desk, and for once it ain’t a Michelob tallboy.