SHOW BITS: A tribute to the losers

Associated Press
Presenters Robert Downey Jr., left, and Jeremy Renner pose during the Oscars at the Dolby Theatre on Sunday Feb. 24, 2013, in Los Angeles. (Photo by John Shearer/Invision/AP)
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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Show Bits brings you the 85th annual Academy Awards in Los Angeles through the eyes of Associated Press journalists. Follow them on Twitter where available with the handles listed after each item.

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QUICKQUOTE: SETH MACFARLANE

"Now I can drink with abandon." — Seth MacFarlane after the final curtain on this year's Academy Awards show. He had nipped from a minibar-sized bottle of whiskey during the show.

— Sandy Cohen — https://www.twitter.com/apsandy

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MASTER-FUL EXIT

In recent years, everyone would head for the door as soon as the best picture winner — the last Oscar category in the show — was announced, leaving the winner with an empty room to thank.

This year, organizers hoped to get attendees to stick around until the end of the show for a closing performance from Seth MacFarlane and Kristin Chenoweth, which was dedicated to all the evening's Oscar losers.

"Ladies and gentleman, we ask that you remain in your seats after the last award for a very special closing number," a female announcer calmly announced during the show's final commercial break.

Well, one pair of "losers" weren't interested. "The Master" stars Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman bolted for the door at the beginning of the song.

— Derrik J. Lang — Twitter https://twitter.com/derrikjlang

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THANKING THE 'MOVIE GOD'

Ang Lee had his priorities in order when he gave one of his first thank you's to the "movie god."

The Taiwanese director pulled off a huge upset when he won an Academy Award for directing "Life of Pi." He beat out front-runner and two-time Oscar winner Steven Spielberg.

Lee also gave a shoutout to the shipwreck story's lead actor, Suraj Sharma, but didn't thank the rest of the cast by name.

"I cannot waste this time talking about them," he said sheepishly.

He did slip in a quick mention of his agent, his lawyer and of course his wife.

"I have to do that," he said.

— Hannah Dreier — Twitter https://twitter.com/hannahdreier

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THE AVENGERS REUNITE

Just like the superheroes they played in the movie, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Jeremy Renner and Samuel L. Jackson huddled together backstage to get a plan together and of course joke around.

Downey suggested the stars of "The Avengers" bow as they headed onstage to make Oscar presentations. Or perhaps curtsy.

When a show worker asked Jackson to stand still so he could be wired with a microphone, the actor faced a backstage wall and pretended he was being frisked by police.

To pass the time, the superheroes watched Melissa McCarthy and Paul Rudd from a backstage monitor.

Suddenly Ruffalo asked, "Did we miss our cue?"

"You want to go out there with them?" asked Jackson.

After presenting two awards, the actors returned backstage, where Downey quipped, "Avengers disassemble."

— Sandy Cohen — https://www.twitter.com/apsandy

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QUICKQUOTE: JENNIFER LAWRENCE

"You guys are just standing up because you feel bad that I fell." — Jennifer Lawrence acknowledging her standing ovation after being named winner of the lead actress Oscar.

— Christina Hoag.

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KRISTEN STEWART HOBBLED

Kristen Stewart ditched her crutches to hobble onstage as an Oscar presenter, appearing bored and disheveled in the process.

She and Daniel Radcliffe handled one of the less glamorous awards for production design. Stewart read her lines with a slouchy insouciance.

Just before going on, Stewart left a pair of crutches in the wings and apparently the backstage hairstylists didn't get ahold of her for a brushing. Her long brunette hair looked stringy.

The reaction on Twitter was swift and severe.

"Kristen stewart are you ok? And by that I mean where were the hash brownies before u got hit by bus (hash)bruise (hash)limp," tweeted comedian-actor David Spade.

Actor Joel McHale tweeted, "Kristen Stewart is limping because she sprained her ankle from being excessively disinterested."

Backstage, Stewart ran into supporting actress winner Anne Hathaway, who noted her crutches.

"I know, I'm an idiot," Stewart replied. "But congratulations!"

"Please tell me you're going on stage with those," Hathaway said, pointing to the crutches.

"Nope. I'm gonna hobble," said Stewart, explaining that she had stepped on glass.

— Beth Harris — https://www.twitter.com/bethharrisap

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TONYS OR OSCARS?

Did the Oscars intentionally turn into the Tonys?

All those song-and-dance numbers weren't lost on Twitter.

"Sucks for the actors at the Oscars who can't sing ... (hash)TONYS? (hash)HollywoodGoesBroadway," Nylon magazine tweeted after a tribute to the musical "Chicago."

"Am I watching the (hash)Oscars or the (hash)Tonys? Either way I'm happy:) lol," tweeted a belter herself, Lea Michele.

— Leanne Italie — Twitter https://twitter.com/litalie

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NOT A MOMENT TOO SOON

As soon as Adele stepped off the stage after singing the Oscar-winning theme from "Skyfall," she kicked off her sparkly Louboutin platforms.

"I'm sorry. (Forget) that," she said, flinging the shoes onto the floor. A stagehand quickly swooped them up.

"I'd pick them up but I can't bend over," she said, motioning toward her tight beaded dress.

— Sandy Cohen — https://www.twitter.com/APSandy .

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CELEBRITY SCHMOOZING

It was maybe the next best thing to being there.

Down the road from the Academy Awards, musicians and models found common schmoozing ground at the Elton John AIDS Foundation's Oscar viewing dinner in West Hollywood.

Lithe supermodel Naomi Campbell sat next to music mogul Quincy Jones then gripped hands and chatted with Steven Tyler and the party host himself, Elton John.

Bono, wearing his customary tinted shades, gleefully kissed Jones on the top of his head, then hugged statuesque model Petra Nemcova.

"Elton's a warrior on the HIV, AIDS scourge, since before anyone can remember," Bono told The Associated Press. "Like Bruce Springsteen is 'the Boss', Quincy is 'the President.' He is so unique. And Elton is both 'the king' AND 'the queen.'"

— Solvej Schou — Twitter https://www.twitter.com/Solvej_Schou

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DAVID ARQUETTE CRASHES OSCAR PRESS ROOM

Things got even more surreal for folks coming off the high of winning an Academy Award when they found a high-spirited David Arquette waiting backstage to interview them.

Nestled amid the rows of working press, the actor asked a series of non sequitur questions. He said he was covering the event for Sirius XM radio, which carries Howard Stern's show.

"Django Unchained" supporting actor Christoph Waltz was asked about the possibility of a black man being chosen pope.

Director John Kahrs, whose film "Paperman," won for animated short film, was asked what he thought of receiving condoms in his gift bag. Arquette told him he'd take them if Kahrs didn't want them.

Academy officials said they didn't hand out any gift bags.

"I guess I have a lot to learn," Arquette said when told that.

The actor says he decided to cover the event so he could get a view of entertainment reporting from the other side.

He also took the opportunity to make a pitch to Kahrs.

"I do lots of voices," he told the director, "so if you're ever looking ... "

— Hannah Dreier — Twitter https://twitter.com/hannahdreier

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BASSEY HITS IT OUTTA THE PARK

For all the sparkling young starlets and the edgy new host, it was none other than Dame Shirley Bassey who truly set the joint on fire early in the Oscar telecast.

The 76-year-old singer's rendition of the theme from "Goldfinger" — or, as she sang so memorably, "GoldfinGAH" — was a feel-good moment that won what was at the time the biggest ovation of the night.

Bassey, who recorded the song in the '60s to great acclaim, reprised it as part of the Academy's 50th anniversary tribute to the James Bond franchise.

On social networks, as people were debating vigorously how the telecast was going, there was no question as to how Bassey did: She was an unqualified hit.

Minutes after the performance, the singer and her song were trending on Twitter.

— Jocelyn Noveck — Twitter https://twitter.com/JocelynNoveckAP

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QUICKQUOTE: CHRISTOPH WALTZ

"Quentin writes poetry and I like poetry." — Supporting actor winner Christoph Waltz of "Django Unchained" about working with writer-director Quentin Tarantino.

— Beth Harris — https://www.twitter.com/bethharrisap

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MAYBE IT LOOKED EASY ...

Charlize Theron, Channing Tatum, Daniel Radcliffe and Joseph Gordon-Levitt were one big bundle of nerves before they took the stage for their opening song-and-dance numbers.

Radcliffe danced by himself. Theron dabbed at her eyes and Gordon-Levitt stood silently as Oscar host Seth MacFarlane delivered the Oscar show's opening monologue.

Then it was time to hit the stage.

"Thank God!" Theron said afterward as she let out a sigh of relief.

"You stepped on my dress," she told Tatum.

Radcliffe and Gordon-Levitt bear-hugged after their dance routine.

"We did all right! We did all right," they told each other.

"It felt good! How did it look?" Gordon-Levitt asked.

"Well done," Radcliffe told him.

— Sandy Cohen — http://www.twittermcom/APSandy

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QUICKQUOTE: BEN AFFLECK

"We don't expect to depart with anything but our integrity." — Ben Affleck, shunning the nominations his film "Argo" received.

— Beth Harris — https://www.twitter.com/bethharrisap

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AND THE FANS SAY ... 'ARGO'

The clear favorite among fans in the Oscar bleachers was "Argo."

The bleacher crowd forced actor-director Ben Affleck to stop an interview with their loud chants of "Ben! Ben! Ben!"

They gave the film's producer, George Clooney, similar treatment and lavished applause on supporting actor nominee Alan Arkin.

Perhaps the strongest sign of fans' love for the CIA thriller was when the group was polled for its choice for best picture before any actors hit the red carpet.

While the chanting was spirited for "Les Miserables" and some other films, it was clearly loudest for "Argo."

— Anthony McCartney — Twitter https://twitter.com/mccartneyAP

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JENNIFER BLEEPED

It's always fun to hear what Jennifer Lawrence has to say — even if you have to lip read because she's being bleeped.

The bleeping started early for the charmingly blunt Lawrence, a best actress nominee for "Silver Linings Playbook," as ABC silenced her cheeky red carpet response to actress Kristin Chenoweth.

The two were bonding over "Dance Moms," the Lifetime reality series, when Lawrence asked Chenoweth if she liked it too.

Chenoweth: "Is the pope Catholic?"

Lawrence: "... ?" (We can't print her reply here, but the reference was to something a bear does in the woods.)

— Jocelyn Noveck — Twitter https://twitter.com/JocelynNoveckAP

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AMY ADAMS SITTING PRETTY

To slide, plop or shimmy?

That's the dilemma that faced Amy Adams in her flowing Oscar de la Renta gown when she approached her front-row seat inside the Dolby Theatre before the Oscars began.

After greeting fellow nominee Phillip Seymour Hoffman in the row behind her with a big hug, "The Master" co-star tilted to her right side and sort of shimmied down into her seat.

While Jennifer Aniston and Samuel L. Jackson mingled with attendees nearby, Adams held court in her fluffy dove grey fabric cloud.

Across the aisle, Bradley Cooper rushed his mother to meet Jean Dujardin, who took home the best actor Oscar last year.

— Derrik J. Lang — Twitter https://twitter.com/derrikjlang

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JOAQUIN PHOENIX: THE GUY CAN MOVE

Joaquin Phoenix didn't waste any time getting into the Dolby Theatre, and the Oscar-nominated actor's dash across the red carpet didn't go unnoticed.

Red carpet host Chris Connelly heckled Phoenix, who has criticized the awards show, as he rushed by, saying he was setting new speed records.

Connelly then added, "You should be at the (NFL) combine," a reference to the athletic tests NFL recruits go through.

— Anthony McCartney — Twitter https://twitter.com/mccartneyAP

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