2013 Oscars Live Blog: A Hollywood Celebration of Hollywood

Tonight marks the 85th annual Academy Awards, a ceremony that honors either the highest achievements in the art of cinema or the most rigorous politicking of the Hollywood elite, depending on one's level of cynicism. The host of tonight's event, Seth MacFarlane, seems to appreciate that balance, describing his roll as "part classy Master of Ceremonies and part Friars Club roaster." It's that blend of art and inside baseball that keeps cineasts returning to the Oscars every year, inspiring serious appreciation and drinking games in equal measure.
This year's nominees feature a fairly commendable mix of Oscar staples and more adventurous fare: front-runners like Argo and Lincoln play pretty squarely into the Academy's perception of The Importance of Movies, while other contenders like Zero Dark Thirty, Beasts of the Southern Wild, and Amour aren't afraid to challenge Hollywood conventions.



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