Oscar 'trophy girls' replaced onstage by film students
05:00 AM, Feb 22, 2013
The 85th Academy Awards won’t have the traditional Oscar “trophy girls” of award shows past carrying the trophy to the podium.
This year they have been replaced by aspiring film students.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and MTV’s 24-hour college network, mtvU, have chosen six aspiring filmmakers from a nationwide contest to deliver Oscar statuettes to ceremony presenters at Sunday’s show.
Craig Zadan and Neil Meron say the change is part of an overhaul of the show they undertook as first -time producers.
“There was some sort of ’50s mentality to how we saw the trophies being presented to the actors, it was the bombshell babe who would bring it out,” says Meron. “And we thought, adding to its current relevance, couldn’t this be sort of a torch-passing representation where this younger, passionate generation of filmmakers are the ones on the stage?”
“We’re trying to blow the dust off these institutions that people haven’t normally given a lot of thought to,” he adds.
Oscar host Seth MacFarlane was immediately on board with the change.
“I actually felt it was a great idea,” MacFarlane says. “It was the kind of thing that when I was in college I would have thought was really cool. And it sends a really good message.”
The winners of the contest and 85th Oscar trophy presenters are:
* ChaRon Brabham SUNY Potsdam (N.Y.) Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.
* Jennifer Brofer University of Texas at Austin Hometown: Austin, Tex.
* Abe Diaz DePaul University (Ill.) Hometown: Duluth, Minn.
* Hearin Ko Emerson College (Mass.) Hometown: Shanghai, China
* Tatenda Mbudzi UCLA (Calif.) Hometown: Harare, Zimbabwe
* AJ Young (pictured above) Columbia College Chicago (Ill.) Hometown: Mesa, Ariz.
The contest was open to college students across the country and required them to submit a video responding to the question “How will you contribute to the future of movies?” The winners’ videos can be seen at http://bit.ly/OscarExp13
The students have also been treated to film industry experiences including a visit to the AMPAS library to see its memorabilia collection, a studio tour and a meet-and-greet with this year’s Oscar nominees in the Short Film category.