Robert De Niro probably doesn't suffer fools or give hollow complements. Again, that's why this new format is working for us, and apparently for the Oscar nominated stars, who are welling up at their introductions from prior Academy Award winners.
Win or not, they're all choking up.
And that makes for good TV (congrats on that, first-time Oscar producers Larry Mark and Bill Condon).
And speaking of that batting average: Sean Penn, our pick, just won the much-deserved trophy for best actor for "Milk." We figured that there would be the two places the Academy voters would reward "Milk," a drama about the life and murder of gay activist Harvey Milk that couldn't have proven more timely in this Prop 8 world. (Best actor and best original screenplay for Dustin Lance Black).
"You commie, homo-loving sons of guns," Penn said with a smirk.
He took the opportunity to talk about the Prop 8 proponents against gay marriage and the "signs of hate" that greeted attendees of the 81st Annual Academy Awards. He didn't specifically explain it, but if it's like every other award show, there are always some placard-wavers outside the venues damning everyone to hell for Hollywood's entertainment output, gay-friendly or otherwise.
We're thrilled with this win and for the exposure it will give to vital human rights issues.